Last week, I had an incredible time interacting with K-8 teachers from across Vermont and sharing the science and engineering of “Energy”. I have been fortunate to serve as the “Engineering Instructor” at this Vermont Science Initiative (VSI)’s annual Science and Engineering Academy, the past two years. This week long workshop to help teachers make sense of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in the context of science and engineering is a valuable resource to us all and our kids in these classrooms.
This year, we built Archimedes screws and a micro-hydro-generator as the engineering design challenge activities. I think everyone’s arms were sore with the “pumping” and clothes and shoes wet as the turbine turned, the voltmeter lit up, and gave us enough data to run through some calculations.
I learnt a great deal from my fellow instructors, Ben Luce of Lyndon State College (and Physics/Energy guru in general), all my wonderful colleagues (now friends really) at the VSI and newfound partners in the Vermont Energy Education Program (VEEP).
When pedagogy, science and engineering join hands, I think that is some powerful educational “energy”!