Discussion:
Small PV system/experiment for kids
(too old to reply)
Jason Szumlanski
2012-12-12 14:08:29 UTC
Permalink
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very small
PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged 9-11.
Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They are
fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.

Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?

Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
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Karl Jaeger
2012-12-12 14:35:00 UTC
Permalink
Hi Jason,
When I was in fifth grade I built a little PV project. It consisted of a very small module (smaller than a dollar bill) and a tiny dc motor mounted in a box with string hooked up to it, and some weights. I demonstrated how shading and irradiance levels affect how much weight the motor could lift. I received an 'A'.

Karl Jaeger
LightWave Solar Electric

From: re-wrenches-bounces at lists.re-wrenches.org [mailto:re-wrenches-bounces at lists.re-wrenches.org] On Behalf Of Jason Szumlanski
Sent: Wednesday, December 12, 2012 8:08 AM
To: RE-wrenches
Subject: [RE-wrenches] Small PV system/experiment for kids

I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very small PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged 9-11. Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They are fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over time.

Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?

Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
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Dave Click
2012-12-12 14:35:40 UTC
Permalink
Jason, for 9-11 year-olds this curriculum may be useful as a starting
point, and we've got some others for different age groups.
http://fsec.ucf.edu/en/education/k-12/curricula/sm2/index.htm

The "solar powered system" experiment is designed for a cell so we
suggested the load be a small propeller. Obviously, this would be a bad
idea with a 250W module since an unsuspecting kid would then be launched
into space, but a small module and a pump could be a fun educational
display.
Post by Jason Szumlanski
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very
small PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children
aged 9-11. Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with
this. They are fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or
ground. They want something interesting and/or interactive that the
students can monitor over time.
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?
Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
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Jesse Dahl
2012-12-12 14:57:59 UTC
Permalink
This is for older kids, but may help. I did a project for a 7th - 10th grade science class. The school wanted one module and batteries, but I talked them out of any batteries, and they went with a small awning mount array and grid tied it with weather station, temp and irradiance meters along with monitoring. I created a small week long curriculum for the teachers and walked them through the system using that curriculum. Might be a little more than you're looking for...

Jesse

Sent from my iPhone
Post by Karl Jaeger
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very small PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged 9-11. Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They are fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over time.
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?
Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
_______________________________________________
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Stephen Kane
2012-12-12 15:39:53 UTC
Permalink
Jason,

Similar to Karl's suggestion, we have built a few education systems with a
small PV module direct to a 12 VDC bilge/sump pump like the Rule models
(with some fusing and disconnecting means of course).
Showing movement of water when the module is in clear sun vs partially or
completely shading the module seems like an effective way to demonstrate to
kids how solar works with a direct load.
The whole setup is pretty simple and affordable.

Stephen Kane
Kane Solar
Lyons, CO

-----Original Message-----
From: re-wrenches-bounces at lists.re-wrenches.org
[mailto:re-wrenches-bounces at lists.re-wrenches.org] On Behalf Of Jesse Dahl
Sent: Wednesday, December 12, 2012 7:58 AM
To: RE-wrenches
Subject: Re: [RE-wrenches] Small PV system/experiment for kids

This is for older kids, but may help. I did a project for a 7th - 10th
grade science class. The school wanted one module and batteries, but I
talked them out of any batteries, and they went with a small awning mount
array and grid tied it with weather station, temp and irradiance meters
along with monitoring. I created a small week long curriculum for the
teachers and walked them through the system using that curriculum. Might be
a little more than you're looking for...

Jesse

Sent from my iPhone


Hi Jason,
When I was in fifth grade I built a little PV project. It consisted of a
very small module (smaller than a dollar bill) and a tiny dc motor mounted
in a box with string hooked up to it, and some weights. I demonstrated how
shading and irradiance levels affect how much weight the motor could lift. I
received an 'A'.

