Explore Energy Sources!

Contributor: Lindsey Congalosi. Lesson ID: 13295

Do you like electricity? What about heat? We power our lives with energy, but where does it come from? Will it ever run out? Learn all about renewable and nonrenewable energy sources!


Earth Science

learning style
Auditory, Visual
personality style
Grade Level
Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12)
Lesson Type
Dig Deeper

Lesson Plan - Get It!

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The image above shows several different types of power plants, or places where energy is created.

  • What energy sources do you see?
  • How do you think it is turned into the energy that is powering your computer right now?

Dive into this lesson and learn all about renewable and nonrenewable energy sources!

Renewable energy sources are ones that can be replenished during our lifetime. They can be created over a relatively short period of time, meaning there is always a way to produce more energy from this same source.

Nonrenewable energy sources cannot be quickly or easily replenished. Nonrenewable energy sources take a long time to form, and once they have been used, they are gone forever or at least the next few million years.

  • Can you figure out which energy sources are renewable and which are not?

Separate the energy sources below by dragging them into the appropriate categories.

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  • How did you do?

If you're confused, watch MooMoo Math and Science explain the Difference between Renewable and Nonrenewable Resources:

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First, let's explore nonrenewable energy sources.

world energy

Nonrenewable resources are finite, which means that they will eventually run out. Fossil fuels take millions of years to form, so new fossil fuels can't be created when we run out because it would take too much time. Nuclear energy requires uranium, which is also a nonrenewable resource.

Let's look into fossil fuels first. Use the arrow keys to click through all of the slides below.

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sustainable energy

Renewable energy sources are infinite sources of energy. These energy sources are cleaner than fossil fuels, but each comes with its own pros and cons.

  • What kind of renewable energy do you think is best?

Let's learn a little more about each type.

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It is important to find more forms of renewable energy because most humans currently are using nonrenewable sources of energy to power the items they use daily, such as automobiles.

  • What would happen if the world were to run out of nonrenewable energy sources, such as petroleum?

Discuss the answer with your teacher or parent.

Continue on to the Got It? section to see if you can tell the difference between renewable and nonrenewable energy sources!

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