The two hour school tour consists of an exploration of the VerEco Home and a scavenger hunt with the "Winds of Change: Wind Energy" and "The Sod House from the Winning the Prairie Gamble" exhibits within the Western Development Museum. Students will also have the opportunity to visit information stations on the technologies and concepts found within the Net Zero Home.
The tour has been developed to enhance the Grade 7 Saskatchewan Science unit on Heat and Temperature as well as the Interactions with Ecosystems unit. Possible integration with other subject areas is also encouraged.
Students will receive information in an interactive, inquisitive manner allowing them to ask questions, see models and eventually apply what they’ve learned to a possible project dealing with energy efficient home design and building. Contact the WDM Education Department to book your Grade 7 class to see the exhibit.
The only cost is $2.00 per student that is payable either when coming for the tour or invoiced to your school. Transportation costs will need to be covered through your school budgets. Once you have taken the tour, feel free to come back here and leave some feedback - we would really appreciate it!
The school tour will be 2 hours long occurring in the mornings only. The tour can accommodate class sizes of 30 or fewer students. The class will be divided into two groups for the first hour. In the first part of the tour, one group will take the tour of the VerEco Home while the other participates in the scavenger hunt through the "Winds of Change: Wind Energy" and "The Sod House from the Winning the Prairie Gamble" exhibits. The groups will then switch.
Once both groups have completed those activities your entire class will be divided into 4 groups. Please ensure that each group has a minimum of one adult supervisor / parent volunteer. Each group will start at an assigned information station and have a set of interactive activities to perform and questions to answer. After 10 minutes, each group will move to another station. These stations will focus on the following topics that are addressed during the VerEco Home tour:
- Water Conservation
- Building Materials & Environmental Impact
- Solar Energy
- Energy Efficient Lighting
|Group A||Group B|
|9:30 - 9:40||Welcome & Responsibilities|
|9:40 - 10:15||Tour of VerEco Home||Tour of Wind Energy & Sod house Exhibits|
|10:15 - 10:50||Tour of Wind Energy & Sod house Exhibits||Tour of VerEco Home|
|10:50 - 11:30||Education Stations|
In order for your students to get the most out of this experience, it is recommended that the following topics/activities/information be introduced and discussed prior to your arrival at the WDM:
- With your students, co-construct criteria for the following questions:
- "What does it mean to be environmentally friendly?"
- "What makes an environmentally friendly home?"
- "What makes an environmentally friendly existence / lifestyle?"
- Energy Efficient
- Sustainability of products and materials
- Carbon footprint
- Environmental impact
- Investigate the VerEco Home website and the concept of Net Zero
- VerEco Education Guide [PDF, 6.4 MB] and the vocabulary used in relation to energy:
- Net Zero
- Photovoltaic (PV)
- Cost Effective
- Building Envelope
- Passive Solar Design
- Environmental Footprint
- VOC Building materials
- Potable Water
- Thermal Mass
- Project Idea: The Pearson Saskatchewan Science 7 Teacher Resource - Project Planner: Design an Energy Efficient Building (p. 499 - 502)
- Have your class divided into two groups ahead of time for the first part of the tour as well as in groups of four for the Educational Station portion of the tour.
Teachers will be given all the questions and information given during the tour in their information packages so that further discussion and inquiry can be addressed back in the classroom.
Destination Conservation Home Audits [PDF, 240 kB]
Destination Conservation Math Worksheet [PDF, 475 kB]
- What are the three most significant technologies used within the VerEco Home that make it more environmentally friendly?
- Would you consider your home to be environmentally friendly?
- What is the most significant change you can promote in your own home to make it more energy efficient?
- Why has the builder felt it necessary to promote this way of building a house?
- What can we do as a class to effectively promote this philosophy in living? Is this philosophy worth promoting?
- How does this viewpoint affect the concept of globalization? What is the most significant impact of this viewpoint?
- How does the amount of water you use impact energy consumption in your home? How are they related?
- What was your reaction to the model comparing the amount of water used by Saskatoonians vs. that of other countries?
- How does the amount of freshwater in Canada impact its standing globally? Or does it?
- What are the energy costs of getting these materials to Saskatoon? (for further study)
- What are the reasons for choosing the materials in the building of your home (aesthetic, cost, environmental impact, ease of care, increased home value, etc)
- How does the concept of "Buy Local" impact a homes' carbon footprint in its construction?
- How often do you ask where a product is made? Should this influence your decision as a consumer?
- Compare and contrast the VerEco Home and your home.
- Home Energy Audit - used with permission from the Saskatchewan Environmental Society for those schools that attend.
- Home Water Audit - used with permission from the Saskatchewan Environmental Society for those schools that attend.
- Home Waste Audit - used with permission from the Saskatchewan Environmental Society for those schools that attend.
- Project Idea: The Pearson Saskatchewan Science 7 Teacher Resource - Project Planner: Design an Energy Efficient Building (p. 499 - 502).
Life Science: Interactions with the Ecosystem
HT 7.1 Analyze how ecosystems change in response to natural and human influences, and propose actions to reduce the impact of human behaviour on a specific ecosystem. [DM, CP]
- Be sensitive and responsible in maintaining a balance between human needs and a sustainable environment by considering both immediate and long-term effects of their course of action or stated position.
