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Electrical Power Lesson for Kids

Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Shoshana Yarin

Shoshana has taught all grades with an emphasis in science and has a master's degree in science.

Turn on the lights, run the fan, or charge the laptop; it all takes electrical power. Have you ever noticed how many things are plugged in or wondered where the electricity comes from? Learn more in this lesson. Updated: 05/18/2020

Electricity

Have you ever wondered how electricity is made or how it gets to your house? You go to the refrigerator to get a cold drink; the light comes on and everything inside is kept nice and cold. Without electricity, we wouldn't be able to pump water, turn on lights, run computers, or charge our phones. All this is made possible with the electrical grid. A grid is the connected network that carries power from the source to all the places that use it like you in your home.

Electricity is a form of energy. Energy can change forms, but it never goes away. Think about that cold drink. Any sugars in the drink are stored energy and convert to the energy you use in your body. Electricity was also once another form of energy.

Remember that the sugars in your cold drink are stored energy? Well, a power plant might burn coal, a form of stored energy, creating heat energy. That heat turns water into steam, which engages a turbine. Then the turbine catches the steam's energy, which turns the turbine's blades. This turbine then turns a coil of wire in a generator, which converts mechanical energy into electrical energy. That heat energy is now converted into mechanical energy. Wow!

Does all the electricity coming to your refrigerator come from coal? Actually, in the United States, about one-third of the electricity produced comes from coal.

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