Online Student Book


Investigating energy from the sun

Investigating Energy from the Sun Book Cover

Investigating Energy from the Sun is a SEPUP module designed for use in grades 6–12. The module contains a series of 7 activities that provide approximately 3–5 weeks of instruction.

This module focuses on the physical properties of electromagnetic energy given off by the sun. Most of the energy the earth receives from the sun is in the form of electromagnetic energy. In this module, students explore the physical properties of electromagnetic waves given off by the sun. The physical properties of infrared, visible, and ultraviolet radiation are explored using the concepts of selective transmission, reflection and absorption. Through an established story line, students use evidence to establish a relationship between the physical properties of ultraviolet waves and their associated health risks of cataracts and skin cancer. Students then determine ways of reducing the overall risks associated with ultraviolet exposure. Students are assessed on their ability to analyze data.

Each module includes a Teacher’s Guide containing reproducible student pages and a kit containing the equipment required to conduct the activities with five classes of 32 students. The Teacher’s Guide provides specific strategies to facilitate and assess student learning.

Shown below is the table of contents for the teacher’s guide, which contains reproducible student pages.


Module at a Glance

Guide to the Module

Activity 1: Introducing Sunlight
Investigation: Focus on This!

Activity 2: Refraction Action
Investigation: Comparing Colors

Activity 3: Investigating Transmission
Investigation: Keeping Cool

Activity 4: Infrared and You
Investigation: Invisible Light

Activity 5: Ultraviolet Understanding
Investigation: Ultraviolet Power

Activity 6: Increased Ultraviolet Risk
Investigation: Follow the Bouncing Light

Activity 7: Personal Protection Plan
Investigation: SUNsational Protection

Appendix A: Materials
Appendix B: Background
Appendix C: Assessment
Appendix D: Glossary