by Erin Potter, Schools Programming Coordinator
Curie High School hosted their first ever Fall Festival on Friday, November 16th, and I headed out to Archer Heights to represent Climate Cycle and support the awesome work of our partner teachers, Mr. Shane Crone and Ms. Erin Faulkner. The event was open to all students, friends and families from Curie or the neighborhood. Students from various clubs showcased their talents and work, crafts and food were available, there was a lively game of teacher versus student dodge ball, and even a hip hop clown.
The Curie Conservation Corps displayed their Pedal Powered Classroom bike systems, funded through a Climate Cycle Green Schools Grant. Students from the club acted like carnival barkers, challenging passersby to jump on the bikes and pedal away, generating power stored in the nearby batteries. The two bikes were set up facing each other, encouraging the friendly competition that continued impressively for the three hour duration of the Fall Festival. After completing a short survey about Curie High School’s environmental impact, participants were given three minutes to generate as much power as they could , challenging both their minds and their bodies. There were several high-spirited sibling vs. sibling, parent vs. child and even girlfriend vs. boyfriend face-offs. Everyone who participated was given a small solar-powered LED flashlight, and each hour, the person who had generated the most watts was awarded a larger hand powered flashlight. The bikes normally hang out in Mr. Crone’s physics classroom, where students power the batteries during quizzes or group study. The batteries are then used to power other classroom equipment, such as laptops or projectors.
Also on display was Mr. Crone’s solar panel backpack, as a preview to a new project the Curie students are working on. As the winner of last year’s Climate Cycle Ride to Recharge Challenge, students are being given the opportunity to turn their school-issued clear backpacks into backpacks fitted with solar panels capable of charging their small electronic devices.
It was a great to see so many people out and engaged with the good things happening at Curie High School, and we at Climate Cycle are happy to be a part of it.