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The Echoes The Independent Voice of Abraham Lincoln High School

December 2010 Issue 2

Abraham Lincoln High School 1205 Bonham Ave. Council Bluffs, IA 51503

One Night First Time Two Teens One Moment Nine Months One New Life Forever Changed Photo Illustration by Christian Schlater

Pages 6 & 7

News 2 New AL Marquee Drawing Attention

The Echoes

Page Design by Brittany Rupp

Emmalee Adams When taking a drive down Bennett Avenue to school all you have to do is look up for a quick second to see all the fun and exciting activities happening at Abraham Lincoln High School. This is because for years we have had a big, yet faded, sign to tell you all of this. Though it was nice, it’s even nicer to have a new one. On your way to school be sure to noticed the new, and electronic, marquee located on the side of Bennett Avenue. The previous marquee was old, faded, and vulgarly vandalized. It also didn’t have the benefits of technology. Students and staff had to go out and put up the news, letter by letter. Now with the new marquee they have the luxury of sitting back and typing it all in, without going out in the questionable weather. The new marquee is a nice touch but one cannot help but question why we even have a marquee. “It’s a way to advertise our school and let the community know what’s going on.” said Patrick Mullen Principal. Forty-nine years ago, there was a different

senior class. A class taking drives down old Broadway to get a Coke and fries and to see who was hanging out at Ewald’s. In 2006 that same senior class got together to reminisce about old times and connect with old class mates. After that reunion, with the money left over, AL Hall of Famer, Bob Knox, and class of ’61 wanted to spend the left over reunion money on a way to improve and help the school. “We had our reunion in 2006 and had money left over,” said Hall of Famer Bob Knox. “We wanted to donate something for the school and talked to the principal for a project and the marquee was suggested.” According to Mullen the marquee was put there to improve and to advertise the school. It is big enough to see and close enough to the road, but do students seem to notice? “I like the (new marquee) because it’s digital and makes the school seem nicer and more up to date,” said Brittney Swanson ‘11. So next time that one is taking that drive to the mall or to the school on Bennett Avenue be sure to look at the new marquee to see all the exciting things happening at Abraham Lincoln High School. A special thanks to Hall of Famer Bob Knox and the class of 61’ for the electronic marquee.

Consequences for Truancy in District Every day students come to school, go to their classes and then leave at the 2:50 bell that signals the end of the day. However some students are leaving before that bell when they should be attending class. These students are not traveling to Tucker Center and do not have a short day, which is causing problems not only the students who are missing class, but also causing problems for the school. “Yes, [there are students who leave during the day],” said Fred Maher, Assistant Principal. “AL does not have an open campus.” This poses many problems not only for the student but also for the school and the district as well. When students miss school, they are missing vital information that is being taught and they will have to make up when they return. With this year’s new block scheduling system, if a student misses a block class they are missing two days worth of material. According to Merriam Webster’s online dictionary, the official definition of truant is: “one who shirks from duties: especially one who stays out of school without permission.” Iowa students are required from the time one turns of school age until the time a student turn 17 the student is required to attend school unless they have graduated early from their high school. According to the Council Bluffs Community School District handbook if a student that is under the age of 18 with a drivers license drops out of high school they can have their that license

revoked. A student is considered truant unless they have a scheduled medical appointment, a funeral, religious event or instruction, illness, or a required court appearance. Truancy in CBCSD may mean denial of academic credit, grade level, placement in different learning environment or a referral to the county attorney where legal action would be taken. “It affects the school because other kids see it,” said Maher. “Consequences for this is usually detention or in-school suspension.” There is no off-campus lunch, all students are required to eat in the cafeteria and not leave the building unless they are traveling to Tucker Center. Students who do travel to Tucker Center are encouraged to take the bus, however if they do drive they are expected to go directly to Tucker Center and back to their home school. Students may not realize that their school attendance follows them for awhile. Colleges not only look at a student’s grades, GPA, and the activities that they are involved in but also their attendance record. Leaving school during the day also affects one’s employability grade which goes on the student’s report cards and future ,employers and colleges. It goes on a students permanent record and if can be looked at by future employers also and can be requested by any army recruitment services if one is joining the armed forces. In the long run students may want to stop and think about what is at stake when they move towards that door. With so many things depending on an education a student should ask themselves: is that joy ride and afternoon off really worth the risk?

Photo by Emily Koontz

Congratulations to Mary Ann Hanusa who on November 2, 2010 was elected to the position of State Representative for Iowa. Hanusa graduated from Abraham Lincoln High School and has recently come back to serve as AL’s SAM (School Administrative Manager). The Echoes staff would like to wish her the best of luck on her new endeavor.

Brittany Rupp

The class of ‘61 helped to buy the new marquee. They donated money that helped to purchase the marquee, helping their former school. Photo by Danille Hogsed

Construction Issues Show Everywhere Suzanne Peterson Waking up in the morning when you don’t feel like P. Diddy is bad enough. Grab your glasses; you’re out the door, you wish you could hit the city, but you’re going to school. Walk through the doors with your pretty boy\girl swag ready to face anything that comes your way. Someone covers their ears and asks, “What the heck is that noise?” Shaking your head, making your way to class, one might see somebody almost get smacked in the face with some wires hanging down from the ceiling, and after seeing that, they have had their first laugh of the their day. The laugh only lasts a few seconds before they quickly close their mouth, wondering what was it they just inhaled. One may also walk into class, and it maybe so cold they as might as well be in Alaska. There are many students and staff who still face construction problems. “I do have a problem with the school,” said Josie Thomas ’14. “The smell makes me sick. It also makes walking in the halls unenjoyable.” One may notice something is different from last hour. It might be the ladders lying around, the construction workers trash or tools on the floor, or the dust all over the floor. “I wish they would clean the dust off the floors, and spray Febreze in the halls,” said Thomas. It’s not just the smell, dust, wires hanging from the ceiling or the loud filters in the halls that the students disapprove of. The problems students face have the potential to affect the learning environment.

