Energy at School

Grades 3-5
Subjects: Science

*French Resources Included as Attachments


In this lesson, students are introduced to where energy comes from and explore how it’s used at school.

This is the first of three lessons to investigate school energy use and plan actions to promote energy conservation.  For more lesson ideas, visit FortisBC Energy Leaders

NB Curricular Connections

Science 3-5

  • Strand: Learning & Living Sustainable-Big Idea: Responsible and Sustainable Application

What You’ll Need


Read the Energy Backgrounder to prepare for student discussion and questions around forms and sources of energy.

Activity 1: Classroom energy hunt (20 minutes)

  • Provide each student with a copy of the Energy in our Classroom Student Handout. Have them use the back side of the handout to record notes and questions.
  • Have students explore the classroom to find at least five examples of energy being used. Have them record these in the first column on their handout.
  • Explain that this is a silent activity—students should use their observation skills to look and listen closely and consider possible questions while they look for evidence of energy.
  • Have students find a partner to share some of their examples of energy. Repeat with another partner.
  • Have students return to their seats and share examples as a class. Have one or two students record answers on the board.
  • As a class, discuss the idea that energy is all around us and we use it every day.

Activity 2: Exploring where energy comes from (20 minutes)

  • With a partner, have students fill in the second column beside each example, noting where the energy comes from.
  • Show the students the Energy and Earth Resources Slideshow.
  • Have students review their second columns and revise as necessary.
  • As a class, explore NB’s Energy Resource Map and discuss:
      • Where does the electricity to power our computers come from?
      • Where does the heat in our school come from?
      • Where do we get the fuel to power our vehicles?

Activity 3: Energy observations (to be completed over multiple classes or days)

  • Explain to students they will be investigating, through observation and data collection, how the school uses energy and resources that come from the Earth.
  • With students in pairs or groups, provide each with an Energy Observation Student Handout.
  • Review the questions as a class and provide students with tips and guidance for using observation skills (see Tips for Leading Energy Observations).
  • Assign students to certain areas of the school or certain questions and have them record these on their handout.
  • Provide enough time for students to complete their energy observations.


  • Collect the Energy in our Classroom Student Handout and assess for completion and understanding of different forms of energy.
  • Review the Energy Observation Student Handout for completion and accurate data collection.

Reflection Activity


Global Competencies


Activity downloaded from Energy at school | FortisBC – Energy Leaders