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Student energy will soon help power Glencoe Elementary, literally

Posted by on February 18th, 2015 at 3:35 pm

Two plug-in electric bikes donated this month to Southeast Portland’s Glencoe Elementary will introduce students to the concept of pedal-powered energy.

“We, like all schools, have some students who need extra time each day expending their energy just to allow them to focus in class,” teacher Lisa Davidson explained in her project description on the fundraising website DonorsChoose.org. “The UpCycles will provide a unique opportunity for those students as well as the other students who will be excited to give the bike a whirl and help power the school.”

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The stationary generators will put out a negligible amount of actual energy, of course. The goal is mostly just to blow students’ minds.

“The connection that I want them to make is that I am a power plant, that I can make electricity using my muscle,” bike creator Adam Boesel says in the video above. “When you eat food, you’re a battery, and you store that energy. And when you get on this, you’re a power plant.”

Two bikes, provided by The Green Microgym, were purchased for $2,500 along with five solar panels designed to charge iPads and Chromebooks. With labor and processing fees, the cost came to $3,618, half of it from 12 donors and the other half from the Paul G. Allen Foundation.

Glencoe is a K-5 school located at 50th and Belmont in the heart of Southeast Portland’s grid, and as of last fall, 60 percent of the students were already walking, biking or rolling to school. So it’s no surprise that a neat demo project like this might connect with them.

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9watts
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9watts

Project sounds extremely cool.
I hope they get past this part, though:
“The stationary generators will put out a negligible amount of actual energy, of course. The goal is mostly just to blow students’ minds.”

Learning just how much/how little energy we can generate using our leg muscles is I think a really important lesson. This fellow (David Butcher) has spent much of his adult life tinkering with this very subject, and he puts out rather more than a negligible amount.
http://www.los-gatos.ca.us/davidbu/pedgen.html

scott
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scott

I disagree with this intensely.

Schools already churn out most students feeling like they learned nothing and with zero critical thinking skills and now we are equating them with batteries.

If they had an alternative energy lab where students could mess with things like this it would be different, but it says it right in the article, subdue active children and help them see themselves as nothing more than an energy source.

Nice gift, horrible execution.

Rob
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Rob

I remember something like this as a child 45 years ago at the science museum. It left a lifelong impression to not leave lights and appliances on when not in use and not take energy for granted.

tnash
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tnash

“We, like all schools, have some students who need extra time each day expending their energy just to allow them to focus in class” — yikes. Katu investigative report on teachers who are forcing kids to cycle in 5,4,3,

Vance Longwell
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Vance Longwell

Oh, yeah; Proglib conservative right wing fascists aren’t using public schools to indoctrinate, condition, and drive innocent children into the loving arms of the Proglib Church of Hate! Nothing to see here, move along. Good. Grief.