Category Archives: People

The Festival Lives On

By Gabe Goldberg

The Annual Festival of Lights this past December was a great success. All of the acts were incredible and interesting. Janet Kalkstein was running this assembly. Of course, Janet got help setting up the assembly. I’d like to begin this article by thanking the people who took the time to set up this amazing festival.

Two Sixth graders started off the festival with a Christmas song.  After that, the middle school a cappella sang “One Love, One Heart”. They did a good job with that, and the whole middle school clapped along after a while. The Jewish Affinity group then did a Hanukah presentation where they lit the candles. Jewish Affinity Group was followed up by a school sing along. After that there were two ballet performances which were very impressive. A school band named FUZZ finished off the assembly by singing Stereo Hearts by Gym Class Heroes and Feliz Navidad.

Everybody left after a moment of silence and the 2011 Festival Of Lights Assembly had ended. All of the performances were amazing and I bet it got everybody looking forward to a good holiday season.

Teachers: Their Deepest… Darkest… Secrets.

What is your favorite thing about teaching middle school?

 Peter Lai: I get to give my students candy and make them hyper. It’s my evil side.

Bob Lynam: Middle schoolers have a good sense of humor; they’re not too serious. They are open to learning.

Rhonda Levy: The kids.

Aaron Preetam: Unlike Upper School where you teach content, here in Middle School I get to teach process.

Ken Aldridge: The kids. The teachers. They rock.

Adam Hotek: The student’s enthusiasm.

Raegan White: They’re unpredictable.

 What is your least favorite thing about teaching middle school?

 Peter Lai: They eat all my candy. They’re crazy!

 Bob Lynam: Grading papers and tests.

 Rhonda Levy: The kids.

 Aaron Preetam: I plead the fifth.

 Ken Aldridge: Students and adults have a different sense of time. They all take different amounts of time to get from point A to point B.

 Adam Hotek: Classroom management.

 Raegan White: They’re unpredictable.

Describe one of the most embarrassing situations you have gotten into while teaching?

Peter Lai: I was projecting a coordinate grid on the white board, and drawing points on it in red.  I started dancing in front of the white board, saying “lets get the red dot on my face!” moving around trying to get the dot on my face. The dot was written on the white board. It couldn’t get on my face.

Bob Lynam: One day, I forgot to come to class.

Rhonda Levy: I was really tired and rushing one morning, because the seventh grade had a field trip one morning and I had to get to school early. One kid came up to me and said “Rhonda, why are you wearing two different shoes?” I hadn’t even realized my shoes didn’t match and I had to go for the rest of the day like that. 

Aaron Preetam: On my second day of teaching ever, a frantic looking high schooler came into my classroom and told me the school was on fire. I thought he was joking around because the smoke alarm was not going off, so I took my time to organize my students into a line. When I stepped into the hallway, I saw that the hallway was filled with black smoke. I ran for my life, screaming on my way out of the building. It wasn’t until I was outside when I realized I was a teacher, and I had students that needed to be evacuated. I ran back into the building and did all the things I wasn’t supposed to do. I ran around screaming that everyone was going to die, pushing students out the door.

Ken Aldridge: Forgetting a student’s name. When the name is on the tip of your tongue but you just can’t think of it.

Adam Hotek: Mixing up student’s names.

Raegan White: I had a Band-aid on my butt for a whole day.

 If you could paint the walls of your classroom any color, which color would you choose?

 Peter Lai: Yellow. Yellow stimulates the math part of your brain.

 Bob Lynam: Bulletin Boards.

 Rhonda Levy: Lime Green.

Aaron Preetam: I would paint the walls with my students work.

 Ken Aldridge: Light blue.

 Adam Hotek: Tan.

 Raegan White: Yellow. Yellow. Yellow.

 Name one reason why you got in trouble in middle school, because everyone gets in trouble.

 Peter Lai:  I picked up whatever I could find of the ground and stuck it in peoples

hair. I was silly.

 Bob Lynam: Talking to my friends in class and not doing my homework.

 Rhonda Levy: My eighth grade science teacher hit me with a meter stick because I talked to much.

 Aaron Preetam: I did not do my work. I hated middle school. With a passion.

 Ken Aldridge: I got really angry, like REALLY angry, when someone called me a bad name. I almost got in a fight.

