It all started from a reflection: “how do we involve our students in a real problem such as that of energy“, through the course of Technology? It would be very interesting for students to actively participate in the creation of real constructions, where they would study the forms of energy and their conversion.
This idea, integrated into the most important trends of the time, was developed in the European research project “STEM4ALL”. After the necessary analysis and design, the idea was adapted to the “Theoretical Framework” of the project (with corresponding lesson plans evaluated). The environment of a playful and attractive lesson on energy transformation (fossil fuels, alternative and renewable energy sources) and energy transfer, transformation, and conservation on earth and in space was created, with videos, simulations, energy conversion board game and energy conversion constructions (“Energy Transformers”).
The pilot phase of the project was implemented in groups of 3-5 students in the 10 classes of 7th Grade, starting from early December 2022, until the end of classes in May 2023, by the two teachers of the course, M. Mogios and S. Makrillos, the significant contribution of the Research – Innovation Department with G. Kotsanis and the Department of Digital Education with G. Tsigos. The “Engineering Design Process” model was followed with indicative phases:
After the completion of the students’ constructions, an exhibition was held at the Technology Laboratory where all classes of the middle school had the opportunity to see, observe and comment on the exhibits, and a relevant informative “stand” was posted at the entrance of the middle and high school.
Finally, at “Education without Borders” the constructions were presented successfully by students to the Belgian team of the large educational organization GO! who visited our School, 4-6 May 2023.
In conclusion, it is now a best European practice on the platform of the STEAM4ALL project and will be included next year in the Technology courses of the 7th Grade. It is particularly important to mention that all students worked and enjoyed this new process this year, sharing with their parents what they did in the Technology class. As a result, we received praise from the parents of the students, some of whom, of their own accord, visited us at school to see their children’s works. In fact, one mother, conveying her enthusiasm and many congratulations to the implementation team, characteristically said: “That is, they started from scratch…“!