“The construction and construction workers are distracting when I’m trying to learn,” said Brittany Boulier ’13. “The wires that hang from the ceiling are irritating, sometimes it stinks, and I don’t like the temporary classrooms; it’s too loud in there.” There are some students who don’t mind the construction issues. They realize that these are some of the effects that take place when a school is under construction. “Sometimes the dust may flare up my allergies, but I really don’t have a problem with the school,” said Ashley Cross ’11. “I wish the school wasn’t such a mess and we wouldn’t have so many obstacles, but I know these problems are necessary if we want a nice school.” It’s not just the students who face problems while the school is being remolded. The staff members put up with a lot too, but are looking forward to see the finished product. “I have to walk all the way around the building to get in,” said Laura Ahl, parenting teacher. “I am looking forward [for the new lobby] very much. I think it will be nice for the students, and teachers. It should help a lot of the congestion.” From all the dust, the changing temperatures, to wires hanging, tools laying all over the place, loud filters, distracting equipment and construction workers, to the funky smells, and some students who having health problems, these issues are common when a school is under construction. In the end, when the school is finished one might even be looking forward to going to school, and hopefully, will wake up the next morning feeling like P. Diddy and ready to take on the day no matter what comes there way during that day.

Construction Update Engineering wing is open by Freshmen wing. After Christmas break the commons area will be open. The Wrestling room is open. Information gathered from Mindi Richardson in the main office

News Student Attempts to Make a Change The Echoes

Suzanne Peterson What would you do if your were in a condition where you couldn’t talk, and you were in a wheelchair for you whole life? The school that you attend had taken your independence away from you? Justin Lippert 11’ may not be able to walk, or talk, but being the unique individual he is, was heard. Lippert has cerebral palsy. According to; Cerebal Palsy is a condition or a group of disorders that can involve brain and nervous system, functions, like learning, hearing, thinking, movement, and seeing. There is no cure for cerebral palsy, but the goal for treatment is for the person to be as independent as possible. In Lippert’s contemporary issues class, his teacher, Kelly Frascht, had the students

construct a project based on a current issue, and with that project, they had to enlighten a target audience on the issue, or bring attention to the issues. This started the kickoff for Lippert’s wheelchair challenge. Teacher and students participated in a fund raiser, where the top three students and the staff who had the most money in “jars” had to spend a day in a wheelchair. The money raised was money for cerebral palsy. A total of $300 was donated. “[I did this challenge because] It was handicapped awareness month, and when they remodeled the school, they had taken away a lot of my independence,” said Lippert (translated by Donna Mott). “[When I saw the participants’ in the wheelchairs] I thought, they’re in trouble; they’re going to have a hard time.” Students Lauren Rommel; Eric Egerbreston; Brett McGee; and teachers, Joel Nelson, Alex Dighton, and Assistant Principal Kyle Forney all spent a day in a wheelchair. “Getting upstairs was a lot harder than I imagined. Not having access to the elevator in the back hall really made things more difficult,”

I did this challenge because it was hadicapped awareness month and when they remodled the school they took away a lot of my independence. -Justin Lippert ‘11

Tucker Center Creates Concerns Christian Schlater Tucker Center is a place for students to grow and get college credits in the field they would like to pursue. One of the benefits of attending is a student that attends is able to have off campus lunch between second and third session courses at the Tucker Center. However one may wonder why this set of students is allowed this privilege. “I don’t think it’s to fair these kids are able to eat off campus and the non-Tucker Center kids are not allowed,” said Amy Rommel, Graduation Coach at AL. AL does not have an open campus where students are allowed to leave during the day to go get lunch. Tucker Center runs on an all block schedule because teachers only teach Dual

credit classes. Tucker Center does not have the means to provide lunch for students that are there over the lunch hour. The lucky students that attend Tucker Center for the second and third sessions are allowed to eat away from the hustle and bustle or a high school cafeteria. “School lunch isn’t very good,” said Alex Klement ‘12. “I can choose where I want to go so it’s really nice.” “It’s a debate between those who care if they are able or not able to eat offcampus lunch.” Some might consider this unfair to other students that attend a school where lunch is offered but one can consider a perk to taking dual credit classes. It is a debate however for the students that are allowed to go and eat off campus. All one needs is a car, some cash and you’re off to Taco Bell, Chinese, McDonald’s, or whatever one wants as long as one is on time for class. Students should remember to aware of the time.

Students that attend Tucker Center often leave school grounds to eat lunch if their lunch hour falls during thier Tucker Center class. Photo by Christian Schlater

Page Design by Brittany Rupp


Justin Lippert 11’ started a fundrasier to help raise awareness about the effects of Cerbal Palsy and what it is like to live in the shoes of a Cerebral Palsy suffer. Photo by Christian Schlator

said Lauren Rommel ‘12. “I really respect all of those kids that are in wheelchairs and all of the hardships that they have to overcome everyday.” All the participants are in agreement that it would be tough being in a wheelchair everyday for the rest of one’s life. “Justin plans to create a presentation he can take to other schools, to encourage them to do a wheelchair challenge.” said Frascht. “Justin has

a sense of humor and has great ideas. He wants to create a change in the handicap accessibility codes, so that all new construction must create the greatest independence for all individuals.” Some people struggle to understand that everybody needs independence, no matter what the circumstance is and that there isn’t a single person out there who is less important or less valuable than any one else. Lippert made his point without speaking a word.

Semester Comes Early for Students Lauren Myers From new teachers to more construction, there are many changes happening at Abraham Lincoln. One change is that electives and gym classes are not the only classes ending at semester. Other classes ending are known as block classes. Block classes are year long courses, narrowed down to only a semester and instead of the normal 42 minute class period, the courses stretch into two class periods which are a total of 90 minutes. Similar to electives, after the semester ends, the block classes switch over to a new course. Since the blocks came about, many students and teachers have questions. Topics of questions include, whether or not a student will remember concepts, to whether or not finals differ from the classes year long course of previous years. “My students have not learned as much as they would in a year long class because I needed to plan differently. I learned as the semester went on [about how to plan lessons],” said Denise Talbott, math teacher. “ I have worked with this block before and it has not happened [ that students lose concepts]. If you truly learned something, with a review you will be able to remember it.” While some teachers lose time on lessons due to getting used to the block scheduling, other teachers still find filling in the time a struggle. Although time may be a contender, students and teachers may find opportunities and gain advantages. “Sometimes it is a struggle to fill in the 90 minutes and you have to fill the [rest of the] time in with other activities,” said Dan Whaley, science teacher. “I think the block time allows more time to investigate and talk about things you can, instead of rushing and cramming stuff into a 45 minute class, in science it is an optimal schedule, you can work with the microscopes and look at more things instead of having students rushing to look at one thing.” With more time in the class period, a plus for students is having all the 90 minutes to process concepts. For teachers the time allows

