Take it home case study

Students from Lenah Valley Primary using the power mate

Lenah Valley Primary School

The Lenah Valley Primary School Grade Six class undertook an enquiry-based unit of work using a class set of the Home Energy Audit Toolkits (HEAT). The unit integrated science, English, maths, sustainability and ICT.

The unit began with a class discussion about sustainable practices within the school and how and why these could be improved. The students formed groups and decided on investigations to contribute to the broad enquiry questions:

What is energy?
How do we use energy in our school?
How efficiently are we using energy?
Can we save energy?
Why should we save energy?

During their investigations students used the HEAT equipment and information. They also used Excel to manipulate and graph data and Adobe Spark to present ideas.

The class made lasting changes, committing to work together to remind and help each other on a daily basis to turn off lights, and check smartboards, computers (including the computer trolley) and heaters. They also increased the number of class energy monitors.

Comments from the teacher

‘A thoroughly worthwhile and engaging toolkit to build students' understanding of energy use and how it contributes to a sustainable world.’

‘Students were motivated to use the kit as it allowed them to engage in learning that they knew could have an impact on a broad audience through the Sustainability Open Day.’

‘It was meaningful, active learning that changed the way we behaved in the classroom and at home. It raised the challenge; how can our recommendations make a positive impact after we go on to high school?’

‘Students were very excited to discover that they could make a positive impact simply by investigating the efficiency of fridges, measuring the temperature, changing the settings and retesting. Other students costed the standby lights in the classroom using the Power-mate.’

‘There were many rich discussions about the process of investigation and the analysis of data collected.’

Comments from the students

‘The HEAT kits were fun to use and I also learnt a lot more than I thought I would.’ Arley

‘It was really interesting using the Power-mate and finding the cost of energy used. It made you say “wow”!’ Jasper

‘It was a bit hard to use and read the Power-Mate but once we figured it out it was easy and fun to use.’ Molly

‘I really enjoyed using the Power-mate. I thought it was really incredible what it is capable of.’ Jake

‘The kits really helped us think about our school’s energy cost and use.’ Oliver

‘I found it really interesting using the radiometer.’ Charlotte

‘The HEAT kits were handy because they had information cards about our project, which was fridges.’ Shaun

‘I found the HEAT kits quite fun as they were new and very different to anything I have used before.’ Alexandra

‘I think they were pretty cool and the Power-mate is awesome!!’ Hayden

‘The HEAT kit was fun to use and I would love to use it again.’ Talia