 Adam Hotek: I was pretending to be a teacher, and I didn’t know that that teacher was in the room.

 Raegan White: Passing notes.

 What is an embarrassing nickname you were called as a kid?

 Peter Lai: Re-Pete.

 Bob Lynam: I didn’t have one.

 Rhonda Levy: Da. My friends couldn’t make a good nickname for me so they picked Da. As in Rhon-Da.

 Aaron Preetam: Pree.

 Ken Aldridge: Kenny.

 Adam Hotek: Adam and Eve.

 Raegan White: Ronald Raegan.

 What is your favorite word?

 Peter Lai: Asymptote

Bob Lynam: Ergonomic

 Rhonda Levy: Friday

 Aaron Preetam: Cacahuates (peanuts in Spanish)

 Ken Aldridge: Agency

 Adam Hotek: Dude.

Raegan White: Vacation. 

GFS: A New 8th Grader’s Experience

by Talia Cieslinsk

An Interview with Meredith Cooney, new 8th grader

1.  How do you like GFS so far?
It’s great, really excited

2.  Where did you go to school before GFS?
I went to Springside

3.  How does GFS compare to your old school? / What are some big changes at GFS?
GFS is far better for me; it fits my personality, which my other school didn’t. There were a lot of big changes; the biggest being that GFS is co-ed and there are no uniforms, which is a bonus.

4.  Was there a particular reason you switched schools?
The girls who attended Springside were becoming a different group of people from when I started.  I like school~ to the extent that school can be liked. GFS students show the same compassion for school as it do.


5.   
What is your favorite part of GFS so far?
The people, teachers and students together. Everyone is so nice and welcoming.


6.   
About how many people did you know coming into GFS? And how many people do you know now?
When I moved to GFS I didn’t know anybody; now it’s so different. At Springside ,I only had a few friends and here everyone introduces themselves and/or comes up and starts talking to me.


7.  
What activities/sports/hobbies/ and subjects are you interested in at GFS?
No one particularly, but the idea of having to move from building to building was particularly appealing.


8.   
If your last school had to be an animal what would it be? What animal would GFS be?
Springside would probably be a black cat and GFS would probably be a domestic, sweet cat because cats have 2 sides to them.

9.    
What are the differences of GFS’s campus and you old school’s
At GFS, the students move from building to building. At Springside you stay in the same building for the whole day. You don’t walk across campus.

10. 
Did your old school have a cafeteria? If it did what was your favorite food there and what is your favorite food at the GFS cafeteria?  
Yes, we had a cafeteria, my favorite food there was probably a sandwich from the deli. I really don’t have a favorite food at GFS yet.  I like to bring my lunch when possible.


11. 
What’s your favorite book?
My favorite book is probably “Maximum Ride:School’s Out Forever”

12. 
What’s you favorite movie?
I don’t have a favorite movie.

13. 
What’s your favorite food?
I don’t have a favorite food.

14. 
If you could be an animal what animal would you be?
A cat.

15. 
How are your expectations of GFS comparing to what it actually is?
My expectations for GFS were really high and GFS, for the most part “lived” up the to the expectations.

Behind the Scenes at the Franklin Institute

Behind the Scenes at the Franklin Institute
An Interview With Larry Dubinski
by Hannah Dubinski ’18

Ever wonder what it’s like to solve crimes? How about seeing ancient mummies?  My father, Larry Dubinski, gets to do all this and more every day in his work as Senior Vice President of the Franklin Institute. Recently, I sat down with my father and asked him all about his experience there.


What is the newest exhibit at the Franklin Institute?

CSI: The Experience.

What is the exhibit about?
The exhibit teaches about forensic science and other tools investigators use to solve crimes. As a visitor you are immersed in one of three crime scenes and you use scientific tools and principles to solve crimes. Click on the link find out more about this exciting new exhibit.

 How long will this exhibit be there?
Until January 2nd.

What is your favorite location in the Franklin Institute?
The Benjamin Franklin National Memorial.

Why?

It is a majestic place and one of the few national memorials in private hands. Additionally Franklin was one of the most important figures in the founding of our country.

What is your favorite traveling exhibit and why?
King Tut because it attracted the young and old to learn about the mysteries of ancient Egypt.

