The Lesson Plan - Forms of Energy II


Science – SC.4.P.10.3
Investigate and explain that sound is produced by vibrating objects and that pitch depends on how fast or slow the object vibrates.

Language Arts – LAFS.4.L.3.4
Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases based on grade 4 reading and content, choosing flexibly from a range of strategies.

Use context (e.g., definitions, examples, or restatements in text) as a clue to the meaning of a word or phrase.

Use common, grade-appropriate Greek and Latin affixes and roots as clues to the meaning of a word (e.g., telegraph, photograph, autograph).

Consult reference materials (e.g., dictionaries, glossaries, thesauruses), both print and digital, to find the pronunciation and determine or clarify the precise meaning of keywords and phrases.

Mathematics – MAFS.4.NF.3.6
Use decimal notation for fractions with denominators 10 or 100. For example, rewrite 0.62 as 62/100; describe a length as 0.62 meters; locate 0.62 on a number line diagram.

Big Idea(s)

Forms of Energy

  • Energy is involved in all physical processes and is a unifying concept in many areas of science.
  • Energy exists in many forms and has the ability to do work or cause a change.

Essential Question

  • Why is sound considered a form of energy?
  • How is energy produced from the vibration of an object?


Compression • Waves Refraction Vibrations • Substance • Sound Intensity Noise • Decibels  Frequency Amplitude Volume Pitch Transfer

Background Information

Sound energy

Imagine not being able to hear a sound! Sound is the movement of energy through a substance such as air, water, or wood. This form of energy is created when a force causes an object or substance to vibrate — Sound energy then moves through the substance in the form of a wave.  These vibrations create sound waves, which move through mediums such as, air, and water, before reaching our ears. Sound, like light, travels in waves and is usually measured by the pressure and intensity it produces – transferring from one place to another

The height of the wave (amplitude) and the closeness of the waves are to each other (frequency) is how we measure volume and pitch. The higher amplitude, the louder the volume of the sound, and the greater the frequency of the waves, the higher the pitch will be.  Usually, sound energy is not as powerful as other forms of energy.

Guiding Questions

  • How is energy transferred?
  • What is a vibration?
  • How are vibrations created?
  • How does energy transfer?
  • How is sound energy produced?
  • How is sound energy used?
  • What is a pitch?

Math Mania

Essential Question:

How many total kilometers would Mr. Gonzalez walk after 4 days of hearing the dogs bark?

Mr. Gonzalez walks through his neighborhood every day for a total 0.9 kilometers. During his daily walks he hears several dogs barking along the path -coming and going. 

The Correct response is 3.6 kilometers (km)

Instructional Sequence

Fun Facts

Did you know…

  • That a dog’s ears are more sensitive than human ears. It allows them to hear sounds that humans generally cannot hear?
  • That flies cannot hear at all?
  • That when whales communicate with each other under water, their sound can travel up to 800 km in the ocean?

Inquiry Type

  • Guided Inquiry
  • Brain Storm
  • Structured Inquiry
  • Class/Group Activity
  • Think/Pair/Share

Teacher Resources

Video: What is Sound Energy?
Video: What is Sound?

what is sound video
what is sound energy video