Cross Country Runners Excel to Regional Competition Next Week

Congratulations Cross Country Runners!

The boys won the James River District Cross Country Meet on Wednesday, October 22 and the girls placed second. Both the girls & boys won the Quad Rivers Conference 34 Cross Country Meet on Wednesday, October 29.

Both teams advance to the Region 2A East at Panorama Farms in Earlysville, VA next Wednesday, November 5.  The girls run at 3:00 & the boys at 4:00.

Come support the Bulldog runners!

Giant Tea Cup

GHS art classes worked collaboratively to create this gigantic tea cup for the drama department’s production of “Alice in Wonderland”.  Hope to see you this weekend at one of the shows! DSCN0753 DSCN0754

In Class: Thursday, October 30, 2014, Day 2 – Lesson and Homework

AP English Literature and Composition
Essential Question: What is the cultural importance of Brave New World as canonical literature? 
* Bellringer: Socratic seminar questions
* Socratic seminar: Chapter 3, 4, and 5 of Brave New World
* Why has Brave New World been banned?
* Introduce Lesson 38 vocabulary
None today
If you need to see the various chapters as we read, please see this webpage, as the entire text is there, chapter by chapter!:
1. Read Chapter 6, 7, and 8 in Brave New World. Continue working on the Google Doc that is for your Works of Literary Merit.
2. Bring your Brave New World text to class.
Honors English 11
Essential Question: What makes for the best research paper?
* Work on research papers: continuing to explore our school databases (SIRS, Gale, and Grolier)
None today
HW: Write a half page about the most surprising and/or interesting information you have found thus far in your research and how you plan to use it in your research paper.  Additionally, write where/how you would like me to help you individually.
English 11 
Essential Question: How can we write our best research paper?
* Bellringer:Answer the following on a fresh sheet of paper with your name at the top.
1. What do you believe makes for the best research paper?
2. What can Mrs. DeFore and I do to make your work on our upcoming research paper the most successful experience possible? (Note: We cannot write it for you.)
* Introduce research paper topics and choose
* Share research paper introduction example
* Introduce research paper expectations and create thesis statement
Research writing packet
HW: Write your first paragraph to your research paper tonight and bring it in on Monday for peer editing. You will want to write 5-7 sentences and include a fascinating hook, some introductory information on your topic, and your thesis.

Book Fair

The Book Fair is Coming!! The Book Fair is Coming!!
The GES Fall Book Fair will be held November 14th – November 21st! Information about the book fair will be coming home in the next two weeks.
Preview Day @ the Kingdom of Books will be held Friday, November 14th. All classes will attend during their Encore time to come to the fair to check it out and create a book fair wish list!
Purchasing Days @ the  Kingdom of Books will be during their regularly scheduled library times November 17th – 21st.  ALL students will visit the library. There will be no Guidance this week. The Fair will also be open daily from 8:00 – 8:30.
Other purchase times @the Kingdom of Books include Grandparents Days Wednesday, November 19th and Thursday, November 20th during lunch. Also, the Kingdom of Books will be open the evening of November 20th before the PTA meeting and 1st Grade Chorus Performance.
The Book Fair will also be Online. Thank you for supporting the GES Book Fair.

RES Book Character Dress Up Day!


Just a reminder that this Friday is RES Book Character Dress Up Day. Everyone is encouraged to participate and it’s a lot of fun! I can’t wait to see everyone’s character costume. Shhhhh….Ms. Shannonhouse will be dressed up as Knuffle Bunny….shhh…:)

…not sure I can handle that nose…

I read the students the series of Knuffle Bunny each Monday for three weeks. They LOVED it! They kept asking when I was going to read the next one. We incorporated reading, comprehension skills, writing, and grammar in our “Knuffle Bunny Experience.”After we finished the third and last of the series, they suggested writing a Knuffle Bunny Four! They are so creative and I love hearing their ideas! I can’t wait to see what they will look like on Friday! Thank you!


Kari Shannonhouse




Weekly News 10-29

Virginia Studies: We just finished hardships the and survival in Jamestown. Now, we will move onto government and the arrival of Africans and women in Jamestown.

1619 Government began- In 1619, the Virginia Company of London voted, and decided to create a legislative (law making) assembly. This was known as the General Assembly.

The General Assembly included:

The Governor

The Governor’s Council – wealthy, powerful men who gave advice to the governor

 Burgesses – two citizen representatives from each of the divisions of Virginia

*At this time, only men were allowed to be apart in government activities.

1619 Africans arrived

1620 Women arrived

1640s *The Burgesses became a separate legislative body called the Virginia House of Burgesses.  They met separately from the Governor’s Council as one of the two legislative bodies of the General Assembly. *1642 Sir William Berkeley became governor

 Language Arts: Book projects are turning out great!! Thanks again for any supplies you may have sent in with your child! Some students will be presenting Friday. I’m looking forward to this! After book projects are presented, your child will begin a new novel study. The students are excited about getting a new book to read!

The Word Study quiz for the words I gave out last Thursday will be this Friday, October 31st.

Dress up like your favorite book character day is on Halloween. The is a school wide event. The students are excited to become a book character for the day!

Next week we will finally be back into the swing of things! We have had a strange reading schedule due to the Jamestown field trip, Dunk Show, Alice and Wonderland Play, 7 habits assembly, etc. I know the students are looking forward to getting back into our weekly groove!