more one on one time with students. “[Students have more] time to process things in class,” said Whaley. “Teachers have more class time to help students. In a 45 minute class, with 30 students with questions, you many not be able to get around to all of them like you would in a block class.” Whether one thinks more time helps students or not, one student dislikes blocks due to the more time. More time may be hurtful to students, but other things are helpful to students. “I dislike blocks because the teachers seem not to plan enough so we end up sitting in class with nothing to do for about 20 to 30 minutes. I find the blocks boring because of this,” said Paige Branson ‘13. “ But I think the blocks are helpful because you get your credits at semester.” More time may be hurtful in some ways but other ways are helpful such as if a student is making up credits in a block period making the credit up is easier than a year long class. This provides another advantage for students. “If a student is handling it [ the work], they can make up credits easier in a block scheduling than a skinny class, for some a block is perfect and others not, some can learn in a short time and others learn in a longer time,” said Talbott. “Also, the change up at semester is nice for students.” Whether a student is making up a credit or not, students learn a lot of work and some feel they will lose the learned concepts during the following semester. “ We only have a semester to learn all the work and we miss some units,” said Branson. “I think I will lose concepts over my next block.” Despite one feeling the learned concepts will be lost, finals are still the same as the year long course. Whether a teacher is new to a course or not, the final is the same due to being a district requirement. Although block classes are a change this year, the blocks are ending for teachers and students at semester. Blocks have shown that a course can be learned in a semester with the same final. New block courses will change for students after winter break. Block scheduling and classes bring many different advantages and opportunities to students and teachers despite getting used to the scheduling at first.




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The Echoes

Life and Music

EDITORS’ REPORT CARD Everyone who toughed the cold weather and supported AL’s football team in the Oct. 27th game.


Drivers for thinking that a few flurries mean that they need to drive five miles an hour.


This year’s State Track Tournament being on the same weekend as graduation.

By Devon Jefferson

The class of 1961 for donating a new marquee with leftover money from their class reunion.

The ramps not being done on time, forcing students to continue to be late to class.

Disgusting smells causing foreign language students to duck and take cover into their classrooms.

Teachers who understand that the Harry Potter premiere is a big deal, and that students will be tired and unwilling to work the next day.

Teachers who leave busy work for their students when they are gone, instead of leaving something productive.

Early morning frost being a hassle to all those who drive to schoolespecially those who have to be there early.

In The Blink of an Eye By Shanon Smith As one gets older, one obtains a growing list of responsibilities. For instance , when you turn 21 you get the responsibility of partaking in adult beverages, at age 18 you get the responsibility to vote, and at the young age of 14 you get to learn how to drive (with a licensed driver in the passenger seat, of course). Now this is where it all begins. This is where the very fundamentals of driving take place. You learn how to apply the break, how to put the car in reverse and the ever so tiny and yet one of my personal favorites, using your blinker. With just the simple flick of a finger you can control a light that will let the rest of the driving world know which way you’re planning to turn. What

direction your life will soon be taking. Now it’s just a simple little thing, not too hard to hard to do, however most of the time while driving this little blinker is forgotten leaving the bitter drivers who follow you ready to ram into that pretty little rear end. The blinker is designed to serve as a warning, to let other drivers know when you’ll soon be changing your original flow of traffic, but when drivers don’t use that warning it often ends with confusion and frustration. For instance, have you ever been at a stoplight waiting to turn left when there is a car opposite of you that doesn’t have their blinker on? Now based on our driving knowledge we would assume that the opposite car would be going straight. However when that light turns green there’s a stall at the stoplight. Why? Because innocent little you with your blinker on is waiting for that idiot to go straight. No instead they stare at you like a dear in headlights and then they finally make their turn, wasting valuable seconds of your life. Let’s try another situation. You’re driving, going about your usual day, when all of a sudden the car in front of you starts to slow

down. Suddenly they are going 5 mph under the speed limit... then 10... then what seems like almost a complete stop, and you’re left to wonder, “What the heck is this person doing?” Then finally after following them for what seems like forever, as joggers on the sidewalk start to pass you, they turn, with no warning other than going slower than dial-up. Not to mention situation three. The driver who just keeps driving along at the normal speed, not causing a problem at all until then suddenly slam on their breaks to make a turn, and still don’t use their blinker! They’re giving you the absolute least amount of warning possible, and I’d be willing to safely say that under-use of blinkers have probably caused an accident or two. Frustration, confusion and so many other emotions all because some driver is too lazy to flick their finger. I’m not saying that this is the most important driving issue in the world, but let’s be honest it’s not that hard to use a blinker. So basically everything can be summed up in six short words: Be a thinker use your blinker.

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Politics and music have a time and a place, and I know that I don’t want some uptight delegate interrupting one of Bob Marley’s finest, or right in the middle of one of Drake’s hot 16’s on a verse in his song. Honestly let’s just get back to the listening part of music. Back to the times when a new song came out and one didn’t instantly write it off as lame because they don’t like the artist’s “image.” Let’s get back to the days when music was an art. I remember when I was a kid I had a new favorite singer or rapper or music group almost every other day. I was addicted to music like candy. In the morning I would get up in the morning for elementary school I would play my stereo, sometimes I would be late because I was jamming out too hard in my pajamas. I knew the words to all my favorite songs and on car rides my parents got their own personal karaoke show every time a song came on. I have so many fond memories from music, when I go through my iTunes it’s like going through a scrapbook or a photo album of my life. Yet now when I ask a person if they have heard the new Wiz Khalifa single, or the new Wayne song and I get some answer back about how they don’t like these artists because they are “sellouts.” Or I hear how their older music was good before they got really famous. When I hear that it just ignites a never ending fire inside of me. It’s like when you tell me that the music an artist puts out is bad because they got famous from it, or because their music is listened to main stream, that has to be the single most idiotic thing one could say. That’s like saying that because their music is good and a lot of people like, it’s bad because that artist is rising to fame. Honestly it makes my skin crawl, I despise it. To me when an artist becomes famous and more mainstream, its just more power to the artist because obviously they are making good music if they are famous. After all, I’m pretty sure that a one hit wonder wouldn’t sellout everyone of their shows and always have an album on top of the billboard charts. More or less, what I’m trying to say is that there is no reason an artist’s craft should be confused with their product. There is no reason that one’s image should get into the way of what they are doing with their music. Of course with any music artist their image is a huge part of what they do, but their image doesn’t make billboard number one hit songs. Their image doesn’t make their album sell one million copies in one week. In the end, I’d hope that people would just sit down with me and listen to music, good music, and not judge it by the standards of what’s “cool” in the pop culture spectrum. After all, I like to think that one shouldn’t judge music by its album cover.

