collage of student projects from museum day

Pictured clockwise from top left: a student participating in the Smithsonian Lunar Rover design challenge and (top right and bottom) students participating in the paint splatter workshop with the Pollock-Krasner House.

Despite the ongoing pandemic, William Floyd Elementary School found a way to continue the school’s beloved Museum Day, a fun and educational 17-year tradition that usually transforms the classrooms, hallways and gymnasium of the school into museums, laboratories and art galleries with visits from various Long Island educational institutions. So on December 18, students enjoyed – for the first time – an entirely virtual Museum Day.

Determined to provide her students this opportunity this school year, school librarian Margaret Finne worked tirelessly to arrange for Long Island’s virtual institutions to present and collaborate virtually. She also arranged for new and exciting additions to the virtual program including the American Museum of Magic in Michigan and the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C., where students participated in a Lunar Rover and Habitat Design challenge.

“Our students had the opportunity to participate in so many exciting STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art & mathematics) adventures,” said Ms. Finne. “This was an amazing day and I look forward to incorporating these out-of-town institutions into future in-person Museum Day events to keep growing and building the program.”

Local participants included the Cornell Cooperative Extension, which hosted a virtual visit for students to their farm where they learned the importance of agriculture in the community.  Brookhaven National Laboratory and the Dolan DNA Learning Center brought learning to life by conducting scientific experiments demonstrating that science is truly in all of our lives. Plus, the Quogue Wildlife Refuge and IFish NY taught students about the importance of wildlife and how people have can have a positive impact on the our ecosystem. Additionally, the Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center (legendary artist Jackson Pollock) introduced students to the art of learning with splatter paint workshops.


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