What is an area that many people may not know about?
The observatory with a giant telescope on the roof of the Franklin Institute.

Can you tell us more about that?
During the day you can look at the sun, and at night you have a spectacular view of the planets and stars.

What is the next traveling exhibit?
Giant Mysterious Dinosaurs.

What is the best part of your job?
Watching my kids learn from and enjoy the exhibitions.

What is the mission of the Franklin Institute?
To inspire a passion in science and technology.

EAC 2011-2012

by Ishmael Bynum

The Upper School E.A.C (Environmental Action Club), lead by Ian Van Wert has already been hard at work. The E.A.C has continued the tradition of a Wissahickon woods clean up;  The E.A.C has also decided to sponsor a ‘’reduce your carbon footprint’’ week. They are promoting the dos and don’ts of composting and are also considering a battery-recycling program.

The Middle School E.A.C has a large agenda for the coming year as well. Tara Goss is leading the E.A.C and has come up with multiple projects. The E.A.C is planning to make videos and songs on how to compost. Also, they are trying to get funds for planting trees. Surveys are being passed on why or why don’t people compost. For the future, the E.A.C is going to tell us why birds and their habitat are so important.

The Scottish Exchange

Last month, on April 10th, four girls from Scotland came to stay at GFS. They came from St. George’s, a uniformed, girls school in Edinburgh. The first week of their stay, they were amazed by the difference between their school and ours. One of the exchanges saw a student hug one of their teachers and was completely shocked. This was a level of informality they had never experienced. By the end of the exchange, however, they loved the easy-going atmosphere of GFS and were readily hugging teachers.

They also noticed the different words that Americans use as opposed to people from the United Kingdom.

Here is a list of some of the words.

American to English – Dictionary

Bangs    –   A Fringe

Butt     –    Bottom

Chips    –   Crisps

Cleats  –   Studs (spikes)

Flats    –   Pumps

Make up    –   Pull, snog

Mall     –    Shopping Centre

Soda            –    Fizzy Drinks

Sidewalk    –    Pavement

Sneakers   –    Trainers

Soccer   –   Football

Pumps   –   High Heels

Vacation   –    Holiday

Trash can   –   Rubbish Bin

Trash   –   Rubbish

Period   –   Full Stop

Truck    –   Lorry

White-out   –   Tip-ex

By Magda Andrews-Hoke and Olenka Jain

The Found

Everyone loses stuff. If you’re anybody, it might be a good idea to visit the lost and found. Go into the building and down the echoing stairwell next to the bathrooms. Down a flight, there’s a big brown chest, stuffed in the corner under the stairs. It’s filled with all sorts of things. There may be things of yours, and things belonging to your friends. Looking closer, one would find all sorts of junk that has been sitting there rotting for years (like a lunchbox from who-knows- when with a moldy sandwich inside).

In lower school, the lost and found in the Cary Building is always filled with gloves, coats, lunch boxes, and maybe a shoe. But, every 6 months or so, the lost and found items are put on display in the Cary Building lobby for a week or two so the kids that never bother to look in the lost and found can find their lost items. Then, all the remaining things are taken and donated to a charity and the lost and found is empty, though not for long. The Middle School doesn’t have that kind of system. Middle School faculty expects kids to be more responsible. Or maybe everyone is just too lazy. Either way, that box is never emptied.

If the lightweight lid of the chest is pushed open and propped carefully against the wall behind it, an unpleasant stench will waft up. Scrunching up one’s nose, one might push through the junk, hoping to recognize something of theirs in the dim light. There’s a notebook on top of a pile of coats. “Joi Dallas, 2007-2008”. The notebook is filled with English notes from Will “Terri’s” 7th grade English class. Though the notes mean nothing to her now, one can’t help wondering; was is it lost before or after the end of the year? Along with the notebook is all of her 7th grade science work, including a test that the 7th graders just took. A medium-sized Sure deodorant labeled with somebody’s name (who preferred to not have his name mentioned) sits near a ruined Santa hat. If the piles of sweatshirts had faces then they would have long, graying beards.

The lost and found is really just the found, because no one knows what they’ve lost. “He-who-shall-not-be-named” probably has new deodorant, and it’s most likely that Joi Dallas doesn’t need her 7th grade work anymore. It would be nice if the so-called lost and found didn’t smell like rotting lunches and mildewy winter coats, so please take a minute out of your day, and find what needs to be found.

