New River Primary students get to learn about exotic animals during a visit from Barn Hill Preserve

OAK HILL, WV (WOAY) – Barn Hill Preserve, a wildlife conservation and education organization, set up at New River Primary for a day.

It was an event that was made possible through the new program for Fayette County Schools, Early Steps to School Success. Children as early as infancy all of the way to the second grade got to take part in Tuesday’s event.

“Barn Hill Preserve, with the animals that they are bringing, is totally connected to our science standards, so the teachers have connected the animals that they are bringing to reading across the content of science and math,” Fayette County Schools Early Childhood Coordinator, Melinda Foster says.

Experts from Barn Hill Preserve were there to teach the students about the animals, which ranged from a tortoise, an armadillo, a bearded dragon, and more.

As the expert’s experience ranges from wildlife rehabilitation, zoological conservation, and captive breeding programs, they strive to bring that knowledge to students in a free 45-minute presentation.

“We travel around to different places and we provide animal presentations for the kids there. It’s free and it just helps them learn about the animals around them and how they can help them out,” says Sherri Jackson, a Mobile Animal Educator with Barn Hill Preserve.

The Early Steps to Schools Success Program is part of the Save the Children organization.

Fayette County Schools is now one of the five counties in West Virginia to acquire the program and they plan to host many more educational events like this one as part of it.

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