It’s Academic

As part of our education programme, we have developed a curriculum  on passive solar design for upper primary and lower intermediate/middle schoolers. It is included in the current edition of Green Teacher, and viewable on our website:

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Here is a story that sets the scene:

Once upon a time, in a small country at the edge of the world, a couple bought a run-down house and renovated it into an eco-home using passive solar design. They shared the project with the local community through open homes, workshops, school visits, and presentations. And they shared the project with the world with their blog. Word of the project traveled far and wide, up the Whanganui River and out across the Parapara Range to number of rural schools that formed a cooperative network called a “cluster.” Teachers from three schools in the cluster decided they wanted the theme of their final term (Term 4) to be sustainable energy use. They contacted the couple and arranged a hui – Maori for gathering or assembly – to talk about working together.

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At the hui they decided together to take a cross-curricular approach, integrating science, maths, English and the arts. The isolated locations of the schools across the rugged New Zealand countryside offered both challenges and opportunities. On the one hand, the couple would not be able to visit the schools during the term. But on the other hand, they could use the Internet as part of an innovative unit plan that could be shared not only across the Parapara, but also across the world. Additionally, the rural schools had roles of five to 25 students, so mixed-age classrooms were the norm. Therefore, the lessons would need to be adaptable for different ages and abilities. The couple returned home and developed a series of multi-disciplinary lessons on energy that became The Little House That Could (TLHTC). What follows is an overview of the unit and then a number of individual lessons.

Also check out TLHTC on Facebook:

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