image World Solar Challenge: Free STEM resources for secondary teachers

The Bridgestone World Solar Challenge (BWSC) begins on the 8th of October. The event has been going since 1987. Every two years, “teams from leading international universities and technical institutes, together with private entrepreneurs and even high schools, come together “Down Under” to test and promote the ultimate synergy of nature, motion and innovation” (source). Why in Australia? Well there are two very obvious things we have, sunlight, and a lot of it 👌, and the Stuart Highway, an almost 3,000-km long road that stretches from Darwin in Australia’s Northern Territory to Adelaide in South Australia. You can view a map of the route by following this LINK.

You can download a free teacher guide (classroom resources) which is designed for students in years 7 to 9 but can be adapted to suit other year levels. The resources employ the ‘Five Es’ instructional model designed by Biological Sciences Curriculum Study, an educational research group in Colorado, USA. The ‘Five Es’ are also the foundation of the Primary Connections Science resources, used in many schools here in Australia.

So what are the ‘Five Es’? (1) Engage (2) Explore (3) Explain (4) Elaborate and (5) Evaluate.  It follows a constructivist or inquiry based approach to learning, in which students build new ideas on top of the information they have acquired through previous experience.

Some of the learning resources include images to stimulate discussion, articles and blogs about issues and applications of solar technology, hands on ideas for setting up workstations and scientific experiments. It is a fantastic resources, so why don’t secondary Science, Technology, English and Math teachers at schools get together and see how you can get the most of this resources by integrating your subject areas?

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