UniSource Energy Services helps local teachers bring energy and safety instruction into their classrooms by providing free booklets, worksheets and hands-on lessons.
Thousands of Arizona students in kindergarten through high school benefit from UES’ education programs in communities that receive both electric and gas service. In the fall, the company distributes mailers that inform teachers about how to order the free materials.
In 2016, more than 25,000 booklets were sent to 97 schools, and 134 teachers used them in their classrooms. The materials are aligned with Arizona’s science and health content standards.
“The classroom resources help teach our youth about using energy more safely and wisely,” said Nikole White, Program Manager of Energy Services. “The information reaches beyond the classroom to educate the students’ families. Students go home eager to discuss the fun new booklets they received at school.”
UES’ education programs include:
- Education booklets: Developed by Culver Company, booklets in English and Spanish include information ranging from electricity experiments to natural gas safety tips for kindergarten through eighth grades. Find education materials here.
- Career education: For high schools, UES provides posters and materials about jobs and careers in the energy efficiency field to cultivate awareness for students preparing to enter the workforce.
- Get SMART! materials: Teachers and parents can find worksheets, experiments and activities on the e-SMARTkids section of the UES website.
- Bright Students program: This three-part program is presented to middle school students with help from an instructor from the Environmental Education Exchange. Students can ride the UES Energy Bike to experience how much pedaling is required to light up different kinds of bulbs; they also receive energy-efficiency kits, including LED night lights. Find out more about Bright Students.
In the UES service territory, more than 2,800 students benefited from the Bright Students program last year.
In addition to the mailers, UES promotes its education programs at public events, including the recent educator appreciation dinner hosted by the Lake Havasu Area Chamber of Commerce.
The programs are popular, and materials sometimes run out before the end of the school year.
“Our education programs are in high demand,” White said. “We’ve had excellent feedback from our teachers.”
Kingman Academy of Learning last school year ordered storybooks, called “Aunt Sarah and the Amazing Power,” about the benefits of electricity and natural gas geared for kindergarten through second grades. Fourth graders at the charter school also got to try out the Energy Bike and learn about light bulbs.
“My teachers think this is one of the best hands-on programs that we bring into our school because the presentation really holds the students’ attention and allows them to absorb the concept of energy efficiency,” said Susan Chan, the academy’s Executive Director.