Individual Lessons 

The following list of lessons can be delivered on an individual basis or combined into a customized unit. Stand Alone Demos and Activities presented by Cuesta Sustainability staff. Topics include general energy science, renewable energy sources (sun, wind, water), magnets, climate science, waste reduction & resource conservation, and electricity.  

Grade Lesson/ Activity NGSS Topic In person Virtual
K-2 Light to Heat   Energy, Light Yes Yes
K-5 Radiometer Energy, Light Yes Yes
K-5 Solar Balloon 

Energy, Light, 

Forces and Interactions 

Yes Yes
K-6 Convection  Energy, Light, Earth Systems  Yes Yes
K-6 Solar Distiller Energy, Light, Earth Systems Yes  

Solar Oven

Energy, Light Yes  
K-2 UV beads Energy, Light Yes No


Nature Print Paper 

Energy, Light Yes No


Build a Windmill   Yes  


Weight Lifter Windmill   Yes Yes


Wind Turbine Testing   Yes Yes


Measuring Wind Speed   Yes Yes


Build Anemometer   Yes  


Water Wheels    Yes  


Hydro Turbine Testing    Yes Yes


Land Ice vs Sea Ice    Yes  



Ngss Mini Units

The following units are made up of 3-4 lessons that connect to specific Next Generation Science Standards for each grade. The units can be delivered fully outdoors and most can be modified for virtual instruction. There are 2-3 units per grade. 

Grade Level Mini Units to support NGSS. Each is a series of 3-4 lessons that incorporates both demonstrations and hands-on activities. The units can be entirely led by Cuesta Sustainability staff outdoors in person or via virtual platform. Some unit topics include: Weather, Energy, Waves, Forces and Motion, Human Impact, Biodiversity, and Earth Systems. There are 3 units per grade level to choose from that incorporate sustainability themes and engineering within the NGSS topics.  Click on the grade level to expand for the specific unit topics.