1056 Views
  1. Laura Zangori
  2. https://education.missouri.edu/person/laura-zangori/
  3. Associate Professor
  4. Presenter’s NSFRESOURCECENTERS
  5. University of Missouri Columbia
  1. Laura Cole
  2. https://greenbuildingliteracy.com/
  3. Assistant Professor
  4. Presenter’s NSFRESOURCECENTERS
  5. University of Missouri Columbia
  1. Sepideh Fallahhosseini
  2. https://www.linkedin.com/in/sepideh-fallahhosseini
  3. Graduate Research Assistant
  4. Presenter’s NSFRESOURCECENTERS
  5. University of Missouri Columbia
  1. Heather Jones
  2. Teacher
  3. Presenter’s NSFRESOURCECENTERS
  4. Columbia Public Schools
  1. Tanner Oertli
  2. Graduate Research Assistant
  3. Presenter’s NSFRESOURCECENTERS
  4. University of Missouri Columbia
  1. Suzanne Otto
  2. Graduate Teaching and Research Assistant
  3. Presenter’s NSFRESOURCECENTERS
  4. University of Missouri Columbia
  1. Meera Sood
  2. Teacher
  3. Presenter’s NSFRESOURCECENTERS
  4. Columbia Public Schools

Enhancing Energy Literacy through Place-based Learning: The EYE Project

NSF Awards: 2009127

2022 (see original presentation & discussion)

Grades 6-8

Energy and your environment (EYE) is an interdisciplinary project to develop a Middle School energy literacy unit. This unit fosters place-based education by using the school building to enhance systems thinking about energy consumption and flow between buildings and Earth systems. Given that buildings are responsible for nearly 40% of global carbon emissions, green buildings are important for addressing climate change. They work synergistically with surrounding ecosystems to promote human and planetary health. They can contribute to a sustainable and just future and are filled with learning content for the science classroom. The EYE unit gives students a real world connection to the abstract concept of energy flow and helps them learn about making better energy choices for a sustainable future.  

Resource:

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Discussion from the 2022 STEM For All Video Showcase (19 posts)
  • Icon for: Laura Zangori

    Laura Zangori

    Lead Presenter
    Associate Professor
    May 10, 2022 | 08:17 a.m.

    Welcome and thank you for viewing our video! Laura Cole and I started thinking about this project in 2015 and are so excited to see it coming to life!

  • Icon for: Marie Himes

    Marie Himes

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 10, 2022 | 09:15 a.m.

    Hi Laura and Team,

    Thank you for sharing The EYE Project! I really appreciate how the energy literacy unit you are designing supports students in better understanding the connections between building design, energy usage, and sustainability. 

    With the engineering design portion of the unit, do students share their energy-efficient school building designs with an authentic audience? One of the challenges that we are working to address through the inquiry cycle with Project-Based Inquiry (PBI) Global is the "so what." What can students do with the social innovations and engineering design solutions for enduring global challenges that they are developing in order to gain traction with a broader stakeholder audience? And for their findings, interests, ideas, and innovations to have sustained impact beyond the scope of the project?

    Look forward to reading your thoughts and learning more about this relevant and thoughtful project.

    Thanks, Marie

     
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    Sepideh Fallahhosseini
    Laura Zangori
  • Icon for: Laura Zangori

    Laura Zangori

    Lead Presenter
    Associate Professor
    May 10, 2022 | 09:43 a.m.

    Hi Marie,

    I replied and it didn't "stick" so I'm going to give it another go and hope this one stays around!

    We talked quite a bit about students presenting their designs to stakeholders, but the pandemic made it hard to coordinate this and, since this was our first run through of the unit, we also weren't sure how far the students would make it through the design and build. Instead, the students held a showcase in their media center and invited parents in to see their designs and comment. We did have undergraduate architectural studies students in their intro class come and support design and build days (they were such a wonderful support)! In our next phase of the project, we are working towards community involvement in which students tour their communities and think about how the sustainable design works with the community. We also plan for students to present their ideas to stake holder community members and get project feedback. 

    Thank you for visiting! I am looking forward to viewing your project too!

     
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    Sepideh Fallahhosseini
    Billy Spitzer
    Marie Himes
  • Icon for: Laura Cole

    Laura Cole

    Co-Presenter
    Assistant Professor
    May 11, 2022 | 09:25 a.m.

