Middle School Students Get Earth-Friendly Lesson from Bill Nye

North Canton Middle School students participated in a Q&A with Bill Nye the Science Guy before his lecture at Kent State University's Stark Campus Tuesday


Editor's note: The following information was supplied by Maria Wackerly, science teacher and science department chair at North Canton Middle School.

students got a chance to interact with Bill Nye the Science Guy when he visited North Canton Tuesday.

The middle school was one of five schools that registered first to be selected for a distance learning question and answer session with Bill Nye himself Tuesday afternoon before Nye appeared at .

(Check out IndieOnline.com for coverage of Nye's visit to Kent Stark.)

NCMS celebrated a love for learning science the past two weeks by launching a Bill Nye theme driven Q&A section of the school video announcements, gave away tickets to the evening show at Kent Stark and gave newly made Bill Nye T-shirts for prizes. This all coincided with getting students to begin thinking about ways to change their behaviors at home to making Earth a more "greener" planet.

On Tuesday, North Canton Middle School put together a panel of nine students (three per grade level and one per team). Students had to express their interest in being on the panel by submitting a one-paragraph essay on what it means to make Planet Earth "greener," as well as writing five questions that if given the opportunity to speak to Bill Nye about this issue, what would they ask.

Essays for each team were then compiled by that team science teacher and randomly pulled out of an envelope for selection. Every student at NCMS had the opportunity to participate. Five students asked Nye a direct question of their own that they either were curious about or students wanted to know more about how they could impact their own community and get them involved in more "greener" life skills.  

Over and over again, Nye stressed to the students the need to "do more with less." He gave them examples of ways they can affect the environment and repeated to them again and again how one small change can make a difference and that they are all capable of making a significant discovery, invention or impact on these issues during their lifetime. He also encouraged students to embrace learning, especially in the math and science areas and not to be afraid to consider careers in these fields. Students were very engaged in the video conference and some were also going to attend the live speaking event at Kent Stark later in the day.

Twenty-eight students and staff from North Canton Middle School attended Nye's lecture at Kent Stark Tuesday evening. It was very a entertaining and educational experience for all ages. My 11-year-old, a student at , was even so engaged, he couldn't stop talking about all he had learned to his dad later that evening.

According to Kent Stark: Nye, best known as host of the popular children’s show, Bill Nye the Science Guy, is an established engineer, scientist, comedian, author and inventor with a lifelong fascination on how things work. After earning a Cornell University mechanical engineering degree, he accepted a position at Boeing, where he developed a device that continues to be used in 747s today.

Combining his love of science with a flair for comedy, Nye moonlighted as a stand-up comic, eventually taking on the Science Guy persona. The series won 28 Emmy Awards during its five-year run and earned him seven Emmys for writing, performing and producing. He has authored five books and frequently appears as a guest on various shows.


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