Applied Science - Built Environment (3)
Pre Lab

  • Exploring how electric energy has changed our society.
  • Comparing different modes of transportation.


  • diesel
  • electric
  • electromagnetic
  • gas
  • transportation

Students use a worksheet to explore transportation.


The use of electricity has changed the face of the Earth. Electricity not only has made living easier, but is important to power different types of transportation. Many students do not realize how difficult it was to create a machine that moves on its own.

Transportation is a way to move objects from one location to another. Road, rail, water, air or pipelines are common means used today. The list below shows different forms of transportation and how they are powered.

carriage horse, hay
airplane, truck diesel
glider air
train diesel, electric, steam
cable car, trolley car electric
car diesel, gas


  1. Read "A Child of Rancho Arroyo de la Alameda."  Discuss with students the mode of transportation back in the early 1800s.  Horses were the prime way for transportation from a single person to moving with stagecoaches to wagons.
  2. Go over different modes of transportation. In the lab, students will look closely at the development of trains and how they are powered.
  3. Have students write a paragraph on the different types of transportation used in the past or used today.
  4. There are many vehicles that are powered by electric motors supplied with electricity from distant generating stations. These vehicles include streetcars, electric trolleys, railway, rapid transit lines, and electrified main-line railroads.
  5. Have students make a list of the different types of transportation on the board and then name the type of fuel that makes them move.

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