© 2024 WHRO Public Media
5200 Hampton Boulevard, Norfolk VA 23508
757.889.9400 | info@whro.org
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

5 Must-Have Resources for Virginia Teachers

Photo: pexels.com

Educators in Virginia have come to rely on WHRO Public Media to help them meet their needs as well as the needs of their students. Yet, some in our community still may not realize the vast resources WHRO offers for educators — many of them accessible online with no need for travel.

Here are five of our favorites:

1. eMediaVA.org

eMediaVA is Virginia’s premier digital media content library for educators and students, providing access to thousands of free, relevant, SOL-aligned digital learning resources for your classroom. Access is free for all PreK-12 public, private, and home educators and students in Virginia. Check to see if you have an eMediaVA account today!

In this vast collection of resources, you will find videos, audio recordings, images, interactives and labs, lesson ideas, and special collections. eMediaVA features content from state and national leaders in educational content like PBS LearningMedia, Library of Congress, National Geographic, Khan Academy, Sesame Workshop, Science Museum of Virginia, Colonial Williamsburg, NASA, and more.

This library is searchable by keyword, SOL, type of media, and more. We have online tutorials to get you started. 

The WHRO Education team also curates collections frequently to make it even easier to find resources on popular topics.


2. Teachers’ Facebook Group

Free Virtual Learning VA, a group for Virginia educators on Facebook, is a place for teachers and parents to learn about resources available to you from WHRO Public Media including eMediaVA. Learn how innovative educators from around the Commonwealth are using eMediaVA in their classrooms.

It is also a place to gather and share knowledge and resources for learning. Members exchange free educational resources, tips and advice for learning both in the classroom and at home.

In a recent post, one educator praised the “It’s Okay to Be Smart“ collection in eMediaVA for highlighting intelligence as a trait to seek and to praise over the concepts of beauty, career success or popularity that most social platforms highlight.

Another educator reminded the group about Computer Science Week and provided a link to a video that walks teachers through how to explore coding and the PBS KIDS ScratchJr app with their students.

Last month, one educator found the content in eMediaVA very helpful for lessons during Native American Heritage Month.

If you aren’t in this group, you’re missing out! Join it today.


3. Teachers’ Blog

eMediaVA.org is also a home for WHRO’s blog for teachers. Local educators write each blog post to provide valuable information and resources they want to share with other educators.

Kristen Strickland, an ITRT in Chesapeake Public Schools, recently posted about exploring the transformative realm of Project-Based Learning, where students engage in real-world projects that foster meaningful learning experiences. She offered tips to revitalize assignments and activities and linked to an example of a school in Philidelphia that has implemented project-based learning.

In another post, Carolyn LaRoche, a science teacher in Chesapeake City Public Schools, explains how she has curated collections of interactive review activities ( one about RNA and protein synthesis and one about macromolecules) that she is using with students to revisit and reteach difficult-to-grasp content as the clock ticks down for students taking the Biology SOL test.

“For those who don’t know, the Biology SOL is a high-stakes test for our students,” she writes. “The federal government uses it as a benchmark for the success of our students and it is a requirement for graduation.”

Read the blog for more tips and resources from local teachers.


4. Professional Development

WHRO Education provides opportunities for professional development throughout the year. Featured webinars have included “Getting Familiar with AI in Education,” “WHRO 2024 Great Computer Challenge Informational Session,” “Making SOL Prep Fun for Students,” and “Coding and Computer Science for All Ages,” as well as multiple sessions on Social Emotional Learning and digital tools for Blended Learning.

Webinars are recorded and archived — so you still have time to check them out! The webinar page also lists any upcoming webinars.


5. Student Competitions

WHRO also hosts several annual student competitions that are hugely popular with educators, students, and their families. These annual competitions allow students to develop hands-on skills and celebrate their successes.

If your students aren't signed up to compete in these exciting events, follow the links above to learn how your school can be a part of the fun!


Bonus Resource: WHRO Van Programs

Perhaps you've seen our colorful WHRO vans driving around the community. Next time you see one, wave hello to our Education Specialist who is delivering engaging programs to schools, libraries and community centers around the Commonwealth! WHRO Education operates three of these vans—and they are available to visit your location upon request. 

  • STEM Van - The STEM van visits local kindergarten through second-grade classrooms to bring fun and exciting activities that will challenge students to use their science, technology, engineering, and math skills.
  • Literacy Van - WHRO’s Literacy Van is a cheerful, brightly colored vehicle that visits Pre-K-1st grade students with programs designed to motivate children to read daily.
  • Batten Environmental Van - The Batten Environmental Van program provides classroom teachers with pre and post-visit lesson plans and interactive learning objects related to the GreenBeats video series. WHRO and the Virginia Stage Company have also partnered to offer an optional environmental musical assembly.

These are just a few of the resources that our Children's Services department offers. They also provide free books to area children, offer camps for children that focus on reading, STEM and coding, set up library corners in local libraries, and offer workshops for parents. Check out this brochure to learn more.

Whether it’s through professional development opportunities, literacy and STEM camps, online courses for school systems, or community van visits, WHRO is committed to helping Virginia educators and students succeed in their educational journeys.

WHRO is proudly owned by the 21 school divisions in the southeastern Virginia region.