Congratulations AL’s All-Staters: Lexi Raygor (Viola I), Brian Williams (Vocal-Bass I), Seamus St. Clair-(Vocal-Tenor I), Jocelyn Gibler(Vocal-Alto I), Lucas Thallas (Trombone I), Shannon Holmes (Tenor Saxophone), Olivia Petersen (Clarinet III), Austin Farwell (Euphonium), Collin Dall (1st Alternate Tuba), Ashley Cross (2nd alternate Alto Saxophone), Mallory Huggins (Recalled Flute). And Congratulations to all those who auditioned.

Cartoon by Kevin Dickey

AL Varsity Volleyball: Lauren Meeker, Josie Thomas, Olivia Leisinger, Delaney Bolton, Michaela Kennedy, Sierra Nighswonger, Hannah Christensen, Kristina Lee, Jordan Gillenwater, Victoria Krohn, Chelsea Acosta, and Amber Michael for making it to state. Everyone is so proud of all your hard work. Mary Ann Hanusa for being elected as a state representative for Iowa.

The Echoes


Page Design by Danielle Hogsed


The Echoes Editors-in-Chief Danielle Hogsed Shanon Smith

Cartoon by Kevin Dickey

Copy Editor Sierra Nighswonger Business Manager Amber Michael Page Editors Danielle Hogsed (Opinion) Danielle Peabody (Feature) Brittany Rupp (News) Shanon Smith (Sports) Brian Williams (Entertainment) Advertising Taylor Bright Graphics and Cartoons Kevin Dickey Photographers Emily Koontz Christian Schlater Reporters Emmalee Adams Sarah Bach Arianne Boehme Devon Jefferson Kristin Molgaard Lauren Myers Mitchell Myers Suzanne Peterson Webmaster Elizabeth Beck Adviser Gerry Appel The Echoes is published weekly by the newspaper staff of Abraham Lincoln High School, and exists to serve as an open forum for the students, faculty, administration and community. All state and federal laws regarding the publications of student materials shall apply, and the Echoes will not publish materials which also fall under the guidelines established by the Council Bluffs Public Schools system, and are deemed libelous, obscene, or a material and substantial disruption to normal classroom activities. The views expressed are not those of the Council Bluffs Public Schools, faculty, or administration. Any student, faculty, or staff member wishing to contribute materials will need to submit a letter to the editor within deadline restriction; however, final publication is at the discretion of the staff. Letters to the editor are encouraged, and must be 400 words or less in length and signed; letters will be printed as received. Every attempt will be made to verify the authenticity of the author, and no anonymous letters will be published. Advertising will not be accepted for all products or services that are illegal for minors to possess or utilize. Advertisers wishing to reserve publication space should call 328-6481 ext.. 425.


Students at AL Participate

The Staff Discusses Involvement of Students Each day the hallways of AL are filled with multiple students going from one class to another. Many of these students have made the choice to participate in more than one activity. With sports, jobs, extracurricular activities, and Advanced Placement/Dual Credit classes, it seems like the students of AL do it all. Pluck out just one student from these crowded hallways and most likely it’s someone who is in yearbook, mock trial, student council, and the lacrosse team. The person standing behind them has probably been in 4-H for seven years, plays football, and is in the orchestra. No one can argue that it would be boring to go to a school in which everybody does just one thing or even nothing at all. By participating in more than one activity the students of AL have become more cultured and well-rounded. The more one chooses to participate, the more one can expect to be prepared for what’s to come in the future. Scholarship applications and college applications are two things that consume of the desks of most high school seniors every year. The activities that control the daily lives of students each day

will pay off in the future. In addition to college help, participating in multiple activities teaches one to multitask which will eventually pay off in future endeavors, whether they be military, jobs, travel, or whatever students choose to do after their time at AL expires. Involvement teaches punctuality and responsibility. When it comes time for students to go out into the world without mommy and daddy, those who chose to be involved in school will be well prepared and successful. Without being involved students would be bored. They would be stuck at home with nothing to do other than watch TV and play with their hamsters. Also, being involved gives one that chance to meet knew people, and make friends that could possibly last a lifetime. Being involved in school will make college classes easier. Why take a half day if classes? It would be easier and cheaper in the long run for students to knock out some college credit when they can. AL pays for dual credit classes taken through Iowa Western, so why not take them here for free, rather than wait one or two years and pay for them later? The Echoes staff is proud of the AL student body. We enjoy that one person isn’t afraid to do everything. It makes school interesting. We

are also proud to have a Runza Student of the Week on our staff. Sierra Nighswonger started on our staff this year. In addition to being our copy editor, she also plays on the Varsity Volleyball team, yearbook, and an honor student. Sierra is like many other students, participating in multiple activities. Students who don’t participate in activities have many excuses. Like they would rather be working or they don’t want to let their grades slip. But that’s not true. Students can always fit in extracurriculars around their work schedules, and homework can also be done around the schedules and on breaks at work. There are so many people who do everything. They set good examples for everyone else. They show the student body that being involved is fun, and that it’s possible to be busy and still do well in school. It’s students like these who make up the diverse student body of Abraham Lincoln High School. It’s cheesy, but without them we are the song without the words. A year without December. A pie without the filling. A school without diversity. The Echoes staff voted unanimously in favor of this editorial.

