field trips

Sketch a Christmas Tree

Just after Thanksgiving, the 2nd grade class and their teacher, Mrs. Lisa Porter, visited the Appleby Sand Christmas Tree Farm, picked out a beautiful Virginia pine, and brought it back to the school. Decorated with ornaments brought from Regents students’ homes, the tree has added festive sights and smells to the school’s foyer ever since.

As a part of their science studies, the 2nd graders sat down to sketch the tree. Pictured below is the class busily sketching the Regents tree.

A Visit to Austin

Regents 9th and 10th grade students visited Austin this week, along with David and Nicole Alders. Our group toured the capitol, observed the House of Representatives in session, and had our picture taken with Senator Robert Nichols and Representative Travis Clardy. The students were also able to visit the George Bush Presidential Library and the Bob Bullock Museum, to round out a fun and educational trip.


Going Back in Time

The 6th, 11th and 12th grade classes made the long trek to Washington, Texas, to visit Washington on the Brazos State Park. The students learned a lot about the settling and founding of Texas and also visited the park’s working farm, where several wonderful park rangers gave a fascinating tour and demonstrations of life in 1840’s frontier Texas. The students had a great day as they went back in time!

Falling in Love

Although I’m quite serious and down-to-business in my teaching manner, I’m still a fool for falling in love. The day dawned bright and sunny with a gently cool breeze that was just perfect for falling in love. Sixth grade had a trip planned for N.W. Norton Art Museum in Shreveport and I knew that morning that the day was going to be grand!

We arrived promptly at the museum which is nestled in the middle of a neighborhood and hugged tightly with blooming azaleas. Our group was greeted by a member of the staff and then our personal docent, Ms. Newberry Mills, rushed us off for our delightful journey into America’s Western art scene. Mr. Charles Russell was the featured artist for the day and we completely forgot ourselves as we listened intently to our enthusiastic docent. One could almost smell the horses and feel the heat of the outdoors as we studied piece after piece and learned more about this colorful artist.

After a trip to the basement for a creative activity in the fashion of Mr. Russell, we gathered up our sack lunches and set out to conquer the gardens of the museum. Here we brushed up against more intriguing art as we laughed at the river otters caught playing near the stream and whispered quietly so as not disturb the grizzly waiting for sockeye. As for living, breathing animals we cooed over the brood of tadpoles, smiled as we watched the adorable red-eared turtles bask in the sun and literally held our breath each time we came across a snake!

After lunch the party was anxious to return to the museum so that we could saunter through the entire museum. We passed from one room to the next sighing at the beauty of each artist. One room held a lovely still life of a vase of vibrant red flowers. Upon closer examination, one student declared the flowers to be POPPIES! In one voice my students began to recite “In Flanders Fields” and the fact that the security guard was staring at them strangely didn’t deter them a bit!

A turn down a new corridor brought us into the room where Mr. Norton has displayed his finest guns! The noise level just kept getting louder and louder with each new discovery. A German pistol here, a Cowboy riffle there and a fancy handcrafted gun for R.W. Norton put the class over the top. A gentle “shhh” coming from their teacher reminded them to lower their voices but it certainly didn’t extinguish their delight!

I kept an eye on my watch and tried to keep the pace rather quick though most of my students could have lingered for several more hours. I had mamas and papas waiting for us back in the Lone Star State. You know it’s been a great day when the teacher has to bulldoze her class out of the fine arts museum! At one point in the education center, a museum educator asked about my “field trip budget.” I stared blankly back at her and quizzed, “What budget?” It was her turn to look confused so I tried to mend the situation with a subtle chuckle and added, “There’s too much to learn in 6th grade!”

6th grade is a great place to fall in love!



A Trip to the Farm

Mrs. Cunyus’  2nd grade class visited the local Lone Star Feed Store to purchase vegetable plants for their gardening  project. Students also got to hold baby chicks and rabbits that were offered for sale at the farm store. Some other items that students were interested in were the local honey, livestock medications and identification supplies, seed packets, and supplies for small animals.

Haris Hashim holds the plant he selected at the local farm supply store. Students were very excited about riding in the new school bus on this field trip! Students prepare soil for planting in the 2nd grade vegetable gardening project. The class has been studying botany; roots, leaves, seeds, and plant life cycles.  Students enjoyed meeting other farm animals on their field trip. They were able to pet the farm’s chickens and rooster, goats, horse, dogs, and cat.

2nd Grade Class Visits the Boy Pharaoh–King Tut

The following is a journal-style entry by Lori Cunyus, second grade teacher at Regents Academy.

Regents Academy 2nd grade students and parents recently travelled to Houston to visit the archaeological find of the century– King Tut’s tomb!

Several children had trouble sleeping the night before their trip. Others awoke early and wanted to know if it was time to leave. Excitement was in the air as students travelled to the Museum of Fine Arts early last Thursday morning.

Mrs. Cunyus’ 2nd grade class has been studying Ancient Egypt and all were eager to see all of the golden objects, the enormous statuary, the mysterious Pharaoh mummy and other amazing treasures straight from the history books. Everyone found something to fascinate; diminutive statues that were supposed to gain purpose as servants in the after-life, the stone toilet seat, a single mustachioed likeness of a royal, the box that once contained a royal cat mummy, the long escalator to the museum’s 2nd floor– or maybe it was the golden glittering gift shop where everyone found something to take home as a memento of the day.

“At first I was scared,” admitted one second grader, whose thoughts were echoed by a few others who wondered if the much-discussed mummy was real. One student decided to skirt the room where the boy Pharaoh (an exact replica) was on display for all to see. Students gazed in wonder at the golden finger and toe tip covers and the large, flat, gold sandals that covered the boys’ small kingly feet. The exhibit presented theories about his wounded knee and whether it caused his early demise. Nearby several other museum guests smiled at the children as they excitedly discussed the legendary “curse of King Tut”.

Museum docent, James told the group that the exhibit would travel from Houston to Australia and then head back to Cairo, Egypt. There are no plans to take this world treasure back on tour. This was likely the only chance these young people will ever have to see the most famous archaeological find in the world–Howard Carter’s 1922 discovery of Tutankhamen’s tomb in the Valley of the Kings.

Back in class the students wrote in their journals, documenting their thoughts and experiences. Additionally, Mrs. Cunyus’ second grade class has made mummies and sarcophagi, Egyptian paddle dolls, falcon crests, and other artistic projects relating to their studies. Soon they will decorate their own golden falcon breast plates with jewels and hieroglyphics.

And so the 2nd grade adventure continues at Regents Academy.