Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Architecture Expo

Architecture Expo has become a tradition for the 7th grade at Garrison Forest Middle School.  Architecture Expo is when the whole seventh grade goes to downtown Baltimore and study Roman architecture.  We started off by playing some team building games to get to know our group more.  Then, when we went to downtown we studied our how our assigned building were built and their columns.  For example, Doric and Corinthian columns are a couple columns that we learned about. After the field trip we did a project in our Latin classes.  In the years before the seventh grade hand-drew the building, but this year to enhance more technology, we started to use Google SketchUp.  Google SketchUp is an application where you can construct 3D buildings, houses, etc.  Mrs. Kelland taught us how to use Google SketchUp.  

This is a perspective of a 7th grade student who went on the field trip named Emma S.:  

1) How did you like the trip? I enjoyed all of the different types of architecture, however I felt it was very tiring walking around.  

2) What did you learn?  I learned all the different names of the columns.

3) What was the most interesting thing that you learned on this trip?  There were a lot of Latin words on the buildings that we looked at.  

4) What was the best part of the trip? Being able to talk about all of the architecture with my peers.

5) Are you excited to start using Google Sketch Up and why?  Yes, because I like how our school is trying new ways to enhance technology further and it is cool to work with something that people use in the real world.

Written by: Heloise G. & Milan S.

Thanksgiving Traditions

It’s November, and Thanksgiving is right around the corner! Thanksgiving is a time to be thankful for everything you have. During Thanksgiving, there are many traditions have passed around. For example, people celebrate Thanksgiving with a turkey in the center of the table. Other main foods served during special occasion is cranberry sauce, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and green beans. Many people around the world have different ways to celebrate Thanksgiving like in America there is a Macys Thanksgiving Day Parade. This parade is broadcasted in the morning on Thanksgiving at 9:00 a.m. Another tradition, is called the “wishbone.” This wishbone is found connected to the breast meat on the turkey. After the family have eaten the meat off the turkey, the wishbone would have had the time to dry. Two people get the end of the wishbone, make a wish, then break it into two. We would like to hear from you about any family traditions that you do on Thanksgiving  or around Thanksgiving like recipies, places you go, people you see, etc.  

Please leave us a message about your thought so that you can encourage other people to do it too.  Like Camryn C. from the 7th grade said: “Well, we pick Secret Santa names from a bag with my family. My grandmother makes sweet potato pie.”

There are so many other traditions, but one tradition is making your own food. We have a delicious recipe for Southern Cornbread and below you can find more recipies at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/topics/thanksgiving/index.html

Total Time: 45 minutes
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Serves: 4-6 servings
Level: Easy

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for the pan
¾ cup all-purpose flour
¾ cup yellow cornmeal
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup buttermilk (shake before measuring)
2 large eggs

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F and position a rack in the middle. Butter an 8-inch-square baking pan. Melt the butter in the microwave in a microwave-safe dish in three 15-second intervals on high or in a small pan on the stove. Set it aside to cool. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a large bowl, whisk together the buttermilk and the eggs. Add the melted butter. Add the flour-cornmeal mixture and stir just until combined. Pour the batter into the pan. Bake until the cornbread just begins to brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 18 to 23 minutes . cool for about 10 minutes before serving.

Written by:  Semira N. and Madison W.

How Spirited Are You?

This quiz is to see how much school spirit you have!
To take the quiz click Here

Created by: Cara Z. and Emma S.

Teacher Interview with Mr. O!

In this video we are interviewing Mr. O, who is a 7th grade math and history teacher.  We asked him about his personal life and teaching.  Hope you enjoy and get to know Mr. O!

Created by: Hannah R. and Ella G.

Halloween at Garrison Forest

What were you for Halloween? Once a year, Halloween comes to Garrison Forest and we love it! Garrison Forest allows everyone be out of uniform, in their costumes whether it’s your favorite character from a movie or you're just chillin’ in your pajamas. Halloween is always fun for everyone and GFS makes it special for the students. When you come to school on Halloween day you are greeted by a teacher in their spooky costume. Then we all come together for a Halloween themed morning meeting with fun games and lots of yummy treats. After morning meeting the whole middle school heads outside even in the cold weather for the yearly Halloween Contest! All students walk around when other students judge upon their costume. When the judging is over one middle school student from various categories wins.