    Marie -- Great question! We have been finding that this work has so many tendrils out toward workforce development and future advocacy for green community development. One challenge of our unit is that our first pilot took 10 weeks of instruction, which was beyond what most teachers can devote to the subject. We are working to streamline the unit, but I can imagine creating an add-on activity for teachers at the end of the unit that involves school administrators, architects, city hall staff, etc. in the final presentations. Something like that would take significant coordination for teachers, but could certainly enhance the place-based nature of the unit. Thanks again for visiting. -Laura

     
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    Sepideh Fallahhosseini
    Billy Spitzer
    Marie Himes
  • May 10, 2022 | 09:48 a.m.

    Hi Laura, 

    LOVE seeing how you are making science relevant and practical for students. Energy is such a difficult yet important topic for students so it was great to see this chosen as the focus for the unit. I can't wait to learn more about future outcomes of this project!

     
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    Laura Zangori
  • Icon for: Laura Zangori

    Laura Zangori

    Lead Presenter
    Associate Professor
    May 10, 2022 | 09:55 a.m.

    Hi Brooke,

    Thank you for watching! We are in the midst of data analysis now and are thinking about our next iteration of unit implementation in the fall and spring of next school year. We are excited to streamline the unit and better integrate engineering throughout the unit.

    Thank you for your interest in our project!

    -Laura

     

  • Icon for: Brian Drayton

    Brian Drayton

    Facilitator
    Co-Director
    May 10, 2022 | 11:08 a.m.

    I like this project, which integrates so many subjects in a way that makes learning the math, science, engineering, and technology quite natural and authentic.  And I think the times are right for such projects (as we see elsewhere in the Videohall this year).   I was part of a team that piloted a "solar house" unit back in the late 1980s and early '90s in various iterations.  At the time, there were very few "green houses" around, that could serve as examples and learning settings, and nothing like the "smart technology" that exists now for so many homes and public buildings to monitor energy  use and such things.  I imagine kids engaged with your project start seeing the energy story everywhere they go. And the climate urgency offers an additional sense of purpose or importance. 

     
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    Billy Spitzer
    Laura Cole
  • Icon for: Laura Cole

    Laura Cole

    Co-Presenter
    Assistant Professor
    May 11, 2022 | 09:26 a.m.

    Brian -- Thanks for this comment and seeing the potential and importance of this work! Laura

  • Icon for: Billy Spitzer

    Billy Spitzer

    Facilitator
    Executive Director
    May 10, 2022 | 02:40 p.m.

    Laura,

    Thank you for sharing information about this project. I really like the positive and accessible tone of the video, your enthusiasm for the project really comes through.

    I was curious to learn more about the focus on energy, and whether you considered addressing other aspects of sustainable design (e.g., water conservation, use of materials, etc.)?

    I was also wondering about how you are thinking about assessing the impact of the unit, and how you are thinking about students "making better energy choices" vs. advocating for sustainable schools and other buildings?

    Thanks,
    Billy

  • Icon for: Laura Cole

    Laura Cole

    Co-Presenter
    Assistant Professor
    May 10, 2022 | 04:37 p.m.

    Hi Billy -- Love these questions. I am one of the investigators on the project and my work addresses the idea of "green building literacy." ENCORE Learning Lab is the group that is focusing on curriculum project. We are focusing on energy in this project, but we are interested broadly in the ways in which green building design provides exciting content for the science classroom. As an example, we simultaneously developed a green roof unit that focuses on the water cycle. We would love to keep expanding outward with these ideas.

    Our assessment of the unit currently focuses on student conceptual energy knowledge -- where we are looking at the ability for students to understand the components within the system, how these components are linked, and why it matters. We have student surveys, drawings, and writings as the data. We hope that this is the foundation for the energy behaviors you mention above, which have not been the focus of our assessments, even though these are potential outcomes of a unit that focuses on energy efficient design features!

    Thanks so much for watching.

    Laura

     
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    Sepideh Fallahhosseini
    Billy Spitzer
    Laura Zangori
  • Icon for: Beatriz Canas

    Beatriz Canas

    Facilitator
    Director of equity, diversity, inclusion and accessibility
    May 10, 2022 | 03:40 p.m.

