PhET - Science Energy Forms

Empowered Learner, Digital Citizen


PhET provides fun, free, interactive, research-based simulations for math and science. The simulations are written in HTML5, and can be used online or downloaded to your computer. This is free for all students and teachers. There are hundreds of lesson plans and materials using the simulations. You can download and use as-is or remix them for your needs.  This can be used for elementary, middle school, and high school.

Students will:

  • Be able to explore how heating and cooling iron, brick, water, and olive oil adds or removes energy. 
  • Be able to see how energy is transferred between objects. 

Vocabulary Words:

  1. Heat Conduction: Heat conduction is the movement of heat from one object to another one that has a different temperature when they are touching each other.
  2. Energy Transfer: The conversion of one form of energy into another, or the movement of energy from one place to another.

To prepare for this lesson:

  • Watch an overview video tutorial of PhET. 

  • Visit the website to find Energy Forms and Changes, Energy Skate Park and Energy Skate Park Basics.  (The examples are in alphabetical order. Scroll down until you see the energy examples.)

  • Be prepared to show students an example of how Energy Forms and Changes work and how to use Energy Skate Park.   

See Accommodations Page and Charts on the site in the Teacher Resources. 

Directions for this activity:

  1. The students will come to the carpet while the teacher models how to play the games, Energy Forms and Changes, and Energy Skate Park. Review the vocabulary.

  2. Have students log in and click on the link for the games. You can have them work alone or partner up together.  

Different options for assessing the students:

  • Observations
  • Check for understanding
  • If students get an answer incorrect, it will alert them that it was wrong and they will get to try it again.

MITECS: Michigan adopted the "ISTE Standards for Students" called MITECS (Michigan Integrated Technology Competencies for Students) in 2018.

Empowered Learner
1c. Students use technology to seek feedback that informs and improves their practice and to demonstrate their learning in a variety of ways.

Digital Citizen
2b. Students engage in positive, safe, legal and ethical behavior when using technology, including social interactions online or when using networked devices.

Device: PC, Chromebook, Mac, iPad

Browser: Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Edge, ALL

App, Extension, or Add-on:

Overview Video Tutorial of PhET

PhET Science Energy Games


Students will learn how energy is transferred between objects.

This task card was created by Dawn Phillips, Wyoming Public Schools, June 2020. Updated January 2022.