Karl Jaeger
LightWave Solar Electric
Post by Jason Szumlanski
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very
small PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged
9-11. Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They
are fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.
Post by Jason Szumlanski
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?
Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
_______________________________________________
List sponsored by Home Power magazine
List Address: RE-wrenches at lists.re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/options.cgi/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/pipermail/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
Post by Jason Szumlanski
www.re-wrenches.org/etiquette.htm
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Ray Walters
2012-12-12 20:01:10 UTC
Permalink
Array direct is definitely better as Stephen points out, and I've built
units that run a fan other visibly moving device. Definitely don't want
to roof mount the module, as others pointed out, you want the kids to be
able to experiment with angles and shading. Throwing in some analog
meters for current and voltage is usually a good idea too.
Keep it to 12 v, and forget about NEC, the kids want to see the complete
circuit. Array direct with a 10 to 20 watt module doesn't even need a
fuse (its only about an amp)
I've also used board mounted european screw lug connectors, and then had
the kids strip wires and tighten the connections with a screw driver.
For that age group, you'd be surprised how capable some of them are, and
also how short an attention span others have.....I keep a loose
curiculum plan, so that I can adjust the demonstration to the kids that
day. Less attention, then we skip the wiring, for example.

Ray
Post by Karl Jaeger
Jason,
Similar to Karl's suggestion, we have built a few education systems with a
small PV module direct to a 12 VDC bilge/sump pump like the Rule models
(with some fusing and disconnecting means of course).
Showing movement of water when the module is in clear sun vs partially or
completely shading the module seems like an effective way to demonstrate to
kids how solar works with a direct load.
The whole setup is pretty simple and affordable.
Stephen Kane
Kane Solar
Lyons, CO
-----Original Message-----
From: re-wrenches-bounces at lists.re-wrenches.org
[mailto:re-wrenches-bounces at lists.re-wrenches.org] On Behalf Of Jesse Dahl
Sent: Wednesday, December 12, 2012 7:58 AM
To: RE-wrenches
Subject: Re: [RE-wrenches] Small PV system/experiment for kids
This is for older kids, but may help. I did a project for a 7th - 10th
grade science class. The school wanted one module and batteries, but I
talked them out of any batteries, and they went with a small awning mount
array and grid tied it with weather station, temp and irradiance meters
along with monitoring. I created a small week long curriculum for the
teachers and walked them through the system using that curriculum. Might be
a little more than you're looking for...
Jesse
Sent from my iPhone
Hi Jason,
When I was in fifth grade I built a little PV project. It consisted of a
very small module (smaller than a dollar bill) and a tiny dc motor mounted
in a box with string hooked up to it, and some weights. I demonstrated how
shading and irradiance levels affect how much weight the motor could lift. I
received an 'A'.
Karl Jaeger
LightWave Solar Electric
Post by Jason Szumlanski
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very
small PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged
9-11. Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They
are fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.
Post by Jason Szumlanski
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?
Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
_______________________________________________
List sponsored by Home Power magazine
List Address: RE-wrenches at lists.re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/options.cgi/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/pipermail/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
Post by Jason Szumlanski
www.re-wrenches.org/etiquette.htm
www.members.re-wrenches.org
_______________________________________________
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Carl Emerson
2012-12-12 20:22:15 UTC
Permalink
Hi there,

Check out these educational units that include miniature fuel cells and
solar...

http://www.fuelcellstore.com/en/pc/viewCategories.asp?idCategory=41



Regards
Carl Emerson
Carl Emerson
2012-12-12 20:22:15 UTC
Permalink
Hi there,

Check out these educational units that include miniature fuel cells and
solar...

http://www.fuelcellstore.com/en/pc/viewCategories.asp?idCategory=41



Regards
Carl Emerson
Ray Walters
2012-12-12 20:01:10 UTC
Permalink
Array direct is definitely better as Stephen points out, and I've built
units that run a fan other visibly moving device. Definitely don't want
to roof mount the module, as others pointed out, you want the kids to be
able to experiment with angles and shading. Throwing in some analog
meters for current and voltage is usually a good idea too.
Keep it to 12 v, and forget about NEC, the kids want to see the complete
circuit. Array direct with a 10 to 20 watt module doesn't even need a
fuse (its only about an amp)
I've also used board mounted european screw lug connectors, and then had
the kids strip wires and tighten the connections with a screw driver.
For that age group, you'd be surprised how capable some of them are, and
also how short an attention span others have.....I keep a loose
curiculum plan, so that I can adjust the demonstration to the kids that
day. Less attention, then we skip the wiring, for example.

