Fifth through ninth grade science teachers in West Virginia spent two weeks at the Green Bank Observatory at a professional development retreat focusing on meteorology, astronomy and geology. Pocahontas County High School retired science teacher Mary Sue Burns led the geology class and, as shown above, led interactive projects to engage students in learning. S. Stewart photo

Suzanne Stewart
Staff Writer

While students all across West Virginia were enjoying their summer vacation, fifth through ninth grade science teachers gathered at the Green Bank Observatory for a two-week professional development retreat provided by an Earth and Space Science Passport grant.

Dr. Deb Hemler, geoscience coordinator at Fairmont State University, received the grant and organized the classes for West Virginia’s science teachers.

“I’m also the person responsible for teaching science teachers,” Hemler said. “So, any secondary science teachers come through my program, and I’m also responsible for teaching the elementary sciences. There’s a couple of my former students in here actually, and three of my current students.”

During the two-weeks, science teachers…

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