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As America switches to renewable energy sources and embraces energy-saving technologies to confront the threat of climate change, it’s more important than ever for citizens to understand the nature and role of energy in the world. The Energy Department is committed to improving energy literacy throughout the nation, and to providing educators with resources and tools to help achieve this goal.

As part of its energy literacy efforts, the Energy Department’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) partnered with the American Geosciences Institute (AGI)’s Center for Geoscience and Society and the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) to produce a series of new videos. The videos focus on the seven essential principles and fundamental concepts established in EERE’s Energy Literacy Framework, an interdisciplinary approach to teaching and learning about energy. The video series highlights all seven energy literacy principles, starting with the first four:

  1. Energy is a physical quantity that follows precise natural laws.
  2. Physical processes on Earth are the result of energy flow through the Earth system.
  3. Biological processes depend on energy flow through the Earth system.
  4. Various sources of energy can be used to power human activities, and often this energy must be transferred from source to destination.

The first four videos launched today. They can be used as educational tools in the classroom and are intended for all ages. Videos about the remaining three energy literacy principles are expected by next summer. Watch the first four energy literacy videos now.  

In addition to the energy literacy videos, EERE provides other educational resources that help educators incorporate energy into the classroom. These include K-12 lesson plans that help educators teach students about energy, and short, informative Energy 101 videos that describe the fundamental concepts behind clean energy technologies. There are also fun activities such as the Get Current coloring book, which is now available in Spanish

Learn more about EERE’s work to inspire interest in clean energy, and to support the development and enhancement of critical workforce skills. Contact energyliteracy@ee.doe.gov for additional information about EERE’s energy literacy resources.