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Undecided with Matt Ferrell


9th, 10th, 11th, 12th


Science, Physics, Engineering

Resource Type

  • Videos, 11 minutes, 43 seconds, CC, Subtitles

Regional Focus



YouTube Video

Clean Renewable Energy From a Toilet? Exploring Water Pipe Turbines.

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  • This video explores the field of energy recovery hydropower, a method for generating energy using water pressure in existing water infrastructure. 
  • Students will learn about how energy recovery hydropower works, the benefits and drawbacks of this type of power, and some of the places it is already being used. 
Teaching Tips


  • This video does an excellent job of explaining complex ideas in easy-to-understand ways. 
  • The graphics used will help students to understand how energy recovery hydropower works.
  • A link to the transcript is available in the video description.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Ads may play before and during the video. 
  • Students should have some prior knowledge of hydropower. 
  • The video's content ends at 10 minutes, 21 seconds; the remainder of the video is a paid promotion.


  • Cross-curricular connections can be made in social studies classes when discussing how governments can incentivize renewable energy production. 
  • After viewing the video, students could research the types of hydropower being used in their areas. 
  • As an extension, students could research what water plants in their areas could use energy recovery hydropower. 
  • Other related resources include this interactive map of energy infrastructure and resources in the United States and this video about tidal turbines. 
Scientist Notes
The video explores hydropower and its contributions to the energy sector. It evaluates the principles, mechanics, and technological designs of hydropower recovery systems, and how they are applied to boost electricity potential and reduce utility costs and CO2 emissions. There is no contradiction in the video and this is recommended for teaching.
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ETS1: Engineering Design
      • HS-ETS1-1 Analyze a major global challenge to specify qualitative and quantitative criteria and constraints for solutions that account for societal needs and wants.
      • HS-ETS1-3 Evaluate a solution to a complex real-world problem based on prioritized criteria and trade-offs that account for a range of constraints, including cost, safety, reliability, and aesthetics, as well as possible social, cultural, and environmental impacts.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Language (K-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.9-10.6 Acquire and use accurately general academic and domain-specific words and phrases, sufficient for reading, writing, speaking, and listening at the college and career readiness level; demonstrate independence in gathering vocabulary knowledge when considering a word or phrase important to comprehension or expression.
    • Speaking & Listening (K-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.11-12.3 Evaluate a speaker's point of view, reasoning, and use of evidence and rhetoric, assessing the stance, premises, links among ideas, word choice, points of emphasis, and tone used.
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