By Molly Nunan,
UMF students in Professor Carole Lee’s Science Methods course are learning a thing or two about energy to teach local students about the concept of energy through the Family Energy program.
For the course of the semester Lee’s class has been working on learning the concept of energy and being green. Lee is very excited to express these values with her students, and has high hopes that this will be fun for them as well as useful in their future endeavors as elementary educators. “I wanted to do it because I wanted my students to know about science,” said Lee. “Science is connected to everything… I wanted them to understand the things they can do to conserve energy.”
Family Energy is an energy literacy program by the Maine Mathematics and Science Alliance (MMSA), which is funded through the profits of Efficiency Maine. The program targets energy education and conservation for children and their families. Children and families who attend the event will be working together on a number of hands on activities set up around the room. Families and other community members are invited to take part in the free Family Energy Night being held in the Olsen Student Center on Nov. 13th from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
For junior Tyler Leskowsky, the Family Energy is exciting to learn about. “We have been talking about energy for almost the whole semester,” said Leskowsky, “Our class has had the opportunity to talk about teaching the concepts of energy with Lynn Farrin, who is part of the Maine Mathematics and Science Alliance.”
Farrin came into Lee’s classroom earlier in the semester and did a presentation on energy and the importance of conserving energy. “She came in and introduced us to this thing called Family Energy Night, and gave us the book explaining the different activities we would have to learn,” said junior Brittany Garcia. “She gave us a paper to write where we look at this science book and what methods of teaching work best for teaching science.”
The MMSA has provided a lot of material to work with. “I work with the SCC [Sustainable Campus Coalition] here on campus and the MMSA,” said Lee. “To me the MMSA is most important because they are the ones giving us the tools and devices to do this.”
The class has been preparing for Family Energy Night throughout the semester talking about it in class and planning activities. “When Lynn Farrin first met with our class, she gave each student a copy of the draft of an ‘Activity and Event Planning Guide for Family Energy’,” said Leskowsky. “It contains 16 different activities that teach elementary and middle school students about energy, such as finding the most efficient light bulb, finding and eliminating drafts in your home, and identifying the best method to power our homes.”
UMF students in Lee’s class will be at the Family Energy Night teaching children about ways to conserve energy and make better choices to save money. “Although our primary audience is elementary and middle school students, we welcome students of all ages. Families will visit each table and participate in the variety of activities,” said Leskowsky. Family Energy’s mascot, Power Sleuth Fox will be at the event. “The Power Sleuth Fox, that is me, will be there to meet and interact with students!” said Leskowsky.
“We encourage all age children to come and their families! We have free refreshments and a door prize, it should be fun!” said Lee.
Families that are interested are asked to preregister online at www.powersleuth.org or call (207)626-3230.