Citizen Science offers students a chance to make real observations and discoveries using scientific tools and procedures. While this can inspire some students to become scientists, it will help all students understand science and the world around them.
(link to article on using budburst:https://greenschoolsnationalnetwork.org/enhancing-life-science-education-project-budburst/ )
Link to articles on several citizen science programs:
NPR story on lead in schools.
It was a joy to learn with the bright students at Baltimore Polytechnic Institute last week. The students worked hard and offered the guest speakers great questions and great respect.
I’d like to challenge the students (and anyone who wishes) to understand and present the City Schools energy data accurately and informatively. Access to open and accurate information can help us understand and solve problems.
I’ve put together graphs and pie charts using the water data supplied by City Schools.
More data from City Schools is available in the resources section of this website.
Please use the original data from City Schools to create your own graphs or check the accuracy of my graphs.
Here are some important items to consider when we interpret this data and create our graphs and charts.
1) Schools vary by size, so we would expect to see some differences in energy and water use between schools because of their size.
You may want to create graphs that show the square footage of the building next to their water or energy use.
2) Poly/Western share a campus and their energy/utility systems, so we need to combine them to effectively benchmark their energy/water use or compare them to
other schools. Delegating water use to one school and oil to another when in fact they are sharing these resources is not helpful in understanding how these
schools use energy.
3) Sometimes the data can simply be wrong. Errors in gathering, tabulating or calculating data can give us false data, so it is wise to check for these errors
as we interpret the numbers.
4) We would also need to consider the effect of operations and mission of a school. Having a pool could increase water use a bit, having air conditioning
or staying open longer for school events could increase energy use. These things support students and the community, so we don’t see this as waste.
Our work is to eliminate energy waste (lights and equipment on 24/7, broken windows, inefficient systems) so we can fund the things that help us learn and
5) Does the presentation of our information (graph, chart, written or spoken language) clearly and accurately explain the situation?
6) Did we include all relevant data and captions explaining how to interpret and act on the information we supply?
7) Is a high utility bill a temporary problem that is solved immediately, or is it a long term problem that hasn’t been addressed?
I’m looking forward to seeing your charts and graphs on the energy and water use of the Baltimore City Public Schools.
Historic Energy and Water Data for Baltimore City Schools. (Click on title to open data sheets)
Tools for Schools checklists by the EPA enable schools to find and eliminate potential or existing asthma triggers and air quality issues.
There are several checklists customized for teachers, administrators, maintenance, cleaning and office staff.
Walkthrough Inspection checklist (click the following) walkthruchklst
Ventilation checklist (click the following) ventchklst
Building and Grounds Maintenance checklist (click the following) tools for schools
Administrative Staff checklist (click the following) tools for schools administrative
Teacher checklist teacherchklst
School official Checklist schoolofficialchklst
Renovation and Repair Checklist: renrepairchklst
Integrated Pest Management Checklist: ipmcklst
Food Service Checklist: foodservicechecklist
Health Officer Checklist: healthofficerchklst
Monthly Energy Data for Baltimore Polytechnic Institute in Excel. Note that Poly shares energy systems with Western High School and energy data and square footage of both schools need to be combined to understand their energy use/efficiency.