Energy and Thermal Physics

Thinking about actions to take: Energy Resources and Pathways

Teaching Guidance for 11-14 Supporting Physics Teaching

There's a good chance you could improve your teaching if you were to:

Try these

  • linking the discussion about the depletion of resources to the ideas of stores
  • linking the distinction between renewable and non-renewable to human concerns and timescales
  • clearly distinguishing between stores (joules) and pathways (watts)

Teacher Tip: Work through the Physics Narrative to find these lines of thinking worked out and then look in the Teaching Approaches for some examples of activities.

Avoid these

  • conflating rates of power in pathways with stores of energy
  • connecting together more than two stores into a chain, eg kinetic  →  thermal  →  gravitational
  • talking about energy being lost, running out or wasted
  • developing complicated descriptions of cases of dynamic equilibrium

Teacher Tip: These difficulties are distilled from: the research findings; the practice of well-connected teachers with expertise; issues intrinsic to representing the physics well.

appears in the relation ΔEΔt>ℏ/2 ΔQ=mcΔθ E=hf E ∝ A^2
has the special case Photon Energy
is used in analyses relating to Emission/Absorption Spectra Phase Change
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