WindWise 2nd Edition

  • Introduction

    The WindWise introduction outlines the lessons below, and provides a short background on wind industry trends, concepts of wind power, challenges and prospects for wind, and more. Also learn about WindWise and national science standards.

     

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  • Unit 1. Energy Creation and Choices

  • Understanding Sources and Forms of Energy

    Students learn the difference between forms and sources of energy and that energy is useful to us because of its ability to change form.

    Subjects: Physical Science, Mathematics
    Listed in: energy conversion
     
  • Understanding Electric Power Generation

    Students learn about the environmental, economic and social trade-offs of electrical power generation technologies.

    Subjects: Physical Science, Mathematics
    Listed in: energy conversion
     
  • What is the Cost of Inefficiency?

    Students learn about work, energy and power and that using electrical appliances and devices has economic and environmental costs.

    Subjects: Physical Science, Technology, Mathematics, Environmental Science
    Listed in: efficiency
     
  • Unit 2. Where is the Wind and How Does it Work?

  • What Causes Wind?

    Students learn about the forces that cause wind and how to measure these changes in the atmosphere.

    Subjects: Physical Science, Social Studies, Earth Science
    Listed in: meteorology
     
  • Where is it Windy?

    Students learn how topography and elevation affect wind speeds and will identify optimal locations for wind farms based on wind speed.

    Subject: Earth Science
    Listed in: meteorology
     
  • What Are Wind Shear and Turbulence?

    This activity helps students understand the concepts of wind turbulence and wind shear—or the smoothness and speed of the wind at different altitudes above the ground.

    Subject: Earth Science, Social Studies
    Listed in: meteorology
     
  • Can Wind Power Your Classroom?

    Students conduct a simple energy audit for the classroom and estimate what size wind turbine could power their classroom under local wind conditions.

    Subjects: Physical Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics
    Listed in: efficiency
     
  • Unit 3. Experiments With Turbines

  • How Does a Windmill Work?

    Students learn the fundamental parts of a windmill, how different rotor designs affect performance, and how energy is transferred from wind into usable mechanical energy.

    Subjects: Physical Science, Technology, Engineering
    Listed in: simple machines
     
  • How Does a Generator Work?

    Students learn how electricity is generated and how design variables affect electricity production.

    Subjects: Technology, Engineering, Physical Science
    Listed in: simple machines, energy conversion
     
  • Which Blades are Best?

    Students learn through experimentation how different blade designs are more efficient at harnessing the energy of the wind.

    Subjects: Physics, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics
    Listed in: blades, energy conversion
     
  • How Can I Design Better Blades?

    Students learn how to design and construct different turbine blades to maximize the power output of a wind turbine.

    Subjects: Physical Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics
    Listed in: blades
     
  • Unit 4. Wind Energy and Wildlife

  • How Does Energy Affect Wildlife?

    Students learn that different electricity generation sources have very different effects on wildlife.

    Subjects: Living Environments, Earth Science, Environmental Science
    Listed in: birds, bats
     
  • What is Wind's Risk to Birds?

    Learn how bird behavior and ecology are related to avian impacts from wind turbines and how scientists study these impacts.

    Subjects: Technology, Mathematics, Living Environments
    Listed in: birds
     
  • Can We Reduce Risk to Bats?

    Students analyze bat behaviors and propose a wind farm operational plan that could reduce the risk of bat mortality.

    Subjects: Living Environments, Technology
    Listed in: bats
     
  • Unit 5. Siting Wind Energy Facilities

  • How Do People Feel About Wind?

    Students explore what effects media can have on people’s perception of wind energy.

    Subjects: Language Arts, Social Studies
    Listed in: society
     
  • What Factors Influence Offshore Wind?

    Students explore offshore wind development—comparing maps that illustrate different siting considerations and using scale models to understand the visual impact of an offshore wind farm.

    Subjects: Earth Science, Environmental Science
    Listed in: society
     
  • Where Do You Put a Wind Farm?

    Students learn how to analyze data (maps, tables, and written information) to compare and contrast two potential sites for a wind farm.

    Subjects: Social Studies, Environmental Studies, Earth Science, Mathematics
    Listed in: birds, bats, society
     
  • When is a Wind Farm a Good Investment?

    Students learn what factors impact the economics of a wind farm and compare and contrast two potential sites.

    Subjects: Economics, Social Studies, Earth Science, Mathematics
    Listed in: society