The Winners:
Best Homemade and Most Creative Costume - Emmie B., 7th Grade - Cop/Crime Scene
Scariest Costume - Sam R., 6th Grade - Spooky Grandpa
Best Pair - Ali S. and Ashley K., 7th Grade - Mario and Luigi
Cutest Costume - Blair P., 6th grade - Baby.
Best Group - 6th Grade Barbies
Judging the contest was Ati - 7th grade, Emerson D. - 6th Grade, Alexis A. - 7th Grade and Johanne - 6th Grade.

Then we resume to our daily schedule with the exception of that morning. Overall we love the tradition of  Halloween day at the Middle School. It’s so much fun to see everyone’s costume and what they decided to be this year. Happy Halloween!

Written by: Molly C. & Ashley K.

Ten Thousand Villages Fundraiser

Ten Thousand Villages and Garrison Forest are partnering up to have a fundraiser in support of Ponheary Ly Foundation. If you’ve never heard about Ten Thousand Villages, it is an amazing store with many unique, handmade creations from all over the world.  15% of the proceeds will go towards the Ponheary Ly foundation. Ponheary Ly Foundation raises money to buy uniforms and school supplies for students in Cambodia. Sometimes, these students aren’t able to go to school, just because they don’t have a uniform, or school supplies. You can help by going to the store, and purchasing some of their amazing products. The fundraiser will be held on November 17, from 10am to 8pm, and their location is:
Fells Point, 1621 Thames St, Baltimore, MD, 21231
So feel free to stop by, it’s a great cause!

Written By: Charlotte N. and Angela M.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

7th Grade Fall Trip

The 7th Grade headed south to the land of Thomas Jefferson in Charlottesville, Virginia. They toured Jefferson’s home, Monticello, the University of Virginia, and nearby Luray Caverns. Middle School Communications Director Milan Sulibhavi shares her thoughts on the trip:

As we get into the school year, we kickoff the school year with fall trips! Fall trips are a wonderful time to bond with your grade. However, there is something special about this year’s fall trips, they were overnight! The 7th grade went to Charlottesville, VA.  At Charlottesville, we visited the University of Virginia, Monticello and Luray Caverns. 
On the first day of the fall trips the 7th grade had a long but fun day, as we visited the University of Virginia and Monticello. We studied about Thomas Jefferson. He was a great scientist and leader!  It was amazing how he designed the whole Monticello! 
While at Monticello, we saw a real archaeological dig happen right in front of us! A group of workers at Monticello are responsible for finding artificats and pieces of history onsite. They had a huge tent and were digging far into the ground to try to uncover a secret passageway from the kitchen (which was separate from the building) to the main house. Servants used the path to bring food to Thomas Jefferson and his family. As we were watching, they were just beginning to uncover the stone walkway. It was also unbelievable how much he accomplished.  
 At the University of Virginia, we were exposed to many different aspects of a college student's life. We saw academic buildings, dorm rooms, the campus library, a theatre and even learned about secrete campus societies. We felt welcome on the campus by everyone that we met. Not only is the school beautiful, but it offers so many opportunities to get involved with organizations and other students. It was great to connect the history we've learned about Thomas Jefferson to the buildings he designed at UVA. 

It is amazing that Luray Caverns is naturally formed and was discovered over 130 years ago. While on our tour, we learned the difference between stalagtites and stalagmites (which are different types of formations). Our tour guide took us on a 1.2 mile walk through the caverns. Many of the formations in the caverns have names such as the "ghost" which is a huge white structure that tourist see many times while in the cave. We saw an area where people can get married, and this area even has an organ that plays through the formations in the cave. After our tour, we raced through a garden maze and tried to see who could make it through first. We don't remember who won, but at least we all made it out!

