8G – Upper School Science – Heat and Heat Transfer

Converting energy has never tasted so good! Before moving into our formal curriculum, students engineered solar ovens then used the heat generated by photons (light particles) to warm up tasty s’mores. This experience was the perfect lead into our first Core Experience Learning Lab (CELL), Heat and Heat Transfer.

This CELL gives students the opportunity to investigate the relationship between heat, thermal energy, temperature and the physical changes in matter that accompany the transfer of heat. Students will investigate the expansion and contraction of a liquid when placed in environments that differ in kinetic energy. They will calibrate their own thermometer and discover why temperature is a measure of the average kinetic energy present in an environment or substance. As part of their experiments, students will also investigate the freezing and boiling point of water, discovering that the addition of a solute can change both water’s freezing and boiling point. Finally, students will quantify the amount of heat that is absorbed by a solid and calculate the amount of heat that the solid can transfer.

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