Revolutions in Egypt

Egypt:

Protests in Egypt against President Hosni Mubarak started January 25th, 2011.  Hosni Mubarak became president after President Anwar el-Sadat was assassinated in 1981.  As president Mubarak stabilized the country keeping the peace treaty with Israel and smoothing relationships with surrounding Arab countries as well as America.  And though Mubarak had created good relationships with other countries, he was disliked by majority of Egyptian people.  Mubarak maintained his power by rigging elections and acquired his money (estimated around 40-70 billion) from illegal dealings.  Though right now the Swiss bank has frozen his account.  Hosni Mubarak was in power for 30 years and during his reign the population in Egypt has doubled to over 80 million, while the chasm between rich and poor has grown greater.

Finally protests against Mubarak started in Tahrir Square January of this year.  The protests lasted 18 days till Mubarak eventually stepped down.  The protests were non-violent for the most part, but during the revolution two-dozen Egyptian historical sites were looted. One journalist wrote, “When you enter the square now, one row of volunteers checks your ID, another frisks you for weapons and then you walk through a long gauntlet of men clapping and singing an Egyptian welcome song.” Tahrir Square was a vivid revolutionary site housing thousands of protesters each faced with tear gas and gunshots.  Over 300 were killed by police and thugs sent out by Mubarak in Tahrir Square.  Demonstrations including the spelling of “leave” with shoes in Cairo (showing soles is an insult in Arab culture) as well as others occurred till finally Mubarak resigned February 11th, 2011.

When Mubarak stepped down, Egypt was put in the hands the military.  And right now Essam Sharaf (who joined protesters in Tahrir Square) has replaced Ahmed Shafik as prime minister.  Sharaf promised to continue changes requested by Egyptian people stating, “I beg you, you did something great and together we will do more, we are with you I have a heavy task and it will need patience.”

Though the end of Mubarak’s reign has pleased the people of Egypt, it is not certain whether or not the new government will be preferable to the former one.  Mubarak’s resignation may cause tension between Egypt and its former allies, however Obama has promised to support Egypt’s new administration.  But his resignation also signals hope for other revolutions going on in the Middle East.

Bibliography:

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20110224_qaddafi_timeline.html?ref=africa

Donadido, R. (2011, March 5). Libya Unrest Holds Threat of Economic Toll for
Ital. New York Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/06/
world/europe/06italy.html?hp

El-Awady, N. (n.d.). Inside Egypt’s Tahrir Square: “I helped topple a 
dictator!”. Retrieved February 12, 2011, from http://news.yahoo.com/s/
yblog_exclusive/20110212/pl_yblog_exclusive/
inside-egypts-tahrir-square-a-personal-accoun

Friedman, T. L. (2011, February 7). Speakers’ Corner on the Nile. New York 
Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/08/opinion/
08friedman.html?ref=opinion

Harting, S., & Gonzales, D. (2011, March 4). Can You Hear Libya Now? New York 
Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/05/opinion/
05Gonzales.html

KIRKPATRICK, D. D. (2011, March 5). Qaddafi’s Militia Storms Key Town Controlled
by Rebels. New York Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/06/
world/africa/06libya.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1&hp

Kramer, A. E. (n.d.). Unrest in Libya and the Middle East Is Costing the Russian
Arms Industry . New York Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2011/
03/05/world/europe/05russia.html?ref=afric

Kristof, N. D. (2011, February 5). Militants, Women and Tahrir Sq. New York 
Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/06/opinion/
06kristof.html?partner=rssnyt&emc=rss

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Over 180,000 refugees flee to Libya’s borders. (2011, March 3). Dawn. Retrieved
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middleeast/12mubarak.html?ref=hosnimubarak

What’s in your locker?

by Emily Beiser

Equality is a Quaker testimony, but at GFS, we have inequality in the assignment of lockers. Why should some people have bigger lockers than others?

It’s Monday. A student comes in to school and opens up their locker. It’s about a foot and a half wide cube. He moves books around from his backpack to his locker and puts his coat in. He jams his sports bag in too. Then he attempts to put his squash racquet in his locker, but sighs as it is too long for the locker, and brings it into his homeroom.

