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Energy Pyramid - Renewable Energy


How To Make An Energy Pyramid

Energy PyramidSince I teach 5th grade, every year we study about how the Energy Pyramid works. The Energy Pyramid is a diagram that shows the amount of energy at different levels in the feeding order of animals. I thought the students would understand the concept of how it works better if they were to actually make one. Instead of making one individually, they make it in groups which works out well. I found that children enjoy doing projects and working together. Plus, they can learn from each other and share ideas if they are together in groups as opposed to working alone.

The best way to make an Energy Pyramid would be to use four different sizes of pizza boxes. You would need a large pie box for the bottom level, a medium sized box for the third level, a small sized box for the second level, and a personal pan pizza box for the top level. The first year that I taught 5th grade, we used pizza boxes, but it was very difficult to stack the boxes on top of each other. The students used sticks and it worked for some, but others still had trouble keeping the sticks up which meant that the boxes would not stay up. There needs to be a good amount of space between each box, so you can make the different animals and trees on the different levels.

The following year, I had another idea since the pizza boxes did not really work too well for some. I got the idea to use four shoe boxes instead and this has worked well for the past few years. If parents do not have enough shoe boxes at home, tissue boxes will work just as well. Just cut the top part open so it looks like a shoe box. Then you stack the shoe boxes on top of each other with tape. Scotch tape will work but you can use a stronger tape like packaging tape. You have your four levels that you need and the students have plenty of room to either draw, cut out or use fake trees and animals from games that they may have at home. As long as the boxes are taped securely, they should stay together with no problem. This works a lot better than the flat pizza boxes.

If you are a teacher and your class studies the energy pyramid, why not give this project a try? The students will just love it!

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