Sunderland young people get education in energy

Venerable Bede students with EDF Energy's Kelly Burdis and teacher Katryna Wrathmall.
Venerable Bede students with EDF Energy's Kelly Burdis and teacher Katryna Wrathmall.
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Sunderland youngsters have been given an education in energy.

The Big Energy Project, developed by EDF Energy and children’s charity The Transformation Trust, saw teams of Key Stage 3 students from Venerable Bede Academy create their own energy efficiency campaigns.

A team of energy experts from EDF in Doxford visited the school to teach students aged 11-13 about energy efficiency.

Kelly Burdis-McGough, customer service advisor at EDF Energy, said: “It was great taking part in the Big Energy Project, spreading the word about energy efficiency and educating the next generation on important environmental issues.

“The children really got into it and came up with some really impressive ideas for campaigns.”

Classmates worked at raising awareness of energy efficiency between peers and family members as students chose to write and record a song on the subject to help spread the word.

The pupils’ campaigns are now set to go up against others from around the country in ‘The Big Energy Project Challenge’, where experts from EDF Energy and the Transformation Trust will choose a winner for a two-day science -themed trip to London.

The Big Energy Project aims to encourage a change in behaviour towards energy saving as well as to help students develop key skills such as teamwork, problem-solving, enterprise and leadership skills.

Research has shown that as well as educating young people on the importance of sustainability, the project also offers wider benefits.

After taking part, 76 per cent of students agreed that they work better with other people, 78 per cent felt more confident, 92 per cent felt that they had learnt something new, 84 per cent felt that they achieved something and 88 per cent want to do better at school.

Katryna Wrathmall, teacher of science and coordinator of STEM at Venerable Bede Academy, said: “It is fantastic that EDF Energy is interested in educating the next generation about energy and supporting the curriculum with interactive and practical workshops.

“The students all really enjoyed the session and learnt a lot about energy and the issues surrounding efficiency. We will be keeping our fingers crossed that they do well in the ‘Big Energy Project Challenge’ as we think they deserve it.”