Frequently Asked Questions

Why should my class participate?

Solar power is growing rapidly and will increasingly play an important role in all of our lives. With renewable energy careers on the rise, you can start your students early with solar energy concepts, empower them to investigate different career paths, guide them to choose solutions for a cleaner, brighter energy future.

Our goal is to help prepare students to become the leaders of our energy future by learning about solar energy, and competing and connecting with other schools across North Carolina.

What is a solar badge?

A solar badge is a digital symbol of achievement that can be used to motivate learning and track what students have learned about solar. Classrooms earn badges (and points) by completing short activities led by the teacher and answering questions about the activity.

How is the Challenge aligned to the NC essential standards?

The Challenge provides teachers with simple, engaging, stand-alone solar content to infuse into your STEM curriculum. It’s open to any teacher and class, with activities particularly aligned with 3rd-5th Science, 8th grade Physical Science and 9th grade Environmental Science essential standards.

How can my class win a prize?

Entering a contest makes your class eligible for a prize. Contest winners will be chosen by lottery of participating classrooms. The more classrooms that participate, the more prizes there are to win!

What kinds of prizes are available?

Prizes include items such as portable solar chargers and solar backpacks that can be used in hands-on experiments in your classroom.

Can schools really make a difference by “going solar”?

Yes! Committing to a renewable energy portfolio will save schools money, protect children’s health, and prepare students for a green energy economy. Two separate studies in NC have concluded that investing in solar will make a huge impact. One report found Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools could save $42.1 million over 25 years by switching to 100% solar. Another study showed that the average K-12 NC school could provide 80% of its electricity from solar, based on conservative estimates of usable roof area.

Have additional questions?

Send us an email at challenge@ncsolarschools.org.