Monuments, cherry blossoms, ‘Shear Madness’ and more on the 8th grade trip to Washington, D.C.

Text and photos by Naomi N., 8th grade

The 8th Grade trip was to Washington, D.C., and parts of Virginia. It was from April 1-April 4. We all went to experience the nation’s capital and the historic Jamestown and Williamsburg sites. The trip was a memorable experience and had many interactive activities.

We started our trip by looking at the remains of the original Jamestown colony. There were houses made out of clay, wood and this straw-type of material on the top. We got to see the three main boats that settlers came in on. In addition to the boats and houses we went to the Jamestown glasshouse where we saw the making of glass and the remains of the original glasshouse.

After a long day exploring the Jamestown and Williamsburg sites, we went to an improv whodunit show called “Shear Madness.” It was performed at the Kennedy Center with a set that had a working faucet on it. We were encouraged to ask questions and interact with the characters during the show. The outrageous characters made the show enjoyable. We voted at the end on who we thought the murderer was and the majority chose the killer.

It was cherry blossom time in DC. and they were in full bloom. While visiting the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial, we stopped to take photos in front of the iconic blossoms. One of our tour guides, Omi, told us that they were donated to D.C. by the Embassy of Japan and that every year there is the National Cherry Blossom festival to celebrate the friendship between U.S. and Japan.

When I asked the tour guides what the most important thing a student should learn from visiting D.C., they said it was important to learn how the government works. The three branches: the executive branch, legislative, and the judicial branch. And if possible, to learn how government can be done better. That way when we grow up we’ll know how to do it better because we will have first hand knowledge of how government works, and not to just simply by listening to other people’s opinions.

Seeing monuments at night was another highlight of the trip. A couple of the cool monuments we got to see at night was the Lincoln Memorial and the U.S. Air Force memorial. These monuments were illuminated, and this allowed us to really focus on the monuments. The distractions of the crowds and the other buildings faded away into the dark. It was a different point of view then during the day.

The D.C. trip was a trip I won’t soon forget.  When I go back to Washington, D.C., in the future, I’ll look back and remember these great times I shared with my friends and classmates.

Places we visited:

Jamestown Settlement

Jamestown Glasshouse

Colonial Williamsburg, VA

White House

Lincoln Memorial

Vietnam Veterans Memorial

World War II memorial

The Newseum

The National Museum of African American History and Culture

The the Martin Luther King Jr. memorial

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Korean War Veterans Memorial

U.S. Air Force Memorial

The Great Escape: Escape Room

Fashion Centre at Pentagon City

Arlington National Cemetery