ALEX Lesson Plan Resources

ALEX Lesson Plans  
Subject: English Language Arts (6), or Science (6)
Title: Investigating Heat Transfer within Earth's Atmosphere: Radiation and Convection
Description: This lesson will begin with students discussing ways that we can feel the sun’s energy even though the sun is very far away from Earth. Then, the teacher will introduce the three methods of heat transfer (radiation, conduction, and convection) utilizing an online video clip, and the students will take jot notes while viewing the video clip. Next, the students will perform an experiment to investigate radiation as a form of heat transfer by recording how the temperature of ice changes when exposed to an energy source (solar energy or heat energy from a clamp lamp). Then, students will perform an experiment to investigate convection as a form of heat transfer using blue dyed ice cubes and warmed red food coloring, to create a convection cycle within a container filled with room-temperature water. Lastly, students will apply the data gathered from the experiments to write a response to the question: “How is heat energy from the sun distributed between Earth’s surface and the atmosphere?” This lesson results from the ALEX Resource Gap Project.