WVPA Sharing

WV Department of Education hosts 500 students at State Social Studies Fair in Charleston

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The West Virginia Department of Education (WVDE) hosted more than 500 students in Charleston on April 10 as part of the 2024 West Virginia State Social Studies Fair (WVSSSF). Students worked individually and in teams to enter approximately 320 projects. The event brought students from 40 counties to the Charleston Coliseum and Convention Center and features the largest competition field within the last 10 years.

Students in grades 3-12 presented projects in content areas such as anthropology, economics, political science, U.S. history, psychology and more. Participating students earned first place in their school, county and regional competitions. Judges scored projects based on a student-led oral presentation, research and findings, theme and overall display.

Social studies education challenges students to ask thought-provoking questions, predict outcomes, create solutions and draw conclusions from recognized behavioral patterns. The WVSSSF expands these learning outcomes by rewarding students for their dedication to extracurricular education and providing authentic learning opportunities that enhance their self-development, research, communication and critical thinking skills.

“It is inspiring to see students so passionate about their education and confident in their skills and talents. The future of the Mountain State shines bright knowing students of this caliber are tomorrow’s thought-leaders, innovators, teachers and more,” said State Superintendent of Schools Michele L. Blatt. “This experience is something I hope will carry them throughout their educational journey and into their careers, knowing they are capable of anything they aspire to do.”

The WVDE established the WVSSSF in 1977 in partnership with Marshall University and with input from a group of West Virginia social studies teachers. The first fairs were in Huntington and later moved to Charleston.

The competition field was comprised of three divisions, each with first-, second-, and third-places winners:

  • Division One: Grades 3 – 5; 82 winners
  • Division Two: Grades 6 – 8; 87 winners
  • Division Three: Grades 9 – 12; 85 winners

For the complete list of winners and program details, visit the WVDE website.

Event photos can be viewed in the WVDE’s Flickr Album.

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