Members of the Tygart Valley United Way employees and friends recently cut a ribbon to open the Born Learning Trail at the Barbour County Fairgrounds Park. 

Pictured, from left, are Chamber of Commerce President Hunter Mullens; United Way volunteer Crystal Johnson; Community Impact Director Casey Gilbert;  Jason Summerfield with scissors; TVUW Regional Engagement Director Angela Daniels; Amber Higgins, Resource Specialist with the Barbour County Development Authority; and (behind) April Sinsel, Events Coordinator of the Barbour County Fairgrounds with daughter Josie and son Ashton.  Tygart Valley United Way’s Regional Office is located at suite D, 10 11th Street, Elkins 26241, telephone (304) 636-0516.

The Born Learning Trail, says Daniels, is a “fun, easy way for parents, grandparents, and caregivers to capture children’s natural curiosity and love of play to help build early-learning skills critical for school readiness.”  The Learning Trail is a series of signs, offering educational games which are approved by experts which guide adults on specific ways to create learning games outdoors as well as providing suggestions for use back home.

“The Born Learning Trail,” she says, “is an interactive, playful, and visible tool for community volunteers as well as a change strategy to help boost children’s language and literary skills and to encourage families to become active.  It is a great way to elevate awareness of early childhood education and support year-round health habits for childen,” she says.

“Our area trails were installed by local volunteers and are a true testament to the power of teamwork,” says Daniels.  “Each trail features hand-painted art work to accompany the signs along the sidewalk for more interactive play opportunities.  Please explore the Born Learning Trail at the Barbour County Fairgrounds,” she says.