AUGUSTA – A seventh-grade teacher at Cony Middle School is one of a handful of Maine educators piloting a curriculum this fall that puts students to work analyzing and culling statistics on electricity consumption.

The objective, ultimately, is to make students aware of what household appliances consume the most electricity, when household electricity use is highest and what they can do about it, said Guy Meader, who teaches math and science at Cony.

At the same time, he said, the curriculum requires that students identify trends, averages and other statistical phenomena related to power consumption.

On Friday, students in Meader’s classes presented the results of their first round of investigations. Their raw data came from anonymous volunteers who brought home devices that plug into household breaker panels and monitor real-time electricity use, Meader said. The class used the Google PowerMeter program to track electricity use each day of their study period.

“It’s hopefully getting them to look at data,” Meader said.

Students speculated as to why electricity use was higher in certain households on certain days.

One student guessed the consumer had a party one night.

“I think they’re really getting a better idea of how usage changes over time,” Meader said. “They’re associating more people with more usage.”

Next week, students will take home kilowatt-hour meters to measure the electricity consumption of small household appliances, Meader said.

“It would be nice to switch from simply analyzing that data to make a change in their own electrical consumption,” he said. “I think the kids will have a much more vested interest in it once it’s their information.”

Maine Mathematics and Science Alliance curricukum writers are hoping to tie in household data from Central Maine Power Co. once CMP completes its installation of smart meters — the remote devices used to measure electricity use.