Tell Me, I’ll Forget – Show Me, I’ll Remember

Let Me Do It, I’ll Understand – Chinese Proverb

The Schools & Homes Energy Education Project was established in May 1993 as an initiative of Sheffield Environmental Training, a South Yorkshire environmental charity, with funding from the Department of Environment Transport and the Regions Environmental Action Fund. On 4th November 1996 it registered as a not-for-profit company, and as a charity on 15th January 1999. In 1999 and 2005 Plugging Into the Sun® trademark registration. In December 2002 Recovery Insulation®, was established as a for profit share capital company.

Schools & Homes Energy Education Project/Solar-Active has successfully developed an education method and energy efficiency and renewable energy resources. These resources support an approach to learning that focuses on stimulating student’s interest and involves real life applications of scientific concepts while providing opportunities to use inventive, creative, problem solving skills crucial to scientific and inventive thinking; making science enjoyable to learn and teach.

The resources include model solar car, boat, lorry and mini-water pump. The solar car/boat kits are powered by our unique flexible solar cells that work well in diffuse light conditions.

The model solar car kit has been specifically designed for the builder of the car to learn using their creative and inventive of any changes they make first hand. This approach is highly effective in creating enthusiasm and encouraging invention; while allowing one to gain knowledge skills through a process of trial and error; experiencing the affects and problem solving skills.

Since 2003 young people in South Yorkshire have been building solar model cars and boats as part of the EPSRC ‘Engineering a Better World’ case study [Solar Detectives] to develop their enterprise skills and enthusiasm in Science, Technology Engineering and Mathematics.

The QCA considers the Solar Cars/Boats used in the Solar Detectives case study to have helped pupils transfer knowledge and skills between different subject areas. The inspired engineering experience was supported by the educational method, car/boat kits and curriculum materials created by Solar Active.

CPD training workshops are conducted in our education method and how to use our renewable & energy efficiency education resources. Family workshops and courses are conducted with community/environmental organisations, young people, educational institutions (Primary, Secondary, FE/HE), professionals and the general public.

The resources also provide the opportunity to create student enterprise projects and enthusiasm in Science, Technology & Mathematics. Encouraging students to study and enter into careers in engineering and develop an understanding of the issues of sustainability, climate change and global warming. Proven useful with the hard-to-reach and fits into concept of V-A-K Visual, Auditory and Kinaesthetic leaning.

Solar-Active provides support for Solar Challenges; using our solar car & boat, inter-active demonstrations, carbon-footprint and energy efficiency home/school surveys. The support also includes access to web based technical and teaching materials.