Activity Introduction

Quick summary: Students complete a lighting audit of all the lights that are on in their classroom. With this information, students work together to create a plan for their classroom aimed at reducing energy related to lighting. 

Learning goals:

  • Students understand that lights use energy.
  • Students understand that saving energy will help our environment.
  • Students will understand how and why to do a simple audit.
  • Students will use counting and addition skills to audit lights at school and at home.

General capabilities: Numeracy, Critical and creative thinking.

Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability OI.8.

Australian Curriculum content description:

Foundation Mathematics

  • Establish understanding of the language and processes of counting by naming numbers in sequences, initially to and from 20, moving from  any starting point (ACMNA001)
  • Connect number names, numerals and quantities, including zero, initially up to 10 and then beyond (ACMNA002)

Year 1 Mathematics:

  • Represent data with objects and drawings where one object or drawing represents one data value. Describe the displays (ACMSP263)
  • Represent and solve simple addition and subtraction problems using a range of strategies including counting on, partitioning and rearranging parts (ACMNA015)

Year 1 Science:

  • People use science in their daily lives, including when caring for their environment and living things (ACSHE022)

Year 2 Mathematics:

  • Solve simple addition and subtraction problems using a range of efficient mental and written strategies (ACMNA030)
  • Collect, check and classify data (ACMSP049)

Year 2 Science:

  • Earth’s resources, including water, are used in a variety of ways (ACSSU032)

Syllabus OutcomesST1-11LW, ST1-9ESMAe‑1WM, MAe‑2WM, MAe‑4NA, MA1‑1WM, MA1‑2WM, MA1‑3WM, MA1‑5NA, MA1-17SP

Topic: Switch to Save, Energy.

Time required: 60 mins.

Level of teacher scaffolding: High – oversee activity and lead students in audit.

Resources required: Student Worksheet – one copy per student OR computers/tablets to access the online worksheet. Take It Home – Lighting Audit.

Digital technology opportunities: Digital sharing capabilities.

Homework and extension opportunities: Includes opportunities for homework and extension.

Keywords: Energy, lighting, audit, school.

Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.


Teacher Worksheet

Teacher preparation

Overarching learning goal: By participating in this lesson students will understand that lights use energy and will recognise that saving energy will help our environment. Students will understand how and why to do a simple audit and will use their counting and addition skills to audit lights at school and at home.

Teacher content information: Electrical energy is part of our everyday lives at home, at work and at school. Most of our energy is produced by burning fossil fuels and this has a range of environmental, social and economic impacts. One of the most significant impacts is the release of greenhouse gases. A solution is a transition to clean energy sources. Another solution is to think about our personal energy footprint and reduce the amount of energy we use.

In technical terms, energy is the ability to make changes or the capacity to do work. Energy appears in many different forms including kinetic, potential, gravitational, light, heat, chemical, elasti

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Student Worksheet

Thought starter: What would it be like without lights in our school?

Using the table below, take a walk around the school and count:

  • The total number of lights.
  • The number of lights turned on.
  • The number of lights turned off.

Are there any lights that you think don’t need to be on all the time? Remember, you do need to have some lights on all the time just so you can see where you’re going or what you’re doing. You don’t want to bump into anybody or fall over because you’re trying to save energy. It's also important to remember that there are lots of different types of light to look for.

Which light is which?

Incandescent light

Energy efficient light

Fluorescent light

Halogen downlight

LED downlight





Room number or
Total number of
Number of lights
switched on
Number of lights
switched off
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