Before school got out this year, eighth graders from Preston Hollow’s Providence Christian School took a week-long class trip to Washington, D.C.

One of the students, Sydney Pedigo, wrote an account of the trip and what it meant to her and her classmates

Pictured are the students during the trip.

You can read it after the jump:

During the weeklong trip to Washington, D.C. from April 18-24, eighth graders at Providence Christian School cultivated a bond that fused individual friendships together. As individuals, we slowly came to be a group through the historic learning and the social time. Exploring the history in D.C. let us share our thoughts and ideas with one another, and a communal feeling of knowledge began to mix into our class.

We saw in history that the people at Gettysburg grew closer through fighting and shared turmoil, Jews in the Holocaust were bonded through suffering and racial prejudice, and the writers of the Declaration of Independence were united through their political beliefs. This unification through experience creates the closest relationships and forges a lasting affiliation.

Our class used our experiences of the D.C. trip to connect and merge into a combined group. At the Iwo Jima memorial, we shared our somberness and esteem for the heroes of a losing battle. Another doleful visit was to the tomb of the Unknown Soldier. The tomb personified the deaths of all the soldiers who were unidentified or lost in wars, and we all shared a feeling of respect and veneration for the tomb. These grave instances created an understanding of reverence and seriousness throughout the group.

We did not always learn and discover history; we also formed bonds through our social time. From organized gatherings such as mixers and the dinner-dance cruise, to everyday events like socializing in the lobby of the hotel, playing cards, singing, and simply talking on the bus, we all enjoyed the time we found to mingle and socialize. In these experiences, we merged through laughter and cheery moments. The memories of dance contests between teachers and chaperones (scary!) and the dance the room moms had made to the tune of “Dancing Queen” (scarier, yet impressive) extended the sense of community and fellowship to all.

At the end of the trip, we were no longer divided by which class we were in or where we sat during lunch. We had evolved into a group.

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