Environment Education

Workshop on Solar Energy for School students

Workshop on Solar Energy for School students
-Bhavesh Swami

What happens when students learn about solar energy in a fun way?
Rather than just seeing current flow through voltmeter, they understand the concept better; start experimenting with solar modules on their own.

This is what happened during a recent hands on workshop at Manav  Rachna Public School, sector 46, Gurgaon.
The ‘Solar Energy for students’ program was organized as part of Science week to commemorate the successful Mangalyaan Mission and other achievements in the field of science and technology by Indian scientists.
The program started with an orientation session for students introducing them to the horrors of climate change and the resultant effects on planet earth and its habitat.

Concepts of rainfall pattern change, decrease in crop yield, increased vulnerability to diseases and more severe rains and sea side calamities were discussed with students who took keen interest in understanding the science behind these abnormal occurrences. The students were honest to admit about reading about these in newspapers but were not fully aware of the root cause.

As part of the solution regime, low carbon lifestyle and use of renewable energy in day to day life emerged as the most suitable option. But students were not able to appreciate the technical knowhow on how these modules generate energy. A simple ammeter reading showing current flow was not exciting them enough, a student admitted, who learned about this as part of physics practical.  This is where we pitch in with the solution, said Bhavesh Swami, the man behind this workshop. “What we do is, we make these learning a fun for the students”. He showed a DC motor that was having a fan at one of its end and as soon as the solar module was connected with it, the motor started making a movement. What we do is, attach these module and motor to a boat like structure or wind mill prototype, so students appreciate the concept better. Things are the same, the same current is flowing but the knowledge transfer is fun. “Now, put these 3 or 4 models in water and see the motor race among these student groups. They are better engaged and would be learning for them for their entire life. Sometimes, I get call from these students that how to design water flow motor or a solar inverter, what is this, further interest of students, translated to real time examples”. 

The Headmistress of the school, Mrs. Neelu Sharma, said”We believe in the philosophy of ‘learning by doing’ and this kind of learning experiences are a good not only for students but the teachers alike. These budding minds are further encouraged to participate in national and international events that propagate the message of usage of renewable energy and similar technologies.
Mrs. Carol, Sr. counsellor said that students from Manav Rachna University have participated in World Solar Challenge in the past which is a famed event in which students design and showcase their vehicles running on renewable energies for distances spanning as long as  3000 kms.  To know more about these events or to have a similar workshop to be conducted at your school, college or corporate office, one may contact the organizer on solarpower2india@gmail.com or call at 09971470979.

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