Basic learning inquiry
The basic lesson plan is designed to explore the topic to a moderate depth.
View an extract of the plan below and download the full plan from the link on the right.
Explore Future Sparks, learn about the issues in depth, and think about how to communicate ideas.
Step 1: Engage with the project
Overview of the Future Sparks competition (5 minutes)
Refer to the Future Sparks website and explore the requirements to submit a competition entry with the class.
Create a retrieval chart on which to show collected information and ideas e.g. what's needed, resources, time lines, judging criteria, prizes etc.
Explanation of the learning program
Explain to the class that they will be using a range of activities and resources to develop an understanding of 'a clean energy future' and lead to the formation of a 'big idea' to be submitted as a 3 minute 'show and tell' video competition entry.
Step 2: Explore a clean energy future
Investigate the clean energy map (40 minutes)
Using the Clean Energy Council's interactive renewable energy map, locate and find out about Australia's renewable energy power plants.
Imagine (40 minutes)
Ask students to imagine that they were born today. In 20 years time, when they have grown into adulthood, many of the world's ecosystems will have changed. The lesson plan PDF provides two scenarios, and questions for students to ponder.
Picture the future (20 minutes)
Explore how youth globally see climate change, low emission technologies and sustainable futures.
See the 18th International Children's Painting Competition. Working in small groups, ask students to focus on the artwork from India, China, Brazil and Qatar. Have students distinguish between those which may stabilise and reduce global emissions of CO2.
Discuss how climate change, low emission technologies and sustainable futures messages are communicated within the artwork, asking students to focus on what they think the young artists are trying to say.
Engage them in a hypothetical continuation of the artists' stories, encouraging students to evaluate these strategies for coping with potential changes to the climate. In groups, students discuss the types of decisions needed if these preferable futures are to eventuate.
View videos (40 minutes)
Research what's new in the clean energy
Sustainability will certainly demand improvements to our current technology in order to reduce our reliance on non-renewable and non-recyclable resources. How we get our energy is equally as important as how we use it, which means we need innovative ways of harnessing those resources we have access to.
Invite students to explore this website and learn more about existing clean energy technology and emerging and new clean energy technologies.
Engage students individually or in pairs to choose a topic and define their investigation as 'Sustainable Clean Energy Futures'.
Explain to them that they are to research a topic of their choice and engage in an investigation that is related to their topic.
Explore futures ideas (30 minutes)
Take a 'futures walk' by imagining and envisioning clean energy options for the future. Talk about:
- Possible futures
- Probable futures, and
- Preferable futures (hopes, dreams and visions).
Encourage students to formulate their own quesitons and then illustrate and describe their clean energy possible, probable and preferable future ideas.
- A possible clean energy future includes...
- A probable clean energy future might include...
- I hope a preferable clean energy future can include...
Step 3: Explanation
Decide on what to present and how to do
Restate the purposes of the investigation and ask students to consider how they are going to bring their information together and present it so that the main points come across clearly.
Model the construction of the storyboard genre. Students now use the information they have to construct a storyboard for the Future Sparks competition or a related piece of work of their choice.
Check out (10 minutes)
Check out some amazing videos created by students in NSW public schools and focus on the video techniques used post creation of a storyboard. Similarly, view winning video entries in a Geoscience Australia video competition for ideas.
Download the full basic lesson plan in PDF format
We asked Australian students to make a video or convince us in writing about their BIG ideas for a sustainable energy future.
Check out the fantastic videos we received, all about sustainable energy solutions!VIEW THE GALLERY OF ENTRIES
Explore the fascinating science edging us closer to low carbon living. This fun, flexible project includes easy-to-use ICT, oodles of resources and FREE lesson plans from CSIRO Education.
Links to Australian curriculum, plus NAPLAN rehearsal.Find out more