Downstairs, a girl opens her four-foot tall, eight inch wide locker and hangs up her coat. A door above her head opens to a compartment of a one foot wide cube. She stashes her unnecessary books and hangs her squash racket next to her coat. She attempts to put her sports bag in the locker too, but the locker is too thin, and she sighs as she brings it into her homeroom.

Examining these two dilemmas of the lockers: Too thin and too short, I wonder: Which locker is better? In the tall thin lockers, like this girl has, she can easily fit her coat in her locker and access her books at the same time, while in the square locker like the boy has, he has to remove his coat if he wants to access his books again. In the tall lockers, there is also space for sports equipment, like a squash racket or a field hockey stick.

The square lockers do have their advantages. The boy can fit his sports bag in his locker, if he squashes it in, but the girl’s locker is too thin. He can also fit larger items, like a box of cupcakes or a soccer ball. But how often do you bring that in? And why leave cupcakes in your locker?

Examining the real estate of the two lockers, the tall, thin lockers seem to have more space, with 10,101 cubic inches, while the square lockers have 3,712.5 cubic inches. In theory, the tall thin lockers have more space to store things, and are better overall. Plus, they’re way bigger.

It’s time for sports. Two girls go into the locker room. They both open their lockers- one has a full locker, while the other has a half-locker. The girl with the half-locker pulls open the door and a pair of shorts and a basketball shoe fall out. She dumps her stuff on the bench, and changes. When she’s done, she puts her school clothes,(including the nice shirt she had to wear for an orchestra concert that day) sneakers, her coat and her lunch bag in a heap in the locker, and slams it closed before it all falls on her. She leaves her backpack on the floor outside the locker, and runs downstairs, before remembering her water bottle. She runs back up, opens her locker. Her coat falls on the floor, and she moves it to the side. She removes her clothing, (her shirt is wrinkled) sneakers and lunch box from the heap they make in the locker, and finds her water bottle in the bottom. She sets it on the bench and begins to stuff everything back in. Finally, she slams the locker closed and locks it, and leaves the locker room.

Meanwhile, the girl with the full-length locker unlocks and opens the door. She changes and hangs her clothes and coat up on the hooks. Her boots go on the floor of the locker, and her lunch box and cell phone go on the shelf. She can’t fit her backpack either, but she sticks it under the bench. She locks her locker and begins to go downstairs, when she realizes she forgot her water bottle. She goes back to her locker and opens it up. Her water bottle is on the shelf, next to her lunch bag. Her shirt isn’t wrinkled, and she can probably get away with not having to wash and iron it before the next concert. She grabs her water bottle, closes the locker, and goes downstairs.

We all know who the winner is here. The girl with the full length locker is clearly at an advantage. Her clothes stay neat, her stuff doesn’t go everywhere when she opens her locker, and she can get ready much faster than the other girl. It seems like there are plenty of lockers in the locker room. Why do we have small ones? In fifth grade, we were told we had small gym lockers because the older students had bags and more stuff. It seems like we have plenty of lockers, and lots of people don’t use or even know they have lockers assigned to them. Why should they have lockers that somebody who uses their locker wishes they had? And how is it practicing equality to have such different facilities for different people?

Infamous Writer Kurt Vonnegut Leaves the World Remembered

Kurt Vonnegut Biography
by Nick Dahl

Kurt Vonnegut was a writer in the 1940’s all the way up to as recently as 2007. He was a very influential American writer, in genres such as science fiction, black comedy, and satire. He was also the author of many great essays, which have now been put into great collections. He wrote all the way up until the day he died, always a great role model to all sorts of writers and celebrities today from Bill Bryson to Douglas Adams. Honorary head of the American Humanist Association and writer of such great books as “Slaughterhouse 5” and “Cat’s Cradle” this is a basic overview of his life and career.

Kurt Vonnegut was born on November 11, 1922 in Indianapolis, Indiana to Kurt Vonnegut Sr. and Edith Lieber. His older brother was named Bernard Vonnegut who later grew up to discover artificial precipitation. With his grandfather and father in architecture, they wanted him to major in the study of architecture to take over his dad’s company, Vonnegut and Bohn. Not wishing to do so, he went to Shortridge High School. After completing his time there he decided to go to Cornell University, at which point he was majoring in chemistry, the following fall. Despite his classes being more in the sciences there he was also the Managing Editor of the school published newspaper, The Cornell Daily Sun. Even though he was a decent student, Vonnegut decided that he would enlist in the army, instead of staying the course at Cornell University. The U.S. army then transferred him to Carnegie Institute of Technology and, after he finished that the University of Tennessee so that he could now major in Mechanical Engineering to assist him in his stay in the army.