Ray
Post by Karl Jaeger
Jason,
Similar to Karl's suggestion, we have built a few education systems with a
small PV module direct to a 12 VDC bilge/sump pump like the Rule models
(with some fusing and disconnecting means of course).
Showing movement of water when the module is in clear sun vs partially or
completely shading the module seems like an effective way to demonstrate to
kids how solar works with a direct load.
The whole setup is pretty simple and affordable.
Stephen Kane
Kane Solar
Lyons, CO
-----Original Message-----
From: re-wrenches-bounces at lists.re-wrenches.org
[mailto:re-wrenches-bounces at lists.re-wrenches.org] On Behalf Of Jesse Dahl
Sent: Wednesday, December 12, 2012 7:58 AM
To: RE-wrenches
Subject: Re: [RE-wrenches] Small PV system/experiment for kids
This is for older kids, but may help. I did a project for a 7th - 10th
grade science class. The school wanted one module and batteries, but I
talked them out of any batteries, and they went with a small awning mount
array and grid tied it with weather station, temp and irradiance meters
along with monitoring. I created a small week long curriculum for the
teachers and walked them through the system using that curriculum. Might be
a little more than you're looking for...
Jesse
Sent from my iPhone
Hi Jason,
When I was in fifth grade I built a little PV project. It consisted of a
very small module (smaller than a dollar bill) and a tiny dc motor mounted
in a box with string hooked up to it, and some weights. I demonstrated how
shading and irradiance levels affect how much weight the motor could lift. I
received an 'A'.
Karl Jaeger
LightWave Solar Electric
Post by Jason Szumlanski
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very
small PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged
9-11. Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They
are fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.
Post by Jason Szumlanski
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?
Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
_______________________________________________
List sponsored by Home Power magazine
List Address: RE-wrenches at lists.re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/options.cgi/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/pipermail/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
Post by Jason Szumlanski
www.re-wrenches.org/etiquette.htm
www.members.re-wrenches.org
_______________________________________________
List sponsored by Home Power magazine
List Address: RE-wrenches at lists.re-wrenches.org
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http://lists.re-wrenches.org/pipermail/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
www.re-wrenches.org/etiquette.htm
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_______________________________________________
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Stephen Kane
2012-12-12 15:39:53 UTC
Permalink
Jason,

Similar to Karl's suggestion, we have built a few education systems with a
small PV module direct to a 12 VDC bilge/sump pump like the Rule models
(with some fusing and disconnecting means of course).
Showing movement of water when the module is in clear sun vs partially or
completely shading the module seems like an effective way to demonstrate to
kids how solar works with a direct load.
The whole setup is pretty simple and affordable.

Stephen Kane
Kane Solar
Lyons, CO

-----Original Message-----
From: re-wrenches-bounces at lists.re-wrenches.org
[mailto:re-wrenches-bounces at lists.re-wrenches.org] On Behalf Of Jesse Dahl
Sent: Wednesday, December 12, 2012 7:58 AM
To: RE-wrenches
Subject: Re: [RE-wrenches] Small PV system/experiment for kids

This is for older kids, but may help. I did a project for a 7th - 10th
grade science class. The school wanted one module and batteries, but I
talked them out of any batteries, and they went with a small awning mount
array and grid tied it with weather station, temp and irradiance meters
along with monitoring. I created a small week long curriculum for the
teachers and walked them through the system using that curriculum. Might be
a little more than you're looking for...

Jesse

Sent from my iPhone


Hi Jason,
When I was in fifth grade I built a little PV project. It consisted of a
very small module (smaller than a dollar bill) and a tiny dc motor mounted
in a box with string hooked up to it, and some weights. I demonstrated how
shading and irradiance levels affect how much weight the motor could lift. I
received an 'A'.

