This week, millions of kids across the United States are heading back to school. Parents are buying school supplies and perhaps heaving a sigh of relief (or shedding a tear). It's a rite of passage.

My wife and I look forward to our girl learning about energy—where it comes from and how we use it. She loves to share what she learned at daycare; I figure most kids are the same. If they share what they've learned about how to save energy with their parents, this becomes a great opportunity. Parents and kids together can go through their homes and see what they can do to save energy and money; they can also visit as a family for great energy saving tips, including our new Lighting Changes Save You Money campaign. It can be a game, a weekend project, a way to bond.

Another way for kids to get involved is through America’s Home Energy Education Challenge. This is a program for students to try and improve their homes’ energy efficiency (read all about it here). You can sign up for the Challenge by going here.

With the season about to change from summer to winter, now is a great time to "hit the books" and start thinking of ways you can save energy in your home and car. If your kids are anything like my girl, they'll be eager to help, sharing what they've learned and finding ways to cut your energy bill.

As a dad, I’m eager to teach my girl about energy—and showing her, by example, how that affects our day to day life. Learning about important things in school is great, but I want her to learn about the world when she’s not in the classroom too…and this is a great place to start.

Drew Bittner is the Web Projects Manager for DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.