Maker Faire 09: ISKME Teaches Kids to Design Sustainability Solutions


Photos by Jaymi Heimbuch

The very first thing that caught my eye at Maker Faire was a wall of plants, hooked up to solar panels and a wind turbine, that pumped water into a fish pond. I had to stop and ask, and turns out, it's a project that hopes to spark the imaginations of middle and high school kids for creating a world of sustainable food production. Click through to check out the Sun Curve.
ISKME stands for The Institute for the Study of Knowledge Management in Education. In other words, it's an organization that helps teachers teach, and here at Maker Faire, they are hoping to get teachers involved in educating on sustainability.

This particular project is called the Sun Curve Design Challenge, and it asks kids:

If you had to grow your food using efficient and sustainable processes, where would it take you? What science and technology would support your ideas? What design principles would guide your solutions?

Their example is this device - a self-contained system of hydroponic agriculture, aquaculture, and solar energy. The sun powers pumps that draw water up from the pond, uses it to feed the plants, which clean the water and return it to the pond. The design was a runner-up for the 2008 Metropolis Next Generation Design Prize.

This fall, students are taking part in the challenge and will be designing solutions, then submitting them this winter to ISKME. We're eager to see what they come up with!

More from Maker Faire 09
Maker Faire 09: Dying Yarn with Solar Power
Maker Faire 09: Turning Book Scraps into Swag
Maker Faire 09: Cool Solar and Electric Bikes
Maker Faire 09: GoBe Solar Charger
Maker Faire 09: Green Stuff I Wanted to Buy at Maker Shed
Maker Faire 09: SCRAP Puts Junk Back Into Craftster Consumer Stream
Maker Faire 09: Books Are Not Dead
Maker Faire 09: Greywater Systems Make A Great Hack
Maker Faire 09: No Shortage of DIY Garden Help
Maker Faire 09: Resurrecting Fabric Giftwrap with Furoshiki
Maker Faire 09: The iFixit Global Repair Community
Maker Faire 09: ISKME Teaches Kids to Design Sustainability Solutions
Maker Faire 09: The Bigger Picture of Remaking a Sustainable America

Tags: Agriculture | Do It Yourself | Education | Environmental Footprint | Farming | Maker Faire

WHAT'S HOT ON FACEBOOK