Showing Respect for the Flag By Danielle Hogsed

In 1814, Francis Scott Key sat down and wrote the lyrics to a song that is known today as “The Star Spangled Banner.” Key was in Chesapeake Bay to ensure the release of Dr. William Beanes. He was forced to remain in a ship overnight. The next morning he became so excited to see the American flag still flying that he write a poem to remember the event. For years the army and navy used this song, but it didn’t become the official national anthem until passed by Congress in 1931. This song is played at many events. Events such as the Super Bowl, and Lancers hockey game, and even high school pep rallies and football games. I have always been a member of the band, meaning that I have never been in the stands to hear what goes on as we play this song. The second AL vs. TJ game this year was an away game, so the band was not required to

play for pregame. For once, I was able to stand in the stands. I love being with the band, but I was really excited to be able to be in the stands while TJ’s band played the national anthem. I was so disappointed when I heard the crowd talking during the song or trying to see who can sing it the worst. During the pep rally I listened as the people standing behind me incorrectly put symbol crashes into the song. But I must say that one of my most disappointing school memories was last year’s graduation. I was playing the national anthem with the orchestra. We had just begun the song when a parent screamed that they loved their child and then the sound of the air horn followed. People today have shorter attention spans than we once had. But the national anthem lasts roughly two minutes. It’s not the attention spans that are causing students to not pay attention, it’s just disrespect. No one cares anymore. And I’ll even admit that I like to talk more than anything, and it takes a lot for me to shut my mouth. But when I hear that the national anthem is being played I always shut my mouth to listen, because it’s what’s right.

I know it sounds cheesy, but when I hear the national anthem, I think of my dad. From the day I was born I have been part of a family that is somehow involved in the government. For the longest time, my dad was in the military. He eventually gave that up for a contracting job for the CIA. I spend that time thinking about the people currently serving overseas. My dad risked everything. They are risking everything for us, and we repay them by talking during the one song that honors them. You don’t have to love this country. You don’t have to be in favor of this war. Barack Obama may not be your favorite person. But we live in America. We may not like the current situation that our country is in. But people are risking their lives for us. The least that we could do is shut our mouths for two short minutes. We all make mistakes. 2010 was a learning experience. 2011 is coming up soon, and it’s a time for new opportunities. In 2011 “The Star Spangled Banner” will be played in the gym of Abraham Lincoln High School. Some will listen, and some won’t. Which one will you be?



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The Echoes


Birth Control Type of Birth control

k o o L e d i s n I An

s e e B e h T d n at The Birds a



A matchstick-sized rod that is inserted in the arm to prevent pregnancy

Less than 1 pregnancy per 100 each year

Costs between $400 and $800 up front, but lasts up to three years

Safe, effective, and convenient Must be inserted by a health care provider

Birth Control Patch(Orthro Evra)

A small patch that sticks to your skin to prevent pregnancy

2-8 pregnancies per 100 each year

Costs about $15–$50 a month

Safe, effective, and convenient Easy to get with a prescription

Birth Control Pills

Take a pill each day to prevent pregnancy

2-8 pregnancies per 100 each year

Cost about $15–$50 each month

Safe, effective, and convenient Easy to get with a prescription

Birth Control Shot (Depo-Provera)

A shot in the arm that prevents pregnancy

2-8 pregnancies per 100 each year

Costs $35–$75 per injection, plus any exam fees

Birth Control Vaginal Ring(NuvaRing)

Safe, effective, and convenient Easy to get with a prescription Lasts for three months

A small ring you put in your vagina once a month for three weeks to prevent pregnancy

2-8 pregnancies per 100 each year

Costs about $15–$50 a month

Safe, effective, and convenient Easy to get with a prescription


Small, “T-shaped” device inserted into the uterus to prevent pregnancy

Less than 1 pregnancy per 100 each year

Male Condom

Worn on the penis Made of latex or plastic

15-25 pregnancies per 100 each year

A behavior that prevents pregnancy

Used continuously, abstinence is 100 percent effective in preventing pregnancy. It also prevents STDs


Everyone you know is doing it.


Devon Jefferson

At almost any high school in America there are boys and girls that are in relationships. Long term relationships, short term hook ups, there is some type of more than friendly contact between teens today. Yet more and more often schools like Abraham Lincoln are seeing the girls of their school on maternity leave. The statistics for premarital sex, and teen pregnancies are rising and continue to rise. This causes concerns amongst many regarding whether Abraham Lincoln is becoming a part of those statistics. If one were to take a look down Abraham Lincoln hallways they would see what goes on in any high school. Students are talking and being social, young couples publicly displaying their attraction to each other. Yet now it seems that another normal sight is pregnant teen girls and their partners. “When I see girls that are pregnant I think it’s a beautiful thing that they are trying to raise the kid and of course I believe everyone

has a right to life,” said Loraine Duitsman , a Post secondary counselor. Students like Stephanie Brockman ‘13 feels that her pregnancy is just another part of everyday life. Brockman just recently had her child and plans to raise the child. Brockman is part of a small group of student; about one per every 70 female students at AL is pregnant. Even though that seems like a daunting statistic, in a school of approximately 1,400 students that equals less than one percent of the total student body. However pregnancy isn’t the only consequence of unprotected premarital sexual activity; STDs (Sexually Transmitted Disease) are a growing concern for many teens and adults that are taking notice to the subject. “We had a case where STDs that we haven’t seen in years have reappeared in huge numbers and are spreading,” said Marilyn Knauss school nurse. Though physical consequences are the most noticeable, emotional and physiological effects can be just as damaging. Even though the average female teen is capable of carrying child it doesn’t mean that they are emotionally,

and intellectually ready to go through all that comes with the packed deal a child brings with them. “Whether the person is male or female they can be emotionally damaged, one person usually has more invested in the relationship than the other and it doesn’t work out,” said Laura Ahl, child development teacher. Some feel that society itself has created a confinement that boxes in young teens into childhood for a longer time and that makes it harder for them to become parents. “The problem with teen pregnancy is embedded in our social construct. Society has extended childhood so most teens are no longer independent and capable of caring for a baby,” said Kelly Frascht, sociology teacher. Walking around the school one can see posters advertising abstinence, cards that offer contraception options and free STD testing are available in the office. Yet the level of education about sex is still at a bare minimum. To help fix the problem all have to come together to be proactive, but for now all we can do is offer support.


Birth Control Implant(Implanon)


Photo illustration by Shanon Smith


Think about the facts. Over half of the people over 17 are still virgins. Don’t believe everything you hear. People exaggerate and lie about their sexual encounters. In the end, it doesn’t matter who’s telling the truth or not. The only truth that matters is what’s best for you.

