FortisBC adapts school program to support students learning from home

AS the B.C. education system continues to adapt to distance learning forced by the COVID-19 pandemic, FortisBC is supporting parents and teachers who need BC-based materials for students from Kindergarten to Grade 10. In collaboration with educators, FortisBC has modified a selection of its popular online Energy Leaders school lessons to be available for anyone to easily download for free.

These lessons are designed by local teachers and connect with B.C.’s inquiry-based curriculum across grade levels to teach energy concepts like the importance of energy in the world around us, where it comes from, how it’s used in B.C. and why it’s important to use it safely and responsibly.

“As both a parent and partner of a teacher, I have firsthand experience on how challenging it can be to find local materials that support learning at home,” said Danielle Wensink, Director, Conservation and Energy Management, FortisBC. “Because the Energy Leaders modules are already in line with B.C.’s curriculum, this was an ideal way for us to support parents and educators who are faced with this same challenge.”

FortisBC’s Energy Leaders school program is an online platform that allows teachers to download complete lesson modules. Originally designed for in-class learning, there are now close to 30 modules available for home learning environments with more to be released next week. They are available for free download, without a password, from energyleaders.ca/distancelearning.

The new distance learning materials connect to a variety of Kindergarten to Grade 10 subjects including science, social studies and English and include some of the platform’s most popular modules like “Climate change: Earth and its climate”. Each module contains a complete set of teaching materials including a lesson plan, slides and handouts that invite students to generate and share ideas, and transfer and apply learning to new situations.

For example, a Grade 10 Science module on energy innovation and technologies invites students to consider the social, ethical and environmental implications of energy use. It covers content like the Law of Conservation of Energy, potential and kinetic energy and the transformation of energy. Students explore examples of energy innovation and research choices that reduce energy use and environmental impact.

For younger grades, caregivers can download a colouring and activity book. Designed for Kindergarten and Grade 1, it introduces students to where energy comes from and the actions they can take to conserve energy with fun activities and games, like ‘Easy ways to conserve energy at home’ and the ‘Shortest Shower game’.

FortisBc says that as a leading energy provider in B.C., it has a long history of supporting educators with information about important energy concepts. Through the Energy Leaders program, FortisBC has worked with B.C. teachers to make it easier for schools to find resources, lesson plans and activities. Since launching the program in 2017, more than 2,000 teachers have downloaded materials.

Parents and educators can access the site at Energyleaders.ca and click the Distance Learning tab to access the new materials.

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