Teacher Bio

Mrs. Thornburg teaches middle school science at MPHM and college-level physiology at Washburn University.   This is her 4th year at MPHM, her 7th year at WU, and her 8th year in Topeka.  She grew up in Richmond, Virginia where she received a Catholic education from primary through high school.   After graduating from Penn State University, she earned a graduate degree in Physiology from VCU and one in Biological Science from Purdue University.   Mrs. Thornburg plays violin and piano and enjoys anything outdoors.  She and her husband, Todd, have TWO kiddos:  Cecile, a MPHM second grader, and a baby boy or baby girl due to be born Jan 6th, 2017.  The family also has two crazy dogs, Willie and Sugar Pea. 

September 16th, 2016


Current Topic:   The Creed(s)

The 8th graders in the Thornburg homeroom have been discussing the Biblical foundations for what is contained in the Nicene Creed.   See the video below, get inspired to drum up a conversation about it with one of those students, and find out what he or she can tell you!




October 3rd, 2016

Important Dates

Friday Oct 7th - All School Mass at 9:30

Monday Oct 10th - school picture orders due

Tuesday Oct 11th - Women in Science Day at Washburn for 7th grade girls



Important Notes

NEED DRIVERS and CHAPERONES for the Washburn WOMEN IN SCIENCE field trip .  Please email me if you are interested in driving/chaperoning.   This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Permission slips for the field trip will come home SOON!

Parent Teacher Conference Forms will come home SOON!  





All School Mass on October 7th at 9:30 is an 8th grade mass.  All parents and loved ones are welcome to join us.






September 22nd, 2016

Upcoming Important Dates

9-23-15  Progress Reports come home




8th Grade Science

Current topic:  Isotopes and radio-carbon dating

Homework due Monday 9/26 for Science 8A:   Teach to Learn assignment for PARENTS!   Students will teach a loved one all about isotopes and radio-carbon dating.  Parents, or other loved ones, will design and create a paper demonstration of Carbon-14.   It will address the following questions:

     1.  How is Carbon 14 made?

     2.  What is Carbon 14's structure?

     3.  What is Carbon 14's half-life?   What happens to it at the end of this time?

     4.  How do scientists measure the AGE of something old by measuring the Carbon 14 in it?


***Students will supply all information and materials for completion of the project ***


7th Grade Science

Current Topic:   Acceleration and how Newton's 3 Laws of Motion describe it.

See if you can find a 7th grader who can explain acceleration in terms of each of Newton's 3 laws.   Challenge him or her to provide the correct units of measure for ACCELERATION and explain them!




Download a free pdf of the YOUCAT here.  This beautiful book is a question-and-answer formatted adaptation of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, written consulting youth and endorsed by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI.   We will be using it to enrich our religion studies and our preparation for the sacrament of Confirmation this year.    





Religion and Science

"Nature expresses a design of love and truth." Pope Benedict XIV,  Encyclical Letter Caritas in Veritate (29 June 2009)

Mrs. Thornburg