Karl Jaeger
LightWave Solar Electric
Post by Jason Szumlanski
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very
small PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged
9-11. Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They
are fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.
Post by Jason Szumlanski
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?
Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
_______________________________________________
List sponsored by Home Power magazine
List Address: RE-wrenches at lists.re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/options.cgi/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/pipermail/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
Post by Jason Szumlanski
www.re-wrenches.org/etiquette.htm
www.members.re-wrenches.org
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Nathan Jones
2012-12-12 16:28:04 UTC
Permalink
Jason,
If you want a little self contained display that is interactive you could use a high wattage AC light focused on a small 10 or 20 watt module. Put the light on a rheostat the kids can control. Use a computer fan to the module with a clear plastic tube sealed around it. Drop a ping pong ball in the tube. By varying the AC light intensity the ball rises and falls in the tube. If the tubing is sized properly the ball will rise up out of the tube at full fan speed and be suspended in mid air a couple of inches above the top of the tube because the spherical shape perfectly divides the rising column of air around the ball. It remains suspended above the tube perfectly and is guided back into the tube by the falling pressure of rising air surrounding it.
A neat little display that lets kids (and adult kids) see instant cause and effect of the power of light.
Nathan Jones
Power Source Solar


------------------------------
Post by Jason Szumlanski
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very small
PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged 9-11.
Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They are
fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?
Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
penobscotsolar
2012-12-12 16:37:04 UTC
Permalink
I donated some 12 watt solar panels to the local grammar schools in my
area and got a call from one of the teachers with the same question. The
panel was very over sized for the project, but simply taking a small dc
fan (or a d motor with blades (propeller?) attached, combined with a
colorful sheet of mylar with long cuts in it to give it "fingers" and
putting the whole thing in a classroom window was a very effective
illustration. When the sun came out fully the mylar strands really drew
the kids eye and illustrated that solar worked. It is simple, effective
and inexpensive and great for young kids. I suspect it could be done with
a very small solar panel of a couple of watts. you just need to match the
voltage of the "fan" to the panel.....

Daryl
Post by Karl Jaeger
Jason,
If you want a little self contained display that is interactive you could
use a high wattage AC light focused on a small 10 or 20 watt module. Put
the light on a rheostat the kids can control. Use a computer fan to the
module with a clear plastic tube sealed around it. Drop a ping pong ball
in the tube. By varying the AC light intensity the ball rises and falls in
the tube. If the tubing is sized properly the ball will rise up out of the
tube at full fan speed and be suspended in mid air a couple of inches
above the top of the tube because the spherical shape perfectly divides
the rising column of air around the ball. It remains suspended above the
tube perfectly and is guided back into the tube by the falling pressure of
rising air surrounding it.
A neat little display that lets kids (and adult kids) see instant cause
and effect of the power of light.
Nathan Jones
Power Source Solar
------------------------------
Post by Jason Szumlanski
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very small
PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged 9-11.
Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They are
fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?
Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
_______________________________________________
List sponsored by Home Power magazine
List Address: RE-wrenches at lists.re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/options.cgi/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/pipermail/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
www.re-wrenches.org/etiquette.htm
www.members.re-wrenches.org
penobscotsolar
2012-12-12 16:37:04 UTC
Permalink
I donated some 12 watt solar panels to the local grammar schools in my
area and got a call from one of the teachers with the same question. The
panel was very over sized for the project, but simply taking a small dc
fan (or a d motor with blades (propeller?) attached, combined with a
colorful sheet of mylar with long cuts in it to give it "fingers" and
putting the whole thing in a classroom window was a very effective
illustration. When the sun came out fully the mylar strands really drew
the kids eye and illustrated that solar worked. It is simple, effective
and inexpensive and great for young kids. I suspect it could be done with
a very small solar panel of a couple of watts. you just need to match the
voltage of the "fan" to the panel.....