MYTH Sex is the most important thing to a teen.

FACT Everyone is different, no one likes to be stereotyped. Sure, it’s important. Everyday teens have to deal with hormones and temptation. But that doesn’t mean she or he values someone’s companionship, trust, friendship, or love more than sex.

Costs between $500 and $1,000 up front, but lasts up to 12 years

Safe, effective, and long lasting Must be inserted by a health care provider

Cost about $1 each, but are sometimes available for free

Prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted infection Safe, effective, and easy to get

Abstinence is a personal choice and has no cost.

Abstinence has no medical or hormonal side effects and is free


By The Numbers Currently 46.8% of all high school students report they have had sexual intercourse.

Nationwide, 14.3% of high school students had had sexual intercourse with four or more persons during their life Fifty-two percent (52%) of teens report that they have sexually active friends

Three in ten teenage girls (31%) become pregnant at least once before they reach the age of 20 – more than 750,000 teen pregnancies a year. Eight in ten of these pregnancies are unintended and 81% are to unmarried teens. A majority of both girls and boys who are sexually active wish they had waited. Of those who have had sex, more than one half of teen boys (55%) and the majority of teen girls (70%) said they wish they had waited longer to have sex. Nineteen (19) million new STD infections occur each year, almost half of them among young people ages 15 to 24.

Nationwide, 87.9% of high school students had ever been taught about AIDS or HIV infection in school. One in two sexually active youth will contract an STD by age 25. Facts and statistics gathered from myths.html;;


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The Echoes

Students Cope With Cyber Bullying

Social Networking’s Dark Side Creates Angst For Teens depend on how much you hang out and spend time together, and really knowing them." Other than one’s thinking that cyberbullying, is just plain old name calling, some students think people can be hurt by much more than hurtful words. Facebook, Twitter, and Myspace keep “Yes [I think people hurt students and teachers one another online], they do up to date on numerous it by break ups, threats, namethings, but no matter how calling, and much more,” said many social networks one Etchison. uses, social networking Cyber bullying happens in can be both helpful and many different forms online, hurtful for different but still is hurtful and leaves reasons. Networks such as negative affects on the victims. Facebook and Myspace can If reporting the person on the help reconnect old friends, site is not a great result and end get the word out about to the bullying and the bullying events, and many other enters school, students dealing things. On the other hand, with the cyber bullying can get despite all that a site may help from the school staff and offer, people become hurt administration. from negative comments, "That can be a big problem, stories, and all around just [cyber bullying], first thing cyber bullying. they should do is tell a parent, “[The social if there is a way to remove networking sites] are a or block the person they great way to connect with should, also, they should stop people you do not see a posting back and forth, they lot and family and friends can take other steps, but that that live far away, such as is something you should be grandparents, can see their so careful of," said Crawford. grand kids," said Sharon When on the internet, students may take on an alternate persona and say things they wouldn’t normally say. The internet “Remember that a person is Crawford, guidance hiding behind a virtual wall." counselor. "The sites are can be used as a device for targeting other students and could potentially be very harmful. Both helpful and hurtful Photo Illustration by Christian Schlater assessable, instantaneous, in different ways, social they connect to the latest networking sites have huge technology, and they are people need to exercise extreme care when popularity among students and teachers at always right there." student a future job. Certain sites gain popularity from students "It needs to be used responsibly," said using networking sites, I worry that for some school. If one has questions or help pertaining due to all that the sites offer. One student Crawford. “High schoolers do not think that people when you post or say something, you to cyber bullying, students can check the thinks that the popularity comes from the site potential employers look at these sites, you do not have to look at them in the eye, you are site that they are using for answers, such being accessible and entertaining. have to be careful because they can look at the not interacting with them, it is not right or as Facebook and Myspace. If students are fair because, your not able to read their body victims of cyber bullying or need help due “I use Facebook and MyYearbook,” said photos and language being posted." Ella Etchison ‘13. “ I think the sites are popular Many things such as language and photos language so you do not know if their being to the fact of the bullying being brought to because you can keep in touch with people you being posted can hurt one who looks for a mean or sarcastic,” said Crawford. " Some school, students can talk to a trusted school do not see or have not seen in years, also the job in the future, but other things can also assume "friends" are real friends because they staff member, a counselor, or even a school gaming, [the sites offer to being able to], talk be affected, such as hurting other classmates, are called friends on Facebook. Friendships administrator. Lauren Myers

to friends, and figuring out what you can do with friends who do not have a cell phone.” Despite the popularity of the sites, some think students should watch out for what they post on these sites. Certain things such as photos and the language being used can cost a

which is known as cyber bullying. Plus, one who is called a "friend" online may not be a true friend, resulting in the fact that you become hurt by not knowing what the so called “friend” is using your information for. “I think [the sites] can be very hurtful,

Black Friday Draws in Eager Customers Many Rush to Stores For Limited Shopping Specials Sarah Bach

When looking for sales, many people realized that it’s hard to find them, but there was a special day dedicated to the bargain shoppers of this world--Black Friday! In the United States, Black Friday is a major holiday that many people enjoy because of the discounted prices. Participation was high because of the amount of great sales. Some people like the sales but others are bothered by the crowds and competition. “I like the cheap prices,” said Jeremy Dawson science teacher. “I just don’t like fighting people for (the items on sale).” Some people, who are on budgets, thought about what they would like to purchase the most. Some thought they should get the more expensive products when they’re on sale while others got the products they like most, either way the sales are better then usual.

“(Last year) I went out at 3:30 (a.m.), one time (for a Black Friday sale),” said Brice Johnson ‘11. “All I bought was a snickers bar, for a quarter.” When buying items, a great shopper found really great bargains. Many became excited especially when the item is what they most wanted. Whether an item is free or at a low price, Black Friday is a great way to save money and to get the items you like. “I like to get games on Black Friday,” said Haley Tech ’12. “One time I got a free Rock Band game.” When working on Black Friday, companies make big profits. Big profits came from the variety of items offered at

low prices. “A huge amount of people (go shopping on Black Friday),” said Matt Nohr ‘11, Best Buy employee. “Two-thirds of the business is made in the holiday season, from Black Friday to Christmas.” When looking for a certain item, one may happen to bump into others, as a result to the busy holiday, accidents

happened. “One time I knocked a lady over,” said Dawson. “It was an accident, she ran into me.” Black Friday is for those who love to shop and for people looking to find items at cheap prices. Whether one enjoys Black Friday or not, students as well as teachers got excited over the holiday.