- Provide specific examples to illustrate that scientific and technological activities related to ecosystems take place in a variety of individual or group settings, locally and globally, and by men and women from a variety of cultural backgrounds (e.g., individual and community gardening, impact studies done by environmental engineers, and research done by teams of international scientists).
Physical Science: Heat and Temperature
HT 7.1 Assess the impact of past and current heating and cooling technologies related to food, clothing, and shelter on self, society and the environment [TPS, DM, CP]
- Evaluate the efficiency of different types of home insulation (e.g., sod, straw bales, fibreglass, cellulose, mineral wool, polystyrene, and polyurethane foam) with respect to criteria such as R-value, cost, and resistance to water and air infiltration.
- Use a technological problem-solving process to design, construct, and evaluate a prototype of a device that will provide a solution to a practical problem related to heating or cooling (e.g., cooking food, keeping food warm or cool for an extended period, keeping a shelter warm or cool, keeping a person warm or cool).
- Provide examples of problems related to heating and cooling that arise at home, in an industrial setting, or in the environment, that cannot be solved using scientific and technological knowledge.
Possible Integration Ideas
Teachers are also encouraged to integrate the themes and issues that may present themselves during the tour into other subject areas. Possible integration ideas include:
Social Studies 7
IN7.1 Examine the effects of globalization on the lives of people in Canada and in circumpolar and Pacific Rim countries.
- Identify the countries of origin of people, or of personal objects or tools (e.g., clothing, foods, friends, classmates, teachers, electronic equipment, favourite websites).
- Investigate the international links of a Saskatchewan business.
- Define globalization, and identify examples of globalization in the local community.
- Analyze the economic impact of globalization in relation to the effects on the environment.
- Articulate and interpret the main arguments for and against globalization.
- Conduct an inquiry to determine the effects of globalization on the local community.
IN7.3 Analyze the relationship of technology to globalization.
- Identify the technological connections that exist in the student's life, and classify them as local, national, or international.
- Analyze the risks and benefits related to various technologies.
- Develop an argument that addresses the impact of technology and globalization on societies.
RW7.2 Investigate the influence of resources upon economic conditions of peoples in circumpolar and Pacific Rim countries.
- Formulate a definition of a natural resource, and differentiate between renewable and non-renewable resources.
RW7.3 Assess the ecological stewardship of economies of Canada and the circumpolar and Paficic Rim countries.
- Research and illustrate the origins and current meanings of the words "steward" and "stewardship".
- Define the word "sustainable", and discriminate between the concepts of sustainable and unsustainable as they apply to resources and industry.
- Examine the sustainability of the economies of a selction of circumpolar and Pacific Rim countries, and propose practices which might increase the level of sustainability.
English Language Arts 7
Use the Environmental and Technological context: Students explore the elements of the natural and constructed world and the role of technology and related developments in their society. In Grade 7, one of the suggested themes or topics is Doing Our Part for Planet Earth.
CC7.1 Create various visual, oral, written, and multimedia (including digital) texts that explore identity (e.g., Exploring Thoughts, Feelings, and Ideas), social responsibility (e.g., Taking Action), and efficacy (e.g., Building a Better World).
- Create with clarity and correctness, and appropriate to a particular audience and purpose, a variety of expressions (oral presentations, written compositions, and other representations) that represent ideas and information about identity, social responsibility, and efficacy.
Arts Education 7
CP7.12 Use image-making skills, tools, techniques, and problem-solving abilities in a variety of visual art media.
- Demonstrate the skillful use of a range of appropriate tools, technology, materials, and techniques.
- Demonstrate keen observations of detail, and represent unique features of individual people, animals, plants, and so on.
- Depict people and objects using correct proportion.
- Explore and demonstrate understanding of the role of light and shadow in creating the illusion of form.
- Demonstrate how point-of-view can be manipulated.
- Demonstrate understanding of the concept of a vanishing point in linear perspective.
- Explore relationships among shape, space, and form.
- Recognize that scale may or may not be realistic.
- Experiments with different ways of creating focal points or emphasis (e.g., size, contrast, outlining, repetition, isolating).
- Describe your own problem-solving processes and discuss explorations and comparisons of various media.
SP7.2 Demonstrate an understanding of circle graphs. [C,CN,PS,R,T,V]
Identify common attributes of circle graphs, such as:
- title, label, or legend
- the sum of the central angles is 360°
- the data is reported as a percent of the total and the sum of the percents is equal to 100%
- Create and label a circle graph, with and without technology, to display a set of data.
- Find, describe, and compare circle graphs in a variety of print and electronic media, such as newspapers, magazines, and the Internet.
- Translate percents displayed in a circle graph into quantities to solve a problem.
- Interpret a circle graph to answer questions.
- Identify the characteristics of a set of data that makes it possible to create a circle graph.
- Identify common attributes of circle graphs, such as:
P7.1 Demonstrate an understanding of the relationships between oral and written patterns, graphs, and linear relations. [C,CN,R]
- Describe the relationship show on a graph using everyday language in spoken or written form.
- Analyze a graph in order to draw a conclusion or solve a problem.