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Parkway visits Saturn in interactive storytelling program

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Fourth-grade students at Parkway Elementary School in the East Meadow School District participated in an interactive program called Submerge Storytelling throughout the week of Oct. 22. The program aims to inspire creativity in children by facilitating a physical and metaphysical environment where they can lose themselves in their imaginations.

Following along the fictional storyline of “Surfing on Saturn,” the school’s literacy center was transformed into the room of Emmy Sagan by Cory Levine of Submerge Storytelling. Emmy is a 12-year-old scientist and engineer who has invented the award-winning Emmy Engine to help her best friend Broman improve his surfing skills.

As the story and week evolved, Emmy asked the students to take part in an Operation Battery simulation along with NASA. As part of the plot, students imagined that the wolrd’s supply of batteries is nearly gone and NASA asked for the assistance of Emmy and the students at Parkway to assist with a mission to Saturn to recover minerals that can help restore the supply of batteries.

Throughout the lesson, students used critical thinking and problem-solving strategies. Submerge Storytelling provides a pragmatic educational curriculum in addition to teaching important life skills and values through text-to-self literary connections. The interactive learning strategy is used to foster a sense of individuality, camaraderie and community.

—Brian Stieglitz