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Energy Heroes Celebrates Expanded Offerings and Successful High School Pilot

Since 2008, Seattle City Light has provided the Energy Heroes educational program to classrooms across our service area. We’ve been hard at work helping students learn the ins and outs of electrical safety, energy conservation, renewable energy and more.

During the 2022-2023 school year, we expanded Energy Heroes to more classrooms and successfully completed a pilot for the new high school workshop on electrification and equity.

Read on to learn how you can become an energy hero too!

What is the Energy Heroes program?

Energy Heroes is hands-on and fun! Our free, educational program offers interactive classroom presentations and workshops to promote curiosity, safety and develop young “energy heroes.”

Detective Safety Smarts teaches students about electrical safety.

First and second graders use body movement and rhymes to learn how to stay safe around appliances and power lines, while middle grade students play games to learn about renewable energy and energy conservation at home. Middle school students test a hydropower model with running water and learn about sustainable energy sources. Each lesson ties directly into the grade’s science curriculum, helping reinforce what teachers cover in the classroom.

Hydropower boards explain how electricity is generated.

Most importantly, Energy Heroes is for everyone. We prioritize equitable access to our workshops to ensure we reach students in historically underrepresented communities and vulnerable populations across Seattle and in the franchise cities we power. We’ve also adapted workshops to serve a dozen Spanish-English dual-language schools to provide workshops entirely in Spanish. Additionally, take-home materials are available in seven languages so that students can more easily share what they learned with family members.

What made 2022-2023 great for Energy Heroes?

Energy Heroes was able to develop and grow this last year in more ways than one.

We saw an increase in the number of workshops across all grade levels, allowing us to reach more than 2,000 students at 17 different schools. Equity remained a priority for the program, and we were able to reach multiple schools with 40% or more students receiving free and reduced meals, with more than 60% students of color, and with significant English language learner populations.

Two important pilot programs were also completed. We not only finalized the middle-school workshops piloted in the 2021-2022 school year, but we also developed and piloted a new high school workshop focused on local and regional electrification initiatives, decarbonization, environmental impacts, and their intersections with equity.

What are we looking forward to in the 2023-2024 school year?

We’re thrilled by the program’s success and look forward to expanding Energy Heroes this school year by offering even more workshops across our service area. This means more students will be learning about electrical safety, renewable energy, energy equity and other valuable topics that affect our communities. The enthusiasm our students and teachers have shared is contagious, and we’re eager for more.

Energy Heroes simply isn’t possible without a true team effort. We rely on the expertise of colleagues from across the utility to ensure the program is up-to-date, accurate and engaging for students. Our instructors build and deliver the workshops with a keen understanding of equity and inclusion, a student and teacher focus, tying objectives to science curriculum and a commitment to make learning fun.

We are so grateful for all the students and teachers who participate and make Energy Heroes what it is. If you’re interested in learning how your children or students can become energy heroes, consider reaching out.