Empowering Educators Means Solar S’Mores and More

Students from Central Columbia Middle School use the solar ovens they built using foil, a cardboard box, plexiglass and foam insulation.

From PPL Electric Utilities

Science lessons are rarely as tasty as the recent solar oven activity in Jennifer Fisher’s class at Central Columbia Middle School in Bloomsburg.

Fisher received a $1,000 Empowering Educators Grant from the PPL Foundation and used it to help teach her students about solar power. Teams of four students made their own solar ovens using foil, a cardboard box, plexiglass and foam insulation.

On the first sunny day in March, they used the ovens to make s’mores for an after-lunch snack.

Cool things like this are happening at schools all over the PPL Electric Utilities service area thanks to Empowering Educators Grants from the PPL Foundation.

Each fall, the PPL Foundation announced grants to 25 middle and high school teachers to support science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) activities in their classrooms. Each teacher receives a grant of $1,000 to spend on equipment and materials for projects.

In addition to Fisher’s solar project, the grants funded things like STEM labs, computer coding, robotics, 3D printers, climate change projects and soil and water quality studies. Since the grant program’s inception in 2003, more than $230,000 has been awarded to more than 165 teachers.