National Teacher Enhancement Project

Middle School Home Energy Audit


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This set of lessons is to provide a student a basic understanding of how energy is turned into power(watts), the units are measured using a meter(kilowatts), the costs of those units and the eventual reduction of energy consumption and cost to the consumer(audit).

Introduction to Research:

This project will give middle school students an opportunity to gain an understanding of energy. By conducting exercises and energy audits of their own homes, they will begin to see the importance of energy in their daily lives. By using the internet as a research tool, students will gain knowledge about energy as well as developing research skills.

Learner Outcomes:

After completing this unit, students will be able to:

Research Questions:

Understanding energy supply and demand is an important concept. It is also part of district curriculum and state standards. In order to engage the student, they will conduct energy exercises and audit. Technology will be an integral part of this project through the use of the Internet to research data and the use of e-mail to collaborate with energy experts and share results with other students.

Student Products:

Each students will conduct a home electrical energy audit and report their findings and suggestions on ways to reduce their energy consumption and/or improve energy efficiency in the home and community.

Time Frame:

It is suggested that approximately 7 - 12 clock hours will be needed to complete the total set of lessons. Classroom and computer usage will depend on the length of class period. The home energy audit will need to fit into this schedule. Additional time may be required for the addition of extension activities.

Student Groups:

Depending on past classroom practices, students may do the lessons as individuals or placed in group size based on the teacher's discretion.


Before the project begins, students complete an informal assessment to find out the level of previous knowledge. Students will complete a energy audit and post assessment.


Created for the NTEP II Fermilab LInC program sponsored by Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory Education Office and Friends of Fermilab, and funded by United States Department of Energy, Illinois State Board of Education, North Central Regional Technology in Education Consortium which is operated by North Central Regional Educational Laboratory (NCREL), and the National Science Foundation.


Authors: Sue Emmons, Powell Middle School, Littleton, CO; Kevin Lindauer, John F. Kennedy High School, Denver, CO; Linda Lung, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Golden, CO; John Sepich, Scott Carpenter Middle School, Westminster, CO; ; Janet Stellema, Monarch K-8, Louisville, CO.
Created: September 9, 1998 - Updated: June 29, 2001.