History Comes Alive 2022

A logo of the Discovery Explorer wearing a tricorn hat and flying a flag, with the words "History Comes Alive! at Discovery Elementary"

On Friday, May 13—415 years to the day since the founding of the first English colony on the shores of North America!—the Fourth Grade at Discovery Elementary will be experiencing and learning about the important Virginian historic sites Jamestown, Williamsburg, and Yorktown, and the people and events that have shaped our Old Dominion over the past 400 years. Students will engage in a series of rotations to experience tours, speakers, writers, reenactors, and period-authentic activities including music, art, dance, and games, that represent the diverse experiences of Virginians since 1607.

Students should wear their Solar System-themed Grade Level T-shirts on May 13. For lunch, students may bring their own or a brown bag lunch will be provided.

This community-building educational day will enliven and enrich everyone involved. If you are interested in volunteering, please click here to sign up. (Please note APS’s volunteer requirements.)

Schedule of Events
9:15 AM – 10:00 AM Jamestown Foundation Virtual Tour (All Students)
10:05 AM – 10:15 AM Snack
10:15 AM – 11:00 AM Rotation 1
11:05 AM – 12:05 PM Rotation 2
12:05 PM – 12:30 PM Lunch
12:30 – 1:30 PM Rotation 3
1:30 PM – 2:30 PM Chief Red Hawk and the Cheroenhaka Nottoway Tribe (All Students)
2:30 PM – 3:30 PM Rotation 4

Our Guests

Chief Red HawkChief Walter David “Red Hawk” Brown, III is the elected Chief of the Cheroenhaka Nottoway Indian Tribe of Southampton County VA and the Chairman of the Cheroenhaka (Nottoway) Indian Tribal Heritage Foundation, Inc. Chief Red Hawk is a native of Southampton County, Virginia and grew up on his family’s farm experiencing the age old “Traditions” and Culture” of the Cheroenhaka (Nottoway) Indians by farming, raising hogs, fishing, hunting, trapping and curing hides to sell with his father. Learn more about Chief Red Hawk here.

Joseph GreenDiscovery poet in residence Joseph Green will build background knowledge on historical characters and figures from the Civil War era. As a spoken word artist, educator, motivational speaker—and over a decade of work in youth spaces—Mr. Green has seen student transformations firsthand. His acceptance and examination of his intersections combined with both his craft in theater and spoken word performing, as well as more than 10 years of creating an intergenerational dialogue between youths and adults, has contributed to his success in classrooms, boardrooms, and living rooms. Learn more about Mr. Green’s work at

Melanie La ForceMelanie La Force has an undergraduate degree in French Language, Civilization, and Education and a Master’s Degree in Curriculum Design. She presents programs on French and American colonial life to students. Extensively researching her family ancestry, she discovered a love of history, French language, and music. When she is not reenacting for school groups, teaching the simple techniques of sewing and social dancing, she is a professional tour guide in Washington, DC and works with visitors of all ages. She loves a good story, sharing her love for music, encouraging others to study history and learn as much as one can.

John McNair and fellow reenactorsJohn McNair (pictured on the far right) holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in History from the University of Mary Washington, and a Master of Arts degree in Applied History from George Mason University. He began his career in public history as an intern for the National Park Service at the Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Military Park and has since worked as a Certified Interpretive Guide for the Fairfax County Park Authority and the Arlington County Department of Parks and Recreation. He is currently the Park Historian at Arlington County’s Fort C. F. Smith Park and is responsible for educational programing across various historic sites within the Arlington County Parks system.

Cornelia Miller Rutherford at Burleigh HouseCornelia Miller Rutherford plays Lady Mildred Cecil, Baroness Burghley at the Virginia Renaissance Faire, (VaRF) an event she founded in 2001. Ms. Rutherford is a graduate of the Ohio State University and received a Masters in Forensic Sciences (Medicine) from George Washington University. After a long career in Medical Technology and Pathology and Health Care Information Systems, she retired and has devoted her time to the Virginia Renaissance Faire, the Phoenix Event Alliance, and the Prince William Historic Preservation Foundation. Her frequent trips to the UK are filled with research into the lesser known aspects of life during the Tudor decades. She lives in Woodbridge, Virginia with her husband Bill and enjoys spending time with her two children and five grandchildren.

John TuohyCivil war reenactor John Tuohy (pictured far left) has been a Civil War reenactor for 23 years. He is a Union reenactor with the 28th Massachusetts Company B Civil War reenactment unit, a member of the Irish Brigade in the Union Army. Members of the recreated 28th represent ordinary soldiers of the Union Army and also present the immigrant experience of the mid-19th Century. John is a Certified Public Accountant and long-time resident of Arlington. John serves as Treasurer of the Arlington Historical Society.

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