Now being ready and trained properly to be in the army, Kurt was sent of to be in World War II. Upon arrival he was set up in the 423rd Infantry Regiment. After a few successful missions he and his crew went to the Battle of the Bulge. After the backup of Kurt’s regiment were cut off and ran away from the battlefield, they were alone and forced to fight. The 423rd regiment was captured and became prisoners of war, stuck in Dresden by the Nazi’s.

Because of his knowledge of how to speak German, Kurt was elected to become the leader of the POW’s. After taunting the guards about what was going to happen when they were saved he was beaten and was forced to resign from his position. They were then stored in the basement of an old slaughterhouse, which the Germans referred to as “Slaughterhouse Five”. This whole nightmarish experience was later the topic of his best selling novel “Slaughterhouse Five” and many other books that he wrote in his career. The Americans, not knowing of the prisoners being held there, bombed Dresden, the city where Kurt Vonnegut and his allies were being held. It was taken apart to rubble and almost all of the civilians died, but being trapped in the basement of a sturdy meat house, Kurt and his buddies survived. The Germans, needing someone to gather all of the dead bodies, put them to work breaking into buildings and taking away the corpses. Finally, after more suffering and torment the Red Army Troops saved him from capture. He was later awarded the Purple Heart for his bravery in the horrid situations he found himself.

After leaving the army he returned to school to get a degree so he could rebuild his life post World War II. He attended the University of Chicago while writing for a local newspaper, the “City News Bureau of Chicago”. He wasn’t given any big stories, just the ones to fill in the space between big ones. Some teachers were saying that he was not good enough and that he couldn’t make a living off of this. Continuing study for his school, he moved out to the city of Schenectady, New York. There he worked with General Electric because his brother worked in the same company and was able to get him a job.  In his spare time worked as a part-time volunteer fireman for the station right by his house.  After a while of not taking books Vonnegut had previously written for publication but would later on be publicized such as Player Piano and The Sirens of Titan. His school, the University of Chicago, accepted his book “Cat’s Cradle” and gave him the M.A. degree that he wanted in the year 1971.

Kurt Vonnegut very briefly worked with the magazine “Sports Illustrated”, where he got bored, goofed off, and quit his job. After considering very strongly quitting writing altogether, he was offered a job at the University of Iowa’s Writers Workshop. After taking it, he continued writing in his spare time and produced such great hits as “Slaughterhouse Five”. He then again moved to Narnstable, Massachusetts where he managed a Saab dealership. Kurt continued to write such novels as Deadeye Dick and Breakfast of Champions and, after a failed suicide attempt he continued and wrote many science fiction books. Many of his later books either had him incorporated into the book or a character, which was supposed to be him named Kilgore Trout. He would often have the characters talk to him, as thought they were saying how they didn’t like how the story was going. In 1997, after the publication of his book Timequake, Kurt said that he was retiring from writing fiction books. He wrote a few non-fiction books and then retired for good after teaching at Harvard University for a short spell. He passed away on April 11, 2010.

Sports Exemptions at GFS

By Andreas Bezahler

Sketch by Sammy Randall

At Germantown Friends Middle School you are required to take one sport per season. In some cases though, you can get exempt for a season or in some cases even the whole year . There are many different sports or various activities that can qualify you for a sports exemption.  It may surprise you to know that at GFS there are currently about 25 exempt students.

Some of the outside sports which are exemption approved include horseback riding, ballet, ice-hockey, swimming, martial arts, Irish dancing, cheerleading, fencing, tennis, table tennis, travel soccer and hiking. I decided to interview some people who are exempted from sports.  One person with an exemption who I interviewed is a current 7th grader named Alexandra Rhoads.

Me: Hi Alex

Alex: Hey

M: What sport are you exempt for?

A: I swim indoors at Cheltenham High School

M: Is there a reason why you didn’t choose a sport at GFS?