For further coverage over the holidays... Check us out online!

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Sarah Bach


I t’ s ll


Entertainment e v i s r t to G S d n i ve a B



The Echoes

Photos by Christian Schlater and Emily Koontz

I-Dosing: Music Provides a ‘Digital High’ Sounds Mimic the Effects of Popular Common Drugs Micthell Myers There are new frontiers, ones to be discovered and ones that are just starting to bloom in front of our eyes. A frontier not so new, the quest for the perfect drug. The perfect Utopia of happiness; the great escape. The perfect feeling of euphoria, a place for the biggest trip you’ll ever see, or feel. Places where rainbows and dancing mushrooms make you smile and drift through clouds, flying high. Is this Utopia reserved for the troubled, the pained, the insane, the depressed, or those just looking for a high? Luckily for those fighting the drug war, no such drug exists yet. Technology is now assisting in those in quest for the perfect drug. I-Dosers, or binaural beats, are audio tracks that can make you feel anything for the feeling of true love or the worst the pain you’ll ever experience in your life. “(I) have done, Out of body, Gates of Hades, and LSD,” said Austin Thonvold ’13 “(Out of Body) made me feel, sleepy, drowsy, I wasn’t quiet myself.” Thovold added, “If

you really want to do idosers then try them.” An out of body experience is some side effects of certain drugs, but a few years ago it being endused by an audio track might been unheard of. This new, or old news, could be terrifying or amazing to the student body. Most drugs carry a risk of dependency to them, addiction. “Maybe (addiction) is possible if you find something you like and use it as an alternative to a real drug.,” said Kelly McElroy ‘13. Most drugs are addictive because of the feeling they convey. Not the smell or how it’s ingested, shot up, smoked, or dropped. No extensive research on I-Dosers possibility of addiction has been conducted. Gates of Hades; an intense pain inducing track. First love; that feeling of butterflies and racing teen hearts. LSD; a hallucinogen drug. Pot, Marijuana; a drug used to get a long buss or dizzy feeling. All I-Dosers. In the near future will this be considered a drug, or still just an audio file? Either way placebo affects or not, it is technology is now assisting those in the quest of the “perfect drug”.

The use of I-Dosing is on the rise, and sometimes one might find a student ‘under the influence’ during class. Photo Illustration by Christian Schlater

Entertainment 10 AL a Great Place to Show Off Fashion The Echoes

Page Design by Brian Williams

Students See School As a Forum For the Latest Apparel Kristin Molgaard

Isabella Taylor ‘13 strives to create her own individul style, sporting unique items of clothing and combinations of them.

Fashion trends tend to come and go as they please and as people get sick of them. They go through the stages of popularity from popular to ‘has-been’. They get thrown to the side and new fads come around to take their spots. Some styles are influenced by the most recent Jersey Shore episodes like the sky high “Snooki Poof,” to the people we surround ourselves with depending what you like to wear or just feel comfortable in. “I like the whole grunge look,” said Isabella Taylor ’13. “It just depends on my mood, I tend to base my outfits on my mood and music mostly.” These fashion statements tend to be created though some are just coming back into style like Converse and high tops in which our own parents probably wore in their high school years just as the students of AL are nowadays. Some styles like bell bottoms and poofy cloud like hair are some of the few that seem to be staying back in our parents day. Many people do care about what is going on in the fashion world and even what people throughout school wear daily, for some that may not be the case at all. It all depends on what a person’s preferences are in clothing and style. “I don’t notice fashion trends from the students I teach to the people who are around me,” said Brian Moritz, science teacher. “Fashion waved bye to me years ago. I pick out my shirts and ties that’s about it.” Although not everybody notices fashion statements, it is quite apparent throughout AL, that each person has their very own style that sets them apart from the rest of the school and quite possibly the rest of the world. Everyone is their own individual person and has their own individual style.

Isabella Taylor ‘13 enjoys the”grunge” look, often basing her outfits on bands and music groups.

s e o h c S W E E I V e E Th M O V I E R Photo by Christian Schlater

Photo by Christian Schlater


Saw 3D

Paranormal Activity 2 Social Network Shanon Smith

Kevin Dickey

As the holiday season approaches, the idea of the perfect movie starts to change. Everybody wants to see something that is going to touch their hearts, make them smile and leave them feeling inspired as they depart from the movie theaters. Clint Eastwood, however, had an entirely different approach for his movie Hereafter. To summarize Hereafter all that really comes to mind is the word melancholy. The movie is just sad. The many plot lines entangle around one simple theme- death. Honestly, there is no way to make death seem happy, and although the ending doesn’t leave you sobbing from your seat, you can’t help but be depressed from it. The movie is good, not great, but I think they picked the wrong season to release it. This is the time to feel uplifted, we need a movie to call us to action not leave us sitting in our seats thinking about death.

A lot of movies completely disappear of the radar or just end with no tieing up loose end like Friday the 13th or Halloween. The last movie in the Saw series has finally come out. In this movie Jigsaw’s master plan is supposed to be known. In the beginning of the movie Dr. Gordan is seen crawling from his test. Personally I feel the movie is fast paced for a Saw movie. The traps are also so-so. A lot of tension doesn’t build until the very last 20 minutes of the movie. Saw movies are all about suspension (of flesh or emotion). Like most 3D movies this one had unneeded flying objects i.e. flying guts, intestines and bones. The acting in the movie was superb, but. I wouldn’t say the movie is Oscar worthy. And the last part of the movie, the ending, is a let down for me. I wanted to see some epic last test, but alas I did not. Overall I would give the movie a slightly above average rating.

When one pays for a scary movie, they’re paying for more than just a night out. They’re paying for an experience and even more so a service. They’re paying to be scared and Paranormal Activity 2 does just that. In the previews for Paranormal Activity 2 it seemed like it was just going to be another scary movie, much like the first. Just another family being terrorized by some demon. However little did I suspect that it was going to be a prequel to the first Paranormal Activity. It expands on the story of how the demon came to posses the family, and what the family has to do to get rid of it. SPOILER ALERT: they have to kill the baby boy, Hunter. Now I won’t go much farther than that, however I will say that the ending of the prequel left me with the same feeling that the first movie did. A feeling that left me sleeping with my lights on, and jumping at any sound that I heard beyond the bedroom door.

