All forms of energy are a natural resource.  Energy resources are categorized as renewable or nonrenewable. Renewable energy resources can be replenished over a relatively short period of time and include resources such as solar, wind, water (hydro), biomass and geothermal.

Nonrenewable energy resources are available in limited supply and cannot renew at sufficient rates compared to the use of the resource. Examples include coal, nuclear, oil and natural gas.

Where does the energy used in our home come from? How is it produced? Where do the raw materials come from? What are the environmental and economic impacts of energy use by the citizens of Missouri? Explore these questions and more with your students or organizations by using this energy education guide developed for the state of Missouri.

An extensive background section provides information on a variety of energy systems, ranging from wind power to coal use. The lesson plans featured are designed to increase awareness of both current and future trends of energy use.

“To waste, to destroy, our natural resources, to skin and exhaust the land instead of using it so as to increase its usefulness, will result in undermining in the days of our children the very prosperity which we ought by right to hand down to them amplified…” Theodore Roosevelt

Images of Energy makers

Educator's Guide

Provided in Adobe PDF format

Energy Introduction

U.S. Department of Energy



Solar "Raycing"

American Solar Challenge

The American Solar Challenge is a biennial contest in which participating colleges and universities build and pilot solar-powered cars across the nation. Using photovoltaic cell solar arrays and high-efficiency electric motors, the cars use the sun for direct power and for recharging highly-efficient batteries that run the cars in times of limited sun.
The Missouri University of Science and Technology design, build and race solar electric vehicles which is a student run team that collaborates with faculty advisers.  Learn how this Missouri home team combines new technology and engineering principles into a race car that is efficient and reliable.  The team participates in National and World competitions.

The Solar Decathlon

In 2002, the U.S. Department of Energy sponsored the first-ever Solar Decathlon, a university competition that brings together the nation's brightest minds to demonstrate practical ways of producing and using energy efficiently in the home. Student teams compete in capturing, converting, storing and using enough solar energy to power our modern lifestyle by harnessing the power of the sun to run an entire household.

Two Missouri Universities have been chosen to compete in the 2017 Solar Decathlon.

Take Action

How can you take the ideas that these students have generated and make your school and home more energy efficient?

A key long-term objective of this competition is education:

  • Educating architecture and engineering students on how to design and construct solar-powered, energy-efficient buildings.
  • Educating homeowners about affordable, attractive and livable energy efficiency and solar technologies that are available for the home today.
  • Educating every American that investment in renewable energy and energy-efficient technologies can contribute to the nation's energy security and environmental quality, and create markets for American products around the world.