A: Because, I really wanted to swim and it wasn’t an option for middle schoolers at GFS

M: Do you think that GFS should broaden their sports to include swimming?

A: Yes, but I think it would cost a lot of money and there may not be enough people to make a team.

M: Do you think that GFS should make it a priority?

A: Yes, I think it would also make GFS a more attractive school.

M: Well, thanks for your opinion and I enjoyed talking with you.

A: You’re welcome

In conclusion you can see that a lot of children are exempt because they want to play various sports not in the GFS middle school athletics program.  The majority of children though love and enjoy playing for our school, and think our athletics program is a great asset for a school.

A Wonderful Winter Break Survey

I decided to take a survey on what people did over their Winter Break- 2 weeks of no school to do what they want. Most of the results did not surprise me, only a few stuck out of the crowd. I surveyed 20 people and my results are below:

  1. Traveled: 9
  2. Lazed Around: 7
  3. Family & Friends: 6
  4. Skiing: 3
  5. Other: 2

Some people did a couple things, while most only did one. For some people, Winter Break was full of exciting times. For example, Rhonda had watched the whole first season of Dexter. Last time we spoke, she was up to season 5. Others did things such as visiting exotic countries, meeting new family, and even trips to the hospital.

It is disappointing how many people lazed around. Let’s try to do something more active this spring break. Then we can see how many people were able to do it!

Should Laptops be Allowed in School?

Laptops in School, The Great Debate
By Gabe Buyske

Parents, teachers, and students have been arguing about laptops in GFS for about as long as I can remember (I’m new). That’s why I interviewed one representative from each group and talked to them about their opinions so we can finally get an answer to THE GREAT DEBATE

Should laptops be in school? Interview with parent:

Question: What is your general view of laptops in school?

Answer: Overall, I think that they allow you to access a lot of information. Also I think they are a good use of technology.

Q: What are some pros of laptops?

A: Well, for one thing, students can write on them eliminating the issue with handwriting. It also lets you practice using laptops at an early age as you will when you’re an adult, it  gives you access to internet, and easily allows you to receive emails from teachers during the day.

Q: What do you think are some cons of laptops in school?

A: They provide access to Facebook and social networking sites wich can be distracting, they allow for less serious research such as use of Wikipedia, they are expensive and are easily lost or damaged.

Q: How do you think they can be funded?

A: More money needs to be put in student education and should be government funded but damage or loss of the laptops should be the student’s responsibility.

Should laptops be allowed in school? Interview with Rhonda:

Q: What is your general view of laptops in school?

A: I think they will eventually be used more and this will eventually happen.

Q: What are some pros of laptops?

A: The fact that you can bring your files with you and you don’t run the risk of losing data. I also think its good for students who have problems with organization.

Q: What are some cons of laptops?

A: There could be a chance a student could use it inappropriately.

Q: How do you think they can be funded if we do get them?

A: I think we could get donations from ex-students who have graduated.

Should laptops be allowed in school? Interview with student 1

Q: What is your general view of laptops in school?

A: They can be useful. While I don’t bring them in, other people might want to.

Q: What are some pros of laptops?

A: They can provide resources and can be a powerful tool as well you can use it for math and writing as well.

Q: What are some cons of laptops in school?

A: Can be used for non-school things such as social networking and can be distracting.

Q: How can we fund laptops?

A: Donations from parents.

Should laptops be allowed in school? Interview with student 2.

Q: What is your general view of laptops in school?

A: I don’t think that anyone under ninth grade should be allowed to have laptops in school because until that age I don’t believe that students will be responsible. Sixth to Eighth Graders are very unorganized and laptops might help them keep everything together.  Also students with bad handwriting should not be deprived of good grades because the teacher finds it difficult to read.

Q: What are some pros of laptops in school?

A: Organization, no excuse for forgetting work, easy way to type homework, makes finishing work easier and faster so you can do a better job and learn more.

Q: What are some cons of laptops in school?

A: They’re distracting, would distract students, students may go on Youtube and inappropriate sites, easily cheating on tests and work, for example going on a history site because you didn’t study and that promotes dishonesty.

Q: How can laptops be funded?

A: Not funded by school, but by parents so the school can save money and since laptops are not essential  this will be a good punishment but will not hurt the students grade.