Connecticut Content Standard 12: Energy

Students will know that energy is conserved, transferred, transformed, and appears in different forms.

Grades K - 4

Educational experiences in Grades K - 4 will assure that students:

  • recognize (in Grades K-2) forms of energy (e.g., heat, light, sound) used every day;
  • recognize (in Grades K-2) that visible light contains the colors of the rainbow;
  • demonstrate (in Grades K-2) that sound can be produced by vibrating objects;
  • recognize (in Grades K-2) that energy can be used to bring about changes in matter (e.g., melt an ice cube);
  • demonstrate (in Grades K-2) that sound has different properties (e.g., high-low, loud-soft);
  • understand (in Grades K-2) that the sun’s rays warm objects on the Earth;
  • describe various forms of energy, such as light, heat, electrical and chemical, and cite examples of the change of one form into another;
  • recognize that sounds can be varied by making changes to the objects emitting the sound (e.g., tautness of a string, length of a tube, medium through which the sound travels);
  • recognize that some materials conduct heat better than others, and that poor conductors (insulators) can reduce heat loss;
  • give examples of ways energy consumption can be reduced;
  • recognize that primary colors of light can be mixed to create other colors;
  • demonstrate that light has a number of properties, such as color, brightness and direction of travel; and
  • demonstrate that light can be absorbed, reflected, transmitted and bent using mirrors and lenses.

Grades 5 - 8

Educational experiences in Grades 5 - 8 will assure that students:

  • recognize that energy can neither be created nor destroyed;
  • identify energy transformations that occur in various systems (e.g., biological, mechanical, geological) and recognize that heat is a by product of energy transformations;
  • demonstrate that heat can be transferred by convection, conduction and radiation;
  • recognize that energy exists in many forms (e.g., light, heat, chemical, electrical and mechanical) and that energy can be transformed from one form to another;
  • understand that all physical changes, including changes of state, require energy;
  • recognize that the sun produces energy in a range of wavelengths within the electromagnetic spectrum; and
  • compare and contrast different forms of energy in terms of their wave-lengths on the electromagnetic spectrum.

Grades 9 - 12

Educational experiences in Grades 9 - 12 will assure that students:

  • classify various forms of energy as either kinetic or potential;
  • recognize that heat energy is related to the disordered motion of atoms or molecules;
  • understand that the total amount of disorder in the universe is increasing;
  • explain that, although energy changes into different forms within a closed system, the total amount of energy remains unchanged, while the amount of useful energy is decreased;
  • describe the nature of different types of waves, how they are produced, and how they transfer energy;
  • understand that every object exerts a gravitational force on every other object; and
  • interpret the physical characteristics of sound, (including pitch and loudness) in terms of wave theory.


The following GEMS guides address this Standard:

Hot Water and Warm Homes from Sunlight
Grades 4-8

Color Analyzers Grades 5-8

Convection: A Current Event
Grades 6-8

Dry Ice Investigations
Grades 6-8

Invisible Universe
Grades 6-8

Living with a Star
Grades 6-8

Global Warming & The Greenhouse Effect
Grades 7-8

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