Educational Songs with Free Worksheets

Radiation, Conduction, Convection

Teaching heat transfer and conduction with educational music: a rap about solar radiation, convection, and conductivity.

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This song illustrates heat transfer by describing how solar radiation, conduction, and convection work. It also helps students understand the difference between conduction and convection using specific examples. By learning about the three types of heat transfer, students will better understand heat conduction, thermal conductivity, and energy transformation. The teaching materials, including worksheets and activities, help scientists, teachers, and homeschool parents create lesson plans for the song topics. Students will become more knowledgeable when describing the types of heat transfer and using specific examples to explain the differences.

This science song is suitable for teaching heat transfer to advanced elementary school (5th grade and 6th grade), middle school, high school and home school students as well as beginning level college classes.
There are three ways that heat can travel
But it can travel in any direction
From the sun it moves to the earth, quick as a shadow
And disperses in radiation, conduction, and convection

Verse I
First things first, let’s discuss heat
What it is before you pay for it to warm your feet
Heat is the energy that flows when atoms and molecules move
It diffuses out toward coolness

Temperature is the measurement of
The average motion of these atoms
And molecules in the atmosphere
So there have it

Now, the first way of transportation of heat energy is radiation
Like sound waves from your radio stations
Filling the empty space around you
Your radiator warms you, but don’t start a fire now, I warned you
Heat is going through radiation from the sun
Before it burns you from 93 million miles away
To re-radiate this heat is what the earth does for you
This is survival what this heat is going through
Before it rises to the sky and it’s gone so…


Verse II
Conduction is the second method on my list
You can feel it like a hot pot on your fist
With the handle gripped I bet you’d rather grab a candle lit
‘Cause it’s heat through conduction that causes this

Atoms in matter in a fixed position vibrate when heated
Like a pan in the kitchen
Transmit the heat energy to atoms next to them
That are cooler than they are to cause equilibrium
To even out the temperature the heat has to travel
Up the spoon in your tea in the morning with your bagel
It might burn your hand, but just learn the land of
conduction heat energy until you understand
The earth gains little from conduction
It’s mostly radiation that helps us function and keeps us warm
It’s just another way for heat to move
But now let’s move on to method three to prove…


Verse III
Convection is the movement of heat in liquids and gasses
To even out the temperature fastest
This process is called diffusion
It’s a flow of particles cold and hot in a fluid
If you’re not listening, then stop what you’re doing
‘Cause this final mode that heat can move in
And this affects you everyday
It’s the breeze at your back and the wind at your face

When heat reaches the earth it rises at a rate
With the air in the place and it moves up till it cools
Trillions of molecules together
Make up the weather that we see on the news
It’s how they measure the pressure of the air and the temperature
But convection is how it got there in the atmosphere
So don’t be scared. Heat moves in three ways
So we made things clear, it’s like…


ASPIRE: Astrophysics Science Project Integrating Research & Education
Popcorn: Conduction, Convection and Radiation
This website uses the example of cooking popcorn to describe the three methods of heating. Excellent explanations. Good for all grades as an introduction.
Grades 1-12

Mansfield, CT Schools
Convection, Conduction and Radiation
This website gives a brief overview of the concepts of convection, conduction and radiation. The Heat Game at the end is a good review of concepts taught here.
Grades 5-10

Lesson Plans & Activities

Jefferson Labs
Vocabulary Hangman
This extraordinary site is a goldmine of great games and puzzles that are all science related. You can choose topics, grade levels and even add your own vocabulary lists. A great way to learn spelling and definitions of science terms.
Grades K-12

Cool Cosmos
Forms of Heat
This site has several links to resources explaining different ways of generating heat. A link at the bottom of the page directs you to games.
Grades 7-12

HotChalk’s Lesson Plans Page
Passing the Heat Along
This experiment is designed to teach students about conductors and the passing of heat. Offers a variety of simple but good examples.
Grades 5-6
Heat Worksheets and Activities
This website features a word search worksheet for free downloading.
Grades 7-12

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