DATE POSTED: June 9, 2017
Local Students and Teacher Gain Hands-on Experience Building Energy Bike for Energy Education
Graham STEAM is full steam ahead. A Team of female student leaders and a teacher from Graham Middle School were among a select group from just six schools across Ohio who discovered practical strategies for teaching energy concepts and activities during the AEGIS (Activating & Energizing Girls’ Involvement in Science) workshop sponsored by DP&L and the Ohio Energy Project (OEP).
Local participants included DP&L Teacher of the Year Tracy Merica, who teaches 6th grade Science at Graham Middle School. Student participants included Graham 6th graders Kelsey DeMarco, Lexi McAlexander, Grace McLean, and Tory Pence. “The AEGIS workshop is designed to help students become energy leaders along with their teacher to teach energy and science concepts using the Energy Bike they constructed (that has been granted to the school) during the course and other inquiry-based, real-world, hands-on activities,” said Deborah Yerkes, OEP executive Director. “In addition, the students will become role models for their peers as they develop their leadership, teamwork, presentation skills, and self-confidence.”
Energy Bike activities allow students to transform their energy into electrical, light, heat, and sound energy. Students can power light bulbs, a radio, hair dryer, as well as experience the way fuses, circuit breakers and capacitors function. The team will now use the Energy Bike and their experiences to teach other Graham students about energy and science throughout the coming years. Mrs. Merica has utilized the Ohio Energy Project curriculum in her classroom over the years and when asked about why she felt this was a worthwhile project, she stated, “I want girls that I teach to know that although STEM careers are dominated by men, they too have these opportunities.” She further mentions ties to curriculum, inquiry and project-based learning, student leadership opportunities, and that it’s “exciting to receive an Energy Bike worth $5,000 to bring back to Graham Middle School.”