This project challenges students to use the engineering process to imagine, plan, and design a solar-powered invention. Students draw 2D sketches and 3D models of their designs using Tinkercad software. A scaffolded lesson plan is provided, complete with planning worksheets and an evaluation rubric. Skills: engineering, design, CAD software, geometry, geometric measurements.
Each year KidWind runs statewide Solar and Wind challenges for grades 4-12. Students and teachers alike rave about this rich experience. Equipment and entry are free for participating clubs. No teacher expertise is necessary, as KidWind holds office hours for students and provides technical support for teachers.
Source: Solar Schoolhouse
Doing is believing. Solar Schoolhouse offers hands-on, student-centered activities that demonstrate how solar energy can be harnessed and used. Ideal for elementary and middle school, projects include solar ovens (thermal), solar whirligigs (photovoltaic), and DIY solar panels (photovoltaic). All materials are available for purchase as classroom kits at the School Store tab.
Source: We Share Solar
This hands-on STEM education program links practical engineering skills with global humanitarian service as students build and share We Share Solar Suitcases with schools in energy-scarce regions of the world.
Source: Solar Empowered Schools
This project leads students to learn about their schools' solar array, investigate the environmental benefits of solar, and create an infographic poster about solar at their school.