Advanced Placement U.S. History students attend “Cannon School” in St. Augustine, Florida

Cannon School St. Augustine 2016

This past week 15 Advanced Placement U.S. History students travelled back in time to the mid-18th century for “Cannon School”. The students, along with Upper School social studies teacher, Mark Panuthos, and ESOL/English teacher, Tracy Reilly, spent five days in St. Augustine, which is the oldest city in the United States of America.

Since 2010 and during the class’ unit on American Colonial History, Mr. Panthos takes his students to what’s most commonly known as “Cannon School”, an event that the National Parks Service holds annually just for Admiral Farragut Academy.

“We are the only high school in Florida who attends the National Parks Service’s Historic Weapons Interpretations program,” said Mr. Panuthos who designed a lot of the program with consult from the “Teaching with Historic Places” curriculum guidelines. “The Program Director, Chris Leveritt, loves working with our students because they come preprogrammed with excellent military training.”

Cannon School St. Augustine 2016

Ruqi Zhang, a sophomore, said “The trip was a lot of fun. I learned a lot about colonial military tactics. I didn’t know how many steps were involved in firing 18th century cannons.”

All of our students have graduated from the program and have received their official National Park Service identification cards. They are able to work at the Castillo de San Marcos as volunteers on their daily cannon-firing exhibitions. They are also eligible to apply for a high-school NPS scholarship that would enable them to work for a stipend at the Castillo as a historic weapons interpreter or as a guide.

Cannon School St. Augustine 2016

The students who attended were:

  • Antes, Maya
  • Nasr, Zach
  • Fretwell, Chloe
  • Hamilton, George
  • Lorusso, Angela
  • Kirtland, Spencer
  • Mikell, Edward
  • Milord, Katherine
  • Nguyen, Tien
  • Northup, Chris
  • Schlifstein, Evan
  • Wang, Jinyu
  • Zhang, Ruiqui
  • Zinvyev, Nikita
  • Andrion, Casey