Hey guys, I am in a teaching assistant in another 8th grade science class for my 2nd field experience in a title 1 school. The teacher is really struggling(*) to explain to the students the difference between Mechanical and Kinetic Energy. The book their using defines Mechanical Energy as, "energy possessed by an object due to its motion or position. In other words, Mechanical Energy is the combination of gravitational potential and kinetic energy. Its the energy of moving things." On the other hand, the book defines Kinetic energy as, "energy of motion. The faster an object moves, The issue is the class really struggle with abstract math, so we cannot simply have them use the equation M = K+U more over the fact that both are energies involving directional motion confuses them. Do you guys think you can help? (*)For example, one person asked. "What about fly wheel powered-car hybrid, isn't it storing rotational kinetic energy? How can a fly wheel mechanical potential energy or stored energy from kinetic energy" He's talking about a car that instead of instead of loosing all its energy from braking stored some of it it stored in a giant fly wheel attached to the car. But Potential Energy is energy that you store not Kinetic Energy. I tried to explain to him that that is why we have Mechanical Energy, but I felt like my answer was weak. (**)Another student asked, if we have "Gravitational and Kinetic, then why do we need mechanical energy?" (***)In the past the teacher has noted she had one student who literally thought the states of energy were the 50 states. This is because she had never heard of the word of state.