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VIRTUAL SUMMER LEARNING ACADEMY By Brilliant Labs

The Nova Scotia Department of Education and Early Childhood Development’s (EECD) annual Summer Learning Academy may have had a different format this year, but there was no shortage of great information for the province's educators. The week-long professional development opportunity for Nova Scotia teachers is usually held in person, but due to public health restrictions the event became virtual this year. Despite the change in format, over 150 sessions were offered and registration was higher than previous years’ events. The conference offered a diverse range of sessions on topics from personal development and wellness to cutting edge technological tools to support student learning. Presentations were offered by EECD staff, community and corporate partners in education, as well as teachers and administrators from across the 66

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province. Brilliant Labs was one such community partner offering six sessions throughout the week on topics to help teachers incorporate maker-centred learning into their physical or virtual classroom. “The whole Nova Scotia team was on board,” said Sarah Ryan, Brilliant Labs’ Provincial Director. “We delivered sessions on a wide variety of topics that teachers can use in these uncertain times”. Brilliant Labs was quick to pivot to an online format when remote learning was instituted in March of this year. Many lessons were learned and techniques developed to deliver lessons in a fun, maker-centred, way that also provided clear ties to curricular outcomes. The goal of the sessions offered at the Summer Learning Academy was to impart these lessons to Nova Scotia teachers and share the resources developed over the last few months.

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