Two teachers from Elizabeth Ann Seton School in Hastings, recently returned from a teacher training course that provided practical hands-on tools for furthering the energy education of their students. Teachers Anne Burns, 5th grade, and Jane Lynch, 4th grade, attended “Energy Education in the Classroom” sponsored by Great River Energy, Maple Grove, and its 28 member cooperatives. Dakota Electric Association is a member cooperative and purchases wholesale power from Great River Energy.

Through hands-on activities and class discussions, Burns and Lynch learned how to enhance students’ understanding of what energy is, where it comes from, and how it affects their lives.

“I absolutely loved the training,” Burns said. “The best part of the training was the presentations given by the people of Great River Energy. They were so informative and educational.”

The teacher training course is part of the popular Wisconsin K-12 Energy Education Program (KEEP). Attendees included a broad range of teachers specializing in a variety of fields, including science/mathematics, social studies, language arts and more. KEEP staff, along with faculty from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, provided energy education tools to help teachers easily build energy education into their classroom curriculum.

“I will be able to use the valuable information and wonderful activities that are in the KEEP activity guide,” said Burns. “There are such wonderful hands-on activities that will work very well with our school’s existing curriculum and standards.”

Participants received, among other items, a graduate credit from the UWSP and a 400-page activity guide full of course outlines and adaptations. Great River Energy provides the opportunity annually to teachers in its members’ service areas.