ALTOONA, BLAIR COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — Students at Pleasant Valley Elementary in Altoona worked together on Tuesday, May 10, to build boats using only foil.

About 2 hours away in Pittsburgh were their competitors from Duquesne City School District.

Both schools had the same mission to fill their boats with the most pennies before they sank.

“I made it like a bowl and I was able to fit 25 pennies,” Tristen Ramsey, a 2nd-grade student, said.

It’s an activity where they learn valuable skills, but also have a lot of fun.

“It definitely gets them excited about different careers,” Erica Slobodnik, a 2nd-grade teacher at Duquesne City School District, said. “About math, science, engineering, and just the tech stuff, the virtual stuff, different skills that they’ll need in careers and jobs later on.”

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The event is the official kick-off to Remake Learning Days across Pennsylvania, where activities that celebrate learning are planned throughout May.

“It’s a festival where schools, libraries, after-school centers, tech centers, and museums open their doors and provide engaging activities for families and their kids to do together,” Yu-Ling Cheng, the co-producer of Remake Learning Days Across America, said.

134 schools and more than 10,000 students took part in the boat design challenge.

Districts across the state were paired as digital penpals.

“That was amazing,” Ramsey said about his new virtual friends. “That was fantastic. Like I didn’t even know we were going to do that.”

Duquesne City and Altoona Area School Districts were matched, which gave students the chance to virtually meet, engage and learn from one another.