Daryl
Post by Karl Jaeger
Jason,
If you want a little self contained display that is interactive you could
use a high wattage AC light focused on a small 10 or 20 watt module. Put
the light on a rheostat the kids can control. Use a computer fan to the
module with a clear plastic tube sealed around it. Drop a ping pong ball
in the tube. By varying the AC light intensity the ball rises and falls in
the tube. If the tubing is sized properly the ball will rise up out of the
tube at full fan speed and be suspended in mid air a couple of inches
above the top of the tube because the spherical shape perfectly divides
the rising column of air around the ball. It remains suspended above the
tube perfectly and is guided back into the tube by the falling pressure of
rising air surrounding it.
A neat little display that lets kids (and adult kids) see instant cause
and effect of the power of light.
Nathan Jones
Power Source Solar
------------------------------
Post by Jason Szumlanski
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very small
PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged 9-11.
Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They are
fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?
Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
_______________________________________________
List sponsored by Home Power magazine
List Address: RE-wrenches at lists.re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/options.cgi/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/pipermail/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
www.re-wrenches.org/etiquette.htm
www.members.re-wrenches.org
Jason Szumlanski
2012-12-12 21:12:12 UTC
Permalink
Thank you all so much - wonderful ideas so far. My contact really likes the
fountain/pump idea. An indoor wall mounted fountain may also be
interesting, but I think a fountain next to a solar panel would be great
with a sign that explains what's going on.

*Jason Szumlanski*

*Fafco Solar*

*
*
Post by Jason Szumlanski
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very
small PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged
9-11. Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They
are fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?
Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
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Solarguy
2012-12-14 16:56:00 UTC
Permalink
While it's a little more involved, a solar car race can provide a full half
day hands-on event. It involves gear ratios and hot glue guns so will
clearly take some volunteers to help out with the kids. The race afterward
will get the kids outdoors in the parking lot where local vendors can get
involved by supplying prizes like gift cards for pizza etc.

http://www.solarmade.com/JuniorSprint.htm has some high quality kits that
may require some fundraising or parental participation.

We've had great success with this project over the years.



Jim Duncan

North Texas Renewable Energy Inc

www.ntrei.com <http://www.ntrei.com/>

NABCEP PV 031310-57

TECL-27398

ntrei at 1scom.net

817.917.0527







On Wed, Dec 12, 2012 at 9:08 AM, Jason Szumlanski <jason at fafcosolar.com>
wrote:

I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very small
PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged 9-11.
Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They are
fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.



Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?



Jason Szumlanski

Fafco Solar



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Dan Fink
2012-12-14 17:26:44 UTC
Permalink
Then after the kids finish the solar curriculum, teach them about small
wind with a KidWind classroom kit:
http://store.kidwind.org/wind-energy-kits/complete-kits/advanced-wind-experiment-kit

and set them up for a long career in small wind power filled with stress
and poverty... Because wind is so darned much fun.
;-)

Dan Fink,
Executive Director;
Otherpower
Buckville Energy Consulting
Buckville Publications LLC
NABCEP / IREC accredited Continuing Education Providers
970.672.4342 (voicemail)
While it?s a little more involved, a solar car race can provide a full
half day hands-on event. It involves gear ratios and hot glue guns so will
clearly take some volunteers to help out with the kids. The race afterward
will get the kids outdoors in the parking lot where local vendors can get
involved by supplying prizes like gift cards for pizza etc. ****
http://www.solarmade.com/JuniorSprint.htm has some high quality kits
that may require some fundraising or parental participation. ****
We?ve had great success with this project over the years.****
** **
Jim Duncan****
North Texas Renewable Energy Inc****
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Jason Szumlanski
2012-12-15 22:20:36 UTC
Permalink
I'm actually doing that with Florida Gulf Coast University now. They have a
6-cart competition program. Good idea!

*Jason Szumlanski** *

*Fafco Solar
*
While it?s a little more involved, a solar car race can provide a full
half day hands-on event. It involves gear ratios and hot glue guns so will
clearly take some volunteers to help out with the kids. The race afterward
will get the kids outdoors in the parking lot where local vendors can get
involved by supplying prizes like gift cards for pizza etc. ****
http://www.solarmade.com/JuniorSprint.htm has some high quality kits
that may require some fundraising or parental participation. ****
We?ve had great success with this project over the years.****
** **
Jim Duncan****
North Texas Renewable Energy Inc****
www.ntrei.com ****
NABCEP PV 031310-57****
TECL-27398****
ntrei at 1scom.net ****
817.917.0527****
** **
** **
** **
On Wed, Dec 12, 2012 at 9:08 AM, Jason Szumlanski <jason at fafcosolar.com>
wrote:****
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very
small PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged
9-11. Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They
are fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.****
** **
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?****
** **
Jason Szumlanski****
Fafco Solar****
** **
_______________________________________________
List sponsored by Home Power magazine
List Address: RE-wrenches at lists.re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/options.cgi/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/pipermail/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
www.re-wrenches.org/etiquette.htm
www.members.re-wrenches.org
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Dan Fink
2012-12-14 17:26:44 UTC
Permalink
Then after the kids finish the solar curriculum, teach them about small
wind with a KidWind classroom kit:
http://store.kidwind.org/wind-energy-kits/complete-kits/advanced-wind-experiment-kit

