THE CANADIAN ATLAS ONLINE www.canadiangeographic.ca/atlas PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND – GRADES 9 TO 12 Surveying Canada’s Wind Energy Sites Lesson Overview In this lesson, students will look at three sites in Canada that use wind energy to produce electricity. Students will first have to use map skills to identify each location on a map of the country and then they will look at a number of elements – location, size of operation, number of generators or windmills, cost, and number of kilowatts produced. Students will then record all this information in a worksheet. There is an extension activity also available for this exercise. Grade Level Grade 10-12 – Secondary Time Required Students should be able to complete this activity during two 1-hour classes. Curriculum Connection Atlantic Provinces Education Foundation Curriculum for Social Studies: Prince Edward Island Science -- SCI1421A and SCI1421B Geography of Canada – Geo421A World Geography – GEO531A Link to Canadian Atlas online Module on wind energy at: www.canadiangeographic.ca/wind Under “Energy Systems” on the left side of the screen, choose “Extremes of Weather”. Then go to “Generating Power” on the top bar and choose “Wind power” from the drop-down menu. Students should read this prior to begin searching for wind farms in Canada. This will provide the appropriate background information needed to complete the tasks at hand. Students should also use this website to assist them in locating their three wind energy sites on maps of Canada and then locate them on a map provided. When students begin searching for their wind farms, they should use this site to help them locate the individual sites. Go to “Explore the maps” after the language selection on www.canadiangeographic.ca/atlas. From here, students select the highlighted link that says, “Click here to use the maps.” Where it says, “Feature”, students can type in the location of their sites and maps will come up after they hit the search button. Using this information, students can get a relative location of their site that can be put on a map of Canada, provided at the end of this lesson. Additional Resources Computer and Internet access (lab setting preferable). (It is possible to have students work in pairs.) Copies of “Student Organizer” (attached) Map of Canada Blank maps of Canada – available at: http://geography.about.com/library/blank/blxcanada.htm Website searches: <Canadian wind farms> < Canadian wind energy sites> at: www.google.ca www.canwea.ca THE CANADIAN ATLAS ONLINE www.canadiangeographic.ca/atlas PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND – GRADES 9 TO 12 ** The Discovery Channel’s Dirty Jobs has an episode about the maintenance of wind farms. Available from The Discovery Channel Store ** Diagram of parts of wind turbines. Main Objective The main objective is to introduce students to wind farms across Canada. This is not a new way of creating energy globally but is relatively new in Canada. Students will look at various sites across Canada, three or more depending on the teachers’ preference, and compare them using a given set of variables: size or footprint, kilo/mega watt production, number of turbines, etc. By looking at these variables, students will see how something as simple as a wind turbine can have a significant effect on the electrical grid and is a safe way of producing electricity without emitting harmful chemicals into the atmosphere. Learning Outcomes By the end of this lesson, students will be able to: - define the terms kilowatt, megawatt, turbine and wind farm - locate three wind farms in Canada with the aid of a map - describe the production output, size and number of turbines located at each farm - Properly identify the parts of a modern day windmill using the diagram provided. - Discuss the benefits of using this renewable resource. - Identify problems associated with wind farming in Canada. The Lesson Introduction Lesson Development Teacher Activity 1. Provide basic definitions of the subject, including the terms: kilowatt, megawatt, turbine and wind farm. Student Activity 1. Copy definitions on worksheet. 2. Inquire: “Where in Canada do you think we will find wind farms?” 2. Discuss where they think wind farms might be located. 3. Instruct students that they will be using computers to find at least 3 wind farms in Canada and answer the questions on worksheet (master 1) provided. 3. Listen for instructions. Work in small groups to search out information required on the provided worksheet on wind energy in Canada. 4. Instruct the students of the associated websites found on their activity sheet: www.canadiangeographic.ca www.canwea.ca www.google.ca and to research wind farm sites in Canada. 4. Using websites provided, find 3 wind farm sites across Canada, complete the worksheet questions. After completion, identify wind farms on map of Canada. THE CANADIAN ATLAS ONLINE www.canadiangeographic.ca/atlas Conclusion PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND – GRADES 9 TO 12 5. Return to whole class and collate/discuss what each group found. 5. Each group reports on its findings 6.Ask if the class findings matched their initial discussion as to location. Speculate why or why not they were correct. Hypothesize where and why future sites might be located. 6. Map/label each wind farm on a master map provided by the teacher. Lesson Extension After looking at wind farming in Canada, look at some other locations around the world. Some areas of interest might include the mega projects in Denmark, Germany and Spain. To find these sites, simply use a search engine online. Students can use the same handouts for the previous activity and look at the same variables and then compare and contrast Canadian wind farms to European Wind Farms. ** Naming/labeling the parts of a wind turbine (diagram attached) can be used for students who may not be on the regular program. Assessment of Student Learning The teacher will provide a large map of Canada and the students will come up and present what they found in the activity by: 1. Identifying where in Canada their site it and mark it somehow, a sticker or map pin may work fine 2. Informing the class of the number of turbines located at that site. 3. How big the actual site is. 4. How many watts are produced there? And any other questions the teacher may want answered. This activity is meant to expose students to wind energy in Canada. In terms of evaluation, teachers may choose to have students self evaluate by ensuring that the outcomes were met OR the teacher could evaluate the students on whether the outcomes were met by posing questions to each group. Other forms of evaluation are whether the worksheets were completed correctly and whether students used time wisely and effectively while performing the tasks required. Another form of assessment is an essay that students write. This would be an individual assignment that each student would be required to complete and would be graded by the teacher. Questions could include: 1. Is wind farming a ‘green’ form of alternate energy in Canada? OR 2. Write a letter to the Minister of the Environment and explain why (or why not) we should have more wind farms in Canada. Further Reading For further information, students should go to www.westernwindenergy.com. Once here, students should go to the wind energy section and read the information under benefits, sustainability and environment. These will give some insight into wind farming in Canada and help with answering questions in the assessment of this lesson. THE CANADIAN ATLAS ONLINE www.canadiangeographic.ca/atlas PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND – GRADES 9 TO 12 Link to Canadian National Standards for Geography Essential Element#3: Physical Systems Components of the Earth’s’ physical system Global ocean and atmospheric systems Essential Element #5: Environment and Society Environmental issues Effects of human modification of the physical environment Geographic Skills #2: Acquiring Geographic Information Locate and gather geographic information from a variety of sources. Diagram of a Wind Turbine THE CANADIAN ATLAS ONLINE www.canadiangeographic.ca/atlas PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND – GRADES 9 TO 12 Student Organizer NAME: ________________________ Relevant definitions: Kilowatt: __________________________________________________________ Megawatt: ________________________________________________________ __ Turbine: ________________________________________________________ __ Wind farm: __________________________________________________________ Websites: www.canadiangeographic.ca/wind www.canwea.ca www.google.ca Instructions: Fill in the names of 3 wind farms at the top of each column: WIND FARM Province Farm size km2 Number of turbines Energy production in mw/kw No. of homes served Initial cost of site Environmental impact Other interesting information 1. 2. 3.