TRESOC was delighted to be back in schools at the end of May, running its free renewable energy education programme for primary schools. The Renewable Energy Experiential Learning (REEL) programme ran with Year 6 at St Christopher’s Prep School in Staverton over two days.
On the field trip day, the children visited the Marley Head wind turbine (grateful thanks to South Brent Community Energy Society), Totnes weir hydro (with thanks to Dart Renewables Ltd), and the Dartington solar farm and woodfuel boiler (thanks to Dartington Hall Trust). TRESOC is extremely grateful to its sponsors for their ongoing support and access to their installations. As our Operations Director Sally Murrall-Smith said, “I’m aware of how lucky we are in Totnes, to have so many innovative organisations and embedded renewable technologies on our doorstep – organisations that are very happy to engage with the programme and enrich it. As a result, the children learn about renewable energy and wider energy issues. My hope is that the REEL programme empowers children by presenting positive ways to address climate change and busting some of the myths about renewable energy technologies.”
During the workshop day, the children took part in three workshops looking specifically at solar, wind and hydro technologies. For the solar workshop, the children carried out chemistry and physics experiments using electronics equipment. They also learned how important battery technologies are for renewables; without the them the energy is only available at the time it is being generated.
Alexandra Cottell, Head Mistress of the school thinks that ‘The REEL programme is a fantastic STEM project, that brings together physics, chemistry, maths and engineering into one place. It has been an enriching experience for all the children. It is the fourth time that the school have taken part is in the programme and we hope to continue to do so into the future.”
The children were also lucky enough to take part in a craft workshop to make renewable energy artwork that works using the energy from the sun. The Cyanotype session was run by Chloe Uden and Naomi Wright from Art and Energy Collective. They are the inspiration and driving force behind the Moths to a Flame movement that is turning calls for urgent action on the Climate Emergency into a magnificent mass-participation art installation at COP26 in Glasgow this year, using the moth as a metaphor for our relationship with energy. They are inviting everyone to help make 20,000 moths and record messages for COP26 delegates, which will be exhibited at the Glasgow Botanical Garden during the COP26 and then in Plymouth. TRESOC will be running community moth making events in the summer.