Get Charged! The Interactive Science Curriculum Lighting Up Classrooms | OEC News

STEMulating rural classrooms: science kits energize curriculm

OEC’s nationally-award-winning, hands-on educational curriculum, Get Charged!, does just that while meeting Oklahoma state science standards in electricity or energy for grades Kindergarten through fifth.

Designed through careful research and with input from several area teachers, the curriculum is interdisciplinary and fun. OEC Education and Outreach Programs Director Tory Tedder-Loffland has led the classroom program for five years and is gearing up for another year of educating the next generation about the amazing world of energy.

Teachers can check out a fully stocked kit and lesson plan for their classroom or schedule a visit by Tedder-Loffland to facilitate the lesson in the classroom.

“Get Charged! includes more than just electricity education,” said Deborah Phillips of Dryden School of Advanced Academics. “It also involves learning a little history and is a great program for homeschool lessons as well. The kit is packed with so much material, I am finding it useful for some experiments beyond what it is designed for.”

Full curriculums, teacher’s guides, kits and videos are available free of charge for Kindergarten through fifth grades. The kit includes projects and experiments focused on the components of electricity, and the teacher’s guide and folder have everything the teacher needs to facilitate a lesson.

“As part of the most popular experiment, the students learn about circuits, conductors and insulators,” Tedder-Loffland said. “They draw a schematic of the circuit they are constructing, which powers a small light bulb. Later, that circuit operates a telegraph the students use to communicate using Morse Code.”

“We are doing every experiment and adding them as lab assignments to [one of our home schooler’s] science class.”

Contact Tory Tedder-Loffland, (405) 217-6726 or tory@okcoop.org for more information and visit okcoop.org/learn-programming-request/ to explore all the programs offered to youth in OEC’s service area and to reserve a Get Charged! kit for your classroom.

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Unique Camp for Eighth Graders | OEC News

Cooperative Thrills and Electric Skills: Inside Oklahoma's Energy Camp 2023

Three students represented OEC at this year’s Energy Camp, sponsored by Oklahoma’s electric cooperatives. Elycia Bass of Southridge Junior High in Moore, Tobias Montanez of Washington Middle School in Goldsby and Emma Siegfried of Highland East Junior High in Moore joined 75 of Oklahoma’s exceptional rising high schoolers who were selected by their sponsoring cooperatives to attend camp this year, which took place at Canyon Camp near Hinton, Oklahoma.

“This year’s camp was one of the best ever,” said Stacy Howeth, OAEC Director of Member Services and Energy Camp director. “I might say that every year, but I mean it! We came back in 2022 with a renewed vision. We’ve upped the game and these campers rise to the challenge.”

Through various activities at Energy Camp, campers gained a wealth of information about the cooperative business model, power source generation, electric safety, the history of Oklahoma’s electric cooperatives and new leadership and communications skills.

The campers experienced the cooperative business model firsthand by electing a board of directors who then interviewed and hired a camp manager. The elected directors and camp manager maintained leadership roles during camp operations.

The OEC Live Line Trailer made its Energy Camp debut. Daniel Lofland, OEC’s Energy Efficiency Solutions Specialist and former lineman, was joined by linemen Derek Lumm and Tony Ramirez to give up-close instructions on how the power line system works.

“Thank you for showing us electric line safety,” said a camper. “This helped me visualize the situation to better understand the dangers.”

OEC’s Education and Outreach Programs Director Tory Tedder-Loffland led campers through Co-opoly, a cooperative education board game that requires teamwork, analysis and decision-making.

Campers also had a crash course on life skills such as budgeting, career options, working with people of different personality types, how to write and mail thank you notes and interview tips and tricks.

Additional camp activities included pole climbing, tabletop demonstrations, two renowned motivational speakers and an Energy Battle Tournament, a quiz bowl style trivia about electric cooperatives.

Energy Camp is coordinated by the Oklahoma Association of Electric Cooperatives. Campers are selected and sponsored by Oklahoma’s rural electric cooperatives. Applications for the 2024 Energy Camp will go live in January at okcoop.org/energycamp

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Lead D.C. | OEC News

Oklahoma Teens Embark on Youth Tour

Four area teens recently returned from an unforgettable trip to Washington, D.C. known as Youth Tour. The all-expenses paid, seven-day trek through America’s capital inspires hardworking students who earn themselves this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

Oklahoma’s electric co-ops sent 70 students and 11 chaperones to the capital to see the awe-inspiring monuments up close and personal in June. OEC’s Youth Tour delegation included Nandini Patel from Westmoore High School, Chandler Patterson from Tuttle High School, Shepard Schuermann from Community Christian School in Norman, and Jayce Sherman from Blanchard High School. After completing the three-part application, short presentation and interview, the students won the trip to D.C.

“Every year, this contest attracts the most ambitious and determined students in our territory,” said OEC CEO Patrick Grace. “We have the best and the brightest young leaders in Oklahoma, and I was honored to have them represent us this year.”

“I really like that we got to use our creativity to create a community service project we care about,” Patterson said. “Each of us has something different and unique to offer, and the contest values that.”

In the capital, students toured historic sites and monuments, attended an interactive question-and-answer session with Oklahoma’s congressional delegation and made life-long friends while learning what it means to be a youth advocate in their community. Students also attended Youth Day with over 1,500 other Youth Tour winners nationwide.

Tory Tedder-Loffland, OEC’s Education and Outreach Programs Director, joined the group as a chaperone in 2022.

“That was my third time to be selected as a chaperone,” Tedder-Loffland said. “I will apply for the honor every year I am able. To see growth happen to every single kid is beautiful. It’s not just that they are making buddies. It’s their transformation when we ask them to think about their impact on the world as they walk in view of our country’s history.”

Among a packed schedule, students visited Arlington National Cemetery, the National Pentagon 9/11 Memorial, Smithsonian museums and Fort McHenry in Baltimore.

Oklahoma U.S. Congressman Markwayne Mullin continued his tradition of giving the Oklahoma Youth Tour group a private after-hours tour of the Capitol. Congressman Mullin guided the group through areas little known to the public, like back staircases where crosses were carved into the structures and pointed out bullet holes from past skirmishes. The young leaders came home with a newfound sense of purpose and appreciation.

“You can look at pictures of monuments, buildings and paintings, but it’s not until you are physically witnessing these things that your soul understands,” Tedder-Loffland said. “The impact they have and the events they represent are monumental. That is what Youth Tour gives these kids.”

In addition to personal growth, the relationships formed during this week often endure into college and beyond.

“On the trip, it was amazing how fast we became close,” said Patterson. “It was incredible to experience as a group.”

Patterson was named the first alternate for the Youth Leadership Council. Only one student per state receives the honor. Patel was named as a top-10 finalist.

Congratulations to OEC’s four well-deserved 2023 Youth Tour winners. The 2024 Youth Tour Contest opens in August with exciting NEW benefits. Stay updated at okcoop.org/youthtour

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Unmissable Opportunities: 2024 Youth Tour Contest Opens | OEC News

High School Juniors Eligible For “Trip of a Lifetime” to Washington, D.C.

Perhaps OEC’s best-known and most anticipated youth program, Youth Tour offers high school juniors a week-long, all-expenses-paid educational trip to Washington, D.C. in June. Four deserving students travel with the Oklahoma delegation (70+ students) to our nation’s capital where they tour historic sites and national landmarks, meet Oklahoma’s congressional delegation and more. Youth Tour has earned a reputation as “a trip of a lifetime” among former participants.

This year’s trip is scheduled for June 14 – 20, 2024, but interested applicants should keep reading or visit okcoop.org/YouthTour for the full list of contest requirements. The deadline to apply is December 20, 2023.

New Scholarships Up For Grabs

Youth Tour contestants now have even more reasons to get involved. One of them is the Cooperative Youth Ambassador Program’s $5,000 scholarship drawing, which requires participants to engage in activities like attending cooperative sponsored events, promoting OKYT on social media, serving as a High School liaison for future Youth Tours and attending their co-op’s annual meeting. There are also opportunities for bonus entries.

Another scholarship, the OEC Youth Tour scholarship, offers $1,000 (up to $1,500) and can be obtained by participating in the Youth Leadership Council and the Cooperative Youth Ambassador Program.

National Scholarship Available:

The Youth Tour Alumni Scholarship, listed on OEC’s website, offers awards ranging from $1,000 to $10,000 and can be applied for annually. While the deadline for applications is usually in April or May, applicants have the chance to receive this prestigious scholarship every year. To learn more and apply, okcoop.org/sponsorships-scholarships/

PART 1: COMMUNITY PROJECT

Cooperatives come in all shapes and sizes, but they all hold to the seven Cooperative Principles with Commitment to Community being one. Participating in events that benefit our communities is of high priority to OEC.

ASSIGNMENT: Imagine you are granted $500 to create a project benefitting your community. How would you utilize the funds? Who would benefit? How? Why is this important to the community?

Create a project proposal outlining your project using the sample template as a basis.

PART 2: COMMUNITY PROJECT PROMOTION

Every good cause needs an event to inspire interest and raise money. A community initiative will only succeed if people know and care about it. Let’s promote it!

ASSIGNMENT: Imagine a fundraising event for your community project. Create a promotional video for social media. (Max: 2 min/2 MB)

PART 3: LETTER TO A LEADER

Oklahoma Youth Tour allows students to see the government working up close. During our day on Capitol Hill, we walk the halls of Congress, visit with members of the Oklahoma federal delegation, and tour the U.S. Capitol. Being an informed and active constituent is an important civic duty.

ASSIGNMENT: Write a professional letter to an elected official about an issue important to you. This could be the issue surrounding your community project or an unrelated issue.

*Find examples of elected officials and ways to contact them at okcoop.org/YouthTour

Share this article

Reliability: The Impacts of Extreme Winter Weather | OEC News

Winter brings increased indoor activities and higher heating demands, putting a strain on the electric grid. Learn how OEC collaborates with Western Farmers Electric Cooperative to ensure consistent power supply and discover practical tips to help reduce energy consumption. From optimizing thermostat settings to staggering appliance use, these strategies not only ease grid pressure but also offer potential savings on your electric bills. Join us in maintaining grid reliability and enjoy a warm, efficient winter season.

Read More »

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Read More »

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Discover how the OEC Foundation is making a significant impact in the community by awarding over $40,000 in grants to various local organizations and families. These funds are enhancing essential services like fire safety, foster care, and health initiatives, as well as spreading holiday cheer to at-risk families. Learn about the diverse range of projects benefiting from this generosity, including support for literacy programs and life-changing summer camps for children with chronic illnesses.

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Energize Your Summer | OEC News

Middle school students eligible to attend the Youth Power Energy Camp

OEC is searching for the best and brightest eighth grade students in our seven-county service area to send to the action-packed, four day Youth Power Energy Camp!

Energy Camp is set for May 30 – June 2 at Canyon Camp and Conference Center near Hinton. Each year, OEC sponsors up to four students to attend the camp, where they will join 80 of their peers from across the state. Energy Camp helps develop leadership skills and promotes teamwork while teaching about cooperative principles, rural electrification and electrical safety.

If you have questions regarding the contest, Energy Camp or other OEC youth programs, contact Tory Tedder-Loffland at 217-6726 or tory@okcoop.org, or link.okcoop.org/energycamp23.

Procedure and Eligibility

Procedure and Eligibility 

Students currently enrolled in eighth grade qualify and must meet the requirements listed to the left, including a resume, letter of recommendation and the online application.

Energy Camp is part of OEC’s youth development initiative, L.E.A.R.N.: Leading, Educating, Advancing and Rewarding the Next generation. L.E.A.R.N. encompasses the catalog of youth programs OEC offers to students, teachers and schools in our service area.

Contest Requirements:

  1. Applicants must answer at least two short-answer questions on the online application at link.okcoop.org/energycamp23.
  2. Applicants must submit a resume of their curricular, extracurricular and leadership activities. Include awards, recognitions and certificates. Also include club memberships, offices held, hobbies, community involvement and special interests.
  3. Applicants must submit a letter of recommendation from a teacher, principal or community leader.
  4. Complete the online application at: link.okcoop.org/energycamp23 and upload the resume and letter of recommendation. Contact Tory (405-217-6726) if you experience technical difficulties or would like a  printed application.
Share this article

Reliability: The Impacts of Extreme Winter Weather | OEC News

Winter brings increased indoor activities and higher heating demands, putting a strain on the electric grid. Learn how OEC collaborates with Western Farmers Electric Cooperative to ensure consistent power supply and discover practical tips to help reduce energy consumption. From optimizing thermostat settings to staggering appliance use, these strategies not only ease grid pressure but also offer potential savings on your electric bills. Join us in maintaining grid reliability and enjoy a warm, efficient winter season.

Read More »

Special Olympics: Winter Games | OEC News

Discover how OEC’s diverse team of volunteers, from technicians to executives, dedicated their time to scorekeeping, line judging, and cheering at the volleyball events. This heartwarming story showcases OEC’s commitment to community service and inclusion, exemplifying the spirit of the Special Olympics. Read on to experience the power of sports in uniting communities and making a positive impact.