 The 7th grade loved the overnight fall trips. Overall this was a wonderful bonding and learning experience! Below are some quotes from our class:
“They were fun and I loved bonding with my class!”  Heloise Germain
"The Luray Caverns were my favorite part. It was fun to see the caverns and learn about how they found it. Someone saw a hole in the ground with air coming up, and then a group of people dug a hole large enough to fit someone in it and send them in! Crazy!" - Amanda Fruman 
"Monticello was really beautiful. My mother had visited Monticello last year so we were both excited that I was finally going to get to see it. Visiting UVA was also fun- it was cool to feel like we were in college during the tour!" Hannah Reynolds
Click HERE to see the entire image gallery!
Written by: Milan S. & Mrs. Kelland
Photos by: Mrs. Mallonee & Mrs. Kelland

Monday, October 15, 2012

6th Grade Fall Trip

 I was standing fifty feet in the air on a small platform. All that was keeping me from falling to the ground were two carabineers.  I was supposed to jump off, and I wasn’t really very keen on that idea. 
“Are you okay over there?” Layla was already on the other platform, and was waiting for me.
“Um…fine…” My response was muffled. I had put my hands over my face, so as to hide the fact that I was blushing.
“Well, what are you waiting for?” She asked. I asked myself the exact same question. I couldn’t come up with a good excuse. I felt slightly foolish for being afraid.  And with an inward scream, I jumped off the platform.
I let out a real scream as I was ziplining over the treetops, hurtling along towards the next platform.
 I think I am getting ahead of myself a bit. The aforesaid situation occurred during our fall trip at Sandy Springs Friends School.   We had an amazing trip, where we learned from and about one another, and came together as a class.
We began the day with a bus ride. It was an unusually subdued ride, perhaps as a result of the fact that it was 8:00 in the morning, and most of us had woken up early to get to school on time. We arrived at Sandy Springs around 9:00.
After dropping our lunches off, we headed for a big field. While we were there, we played some games, to get us moving. (Oddly enough, they all involved rock, paper, scissors…?). We then broke into groups for low ropes.
The first time, we only got about seven people through. We regrouped, and tried once more. This time, we got everyone through.  It involved lifting several people through holes four or five feet off the ground. I was very afraid.  I just didn’t trust that my group could lift me through a hole without dropping me. I was proved wrong, and gained much more confidence in every person in my group.  Trust is not something that I give to people readily, and this exercise made me realize that perhaps I was being a bit stingy. People deserve trust from the beginning. Once they have shown their true colors, you can choose to revoke trust. It’s your decision.
 After lunch, we headed for the high ropes.  This was what I had been looking forward to all day! This was what I was there for! I heard only half of what we were supposed to do with the carabineers attached my harness (thankfully, someone had been listening, and told me what to do).  There was the predictable stampede to start climbing, but I made it onto a course and started.
I climbled across the first bridge, ended on a platform, and that brings us back to the beginning of this story. But after the zipline, nothing could scare me. The rest of the three hours went by in a whirlwind. The last few stragglers came off the course, and we headed for the bus.
One hour (perhaps more, the event is very fuzzy in my mind) later, we made it back to school. After dinner, the sun set, and we were ready to play capture the flag.
This was probably the most fun I had all day. It was dark, no one could see where anyone else was, and everyone had the same goal. It was all about stealth and hiding.  We played a few rounds of the game, and then we walked over to the pond for s’mores. I was very happy about this, and I think that was the attitude shared by most of the class.
After getting our fingers sufficiently sticky, we headed back to the middle school to watch a movie, which turned out to be The Goonies. I watched some of it, but it was a bit to creepy for my taste. We headed to bed afterwards. For a half hour we whispered to one another, but I fell asleep quickly.
 The next morning we woke up around 7:30. We got into the minibuses after breakfast, and headed to Potomac State Park to plant trees. I had a really good time doing this. How often are you going to be able to get covered in dirt? We planted a lot of trees, and I felt good about the work we were doing. 
 We went back to Garrison, and our trip was over.I talked with a few other girls about our trip, and their favorite part was the high ropes. I couldn’t agree more. A few said that they wouldn’t ever forget the feeling of flying on a zip line. Some learned things about themselves. Some learned things about others.I learned… a lot. I learned about acceptance, and what we really want. I learned not to expect too much, but not to set your expectations low. I learned how to find the big dipper, and what someone else thought about the stars.  I met someone I had known for a year. It set me on the right track for the year ahead.I probably won’t remember this trip forever. How can I know right now? I think that I’ll find though, in the year to come, that the important lessons I learned on this trip will stay, even though I may not remember being afraid to zip line.
CLICK HERE to see the entire image gallery!
Written by: Lily D.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

What Kind of GFS girl are YOU?

Click HERE to answer a few questions and find out what type of GFS girl you are!

Created by Becca S. & Chelsea K.

Middle School Survey Results

Please watch our video to see the results from the Middle School survey. Thanks!

Created by: Nia T. & Leanne G.