imageplaceholder.gifWe are a PK-12 independent school in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Our short history began in 1992, when the school opened its doors to 60 students. Today we have over 500. Over the years, the campus has expanded to its present 50 acres, including two academic buildings, a Sports Center that includes a 25-meter indoor pool and a regulation NCAA basketball court, five playing fields, four tennis courts, and two playgrounds. An Arts and Sciences building, including a theater, opened in June 2004.Our upper school maintains a 1:1 laptop program.

Team Leader:
Susan Carter Morgan: Instructional Tech Coordinator and Upper School English
Twitter: scmorgan
Team Members:
Katie Blashford: Upper School History
Jennifer Clark Evans: Upper School English
Twitter: jclarkevans
Debra Garcia: Upper School Science
Twitter: rinegarcia
Susanne Nobles: Upper School English
Twitter: snobles
Carey Pohanka: Middle School French and Geography
Twitter: capohanka
Keith Wamsley: Middle School Latin and Geography, Upper School History

Building a Community, One Teacher at a Time

What a year it has been.
This quote by Margaret Meade sums up our journey this year:

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.

Working with the PLP has been such a rich experience for all of us. We have met at least once a month (more often on an informal basis) to talk about teaching and learning. This focused, intentional practice has forced us to take the time to examine our practice, our beliefs, and our goals.
We have:
  • started a school-wide blogging platform for students in grades 6-12
  • started four school nings, inviting teachers and students from other schools and colleges
  • presented to our school's Board and Parent Association about our work
  • started using many other applications and tools with our students
  • changed our curricula to work toward more student-centered learning
  • researched 21st century learning to determine how best to define it at FA
  • blogged, twittered, ninged, skyped and chatted with teachers across the globe
  • met with out admin team for approval and support
Take a look at our work:
FA Blogs
English 9
Middle School French
Bubbling Bio
Othello Ning
Othello Ning #2
Global Issues
Geography Wiki
English Wiki
Presentation Tennis
Government Blogs
Intellectual Property Rights Ning
Writing beyond our walls: assignment and student piece

After our research and discussions this year, these goals framed our project:
  • teachers reflecting on their own teaching
  • teachers engaging in current technologies to inform their teaching

To accomplish this, we have
  • started a school-wide ning, where we will introduce our faculty to the idea of reflective collaboration and sharing. We have three school initiatives, and we will introduce those initiatives on the ning to begin discussions. We will each adopt teachers to work with, making sure we comment and encourage. Then we will ask that person to reach out to one other.
  • We will also begin monthly after-school sessions where we will share our own tools--nings, delicious, diigo, blogs--and share what we do with them.
  • We have been given professional time next year to encourage teachers to use the tools for themselves, to have time to play and learn.