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The 12 booklets in their entirety are intended primarily for teachers rather than students and the approach is a general one, appropriate to all key stages. The animations, which can be used directly by students, are also suitable for a wide range of levels.

Health and Safety

For practical activities, the Science Enhancement Programme has tried to ensure that the experiments are healthy and safe to use in schools and colleges. It is assumed that these experiments will be undertaken in suitable laboratories or work areas and that good laboratory practices will be observed. Teachers should consult their employers' risk assessments for each practical before use, and consider whether any modification is necessary for the particular circumstances of their own class/school. If necessary, CLEAPSS members can obtain further advice by contacting the help line on 01895 251496 or by emailing

Key ideas

The resources focus on these key ideas about energy:

 how energy is stored
 how energy is transferred
 conservation of energy
 dissipation of energy

How energy is stored

Although energy is always energy, it can be stored in different ways:

 thermal, as in a cup of tea
 kinetic, as by a flywheel or a moving ball
 elastic, as in a spring in tension
 gravitational, as by a raised mass
 electrical, as in a capacitor
 chemical, as in a battery

How energy is transferred

Energy can move from one store to another and to dissipation in various different ways, such as:

 by heating (transfer from a hotter to a cooler body)
 mechanically (through gears, for example)
 electrically (as within a circuit)
 by radiation (from a lamp, for example)

However, classifying energy transfer processes is not as straightforward as classifying types of energy store. Many processes are ambiguous.

Conservation and dissipation of energy

These resources begin by looking at one particular kind of energy change – the flow of energy due to a temperature difference. By talking about energy in this context as though it was fluid-like, ideas of conservation and dissipation are a natural part of the way that energy is described. (It is important, however, that students are not led to believe that energy is a substance. There is no flow of ‘stuff’.) Once the ideas about energy are developed in this context, then they are extended to changes involving other kinds of store and other ways of transferring energy.
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