Teacher Training Program on Coding and Data Analysis
Based on the effectiveness of our 'Smart Lamp' curriculum, we are working on creating effective teaching materials for teachers that will allow them to meet the Computer Science graduation requirement for CPS high school students.
In 2016-17 school year, RDCEP conducted a series of Teacher Training workshops called 'Energy Engineers' for CPS teachers in collaboration with the Center for College Access and Success at the Northeastern Illinois University (CCAS@NEIU), Project SYNCERE and Planetary Laboratory. These workshops brought cross-curricular hands-on activities to the classroom, engaging teachers from different disciplines like mathematics, environmental science, social sciences and computer science. The students also learned the basics of coding using a smart device designed from LED lights and a micro-computer called Raspberry Pi.
Currently, we are working on adapting our curriculum such that the students can learn coding directly in a browser, without the hardware part. This will help us empower teachers to effectively teach the curriculum in their classrooms. Once the students and teachers become comfortable with the programming part, our staff members will bring in and demonstrate how to use the same codes to control real LED lights.
Energy Demo Lending Library
We're launching a new energy demo lending library. Chicagoland teachers can borrow these kits and associated curricula to bring back to their classrooms. Our goal is to help students develop a deeper understanding and intuition for energy science, technology and usage -- and to spark interests in science and technical careers. Topics include electricity, chemical energy, motors and generators, wind energy, and solar photovoltaics.
You can find all of the demo kits here.
Become a Partner Classroom
We're always on the lookout for teachers who would like to collaborate with other classrooms. This is a great way to expand and leverage data collection and analysis efforts across the city of Chicago.
If you would like to partner with other classrooms, please contact Seth Severns.
Teacher Training Workshops
RDCEP offers teacher training workshops on topics related to energy and climate. If you would like us to visit your school, please let us know.
In many of RDCEP's educational programs, students collect data from all over the city of Chicago. These datasets are available to teachers and cover a range of topics, including:
- urban forestry (e.g., tree health, canopy, species diversity)
- student transportation (e.g., how public high school students get to/from school)
- return rates of lost letters and keys
- abandoned buildings and vacant lots
- residential lot condition (e.g., assessing overgrowth, litter, snow shoveling)
For more information, please contact us.
We're in the process of creating a library of curriculum units covering a wide variety of topics:
- Social Cost of Carbon (webDICE)
- State Energy Policy (RPScalculator)
- Food Security
- Smart Lamps that provide visual feedback on energy usage
- Urban Research
We are also working with Planet Lab, a network for sharing and disseminating science curricula, to reach teachers and students in Chicago Public Schools.