Back to School: Energy Ed in the Classroom

As students are choosing new backpacks and supplies for the start of the school year, we're also getting ready at MGE. That's because MGE provides educational support focused on safety and the environment to area schools.

MGE works with the next generation so they can learn about gas and electric safety  and about the energy choices that can help create a cleaner tomorrow. MGE's Energy 2030 framework sets goals for a more sustainable energy future.

Energy and the environment

We offer a wide range of energy and environmental programs to schools. Here's a sample:
MGE pedal power lighting display

  • In the classroom: Our free K-6 energy curriculum is perennially popular with teachers. More than 100 teachers request these materials annually. The Energy Skill Builder Programsinclude student books covering specific energy topics. The curriculum covers topics from renewable energy to circuits and conductivity. 

    Teachers whose schools are located in the MGE gas/electric service area can receive partial scholarships from MGE for coursework that enables them to offer students energy education. Energy-related courses for certified teachers are offered through the Wisconsin K-12 Energy Education Program, known as KEEP. Established in 1995, KEEP is a collaborative effort between Wisconsin utilities, Focus on Energy and the Wisconsin Center for Environmental Education at UW-Stevens Point.
  • On the rooftops: MGE has installed solar photovoltaic systems on 11 schools in our service area. For example, at the Badger Rock Middle School, a Madison charter school emphasizing sustainability, MGE has two different solar technologies on the building's rooftop for study and comparison.
  • Pedaling to learn: The Pedal Power generator is an educational tool for loan to teachers to use. This hands-on, legs-on tool allows students to experience how much human power it requires to produce electricity for a variety of different loads including incandescent bulbs, LED bulbs, CFL bulbs, fans, a radio and cup heater.
  • When it's time for some fun: MaGicEnergy is a live, 30-minute energy/environmental education program for elementary and middle school students. The fast-paced program combines a strong environmental and energy message with juggling, humor, storytelling and plenty of audience interaction.

Safety

We help teach children about energy safety.
Kids learn electrical safety

  • Electric: We visit classrooms and teach electric safety to approximately 2,000 fourth and fifth graders every year. Our Hazard Hamlet tabletop safety model illustrates and simulates potentially dangerous outdoor electric safety situations. Students learn what to avoid and how to react to these situations. We have offered this program for more than 30 years. Approximately 75% of all elementary schools in our electric service area request this program year after year.
  • Natural gas: We also distribute "scratch and sniff" cards so students can identify the smell of natural gas and learn to put safety first.

We're working together with our customers—and partnering with our local schools to educate our youngest energy consumers—to create a more sustainable future for future generations. Want to learn more about these programs? Visit mge.com/schools.

published: Jul-26-2017

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