Focus: Making inferences

Important Dates:

October 31st- Halloween treat during lunch, Dress up like your favorite book character day, word study quiz

November 4th- Parent Teacher Conferences 11am-7pm -contact the front office to make an appointment.

October Fun in Room 100

WOW! We have been busy having fun in room 100-as always. Check out everything we have done in October.

-Halloween sticker patterns

-Season Trees

-Apple Tasting/Applesauce

-Guest Readers

-Columbus writing/crafts



-Pumpkin Investigations

-Addition with dominoes

2 4 15 17 Apple1 Apple2 Apple3 Applepeeling Columbus columbus2 Frankenstein Pattern photo 1 photo 2 Pumpkin float Pumpkin Reader Reader2 Trees



Wednesday, October 29, 2014 (Day 1)

Science – students completed the Weather Unit Test; they defined the key terms for Chapter 22 (Ecology Set #1) and they started to make flashcards by using the “Flashcardlet” App.  Homework – Finish and study the ecology set 1 terms.

History – students completed and checked the Explorers Test Review and checked their answers using the QR Reader App.  Homework – STUDY!  The Explorers Test is to be given on Friday, October 31st.

The Importance of Exhibition

One of the new features of our G21 framework is the expectation for exhibition, so that students have the opportunity to share their work. But aside from G21 projects, it’s still a powerful and necessary component of instruction, especially when it comes to the creative process.

Today at GMS – I walked into a technology class with Mr. Herbert and encountered students working on creating robotic vehicles using LEGO Mindstorms software and intelligent LEGO parts. While not formal by any means, the exhibition of skills was on full display. Students were working in small groups, and they were able to test their work in real time, and I saw them working towards writing better scripts to control their vehicles. Sometimes in constructionist learning, exhibition is a part of the learning process by design.

When I visited Ms. Ferguson’s classroom at RES later in the day, a student was asked to share a short story she had been working on as part of her GRIP project. The fact that Ms. Ferguson paused the book study they were doing and gave this student the “stage” to share her work was significant. She realized the importance of exhibition and what ensued were a lot of positive comments and feedback from her peers. The story was awesome, but even better for me was the mood boost that student received in getting an audience of her peers to validate her strong storytelling.

Exhibition of work happens a lot in our schools, but here are some ways you can make it happen:

  • Have students share their work with just one peer, and charge the listening student to ask one or more questions…
  • Have students capture their work in a digital format and post it online…
  • Use volunteers to become an audience for student work…
  • Create a podcast series and train students on how to add and publish episodes…
  • Start the end or beginning of each day with an exhibition…
  • Ask students to reflect in writing about what they have been learning…
  • Ask one student a day to exhibit in a safe, virtual space like Schoology…
  • Use the Schoology media library and invite students to upload their work; spend class or homework time in reviewing peer work with praise and constructive feedback

The last idea today was in play in Ms. Gill’s 5th grade classroom, where a pair of students shared with me and their class their social studies project on Ecuador. The feedback allows the whole class to learn some tips on avoiding extraneous noise in their next recording.

What students will develop in the repeated opportunities to exhibit their work and their learning is confidence and hopefully some inspiration for their peers!

Play On…

I cannot believe it was an accident when I encountered Ms. Hall’s interactive obstacle course at Byrd Elementary School just moments after hearing Dr. Peter Gray’s provocative talk on “The Decline of Play.”

Gray, a research professor and author of Free to Learn, asserts that play – free, expressive interaction necessary to learning – has been sacrificed to what he calls a “schoolish view of child development.” Take a look at about 6:50 into the video:

A “schoolish” view. It’s offensive. And he’s right.

He refers to the myth that kids learn best when they learn from adults, period. And he attributes that to a widespread philosophy at work in schools, spreading now deeper beyond the classroom walls into the rest of a child’s world. All decreasing the importance – and availability – of play.

And he says play is necessary to learning. Watch the video, read his book – and agree or disagree.

Having spent 26 years in this field and raising three of my own, I agree without hesitation. Kids learn a great deal when they are free to play, to roam, to explore, to create, to question, to wonder.

Imagine the wash of comfort I experienced when I encountered Karen Hall’s Halloween maze, designed to incorporate creativity, collaboration and kinesthetic strategy into a smorgasbord of what would invariably be seriously fun for Dr. Papert.

Ah yes, I remember. Goochland is different.

I’m reminded of our deep commitment to personalized learning in Goochland. Our pledge to strive for engagement – not entertainment – but the kind of involvement in learning whereby kids become resilient, persistent, and gritty, committed to their work, co-designers of lessons.

Our work to build authentic assessments that are truly formative.

Thank you, Ms Hall.

May fun be “hard” for our students. And let them play on…





Wednesday, October 29

Day One

Blocks 1-3: English 9

Quiz on The Giver chapters 1-3

We handed back the persuasive essays and students completed the writer’s improvement checklist.

We read chapters 4 & 5 in The Giver. 

Homework: Read chapter 6; be prepared for a quiz on chapters 4-6.

Block 4: PreAP English 10 

  • Journal entry #3: What would you do if you knew you only had 6 months to live? Is it OK to choose to die?

  • How to set up LOTF essay in MLA formatting

  • Review expectations for paper

  • Work on rough drafts

Homework: Rough drafts (750 words) must be completed by final 30 minutes of class on Friday.

November-December Lunch and Learn

The Lunch and Learn topic for November/December is friendship.  There will be a group offered for second grade girls and for third grade girls.  If you would like for your child to participate, simply send me an email at  We will meet during lunch for three to four sessions.  Please let me know if you have any questions.