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