Halvorson Trane

Halvorson Trane Awards STEM Grants to Help Fund Energy Education in Iowa Schools

November 14, 2017

DES MOINES – NOVEMBER 14, 2017 – Halvorson Trane has announced the award of five, $500 grants to help fund energy education projects for Iowa Schools. Grants were awarded to the following schools for their exciting grant proposals focusing on energy education in the classroom:

Belmond-Klemme Elementary - Belmond, IA

Belmond-Klemme Fifth Grade Science Teacher, Kendra Haugen, is excited to use the grant to purchase project based STEM learning kits to help students learn about the use of natural resources and energy, as well as their role in protecting them. With these kits, students will participate in three learning experiences. One, to research alternatives to fossil fuels. Two, to explore water as an energy and life source. Three, to investigate the use of oil and the effects of oil spills on the environment, along with building and testing an oil containment boom.  

“Overall, I’m hoping this project will help my students understand that they play an important role in the protection of our world,” commented Science Teacher Kendra Haugen. “These hands on projects will help students think innovatively about the use of different energy sources, and allow them to develop science, technology, and engineering skills for their future.”

Roland-Story High School - Story City, IA

Roland-Story High School Physics teacher, Jeffrey Boman, reports that one distraction to student learning is the inconsistent temperatures in his classroom, due to the southern exposed windows. Boman states, “By noon, it feels like a sauna in my classroom.” To help alleviate this issue, Boman will be using the grant to purchase window films to reduce the radiation coming in from the southern windows, and conduct student-led laboratory experiments and implementation.

As part of this project, students will study the index of refraction, reflection, and absorption between film and glass. The overall goal will be to see if long term savings provide enough economic incentive to coat the windows.

United Community School - Boone, IA

United Community School Principal, Tim Salmon, will work with the Fifth & Sixth Grade STEM Teacher, Grant Walker, to implement an educational LED light replacement project with the grant. Students will study energy consumption, research costs of bulbs, estimate the overall cost savings of the new LED light bulbs, and summarize and report on the entire process to their district facilities committee.

“With the growth of our district the last few years, and increases in our energy bills, installing LED lights is a great step towards reducing our building’s overall energy consumption and costs,” commented Principal Tim Salmon. “Getting students involved with the process is a great way to help educate students on the importance of saving energy, while also learning all the benefits of LED lights, and gaining valuable STEM skills.”

Mount Vernon Middle School - Mt. Vernon, IA

Mount Vernon Middle School Science Teacher, Rob Hanson, and Language Arts Teacher, Michelle Boyden, are excited to put the grant towards an interdisciplinary project for their eighth grade science and language arts classes. They will purchase the book, The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, by William Kamkwamba, wind turbine kits, and a trip to Kirkwood College to tour a model wind turbine.

“Students will use the story from the book as background information to think about how wind turbines work and what they contribute to our society,” commented Science Teacher Rob Hanson. “We will also have students recognize how turbines are used in Iowa, and predict their future implications of energy use. Students will conclude the project with a debate in which they consider the viability of wind energy as a potential renewable resource for power generation.”

McKinley Middle School - Cedar Rapids, IA 

McKinley Middle School Exploratory Science Teacher, Leif Segen, will be using the grant to support an Energy Justice project. Funds will be used to purchase supplies for students to perform energy audits on a variety of community homes. Audits will include thermal scans for heat loss using IR distance thermometers, recording estimated window and roof age, blower door tests, insulation checks, HVAC types, R-value calculations, light bulb comparisons, and appliance age checks. Students will also do team and class-wide analysis of data and present their findings and recommendations to selected local, state, and federal organizations.

“This project is part of our Growing Opportunities (GO) Program for McKinley Middle School,” commented Leif Segen. “Our primary learning objectives are to help students gain a greater understanding of the steps that individual residents can take to reduce energy loss, social factors that can influence energy efficiency and energy education of residents, and how to effectively communicate with residents and businesses.”

Halvorson Trane received several applications from Iowa schools. Project ideas ranging from installing hallway and classroom light timers, to building educational community gardens.

“One of our main goals at Halvorson Trane is to conserve natural resources, and create safe, efficient, and comfortable building environments for our customers,” commented Halvorson Trane President Greg Grandgeorge. “For nearly 30 years, we’ve worked with and helped several Iowa schools improve their building environments, while saving school districts money. We are happy to contribute to energy education projects to help students understand the importance of conserving energy, and how they can be a part of the energy solution.”

If your school is interested in applying for a 2018 Halvorson Trane K-12 Energy Education Grant, please contact Halvorson Trane, 515-270-0004.  


About Halvorson Trane
Halvorson Trane is a commercial HVAC company serving the Iowa market since 1989. Halvorson Trane is a franchised Trane Agent, and the exclusive representative of Trane Commercial Air Conditioning Products and Services for a majority of the State of Iowa. In addition to being the Trane Commercial representative, Halvorson Trane also represents a wide variety of other leading HVAC manufactures. Halvorson Trane believes in conserving natural resources and creating safe, efficient, and comfortable building environments. Key components of the business include Energy Services, Building Automation Systems, New Equipment, Parts, and Service.


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