Topic Progress:

Lesson – Electrical Circuits and Energy Transformations


Title: Electrical Circuits and Energy Transformations
Grade: 5th Grade 
Duration: 30 Minutes


Science – SC.5.P.10.4
Investigate and describe some basic forms of energy, including chemical, electrical,electromagnetic, heat, light, mechanical, nuclear, solar and sound energy.

Science – SC.5.P.11.1
Investigate and illustrate the fact that the flow of electricity requires a closed circuit (A complete loop).


In the following activity, students will be introduced to how energy can be made and transformed.

Essential Questions

  • How can electric circuits help transform electricity to heat, light, mechanical or sound energy?
  • How does a battery transform to other forms of energy?

Background Information

When energy changes from one form to another, an energy transformation takes place. Every minute of the day, millions of energy transformations occur around the world. There are many different forms of energy such as electrical, thermal, nuclear,mechanical, electromagnetic, sound, and chemical. Due to the law of conservation of energy we know that energy is always conserved in the universe and simply changes from one form to another.

Guiding Questions

  • How does energy affect the motion of an object?
  • How do electrical charges react to other electrical charges?
  • Why does a circuit need to be closed in order to complete the flow of electricity?
  • How does one form of energy transform into another form of energy?
  • What are some ways that you use energy every day? Of these, which are examples of energy transformations?

Inquiry Type

Activity #1: Energy Transformations

An energy transformation is the change of energy from one form to another. Energy transformations occur everywhere every second of the day. There are many different forms of energy such as electrical, thermal, nuclear, mechanical, electromagnetic, sound and chemical energy.



  1. Pass out a piece of paper. They will be using one side for during the animation and will use the other side later on.
  2. Ask students to write down any energy transfers and transformations that they see during the animation.
  3. Watch the short animation.
  4. After watching, discuss content with students by using the following questions.
    • What are the TWO main types of energy?
    • What happened when the man picked up the bag and threw it?
    • Can the thermal energy from fire when the man is cooking be transformed to any other energy form besides light energy? Why or why not?
    • What are some of the transfers/transformations that you observed in the Honda commercial?
  5. Now, tell students to: Look around the room. On the other side of the sheet of paper, list all of the energy transformations that you see.
  6. Have students Think-Pair-Share their observations.
  7. Discuss findings as a class.
  8. Pass out Energy Transformations worksheet and loose leaf sheet of paper.
  9. Read the top of the worksheet with students.
  10. Discuss.
  11. Next, have students complete the Energy Transformations Work.