and set them up for a long career in small wind power filled with stress
and poverty... Because wind is so darned much fun.
;-)

Dan Fink,
Executive Director;
Otherpower
Buckville Energy Consulting
Buckville Publications LLC
NABCEP / IREC accredited Continuing Education Providers
970.672.4342 (voicemail)
While it?s a little more involved, a solar car race can provide a full
half day hands-on event. It involves gear ratios and hot glue guns so will
clearly take some volunteers to help out with the kids. The race afterward
will get the kids outdoors in the parking lot where local vendors can get
involved by supplying prizes like gift cards for pizza etc. ****
http://www.solarmade.com/JuniorSprint.htm has some high quality kits
that may require some fundraising or parental participation. ****
We?ve had great success with this project over the years.****
** **
Jim Duncan****
North Texas Renewable Energy Inc****
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Jason Szumlanski
2012-12-15 22:20:36 UTC
Permalink
I'm actually doing that with Florida Gulf Coast University now. They have a
6-cart competition program. Good idea!

*Jason Szumlanski** *

*Fafco Solar
*
While it?s a little more involved, a solar car race can provide a full
half day hands-on event. It involves gear ratios and hot glue guns so will
clearly take some volunteers to help out with the kids. The race afterward
will get the kids outdoors in the parking lot where local vendors can get
involved by supplying prizes like gift cards for pizza etc. ****
http://www.solarmade.com/JuniorSprint.htm has some high quality kits
that may require some fundraising or parental participation. ****
We?ve had great success with this project over the years.****
** **
Jim Duncan****
North Texas Renewable Energy Inc****
www.ntrei.com ****
NABCEP PV 031310-57****
TECL-27398****
ntrei at 1scom.net ****
817.917.0527****
** **
** **
** **
On Wed, Dec 12, 2012 at 9:08 AM, Jason Szumlanski <jason at fafcosolar.com>
wrote:****
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very
small PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged
9-11. Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They
are fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.****
** **
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?****
** **
Jason Szumlanski****
Fafco Solar****
** **
_______________________________________________
List sponsored by Home Power magazine
List Address: RE-wrenches at lists.re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/options.cgi/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/pipermail/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
www.re-wrenches.org/etiquette.htm
www.members.re-wrenches.org
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Solarguy
2012-12-14 16:56:00 UTC
Permalink
While it's a little more involved, a solar car race can provide a full half
day hands-on event. It involves gear ratios and hot glue guns so will
clearly take some volunteers to help out with the kids. The race afterward
will get the kids outdoors in the parking lot where local vendors can get
involved by supplying prizes like gift cards for pizza etc.

http://www.solarmade.com/JuniorSprint.htm has some high quality kits that
may require some fundraising or parental participation.

We've had great success with this project over the years.



Jim Duncan

North Texas Renewable Energy Inc

www.ntrei.com <http://www.ntrei.com/>

NABCEP PV 031310-57

TECL-27398

ntrei at 1scom.net

817.917.0527







On Wed, Dec 12, 2012 at 9:08 AM, Jason Szumlanski <jason at fafcosolar.com>
wrote:

I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very small
PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged 9-11.
Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They are
fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.



Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?



Jason Szumlanski

Fafco Solar



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Jason Szumlanski
2012-12-12 14:08:29 UTC
Permalink
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very small
PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged 9-11.
Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They are
fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.

Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?

Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
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Karl Jaeger
2012-12-12 14:35:00 UTC
Permalink
Hi Jason,
When I was in fifth grade I built a little PV project. It consisted of a very small module (smaller than a dollar bill) and a tiny dc motor mounted in a box with string hooked up to it, and some weights. I demonstrated how shading and irradiance levels affect how much weight the motor could lift. I received an 'A'.

