Activity Introduction

Quick summary: Students redesign their school to make it as energy efficient as possible, presenting their plan as a model or chart.

Learning goals for this activity include:

  • Use sustainable design principles to redesign a familiar environment such as the school to minimize energy use.
  • Show that many design aspects need to complement each other. 
  • Demonstrate an ability to work collaboratively to follow instructions and complete activity.
  • Communicate effectively in an oral presentation.
  • Communicate effectively in fair and considered class-wide discussion on issue.

Australian Curriculum Mapping

Content descriptions:

Year 7 Science

  • Science and technology contribute to finding solutions to a range of contemporary issues; these solutions may impact on other areas of society and involve ethical considerations (ACSHE120)

Year 7 English

  • Use comprehension strategies to interpret, analyse and synthesise ideas and information, critiquing ideas and issues from a variety of textual sources (ACELY1723)

Year 8 Science

  • Science and technology contribute to finding solutions to a range of contemporary issues; these solutions may impact on other areas of society and involve ethical considerations (ACSHE135)

Year 8 English

  • Analyse and evaluate the ways that text structures and language features vary according to the purpose of the text and the ways that referenced sources add authority to a text (ACELY1732)

Syllabus Outcomes: EN4-2A, EN4-3BSC4-11PW

Topic: Energy

Year levels: 7 and 8

Indoor or outdoor activity: Indoor

Time required: 45+ mins

Learning areas addressed: Design, Creativity and Technology, Interpersonal Development, Communication.

Level of teacher scaffolding: Lead students in class discussion around energy efficiency, assist students with design and efficiency ideas.

Resources required: Art materials, Internet, Cool Australia Research Learning Tool

Homework and extension opportunities: Parts of this activity can be set as homework

Keywords: Green design, sustainable design, school improvement, energy efficient.

Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.

Worksheets

Teacher Worksheet

Teacher preparation

Step 1: Break your class into groups. Each group is to research one option for increasing the energy efficiency of the school. This might include looking at the windows, doors, lighting, food service and computers and photocopiers. Ask them to think about where the problem areas might be. For example, is there a room that is really draughty in winter? Or a room that in summer is always hot, no matter how high the air-con is on? Or is there a room that is always dark and that always needs the lights on? Get your students to think creativity  There are some truly strange and amazing green building designs being conceived and constructed: you and your students could be creating the next internationally acclaimed green building!

Step 2: Once each group has one specific option for increasing the schools energy efficiency they should conduct research to answer the following questions:

• How will it improve the energy efficiency of the school?
• How much will the alter

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Student Worksheet

Activity outline

Student Instructions: 

Group members:

Step 1: Each group is to research one option for increasing the energy efficiency of the school. This might include looking at the windows, doors, lighting, food service and computers and photocopiers. Think about where the problem areas might be. For example, is there a room that is really draughty in winter? Or a room that in summer is always hot, no matter how high the air-con is on? Or is there a room that is always dark and that always needs the lights on? Get creativity! 

Step 2: Research to answer the following questions:

• How will it improve the energy efficiency of the school?
• How much will the alteration cost the school? Will the school save money in the long run?
• What will the features of energy efficiency be?
• Are there any negative impact associated with the alteration? If so, how will you overcome them?

Step 3: Present your ideas in a creative way. It could be a maps, models, blue-print, drawing or digital st

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