This is the sixth year West Virginia has hosted a Remake Learning Days festival, and participating organizations are thrilled to have in-person events.
“It’s really amazing that we can see each other’s smiles. You do see a lot of excitement for the in-person events,” said Donna Peduto, executive director of the West Virginia Public Education Collaborative, the region’s lead organization for Remake Learning Days.
There were a few in-person events last year, but the COVID-19 pandemic put a damper on them, and attendance was lower than expected.
“This year, there’s more community involvement than ever,” Peduto said. “We worked really hard to make it a statewide festival. Community members have really come out to support Remake Learning Days. They feel empowered to be able to do it, and that has really shown. I compliment Remake Learning for that — they always stress the community and the parents being involved.”
This year, West Virginia will host 50 free events May 12-23. Last year, there were 31.
“We are so fortunate to have Remake Learning Days and to see it growing. To see it grow has been a personal joy for me,” said Peduto, who was a teacher for 22 years.
The state and West Virginia University (WVU) also have helped promote the event. “WVU has just been promoting it like crazy,” she said. “They have been very supportive, as has been the Department of Education in Charleston.”
Some of the events include:
- Play with Clay, at the Mason County Public Library, where families will experience the wonders of clay through a read-aloud of the book “Play with Clay,” followed by exploration, building and creating using their own pieces of clay.
- Intro to Photography, at the Summit Bechtel Reserve, will teach participants about the history of photography, how a camera works, how to shoot a proper photo, as well as explore careers in photography. They also will take part in a short photo walk, tour a media department, and get a coloring book of their images.
- Super Science Saturday, where MountainHeart Community Services staff will lead children, families and childcare providers in an exciting adventure of wonder and awe with simple science experiments that can be duplicated at home.
- Eastwood Community STEM Fair, when Eastwood Elementary will host a STEM Field Day, including all students pre K – 5 with engaging stations to make connections with the community, construct and create, as well as celebrate careers with the introduction of its new outdoor learning space the Wonder Full Watershed.
- Statue Selfie, at Science Adventure School, where participants make their very own statue of themselves with packing tape.
- Old Rock, at the Mason County Public Library, where families can learn what it is like to be a geologist and will explore the wonders of rocks with hands-on activities inspired by the book “Old Rock (is not boring)” by Deb Pilutti.
“The fact that teachers and schools and community organizations get to showcase their innovation, the teachers and community leaders need that,” Peduto said. “So many times, we are doing great things, and Remake Learning puts all its support around event hosts, and our teachers, community members and students have felt good that they are being appreciated. It gives real validation to groups that what they are doing is innovative.”
The Remake Learning Days festival also allows educators, students and organizations to see what they can do differently and how they can learn from seeing other events.
“It’s a wonderful festival for teachers, students and the community,” Peduto said. “We are so fortunate.”
More information about Remake Learning Days in West Virginia can be found right here.