Classrooms Competing to Save the Most Energy

Many teachers in the metro are learning about energy consumption in a friendly competition

FARGO, ND — Teachers are being put to the test to see who can save the most energy.

They can make their classrooms more interactive in the process.

It’s not your traditional classroom.

“Part of project-based learning is to have real, authentic content that students can relate to outside of a school setting,” said Amy Soma, library and instructional resources coordinator.”

Metro elementary teachers participated in an Energy Challenge at Davies High School, where they learned how to use and incorporate project-based learning into their classrooms.

“One of my main takeaways has been the self-assessment piece,” said Jefferson Elementary fourth grade teacher, Mike Grant. “That’s something that I didn’t do as much with the projects I did in my classroom but just periodically stopping and having the kids stop and self-assess where they’re at with their work.”

In addition to the project based learning, they also learned another valuable lesson.

Teachers presented ideas on how to reduce energy consumption at their schools.

Second grade teacher Megan Kreps does this in her lesson plans by making students electricians.

Each day a new student fills the role, meaning they have to make sure the lights are off every time all the students leave the room.

“Oh it’s so fun, they really get a thrill out of having ownership of what they’re doing in the classroom and being in charge,” said Dorothy Dodds Elementary second grade teacher, Megan Kreps. “They love to be helping the teacher or feel like they are the teacher and so having them have jobs, I feel, is really important for them.”

It’s not just about schools though.

It’s about the bigger picture.

“We’ve been working to engage with the community so it’s not just about learning for schools’ sake but learning for improvement in our community and reducing energy consumption,” Soma said.

This was the first year that teachers were pitted against each other in the energy competition.

Winners may have their ideas used in the eFargo Energy Challenge, a partnership between Fargo schools and NDSU.

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