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From the World Book Online
A rock falling off a cliff is different from the same rock lying on the ground below. A rubber band pulled taut is different from the same rubber band left slack. A glowing lightbulb is different from the same bulb when the electricity is switched off. It is the same rock, the same rubber band, the same lightbulb. The difference is one of energy.
Energy is one of the most basic ideas of science. All activity in the universe can be explained in terms of energy and matter. But the definition of energy is not at all simple since energy occurs in many different forms, and it is not always easy to tell how these forms are related to one another and what they have in common. One of the best-known definitions of energy is the classical definition used in physics: Energy is the ability to do work.
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Citation: "Energy." Britannica School, Encyclopædia Britannica, 8 May. 2018. school.eb.com/levels/middle/article/energy/274180. Accessed 28 Jan. 2019.
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In the Library
What's Physics All About? by
Publication Date: 2010-01-01
An illustrated introduction to physics, containing information on subjects such as gravity, sound, force, energy, and electricity.
Falling for Fun by
Publication Date: 2008-01-08
Explains the science of gravity using roller coasters as examples, discussing such topics as acceleration, weight, g-forces, free fall, center of gravity, and kinetic and potential energy.
Twists and Turns by
Publication Date: 2008-01-08
Helps middle school children learn about the forces of motion through amusement park thrill rides, explaining how roller coasters, bumper cars, and other rides work.
Motion and Forces by
Publication Date: 2011-01-15
An exploration of motion and forces that discusses the laws of motion, experiments and controversies related to them, magnetic fields and poles, and the physics of amusement park rides.
The Manga Guide to Physics by
Publication Date: 2009-05-23
An introduction to physics, featuring manga illustrations that explain classical mechanics, the physics of everyday objects, parabolic motion, Newton's laws of motion, vector diagrams, kinetic energy, and more.
Websites about Energy
What is Energy?
An interactive activity to explore different types of energy.
Energy and Matter
A short video from Scholastic Study Jams explaining different kinds of energy. Followed by a quiz.
Energy - What Is It?
A short lesson introducing energy and how to measure it and how to change it. There is also information on heat (thermal) energy.
Forms of Energy
A description of the differences between potential and kinetic energy from the US Energy Information Administration.
Energy from BrainPOP
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