KidWind is a hands-on design challenge in which student teams design and build small-scale wind turbines and solar structures at home or school and bring them to events all over the country to measure power output and present in front of expert judges. The Wisconsin KidWind Challenge is open to 4-12th grade students and educators across the state and feeds into the National KidWind Competition. KEEP partners with the Wisconsin Energy Institute (WEI) at UW–Madison to support Wisconsin KidWind by co-hosting annual KidWind Educator Workshops and the Wisconsin State KidWind Challenge.
Two to three KidWind Educator Workshops are held in late summer or early fall. During these fast-paced workshops KEEP, WEI, and KidWind staff work with participating teachers to review energy basics, design and test blades in a wind tunnel, and preview ready-to-use curriculum for integrating renewable energy into their lessons. Workshops are held in locations across the state and typically feature a tour of a local renewable energy resource such as a wind farm or microgrid facility. KEEP’s particular support of the workshops includes: registration, training on at least one KEEP lesson or resource, and substitute stipend reimbursement to school districts.
The Wisconsin KidWind Challenge is held in late February or early March each year. The Challenge is a day-long event that draws student teams from all across Wisconsin and northern Illinois. KEEP supports the Challenge through sponsorship of the event, assisting with judging of the events, and integration of the Energy Career Pathway into the event.