This activity is divided into four parts. In the first part, students will analyze data detailing global energy sources and sinks (uses). In the second part, students construct a model to show energy sources and sinks. In the third part, students are lead through discussions of scale, historical, socio-environmental and geographic variations in the data and implications of future energy use in terms of increasing use of biofuels. In the assessment activity, students use the information from parts one - three to develop a new energy source and sink model predicting what they think will change in twenty years.
The suggested time for this activity is one-two, 50 minute class periods. Teachers will need to download the Global Energy Flows Package zip folder which contains all materials (Teacher Instructions, Answer Key, Student Pages, Global Energy Flow Graph Slide Set, Supplement and a Student Reading). The student reading file does not open, but teachers can use this link: https://str.llnl.gov/Sep09/simon.html to access the reading. Teachers can choose between two options in Part 2 that would allow them to either extend or shorten the time on the activity. Teachers will need to make sure they preview the order in which pieces of information need to be presented to students in order to not give them too much information too early. This is not explicitly discussed in the teacher pages. For example, students should only be presented with page three of the student pages when doing option one of part two. It would be helpful to make color copies of figures 3, 4, and 5.