Energy in = Energy out

Learning Intention: Students will understand how energy is measured and the energy content of some different foods. They will understand the process of respiration and how much energy is used during some common physical activities.

Success Criteria: You will calculate the amount of energy (in kilojoules) in 100g of some common packaged foods and compare those amounts with the energy use of daily activities. You will be able to describe the process of respiration and write the chemical equation that represents this reaction.


Year 9 Science: Energy of Life

Of all the sun’s energy that reaches the earth, less than 1% is utilised by plants for photosynthesis, which drives all the food chains and is the ultimate source of energy for almost all life on earth. Even fossil fuels are a form of energy that are created by sunlight converted to chemical energy by photosynthesis.

Learning Intention: Students will understand that ecosystems consist of communities of interdependent organisms and the abiotic components of the environment; matter and energy flow through these systems.

Success Criteria: You will be able to identify biotic and abiotic factors in a range of environments and describe the following cycles: water, carbon, phosphorus and nitrogen. You will be able to identify levels in food chains and draw food webs, showing how energy moves through these systems.

When you walk from a grassy paddock into the bush, what changes? When you walk from the edge of the ocean, up a rocky slope and into the sand dunes, what different micro-climates do you observe? On a smaller scale, your garden, a rock pool or a fish tank all have different factors that affect life. Draw up a table with two columns headed, abiotic (non-living) and biotic (living). Make a list under each heading with the factors that change in different environments.

Chemical Energy

Learning Intention: Students will understand the relevance of specific chemical reactions to everyday life and be able to describe the usefulness of those reactions to society.

Success criteria: Students will produce a poster, slideshow or video that investigates and describes a specific chemical reaction and it’s usefulness in our lives.

Your task is to research one of the following materials and how they can react to produce useful results – a release of heat, a new product or a portable source of energy for example. Find out how these materials are extracted or produced, the useful reaction that occurs and how this reaction benefits society. Are their any disadvantages of this reaction? (eg. greenhouse gases produced, finite resources being used or toxic by-products?

  1. Fossil Fuels (oil, coal or gas – choose one) – combustion
  2. Dynamite explosions
  3. Electrolysis to allow silver plating, copper plating etc
  4. Batteries – (car battery, torch battery, lithium rechargable battery etc)
  5. Biofuels – ethanol for sugar cane or corn, methane from effluent or garbage, biodeisel from abbatoir waste, algae or waste oils)

This project is due next Monday, 14th May and will be assessed for your end of term report.