Energy plays a major role in the everyday functions of our planet and all its life forms. From weather patterns and food chains, to human society’s daily electricity and heating needs, energy is the driver of everything we know. This video series highlights the seven Energy Literacy Principles, which demonstrate energy’s role across the natural and social sciences.
Energy is a physical quantity that follows precise natural laws.
Physical processes on Earth are the result of energy flow through the Earth system.
Biological processes depend on energy flow through the Earth system.
Various sources of energy can be used to power human activities, and often this energy must be transferred from source to destination.
Energy decisions are influenced by economic, political, environmental, and social factors.
The amount of energy used by human society depends on many factors.
The quality of life of individuals and societies is affected by energy choices.
Want to learn about the Energy Literacy Principles and Concepts?
The Energy Literacy Initiative is excited about its new video series highlighting each of the 7 Essential Principles of Energy. The Department of Energy, the Center for Geoscience and Society at the American Geosciences Institute (AGI), and the National Center for Science Education (NCSE), developed these videos to help educators bring key energy principles to the classroom. The videos are also available in Spanish.
Teachers - Are you planning a lesson around these videos?
Get started with the Quick Start Guide for educators. Scroll down to the bottom of this page to download a copy of an accompanying student analysis guide and teacher guide. AGI has also created social studies guides for each of the seven principles.
Interested in a particular principle? Click on it to watch the video:
Want more videos?
Check out the Department of Energy's YouTube channel.
Are you an educator looking for more lessons and resources?
Use the Education Toolbox to get engaged with energy education today. You can also find additional resources at the following sites:
- National Energy Education Development (NEED) Project
- Climate Literacy & Energy Awareness Network (CLEAN)
- National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) visualization tools
- U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA)
- EIA Kids
- Watt's Up? The Lowdown on Energy
Wondering how this all fits into the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)?
Use our Energy Literacy Alignment Tools to see how the Energy Literacy principles and concepts align with NGSS, and find out how your own activity or curriculum stacks up.
Download the student analysis guide and teacher guide to get your students actively thinking about the 7 Essential Principles of Energy: