Engaging Caregivers and Families is Focus of Eastern Kentucky’s Remake Learning Days

Posted on Wed, March 27, 2019 by

Eastern Kentucky’s Remake Learning Days runs from April 12 to 20, 2019, kicking off this year’s slate of Remake Learning Days Across America (RLDAA), a major expansion of the Pittsburgh-founded event (first established in 2016) to cities and regions throughout the United States.

KET team members Traci Tackett and Brian Spellman.

It’s also the first year the event will be held in this region. Kentucky Educational Television (KET) is organizing the events in cooperation with Remake Learning, PBS and Digital Promise. Public television stations across the participating regions are getting involved to help increase the visibility of these events and further expose teachers, parents and students to the many high-quality resources made available by local PBS stations.

Excitement for RLDAA is high, said KET coordinator and former teacher Traci Tackett, especially in the schools. The region is extremely large and spread out—Tackett said that some events may be a two- to three-hour drive apart—and schools have been instrumental in hosting events and getting kids excited.

It’s an excellent opportunity to show adults firsthand what connected learning looks like. Concepts like STEAM and makerspaces can seem abstract and distant when kids talk about them, but to see firsthand what and how students are learning, and even to encounter them in a hands-on fashion, engages parents and caregivers in new and meaningful ways.  Families can go online and search events by various filters like learning themes (arts, maker, outdoor learning, science and technology), age recommendations, dates, location and more.

Eastern Kentucky’s Remake Learning Days showcase presents unique opportunities to build connections among all community members.

“Eastern Kentucky is rich in culture,” Tackett said, citing deep traditions in the arts and in the region’s culinary practices. “And people in the community are eager to share.”

Some of the workshops and programs offered present rare and dying art forms, such as crafting corn husk dolls, cooking outside in a cast-iron skillet, folk dancing, and making arrowheads.

Technology and science will also be on full display during RLDAA. Students can see first-hand what 3-D printing looks like and how to program to create items. Scientific experiments will also be taking place. Eastern Kentucky’s eclectic mix of offerings reflects the region’s diversity and rich traditions.

That diversity, along with the region’s size, have presented challenges in terms of equity, which has consistently been at the center of the work of the Remake Learning Network and of Remake Learning Days. KET has strived to make sure all of the region’s counties are represented, while also seeking out solutions for those of low incomes and without access to transportation.

KET is hopeful about possibilities such as low-income housing units hosting events in communal spaces, allowing residents to attend while also bringing in community members, and churches that may be able to offer transportation. They’re also excited about events such as a series of workshops offered through The Arty Bus, a traveling arts classroom that will bring lessons and supplies to a number of sites throughout the region.

“Having as many of these events as we can is important so that everyone can participate,” KET’s Brian Spellman said. “We hope kids and families get excited to learn together in this inaugural festival.”

KET is pleased to partner with organizations for these Remake Learning Days Across America events to bring learning to life for families and educators in these rural communities.

This blog is part of series highlighting the work of each participating region of Remake Learning Days Across America, led by partners Remake Learning, PBS Kids and Digital Promise. Remake Learning wishes to thank the national sponsors of 2019’s Remake Learning Days Across America: Carnegie Corporation of New York, The Grable Foundation and Schmidt Futures.


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