Karl Jaeger
LightWave Solar Electric

From: re-wrenches-bounces at lists.re-wrenches.org [mailto:re-wrenches-bounces at lists.re-wrenches.org] On Behalf Of Jason Szumlanski
Sent: Wednesday, December 12, 2012 8:08 AM
To: RE-wrenches
Subject: [RE-wrenches] Small PV system/experiment for kids

I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very small PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged 9-11. Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They are fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over time.

Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?

Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
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Dave Click
2012-12-12 14:35:40 UTC
Permalink
Jason, for 9-11 year-olds this curriculum may be useful as a starting
point, and we've got some others for different age groups.
http://fsec.ucf.edu/en/education/k-12/curricula/sm2/index.htm

The "solar powered system" experiment is designed for a cell so we
suggested the load be a small propeller. Obviously, this would be a bad
idea with a 250W module since an unsuspecting kid would then be launched
into space, but a small module and a pump could be a fun educational
display.
Post by Jason Szumlanski
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very
small PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children
aged 9-11. Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with
this. They are fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or
ground. They want something interesting and/or interactive that the
students can monitor over time.
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?
Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
_______________________________________________
List sponsored by Home Power magazine
List Address: RE-wrenches at lists.re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/options.cgi/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
List-Archive: http://lists.re-wrenches.org/pipermail/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
www.re-wrenches.org/etiquette.htm
www.members.re-wrenches.org
Jesse Dahl
2012-12-12 14:57:59 UTC
Permalink
This is for older kids, but may help. I did a project for a 7th - 10th grade science class. The school wanted one module and batteries, but I talked them out of any batteries, and they went with a small awning mount array and grid tied it with weather station, temp and irradiance meters along with monitoring. I created a small week long curriculum for the teachers and walked them through the system using that curriculum. Might be a little more than you're looking for...

Jesse

Sent from my iPhone
Post by Karl Jaeger
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very small PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged 9-11. Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They are fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over time.
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?
Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
_______________________________________________
List sponsored by Home Power magazine
List Address: RE-wrenches at lists.re-wrenches.org
http://lists.re-wrenches.org/options.cgi/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
List-Archive: http://lists.re-wrenches.org/pipermail/re-wrenches-re-wrenches.org
www.re-wrenches.org/etiquette.htm
www.members.re-wrenches.org
Nathan Jones
2012-12-12 16:28:04 UTC
Permalink
Jason,
If you want a little self contained display that is interactive you could use a high wattage AC light focused on a small 10 or 20 watt module. Put the light on a rheostat the kids can control. Use a computer fan to the module with a clear plastic tube sealed around it. Drop a ping pong ball in the tube. By varying the AC light intensity the ball rises and falls in the tube. If the tubing is sized properly the ball will rise up out of the tube at full fan speed and be suspended in mid air a couple of inches above the top of the tube because the spherical shape perfectly divides the rising column of air around the ball. It remains suspended above the tube perfectly and is guided back into the tube by the falling pressure of rising air surrounding it.
A neat little display that lets kids (and adult kids) see instant cause and effect of the power of light.
Nathan Jones
Power Source Solar


------------------------------
Post by Jason Szumlanski
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very small
PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged 9-11.
Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They are
fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?
Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
Jason Szumlanski
2012-12-12 21:12:12 UTC
Permalink
Thank you all so much - wonderful ideas so far. My contact really likes the
fountain/pump idea. An indoor wall mounted fountain may also be
interesting, but I think a fountain next to a solar panel would be great
with a sign that explains what's going on.

*Jason Szumlanski*

*Fafco Solar*

*
*
Post by Jason Szumlanski
I have been approached by a local elementary school to develop a very
small PV related experiment or system that is appropriate for children aged
9-11. Not having kids myself, I have no idea where to start with this. They
are fine with mounting a PV panel on the roof, wall, or ground. They want
something interesting and/or interactive that the students can monitor over
time.
Has anyone done something like this that would be suitable?
Jason Szumlanski
Fafco Solar
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