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Clark County - Solar Energy Inquiry & Engineering

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Educational Service District 112

2500 Northeast 65th Avenue

Vancouver, WA 98661

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Event description


This Renewable Energy Teacher Training is a FREE full-day professional development workshop presented by Solar 4R Schools™ in partnership with Clark Public Utilities and ESD 112 and intended for 6th-12th grade teachers. This inquiry-based, hands-on science and engineering training program offers a review of the science, technology, and classroom applications of solar energy and other renewables for high school classrooms.

Hands-on workshop activities provide a chance to run through inquiry-based classroom tasks/experiments with other teachers in preparation for adaptation in your classroom. Each participating teacher will receive access to free materials to be stored at their schools, which include tools to build solar circuits, solar cars, solar ovens, electricity-generating wind turbines, and other materials to teach fundamentals of renewable energy. Additionally, teachers receive classroom lessons aligned with NGSS and CCSS, and an opportunity to network with area teachers. Students and educators located throughout the region can access real-time energy data to graph and analyze the performance of solar projects at This workshop is sponsored by Clark Public Utilities' Green Lights Program.

For more information about this type of workshop, view this video created by the Stanislaus County Office of Education highlighting our workshop held on February 4, 2015. Or, get a sense of a workshop in action with this teacher-created video from a workshop in Denton, TX on June 14, 2016.

Solar 4R Schools Logo

About Solar 4R Schools™: With the help of corporate, philanthropic, utility and community partners, our mission is to inspire a new generation of clean energy leaders with the skills and innovative thinking needed to solve the world’s biggest energy challenges.

Our vision is to bring interactive renewable energy education into every classroom in the nation. As a program of the Bonneville Environmental Foundation (BEF), Solar 4R Schools provides one of the most comprehensive, teacher-tested renewable energy educational programs available nationwide.

Solar 4R Schools empowers educators to integrate the latest renewable energy science and technology into their lesson plans. We provide professional training, teacher-generated lesson plans, interactive science kits and materials, and access to real-time energy data to help bring renewable energy topics to life.

Words from the Workshop Sponsor:

Clark Public Utilities Logo

Clark Public Utilities is committed to encouraging the development of local renewable energy resources and providing curriculum support to area educators. For more than a decade, the Solar 4R Schools program has been funded by utility customers through a portion of voluntary Green Lights contributions. Through the program, 13 photovoltaic solar arrays have been installed on Clark County schools and funding is now focused on the development and classroom implementation of curriculum related to renewable energy.

Words from Workshop Partner:

ESD 112 Logo

ESD112 STEM Programs is thrilled to partner with Clark Public Utilities and Solar 4R Schools to bring quality teacher professional learning on renewable energy and engineering design to the districts we serve.


What topics will be covered during this training?

The topics covered will include: the fundamentals of energy and energy use/conservation; the fundamentals of solar energy; simple circuits including voltage, current, resistance and power; the photovoltaic effect and technology; wind energy and tips on integrating engineering design and inquiry into renewable energy curriculum.

What are my transportation/parking options getting to the event?

This event will be at ESD 112. Participants should park in front of, and enter through the ESD112 Conference Center doors on the north side of the building. Classrooms can be cold, and we encourage participants to bring a light jacket or sweater.

Where can I contact the organizer with any questions?

Contact Solar 4R Schools with any questions or for more information. Solar 4R Schools Program Manager, Laura Nicholson, can be reached at 503-553-3955 or via email at

Do you maintain a waiting list?

Yes. Please let us know as soon as possible if you are unable to attend. We provide lunch and materials expecting you to be there!

Is my registration/ticket transferable?

Solar 4R Schools allows for the transfer of tickets, however, please let us know the name and email address of the participant, as we will need to gather some preliminary data to help inform our workshop!

Do I have to bring my printed ticket to the event?

No. We will have a registration table set up where you will sign in.

Is this training free for teachers/educators?

Yes, this is a fully funded training opportunity for teachers in Clark Public Utilities' service territory. This workshop is sponsored by the Bonneville Environmental Foundation with funding from Clark Public Utilities.

Is lunch provided?

Yes. Please let us know any dietary restrictions! We will also provide coffee and beverages in the morning.

Will I receive any classroom materials/equipment?

Yes! Teachers who attend this workshop will gain access to science kits aligned with the hands-on activities covered in the workshop. Each school will receive an assortment of science and engineering materials science kit valued at up to $3000.

What will the science kits include?

Kits will include materials such as solar-powered circuit supplies, electricity-generating wind turbines and a variety of DC loads. These kits are designed to be implemented with NGSS-aligned hands-on activities, including ones that we complete within the workshop.

Date and Time


Educational Service District 112

2500 Northeast 65th Avenue

Vancouver, WA 98661

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