Students (7 to 10 years old) from Templewood School in Pentley Park, Welwyn Garden City went to Mitsubishi Electric to learn the importance of reducing energy use in our everyday lives, re-using things wherever possible and recycling to help reduce carbon emissions and limit the effects of climate change.
Parent Ian Pottinger, who works for TSG Building Services plc, a Mitsubishi Electric Accredited Heating Partner was keen to involve his son Jack's school as soon as he heard about the programme and even persuaded his company to pay the travel costs for the class.
"We supply and install renewable technologies and I find it truly inspiring to see the number of people who are keen to engage in this field, once they understand its importance," he said. "Mitsubishi Electric deserves a lot of praise for making this resource available to local schools. If we can capture a child's interest at an early age, in time they will become much better stewards of their world and help to influence their families too."
Mitsubishi Electric organiser Jenny Maskrey played class teacher for the event and explained to the children how important it was for everyone to think about the energy they use. "We set experiments for the children so that they could get involved and have tried to base the morning on the curriculum so that the session becomes a benefit to the teachers as well," she explained.
Mitsubishi Electric markets renewable heating and power generating equipment to the construction industry and is making its new Renewable Training Centre in Travellers Lane, Hatfield available to schools who wish to study renewable energy as part of the curriculum.
Using a specially designed workbook complete with stickers and purpose-built
experiments, the children discovered how photovoltaic panels can use solar energy to reduce electricity consumption and also investigated how air source heat pumps can provide heating in the middle of winter, by extracting 'free' energy from the outdoor air. They also recycled their drinking cups into bird feeders and visited the company's special wormery, where kitchen waste is recycled.
"The children enjoyed their practical hands-on session where the Mitsubishi staff provided structured activities in an exciting environment," commented Headteacher, Mrs Morris who accompanied Year 3 on their visit. "The learning opportunities are well planned and encouraged the children to take responsibility for energy consumption both at school and at home."
Mitsubishi Electric opened its new Renewable Training Centre in April, to cater for the growing number of industry professionals that are interested in acquiring the skills needed to serve the renewable energy sector. The company is interested in hearing from other schools in the area who would also like to use the facility.
"Around 44 per cent of total UK carbon emissions come from the buildings we live, work and play in, so we are offering our centre to schools to increase awareness of how everyone can play their part in reducing our impact on the environment," explained Mrs Maskrey.
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