Chili Cook-Winners Team Gryff

It's National Poetry Month:
Dr. Walt's Remarks from April 1 School Board Meeting
March 27, 2020 Updates


  1. STAY SAFE AND HEALTHY – the highest priority now is to stay healthy. Parents and guardians should follow CDC Guidelines for physical distancing of children. If children meet outside of school in bigger groups, it can put everyone at risk. Please visit the Prince William County COVID-19 website to see additional local guidance.   
  2. PWCS AND PARENT PARTNERSHIP FOR HOME LEARNING – STUDENT LEARNING CONTINUES -  Although our school buildings and grounds are closed, learning is open, and staff and teachers are working daily. First and foremost, we want all families to know that the continued learning of our students is important to us.
    1. In the very limited time following the closure announcement, PWCS has rapidly developed detailed plans to ensure continuity of learning through the remainder of the year. In support of these detailed plans, a variety of quality online and offline materials, resources, and supports have been quickly developed and put together for students, families, and teachers. We have already implemented Phases 1-3, with Phase 3 beginning this week. This week your child’s teachers began to provide information, resources and/or assignments to support the review and/or extension of the learning standards in all curriculum areas taught through March 13, 2020. It is important to note that the majority of standards students should master before moving to the next grade were a part of this instructional time period from August through mid-March. 
    2. Although, we are currently not grading this review learning, we have asked that teachers continue to provide specific growth-producing feedback to students. Additionally, the Superintendent of Schools has shared that students are also able to work with their teacher(s) to redo assignments and/or retake assessments given or assigned prior to March 13.
    3. These detailed continuity of learning plans also include Phases 4-6 of our learning support that will result in increased virtual instruction and learning time between teachers and students, as well as a movement toward increasing numbers of students utilizing other remote online learning systems. These learning systems will be able to support both review and new learning. It is important to remember that our quick closure and rapidly increased remote learning bring challenges and we are working to mitigate challenges such as device and connectivity access for students and staff. 
    4. Parents and guardians are encouraged to visit the PWCS Home Learning Resources webpage for ideas and recommended schedules to keep students engaged in learning while at home.


Team Gryff, 

These are sci-fi crazy novel times, but we’ve got this because that’s what we do. I hope that you remember the speech that I made the day that you took the essay portion of the SOL because I mean it even more today. I believe in you. We can and will do this, so let’s go over some things that you may have questions about or be anxious about. 

First, this is new for all of us, so we’re all learning as we go. Be kind to yourself and others. Take time for you and your family because that’s priority number one. And please remember how I am with technology…I’ve learned a great deal these last couple days!

Second, according to PWCS, we aren’t to assign any new work this week. This week is about catching up on old work. There’s to be no new graded work until April 14. 

Third, PWCS wants to make sure that all due dates of previously assigned work are pushed to at least April 14, or beyond. Thus, we have time to make things up and figure things out, so relax. 

Fourth, PWCS stated that all work is optional during this time. The word “optional” is a fabulous word! Let’s embrace it and have things work for us. 

Fifth, PWCS wants teachers to work with students on making connections, on thinking, and critical questions. Hey, we’ve been doing that all along! 

Sixth, PWCS doesn’t want teachers giving you large packets, busy work, or worksheets. I published many assignments on Study Island. Okay, as to the worksheets that I have online, it’s just a continuation of what we’ve been doing to try to have some sort of normalcy during these trying times, but please keep in mind that the items I post are optional. 

Seventh, PWCS wants teachers to give helpful growth-producing feedback to students, but they don’t want us to assign any numerical grades. As a result, I’ve kept DGP in place because that’s what we’ve been working on, and it’s just a continuation of that. It’s going to be a relaxed atmosphere, so please keep that in mind. Please also use Study Island.

I am HERE for you! WE are here for you! If you need me, please email me, and I will get back to you asap. My email address is 

Who owns this school? We do! And we’ve got this! 

Love (yeah, I used that word),

Mrs. Freeman

P.S. Do you remember when a student had a family discussion about what teacher would survive a zombie apocalypse and our fellow student picked me? Well, we are going to survive this and come out for the better when it’s over. We won the chili cook-off and best decorated table because that’s what we do as a team. GO TEAM GRYFF!

The National Theatre is streaming free plays via YouTube every Thursday:

Students, please check our Calendar and Class Page daily.

Office 365 - Students will be using our Class Page and Office 365 for this class.  Accounts will be set up at the beginning of the year.  Students can log in at

The daily news is continuing and hosted on the School Library Webpages at:
 WMS Morning News

If you would like to share something via the news, please send it to Mrs. van Kan at - thank you!

Remember all the good reasons to visit your WMS School Library Webpages! The School Library Webpages hosts the Databases, Research, and MLA webpage which provides links to the PWCS provided databases. You will need to use the usernames and passwords given to you on stickers/labels that should have placed inside your daily agenda books.

The School Library Webpages has a new webpage: Reading, Creating, and Curiosity It hosts many website links that have been curated by your school librarians for student use. Please visit  and  -  WE'D LOVE TO HAVE YOUR SUGGESTIONS! There is a suggestion form embedded on the webpage for you to use. We look forward to hearing from you!

Dear Parents and Students,

Welcome to English 8! I am in my 18th year of teaching, and this is my second year of teaching middle school. I taught 9th grade English for nine years, so I know everything that students need to know when they get to high school and am ready to prepare our 8th graders for success in high school. I have a BA in English and a Master's Degree in Curriculum and Instruction. I was born in Illinois but have lived all over the world. I have a son in college, two sophomores in high school, twin high school freshmen, and an 8th grader, so I have a very busy household. I enjoy reading, hiking, and shopping with my kids and husband who is a retired Marine. I looked forward to an outstanding year! Go Seminoles! 

Please click the link below to access my class calendar.

                           SLMS Login

To login: 

Students will need their PWCS login and password. 

Parents will need their Parent Portal credentials. Please remember to use all lowercase letters when typing in your username and password. 

Thank you!

Mrs. Freeman