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Lively Recognized for Excellence in Energy

Lively Receives Prestigious Award

March 6, 2018
Wetzel Chronicle

The National Energy Education Development (NEED) Project is pleased to announce the 2018 recipient of the Bob Thompson Excellence in Energy Award is Leslie Lively of Short Line School in Reader, West Virginia (Wetzel County Schools).

The Bob Thompson Excellence in Energy Award was created by NEED in memory of long-time NEED teacher and staff member Bob Thompson. Bob was a dedicated teacher, friend, and proponent of science and energy education. His time at NEED enriched many, encouraged all, and improved the way we present and teach about energy in our curriculum and training workshops. Bob was a good friend to many here at NEED and he and his spirit live on in our work. Because of this, NEED established the Bob Thompson Excellence in Energy Award that is given each year to a teacher who exemplifies Bob's childlike wonder of science, technology and energy.

The award includes a $1,000 cash grant to the teacher to use as he/she chooses in the classroom and an all-expenses paid trip to the NEED Energy Conference for Educators hosted in Galveston, Texas, July 8-12, 2018. The award will be given at the 38th Annual NEED Youth Energy Conference and Awards hosted in Washington, D.C. June 25, 2018.

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Leslie Lively

Leslie's nomination from his former student, Dustin Higginbotham, highlighted the reasons why he is a worthy recipient of this award. He said of Leslie, "My name is Dustin Higginbotham. I am a seventh grader at Short Line School. I have been participating with the Engineer Energy Kids in the NEED Project for four years. Mr. Lively works hard to share his knowledge with all of his students. He then expects them to pass their knowledge on to younger kids by using the NEED "Kids Teaching Kids" approach. While in the NEED Project I have learned strategies on how to conserve energy. My favorite NEED Project activity is when we do wind turbines. While working with the wind turbines I was able to work on STEM challenges by designing and engineering my own wind turbine blades. Then I was able to test them in the wind tunnel. I liked it because we gave presentations and shared our knowledge with other people. We also have an energy carnival every year. We do it throughout the school day, and also during night so that parents can come with their kids."

Leslie's colleague, Kip Bisignano, said of him, "For students from an economically-depressed rural community, Mr. Lively serves as a model that learning never ends, opportunities are there when you seek them, and it is up to us to work together in our community to solve problems."

In Leslie's own words, "I am a true believer that teaching and learning should be fun. I am a life-long learner in every aspect. I try to instill this into my students so that they have the desire to wake up every morning and say, "What am I going to learn today?" I want students to crave knowledge, I want them to share knowledge. By sharing knowledge that tells me that they are learning. If you walk past my classroom you may say, "What the heck are they doing in there?" My response would quickly be, "We are learning!" My classroom does many hands-on labs throughout the year. In the warmer months you will usually find us outside doing stream studies, animal studies and/or learning about energy. You may even catch us baking in our solar oven."

Leslie embodies all of the great qualities that Bob Thompson is remembered for in the NEED Project family.

Congratulations to this great energy educator and dedicated friend of NEED!



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