Wetlands Institute Reimagines Remote Learning Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

By: David J. Detweiler, Writer / Follow South Jersey Child Welfare Intern

STONE HARBOR, N.J. — On September 17, the Wetlands Institute relaunched its nearly two-decade old program, Nature Education for Homeschool Students and Teachers (NEHST), with a new aspect of remote learning.

During the nearly two-decade existence of the NEHST program, it’s focused on giving students that are homeschooled the education they need in science and nature while encouraging them to explore and discover. The program stretched to three semesters last year (Autumn, Winter, and Spring) in order to give each semester a theme for learning over the three-month span of it.

 “We teach all ages together to emphasize multi-age learning and peer assistantship, and we use hands-on methods to reinforce students’ abilities in not only science, but also math, language arts, and social studies,” Wetlands Institute’s director Brooke Knapick said in a press release.

Wetlands has made more adjustments to its curriculum to prepare for this school year, as well. On top of offering in-person instruction, the institute has created NEHST activity packets. These packets allow enhancements to in-class learning and the possibility to learn all the content for each semester’s theme remotely. The packets include interactive science experiments and activities, places to go to complete certain activities for the curriculum, and the ability to use a virtual Branching Activities Bitmoji Learning Space.

“We continue to offer unique and enriching learning opportunities through a combination of traditional in-person and new distance learning programs. This is our next step in addressing the new education frontier,” Director Knapick added.

NEHST will conduct lessons every Thursday until the end of its spring semester on May 21. NEHST packets are available for pickup at the Wetlands Institute, and they can be delivered to your home. You can register by calling (609) 368-1211. Any further information can be found on the Wetlands Institute website.

This article was produced by a Follow South Jersey news intern thanks to a grant provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation through the New Jersey Health Initiatives program to create hyper-local news to meet the informational and health needs of the City of Bridgeton, N.J.