Watt Watchers of Texas: Texas is Too Good To Waste™

Energy Conservation Resources for Middle School

When it comes to saving the planet through energy conservation efforts, it is critical that kids of all ages and grade levels are aware of the benefits of saving energy and how they can do their part.

Young children in elementary school may simply enjoy doing activities that center around easy experiments and provide an interactive experience. High schoolers may enjoy learning more specific aspects of the energy conservation process through themes such as electricity or transportation. Middle schoolers, though, may benefit from a mix of participation and explanation.

No matter what grade students are in, it is never too early or too late to begin or continue their education about energy conservation.

Adults and kids alike should be able to actively participate in the energy saving process, and it is important that everyone understands the many benefits of conservation. For middle school students, it may be a challenge to keep them interested in a discussion about energy conservation, but they would also enjoy some hands-on activities that demonstrate the value of saving energy.
At Watt Watchers of Texas, we understand the importance of teaching middle school children in a way that is engaging and educational. We have a range of activities and resources for teachers of middle school students that we know will be useful as a part of the energy conservation curriculum while also keeping students’ attention throughout the course of the lesson.

Energy Curriculum Resources for Middle School Teachers

Lil’ Tex and Ann, the foundation of our Student Patrol Program, are always looking for kids of all ages to join them in their efforts to stop the Wasters Gang from taking resources away from Texas and its citizens. If your middle school students are looking for a fun and exciting way to make sure that teachers, administrators, staff, and other students are all following the energy conservation guidelines you have put into place, the Student Patrol is perfect for them.
You can hand out Watt Watchers badges for all of your students who are participating and assign them jobs such as checking to make sure the lights are turned off in empty classrooms. Other classes can earn achievement certifications for being conscious of their energy saving activities, and both the school as well as the earth will benefit from your students’ participation. And best of all: everything is free to download as many times as you need!
Watt Watchers also has plenty of free energy education activities designed to supplement an energy conservation and energy efficiency curriculum. They are divided into seven themes (at home, cooling and heating, electricity, food, materials, transportation, and water) as well as grade level (K-12). They range from making a daily menu to hunting for recyclables to graphene emissions and everything in between. Whatever lesson you are working on, Watt Watchers has at least one activity to help you demonstrate to your students the benefits of energy conservation.
No matter the grade level or your students’ age, our activities, lessons, and resources are sure to keep their attention and help them learn energy conservation tips that will last a lifetime.

Why is Energy Conservation Important?

As adults, we understand the benefits of energy conservation, especially when it comes to the monthly utility bills. The more energy we use, the higher the bills. So, it’s an obvious step to reduce our energy consumption in order to save money and help the planet as well. Children, however, may not immediately understand the advantages of energy conservation, so it is critical that they begin to learn these lessons at an early age. And the best way for kids to learn and enjoy the process is through education activities that encourage energy conservation, teach kids about its importance, and show them that saving energy can be fun.
We use these resources every day, and they are essential to our modern way of life. That is why it is everyone’s duty (even kids) to do their part in conserving energy throughout the course of their day. From simply turning off a light when you leave a room to limiting the length of your shower to swapping old light bulbs for new, energy efficient ones, every bit of participation helps.
If your middle school students are ready to take on more energy saving responsibility, Watt Watchers of Texas has resources and lessons to help them find new and creative ways to enhance their energy conservation efforts. And don’t forget to remind students that they should also be discussing the benefits of saving energy with their families and implementing similar energy conservation efforts in their own homes.

Check out these great activities for grades 6-8!

Tracking Down the Wasters Gang: A Watt Watchers Scavenger Hunt

Did you know the Wasters Gang could be hiding out in your home right now? This activity might lead you to them!

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Making Banana Bread

Did your bananas get too ripe before you could finish them? Time to make banana bread!

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Food Preservation Techniques and Recipes: Making Jam

Did you find yourself with more fruit than you can eat? Don't let it go to waste—try making jam!

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Food Preservation Techniques and Recipes: Freezing and Dehydration

Don't let that extra food go to waste—dry it and save it for later. Dried fruit makes a tasty snack and lasts for weeks.

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Food Preservation Techniques and Recipes: Pickling and Fermentation

Historically, people have been pickling eggs, cabbage, carrots and many other food items in order to extend their storage life. Here are recipes for making pickled eggs and kimchi.

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At Home Master Chef

Food waste is a giant contributor to energy waste and can have major environmental impacts. Making new meals from leftovers can help lessen this problem.

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The Pay Me Game

Students have a hard time understanding how much energy they are using if it is not tied to dollar amounts.

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Auto Tire Pressure

Under-inflated tires lower gas mileage, wasting millions of dollars each year. Under-inflated tires are also a major safety hazard.

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Dams

Students can work individually or in groups to research one of the many dams in Texas. Students should use a variety of relevant print and digital resources to investigate their assigned dam. The investigation should include a brief history, including reason for construction, current status of the structure, and how the dam changed the surface water in the region.

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Searching for the Sun

The Sun is the ultimate source of energy for almost all processes on Earth, from weather and climate to fossil fuels to the energy students need to get out of bed or run around the track. This activity relies on deep questions and critical thought to trace the ultimate source of energy on Earth to the sun.

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Graphing Emissions

Whether light rail trains running on electricity or a private car running on unleaded gasoline, each mode of transportation has a different energy use and carbon intensity.

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Comparing Traffic Graphs

In 2017, the Washington Post pulled together a national analysis of driving distance limitations imposed by traffic during rush hour. Based on the hypothetical scenario of attempting to drive away from a downtown area in America's largest cities, contributor Sahil Chinoy produced a series of graphic representations of the distance achievable when leaving at three different times.

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Contact Watt Watchers for More Middle School Energy Conservation Resources

Watt Watchers of Texas is founded on the principle of boosting energy literacy for students in grades K-12 as well as helping schools save money through energy conservation efforts. We are a state-sponsored STEM program, and we are proud to provide students, teachers, and families access to energy saving tips, activities, and lessons to encourage energy literacy. Watt Watchers believes that Texas is too good waste, so we make all of our resources freely available for download and use.

If you are a teacher or administrator who is interested in getting your school involved in the Watt Watchers of Texas energy conservation program, contact us today. We have all of the resources, information, and activities you could need to ensure a successful implementation of our program. Your kids will love knowing that they are helping Lil’ Tex and Ann and feel proud to be making a difference while they learn about the environment.

Watt Watchers of Texas
204 E. Dean Keeton Street, Austin, Texas 78712

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