Let’s be honest: getting a kid interested in anything is difficult, especially if it’s science-based and your child isn’t really into science. That’s about half of the parents of the US, right? Whether you’re a teacher passionate about renewable energy or a parent who just really wants to teach their child about how alternatives to standard electricity is there are actually some fun and interesting ways to make learning child-friendly!
Teaching the next generation about renewable energy over non-renewable energy sources like fossil fuels is important. What’s more, finding fun ways to get children involved in solar power, solar panels, wind turbines, and wind farms, and other renewable energy sources doesn’t have to be a lost cause. There are actually some great resources and ideas out there that will make the job so much easier—and so much more fun for everyone involved.
Here are our favorite ways to educate children about renewable energy while keeping it fun and entertaining.
Find fun, educational videos
Kids nowadays seem to always be online or watching videos. Websites like Youtube are actually great resources for teachers and parents alike. All you have to do is search for whatever topic you’re looking for and then you’ll find a ton of videos that are child-friendly. There are actually a lot of great solar power or other renewable energy videos on the website for kids and it’s definitely hard to pick a favorite.
These videos also vary in length, depending on how long you would like the educational experience to be. Whether it’s a 20-minute video or a 5-minute one, there are some really interesting videos that kids are sure to love.
Check out your local PBS network or children network channels on your TV. Sometimes, they’ll have some fun educational programs on in the morning that may touch on solar energy every now and then.
Find online websites
There are a lot of cool, interactive games and websites out there for kids to learn more and more about renewable energy. One of the best is actually NASA’s. It’s an interactive website that helps kids learn through games, quizzes, trivia, videos, and contests. It also has printable activities, which are always a great resource if you’re a teacher and want to make it a class game.
Do some cool science experiments together
Possibly one of the best ways to get kids involved and interested in renewable energy is by conducting experiments. Again, this could work well in both home and school settings. Experiments are also really great because many people learn by seeing and doing. By partaking in these types of experiments, kids will have fun and actually learn.
Science experiments, simply said, are fun. Kids will have fun, regardless if they’re interested in science as a subject or not. Later, as they grow up and learn more about renewable energy in ways that they can understand, they’ll probably look back on that science experiment they did with their class or their parents one sunny afternoon. That’s the great thing about fun science experiments—a lot of the time, kids will remember them and actually learn from them. Maybe they’ll even put those thoughts and ideas to use later on in life.
There are a ton of great science experiments out there, from making a solar oven to a handheld windmill that is bound to get kids interested and have fun.
Have fun with renewable energy in the real world
A bit more time and effort is involved with this idea, but it is well worth it. Find ways to have fun with your kid outdoors while also teaching them about renewable energy. For example, if you have the skill, guts, and money to take your child parasailing, do it! A better alternative may be to just take them to see someone else parasailing, especially for those parents and children who really don’t like heights.
This makes the whole experience fun. Your child will be outdoors learning, seeing something really cool that they normally wouldn’t while still learning about wind and renewable energy.
If you live in an area near windmills, take them out and show them how they work. Teach them all about how windmills can help bring renewable energy to land, houses, and residents.
There’s nothing like a little competitive fuel to get kids active and having fun. Discover a game or experiment online (or create your own) and start a competition. Say that the first one to finish or complete the experiment wins some prize.
Trivia competitions also work really well in this format. After teaching kids (in whatever format you choose), have a little Jeopardy or trivia round to see how they learned. This could be a fun in-class game or an interesting dinner table activity at the end of the evening.
You could also give them a concept or idea and then tell them to create a model or picture of it. This works great with some more creative kids, as they’re able to unleash their creativity in a scientific way while also learning about renewable and solar energy.
Use renewable energy in your everyday life
If you’re trying to teach your child about renewable energy, the best way to teach them is by actually showing them. That means making sure you turn off the light in your house when you don’t need them on in order to help save energy.
You could even make a game of it, to keep it fun and entertaining! Tell your child that you both should always remember to turn off the lights when leaving the house or for the night and see if they remember. Purposefully leave them on and pretend to leave, seeing if they say something. The more you put this into place, the more they’ll learn, and it could be a fun little way to keep the idea of renewable energy—and saving energy—in their head.
As you can see, there are a lot of ways to get your child interested in renewable energy. Whether it’s through educational videos on Youtube, games online, or conducting your own experiments at home, there are fun ways to keep kids involved and interested in solar energy. Some of them take some more time and effort, but they’ll be worth it. Not only will your child have fun learning through these recommendations, so will you!