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SAVE: Steps in Achieving Viable Energy—Teacher Edition

Nathan Mitten, H.A. Ingley, Jessica Kochert, and Joy Jordan


S.A.V.E. = Steps in Achieving Viable Energy

The 4-H SAVE project is an energy education curriculum that targets youth, ages 11 to 13. The project takes youth on a journey through the exciting world of energy.

Youth start the journey by learning about what energy is, the different forms energy can come in, and how it can transform from one form into another. Once they have mastered the forms in which energy can exist, they will search out where that energy comes from by investigating the wide variety of energy sources. The journey continues as youth investigate the various ways that energy is used, both through natural and man-made processes. Finally, the journey concludes with a closer look into the ways the world we live in is impacted, both positively and negatively by our energy use.

Three different modules are available within this curriculum:

  • 4H EGM 50—SAVE Youth Guide is an independent project book that guides youth through an independent study of four major themes—forms, sources, uses, and impacts of energy in our life.
  • 4H EGL 60—the SAVE Leader/Helper Guide has been designed to supplement the Youth Book for club and individual projects.While working through the activities within their project book, youth will not only discover important information, but they will use reflective questions, discussions, and journaling activities to gain even greater insight into the world of energy.
  • 4H EGL 61—the SAVE Teacher Edition has been created to help teachers and leaders in group settings explore these basic concepts of energy forms, sources, users and impacts using a series of nine additional experiential activities. These science/math-based activities, which build off the activities previously performed in the Youth Book, allow for youth to enhance their understanding of these topics through interaction with specific energy topics including radiant, chemical, hydrogen, wind, biomass, efficiency of energy systems, and energy conservation.

About theSAVE Teacher Edition

SAVE Supports these Florida Next Generation Education Standards

The following provides the educational standards supported by the SAVE curriculum. All the activities support some elements of the science and math standards, while choices of SAVE certification activities support additional standards. The depth of the experiences can be variable with the time and instruction to address various levels of benchmarks. See Appendix B in the PDF file for a complete listing of grade-related benchmarks. Only relevant standards and benchmarks to the activities have been included below.


SC.N.1: The Practice of Science

A: Scientific inquiry is a multifaceted activity; The processes of science include the formulation of scientifically investigable questions, construction of investigations into those questions, the collection of appropriate data, the evaluation of the meaning of those data, and the communication of this evaluation.
B: The processes of science frequently do not correspond to the traditional portrayal of "the scientific method."
C: Scientific argumentation is a necessary part of scientific inquiry and plays an important role in the generation and validation of scientific knowledge.
D: Scientific knowledge is based on observation and inference; it is important to recognize that these are very different things. Not only does science require creativity in its methods and processes, but also in its questions and explanations.

SC.N.2: The Characteristics of Scientific Knowledge

A: Scientific knowledge is based on empirical evidence, and is appropriate for understanding the natural world, but it provides only a limited understanding of the supernatural, aesthetic, or other ways of knowing, such as art, philosophy, or religion.
B: Scientific knowledge is durable and robust, but open to change.
C: Because science is based on empirical evidence it strives for objectivity, but as it is a human endeavor the processes, methods, and knowledge of science include subjectivity, as well as creativity and discovery.

SC.N.3: The Role of Theories, Laws, Hypotheses, and Models

The terms that describe examples of scientific knowledge, for example; "theory," "law," "hypothesis," and "model" have very specific meanings and functions within science.

SC.N.4: Science and Society

As tomorrow's citizens, students should be able to identify issues about which society could provide input, formulate scientifically investigable questions about those issues, construct investigations of their questions, collect and evaluate data from their investigations, and develop scientific recommendations based upon their findings.

SC.P.8: Properties of Matter

A. All objects and substances in the world are made of matter. Matter has two fundamental properties: matter takes up space and matter has mass which gives it inertia.
B. Objects and substances can be classified by their physical and chemical properties. Mass is the amount of matter (or "stuff") in an object. Weight, on the other hand, is the measure of force of attraction (gravitational force) between an object and Earth.
The concepts of mass and weight are complicated and potentially confusing to elementary students. Hence, the more familiar term of "weight" is recommended for use to stand for both mass and weight in grades K–5. By grades 6–8, students are expected to understand the distinction between mass and weight, and use them appropriately.

SC.P.9: Changes in Matter

A. Matter can undergo a variety of changes.
B. When matter is changed physically, generally no changes occur in the structure of the atoms or molecules composing the matter.
C. When matter changes chemically, a rearrangement of bonds between the atoms occurs. This results in new substances with new properties.

SC.P.10: Forms of Energy

A. Energy is involved in all physical processes and is a unifying concept in many areas of science.
B. Energy exists in many forms and has the ability to do work or cause a change.

SC.P.11: Energy Transfer and Transformations

A. Waves involve a transfer of energy without a transfer of matter.
B. Water and sound waves transfer energy through a material.
C. Light waves can travel through a vacuum and through matter.
D. The Law of Conservation of Energy: Energy is conserved as it transfers from one object to another and from one form to another.

SC.P.12: Motion of Objects

A. Motion is a key characteristic of all matter that can be observed, described, and measured.
B. The motion of objects can be changed by forces.

SC.P.13: Forces and Changes in Motion

A. It takes energy to change the motion of objects.
B. Energy change is understood in terms of forces—pushes or pulls.
C. Some forces act through physical contact, while others act at a distance.

SC.L.18: Matter and Energy Transformations

C. Matter and energy are recycled through cycles such as the carbon cycle.


MA.A.1: Develop an understanding of and fluency with multiplication and division of fractionsand decimals.

MA.A.2: 6th Grade – Connect ratio and rates to multiplication and division. 7th Grade – Develop an understanding of and use formulas to determine surface areas and volumesof three-dimensional shapes. 8th Grade – Analyze two- and three-dimensional figures by using distance and angle.

MA.A.3: Write, interpret, and use mathematical expressions and equations.

MA.G.4–5: Geometry and Measurement

MA.A.5: Number and Operations

MA.S.6: Data Analysis—Analyze and summarize data sets.

MA.P.7: Probability

Continue to to download the SAVE Teacher Edition in its entirety.

Further Resources

Access all modules of this curriculum via the SAVE Series Page on EDIS:

Publication #4H EGL 61

Date: 7/23/2023

Related Topics

  • Critical Issue: Youth

About this Publication

This document is 4H EGL 61, one of a series of the 4-H Youth Development Department, UF/IFAS Extension. Original publication date January 2011. Visit the EDIS website at for the currently supported version of this publication.

About the Authors

Nathan Mitten, graduate student, and H.A. (Skip) Ingley, associate professor, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; Jessica Kochert, graduate student, and Joy Jordan, associate professor and 4-H curriculum specialist, Department of Family, Youth and Community Sciences; UF/IFAS Extension; Gainesville 32611.


  • Brent Broaddus
  • Sarah Hensley