Read More »

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Discover how Over-The-Air (OTA) updates are revolutionizing the electric vehicle (EV) industry and the pivotal role OEC Fiber plays in this transformation. Learn about the advantages and challenges of OTA updates, their impact on vehicle performance, safety, and how OEC Fiber’s high-speed internet ensures timely and secure software enhancements. This article explores the intersection of technology and EVs, highlighting how continuous updates and reliable connectivity are reshaping the future of driving.

Read More »

The ORU Report: Feb. 24 | OEC News

Discover how the OEC Foundation is making a significant impact in the community by awarding over $40,000 in grants to various local organizations and families. These funds are enhancing essential services like fire safety, foster care, and health initiatives, as well as spreading holiday cheer to at-risk families. Learn about the diverse range of projects benefiting from this generosity, including support for literacy programs and life-changing summer camps for children with chronic illnesses.

Read More »
Follow us!

Time to Shine

High School Juniors Eligible For “Trip of a Lifetime” to Washington, D.C.

Perhaps OEC’s best-known and most anticipated youth program, Youth Tour offers high school juniors a week-long, all-expenses-paid educational trip to Washington, D.C. in June. Four deserving students travel with the Oklahoma delegation (70+ students) to our nation’s capital where they tour historic sites and national landmarks, meet Oklahoma’s congressional delegation and more. Youth Tour has earned a reputation as “a trip of a lifetime” among former participants. 4703300502

This year’s trip is scheduled for June 16-22, 2023, but interested applicants should keep reading or visit the link below for the full list of contest requirements.

PART 1: COMMUNITY PROJECT

Cooperatives are businesses created by like-minded people to address a common unmet need. Cooperatives come in all shapes and sizes, but they all hold to the seven Cooperative Principles and core values of self-help, self-responsibility, democracy, equality, equity, and solidarity. This is what makes the cooperative difference.

Assignment: Imagine you are granted $500 to create a project benefitting your community. How would you utilize the funds? Create a project proposal outlining your project using the sample template as a basis.

PART 2: COMMUNITY PROJECT PROMOTION

An event, fundraiser, or community initiative will only succeed if people know and care about it. 

ASSIGNMENT: Create a promotional video for your community project*. (Max: 2 min/2 MB) 

PART 3: LETTER TO A LEADER

Oklahoma Youth Tour allows students to see the government working up close. During our day on Capitol Hill, we walk the halls of Congress, visit with members of the Oklahoma federal delegation, and tour the U.S. Capitol. Being an informed and active constituent is an important civic duty.

ASSIGNMENT: Write a professional letter to an elected official about an issue important to you. This could be the issue surrounding your community project or an unrelated issue.

Share this article

Reliability: The Impacts of Extreme Winter Weather | OEC News

Winter brings increased indoor activities and higher heating demands, putting a strain on the electric grid. Learn how OEC collaborates with Western Farmers Electric Cooperative to ensure consistent power supply and discover practical tips to help reduce energy consumption. From optimizing thermostat settings to staggering appliance use, these strategies not only ease grid pressure but also offer potential savings on your electric bills. Join us in maintaining grid reliability and enjoy a warm, efficient winter season.

Read More »

Special Olympics: Winter Games | OEC News

Discover how OEC’s diverse team of volunteers, from technicians to executives, dedicated their time to scorekeeping, line judging, and cheering at the volleyball events. This heartwarming story showcases OEC’s commitment to community service and inclusion, exemplifying the spirit of the Special Olympics. Read on to experience the power of sports in uniting communities and making a positive impact.

Read More »

Revolutionizing the Road | OEC News

Discover how Over-The-Air (OTA) updates are revolutionizing the electric vehicle (EV) industry and the pivotal role OEC Fiber plays in this transformation. Learn about the advantages and challenges of OTA updates, their impact on vehicle performance, safety, and how OEC Fiber’s high-speed internet ensures timely and secure software enhancements. This article explores the intersection of technology and EVs, highlighting how continuous updates and reliable connectivity are reshaping the future of driving.

Read More »

The ORU Report: Feb. 24 | OEC News

Discover how the OEC Foundation is making a significant impact in the community by awarding over $40,000 in grants to various local organizations and families. These funds are enhancing essential services like fire safety, foster care, and health initiatives, as well as spreading holiday cheer to at-risk families. Learn about the diverse range of projects benefiting from this generosity, including support for literacy programs and life-changing summer camps for children with chronic illnesses.

Read More »
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