    Laura,

    I enjoyed watching your video and learning more about this project. As part of students' learning process, do you also discuss energy justice and challenges/barriers that some communities may face that impact energy choices? 

    Thanks!

    Beatriz

     
    2
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    Sepideh Fallahhosseini
    Laura Cole
  • Icon for: Laura Cole

    Laura Cole

    Co-Presenter
    Assistant Professor
    May 10, 2022 | 10:43 p.m.

    Hi Beatriz --

    Fabulous question. The learning content within the unit does not directly address these questions at this time, but social justice ideas have shaped some of our decisions around unit design. The idea is for this unit to be open access and place-based, and we hope that teachers in many different communities can pick up the unit and weave it into their local school and community context. We also made sure that schools did not need to have access to a certified green building to enact the unit. The lessons work in all school building regardless of how eco-friendly - or not - the building is. Further, when students are designing their one-room schoolhouse in the engineering design lesson, they are given several constraints. Budget is one of those constraints. The worksheets prompt students to calculate construction cost, which would give educators an excellent opening to discuss who does and does not have access to green building practices.

    I would love to hear more of your ideas that we could consider for unit improvement!

    Laura C.

     
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    Sepideh Fallahhosseini
  • May 10, 2022 | 11:51 p.m.

    EYE team,

    I really enjoyed learning about your project! Something I've wrestled with in curriculum design is how to integrate science and engineering into a unit. I'm curious how you approached this in the EYE unit. Is engineering design goal what motivates the unit and students figure out science ideas along the way as they work on their designs? Do students figure out the science ideas first and then apply those ideas in their engineering designs? Or do you have another approach to integration?

     
    1
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Sepideh Fallahhosseini
  • Icon for: Laura Zangori

    Laura Zangori

    Lead Presenter
    Associate Professor
    May 11, 2022 | 09:54 a.m.

    Hi Emily!

    We have wrestled with engineering + science too. I attended a webinar about it and it seems like everyone is struggling with this point. In our next iteration of the unit for next school year, we are starting with engineering and then placing engineering throughout the unit as one of our graduate students is thinking deeply about the overlap between systems thinking and design thinking. Since we are trying to support systems thinking, and do science and engineering, we think this approach might better help us integrate the two in a much more thoughtful approach. 

    -Laura

     
    1
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    Sepideh Fallahhosseini
  • Icon for: Jan DeWaters

    Jan DeWaters

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 11, 2022 | 09:03 p.m.

    This was fun to find while perusing for some videos created by my Clarkson colleagues -- FANTASTIC!!! Hope you get lots of positive feedback, you two are doing such a fabulous job. If I were a middle school teacher I would want to use this material! 

     
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    Laura Zangori
  • Icon for: Sepideh Fallahhosseini

    Sepideh Fallahhosseini

    Co-Presenter
    Graduate Research Assistant
    May 11, 2022 | 11:35 p.m.

    Hi Dr. DeWaters,

    We’re so happy that you enjoyed what we’re doing. Thanks for your heartwarming feedback.   

     
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    Laura Zangori
  • Icon for: Rebecca Sansom

    Rebecca Sansom

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 12, 2022 | 04:15 p.m.

    Thank you for sharing this project. I saw a different presentation that emphasized “giving back” as a key cultural ideal for Native American students that encourages their persistence in STEM. I couldn’t help but see the potential overlap here as students doing green building might contribute to making their communities more climate resilient. Great work

  • Icon for: Laura Zangori

    Laura Zangori

    Lead Presenter
    Associate Professor
    May 12, 2022 | 06:54 p.m.

    Thank you for stopping by! I love that overlap! In our next iteration, we working to integrate the engineering design into the community. Students will meet with and tour their communities to consider sustainable buildings and present their ideas to community members for feedback. 

  • Icon for: Gerald Knezek

    Gerald Knezek

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 14, 2022 | 03:22 p.m.

    Wow, this is a fascinating project. I love the cardboard and masonite model home designs. I would love to be updated from time at gknezek@gmail.com. We are interested in what kinds of plants and trees around the house are targeted in your design process. Do you know of a project featuring this, or is there a repository you could point us too?

    Nice project!

    Gerald Knezek

    simEquity

    (Previously Going Green: Middle Schoolers Out to Save the World -- ITEST)

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