Fifth-grade teacher Stephanie Lederman worked diligently with her colleagues to construct a circuit that would use the sun's rays to power tiny light bulbs. As the light bulbs flickered, the Chandler teacher couldn't wait to take the free set of materials back to her school to teach her students about renewable energy with the information she learned from the Powering Our Future Renewable Energy workshop sponsored by Salt River Project.
"The instructional materials are top-quality, easy to use, and completely aligned with state standards," she said. "It was so easy to replicate the activities and even adjust them to suit what I was teaching in my classroom."
Stephanie is just one of hundreds of Arizona teachers SRP impacts every month with teacher workshops that are free to educators. As these teachers take what they learn back to the classroom, thousands of Arizona students will soon have the opportunity to learn that and more, thanks to Salt River Project's educational outreach to teachers around the Valley and state.
"SRP educator workshops both equip teachers with the background knowledge they need to be an effective instructional leader and model research-based best practices for classroom instruction such as inquiry-based learning, hands-on lessons and critical thinking strategies," said Alison Smith, SRP's community outreach education representative.
From workshops for teachers that provide them with free curricula and educational materials to educational grants that help teachers focus on social studies, math, technology and science, SRP is committed to strengthening our communities through education.
"As a former Arizona teacher, I know that these kinds of resources are hard to come by," remarked Smith, who runs the workshops. "We get a lot of teachers who come back week after week, year after year to apply for grants to enhance their classrooms and attend workshops that they know will be high-quality and directly translatable into their classrooms."
SRP is offering a variety of workshops and websites for teachers who are looking for ways to make learning fun while teaching students about water and electricity and the roles each played in the state's past, present and future.
It's as easy as visiting www.srpnet.com/education to learn about free resources, teacher training and student activities.
For teachers who have an innovative program they'd like to implement in their classroom but lack the funds to do it right - SRP Classroom Connections grants are available for projects that focus on math, science, technology and social studies. Go to www.srpnet.com/grants for more information. Deadline to apply is March 31.
At SRP, our goal is to equip educators with key insights and proven classroom resources related to the water and energy industries. Educators who participate in our programs will be expertly prepared to teach about water, electricity and renewable energy technologies to their students who are our future stewards.
Patty Garcia-Likens is a media relations representative for Salt River Project.