Facebook is the one of the most viewed websites in the world, second only to Google. The internet giant has over 400 million users, and is worth billions, but how did it grow from just a college network to a global phenomenon? The Social Network spins a fictitious tale of a collage age Mark Zuckerberg, a pretentious and condescending computer programmer. While this story may captivate general audiences who question where Facebook came from, anyone who has ever tried computer programming will be quick to dismiss the tale of the twenty-some things in a college dorm playing drinking games and writing numerous lines of code. If you are looking for a modern day rags to riches tale akin to Cinderella, The Social Network might be for you. If your looking for a true to life story of how just exactly how Facebook was made, you will be sorely disappointed.

Sierra Nighswonger

Mitchell Myers

The Echoes



Page Design by Shanon Smith

Qwest Center Welcomes Tennis Stars AL Players in Line To Attend Sporting Event in December Emily Koontz & Suzanne Peterson Andy Roddick, Pete Sampras, and the Bryan brothers. Three names you will most likely hear within the next month or so if you have not already. On Dec 17, these legendary tennis players will take over the Qwest Center in Omaha, Nebraska to play singles and doubles matches. Several members of the Abraham Lincoln tennis team, as well as the coaches, will be in attendance for this event. In addition, Roddick, Sampras and the Bryan brothers will join local celebrities, athletes, and other members of the community for a fanfriendly game of mixed doubles. Followed by a doubles game, Roddick and Sampras ( t h e

former No.1 players in the world) will play the world’s No. 1 doubles team: the Bryan brothers. Last, but not least, there will be a singles match with Roddick vs. Sampras. The evening will also have a halftime performance by The Bryan Brothers Band featuring David Baron and Bob and Mike Bryan. After receiving an e-mail about the upcoming matches in Omaha, tennis coaches Bryan Pregon and Myron Wilder decided the experience would be a good one for the Abraham Lincoln tennis team. “I think Roddick will win a close match against Pete Sampras,” said Wilder. “I think

Sampras and Roddick [however] will win against the Bryan brothers.” Andy Roddick, born in Nebraska, is the former No. 1 player in the world. Roddick is also well-known for winning the Jr. US Open and Australian Open titles in 2000. Despite his tremendous dedication to the game of tennis, he has also established the Andrew S. Roddick Foundation, which is dedicated to “Serving Children Today For

Tomorrow.” This foundation has raised over $10 million and continues to grow. Roddick is currently ranked in the world’s top ten and currently holds the record for breaking serve (155 mph). “I like Andy Roddick the most,” said Dan Hopper ’11, when asked his favorite player of the four. “I’ve seen a lot of good high school tennis in the past year and I want to see how good the pros are compared to us.” Pete Sampras, known as “The King of Swing” began playing tennis at seven years old. He joined the professional tour in 1988 at 16 years old and won his first pro game in 1990. In 1993,

he attained the No. 1. raking in the world with 14 grand slam titles and 64 single titles. For six consecutive years, Sampras held the No. 1 world ranking for men’s tennis. In addition, he also contributes $100 to the ‘Aces for Charity’ for each aced serve he hits during his tournament play. Born three minutes apart, Bob and Mike Bryan have been in sync ever since, both on and off the court. Bob, the 6’4” left-handed player, won the 2010 U.S Open double title. Mike, the 6’3” right-handed player, won two men’s double titles. The Bryan brothers have won more than $14 million in combined p r i z e money. They are

the world’s No. 1 doubles team. “I was the ball boy a couple years ago when Serena was here,” said Alex Crowl ’12. “Andy was born here, he comes back, and he’s a Husker fan. I think it’s cool that he comes back here.” You have the former No. 1 singles players going against the No. 1 doubles team. Also, two dollars from every ticket will be donated to the “Shine the light on hunger” program. For more information, go to


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The Echoes

Winter e Sports dPreview Sport Previews by Devon Jefferson


Photo by Emily Koontz

Boys and girls basketball season is already in full swing, with both teams playing actual games weeks before thanksgiving break. Both teams are focusing on having good seasons and it seams for both programs they have very high sights for this season. “People look at us this year and underestimate what we can do but I think that this year we will be able to play up against all our competition and we plan to go out with a bang,” said Nolan Webster ‘11. However the girls plan to ride out this season and go wherever it takes them. “Don’t get me wrong I want to win, but I don’t want the desire to win to get into the way of me actually enjoying this last season of basketball for me,” said Amie Vorthman ‘11.

Photo by Danielle Peabody

Wrestling The wrestling team is grappling the preseason full on to start preparing for the big goals they have this season. With the season kicking off very soon for them, conditioning and hardnosed training are in full effect for the team. Yet all of the wrestlers are taking on the hard work with the mindset of getting better. “My main goal for this season is to get better and compete at the level I know I can and try to make it to state,” said Jake Leggett ‘13. The wrestling team can be found after school at AL in the old temporary classroom near the gym.

Bowling This upcoming season the bowling team is preparing to tear down the lanes, and knock down any and every pin in their way. The season kicked off on November 15 and members of the team plan to get together so they can start preparing for the season and hold tryouts. This season the bowling team is focusing on being the best of the best and making their players better. This year the team has a lot of talent and it will be even harder to make the team. “I hope I can make the team because I want to get better than I am and be able to win against our competition,” said Matt Nohr ‘11. Everyday after school the bowling team practices are held at Thunderbowl bowling alley.

The swim team is also planning to dive into the waters this season and make a big splash on the competition. This year, all three schools will be combined into one big team and will compete and practice at Lewis Central high school. Head coach Adam Moon has high expectations for the team this year. “We have very high goals for our swimmers this year we expect to qualify in every event, a number of school records should fall, and we hope to finish in the top ten at the state competition,” said Moon. Practices are every day after school as well morning practices are on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.

Photo by Christian Schlater


December 2010 - Issue 2  

This is the December 2010 issue of The Echoes newspaper at ALHS in Council Bluffs, Iowa

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