“Preservation of the Reservation” is Simmons’ winning project using a blended curriculum that will allow her 10th grade literature and composition students at Stephens County High School to work cooperatively towards a common goal through hands-on activities and real-life situations. Enhancing student research, writing and persuasion skills will be the priority as the students focus on three main environmental areas including school grounds, waste management and energy. Throughout the year, students will establish an effective recycling program, create an energy awareness campaign and start a composting program through the use of a worm factory. Additionally, with the help of the ING grant, they will beautify school grounds by adding bird houses to the campus, planting flowers, removing litter and creating an anti-litter campaign. Outdoor learning areas throughout the landscape surrounding the new school building will also be created by students. The school’s entire 1,200 person student body, and the school’s staff and administrators will benefit from the students’ activities as will the community. According to Simmons, the activities in her project will help the students to gain knowledge of vital life skills including cooperative learning, respect, responsibility, and accountability. Simmons lives in Mount Airy.