Page 1

Issue 2| Volume 118 September 2017 1205 Bonham St, Council Bluffs, Iowa 51503

| Echoing Vigorously, Justly, and without Prejudice | @ALHSJournalism

New clubs started for the new year Cassie Davis Reporter

Tayonna Thomas Reporter

Chess club Creative Writing Club

Battle of the Books Club

Amusement by Music Club

Clubs are a big way to be involved in school. There’s new ones to join and there’s older ones to join. Whether you’re looking for a workout kind of club such as the Weightlifting or looking for a beauty club like Cosmetic, Abraham Lincoln has a lot of clubs to offer. “There are going to be many new clubs this year,” Century 21 Program Coordinator Julia Hartnett said. “We will have Harry Potter club with Ms. Reckling, Creative Writing club with Ms. Dowell, Tennis Intramurals with Mr. Pregon and Mr. Wilder, Culinary Club with Ms. Struebing, and Crochet club with Ms. VanHessche. All of the clubs listed above are funded by the 21st Century Learning Community Center Grant. In collaboration with teachers, we together, get the clubs and activities going!” Science teacher Dan Whaley’s club, Ted Talks club, is still a work in progress. To get the club started, Whaley will need to have a Skype interview with a person from Ted Talks, telling them about who he is and why it is he wants to start up the club. In the Ted Talks club, you would be able to do what a person from a Ted Talks presentation does. “I would be the facilitator,” chemistry teacher Mr. Whaley said. “There’s a

guide book, if you will, with thirteen steps; researching and creating your own little mini Ted Talk.” Lynx Academy science teacher Kyle Gann’s club, Amusement by Music club, will be held on Wednesdays in room A002 starting at 3:15. In this club, you’ll be able to share the music you like with everyone and also try out different music. “They [the students] will be submitting song requests,” Lincoln Academy science teacher Mr. Gann said. “They will be coming up with themes each week to kinda give us direction. They will be analyzing music, communicating and collaborating with other members of the club for what they liked about a song, what they didn’t like, why they think they didn’t like it or did.” Trent Kerger and Jacob Salladay are the chess club duo; they meet up in either Mr. Kerger’s room, B214, or in Mr. Salladay’s room, B214. In chess, they play chess and even go to a few tournaments throughout the year. “A couple students asked him [Mr. Kerger] about doing chess,” math teacher Mr. Salladay said. “He was pretty familiar with the game, he played it a lot. We both really enjoyed it and so he started the club, and really got into it.” If you’re looking for a club to join, whether it’s one of the newer clubs or if it’s a club that already started, any club you join will be glad to have another member.

Charges arise against Superintendent Murillo Christina Beck

A&E Editor t the start of the school year of 201718, the Council Bluffs Community School District gained a new superintendent, Dr. Vickie Murillo. Murilo worked during the summer to connect and support the district. Unanimously voted as the next Council Bluffs Community School District in order to succeed superintendent Dr. Martha Bruckner, Murillo instantly took steps


ALHS Echoes Snapchat

to connect with the families of the district as well as the students. In documents sent to the Echoes by the Council Bluffs Community School District spokesperson Diane Ostrowski, it was stated that three allegations were made against Murillo by a former Kansas City Public School employee against the Kansas City Public Schools, and two individuals. The petition was filed with the Circuit Court of Jackson County, Missouri at Kansas City. These allega-

Follow ALHS Echoes on Twitter! Like ALHS Echoes on Facebook!

tions include, employment discrimination of race and/or national origin, employment discrimination, and retaliation for whistleblowing and wrongful termination. The civil suit seeks more than $75,000 in damages from Murillo, the Kansas City Public Schools and Mary Laffey, a district employee. Troy Arthur, president of the school boards issued a comment to the Omaha World Herald: “We fully expect a positive resolution to this matter. Since Dr. Murillo

has arrived in Council Bluffs, she has proven to be the competent and capable leader we thought she would be.” The lawsuit was brought forward by former Kansas City principal, Thomas Herrera. A case management conference is set for December 18, 2017 according to online court records. A statement from Murillo was sent to the AL and TJ journalism staffs. “I want the Bluffs Community School District’s students, faculty, parents and

residents to know that the allegations being made against me are not true. About two years ago, Kansas City Public schools hired a third party law firm to conduct a full investigation on these false allegations. After a thorough and diligent investigation it was concluded that no evidence of wrongdoing was found. Working for the Kansas City Public schools for over 20 years is something I value and take pride in. While I don’t understand the motive of this former employee

of the Kansas City Public school district, I am confident in the ability of the Kansas City Public Schools’ legal team to defend against this frivolous lawsuit which has yet to demonstrate any evidence or show any merit, but rather simply makes false allegations. My job is to stay focused on all of the good work that is being done here in the Council Bluffs Schools and I will not let these false allegations distract from our work here on behalf of students and their success.”

September 28

October 6

October 13

Varsity Swimming Dual at Kirn

Blood Drive

AL vs. Sioux City Editor | Christina Beck


September 2017

Kylee Short | Editor

Former educator using experience as new SAM Sarah King

This school year we are welcoming Derek Schloesser to Abraham Lincoln High school as our new School Administration Manager (SAM.) The former substitute teacher and paraprofessional educator started working as the SAM about two weeks before the school year began. Accepting the position was a big leap for Schloesser, but he is excited to see where it takes him. “It was kind of a tough decision, because I liked substitute teaching and being in a classroom,” Schloesser said. “The advance in rank was nice, and I really missed the Kirn kids I had that are now

high school kids. I thought going into an administrative role would help me to help them.” The SAM position is an important asset in the efficiency of the school, and comes with an abundance of responsibilities. Schloesser must oversee all of the nonteaching staff, school-wide repairs, as well as directing technology, budgetary, and disciplinary issues. Part of being the SAM is interacting with kids, and Schloesser can use his experience as a substitute teacher to make his students feel more comfortable. “It’s been pretty beneficial because I can’t say how well my predecessor did with kids, but the majority of juniors down have had me in some form in class, whether

Burke High School.” Schmedding takes a lot of interest in sports and other activities, as she enjoys interacting and working with the students. “I try to go to all the events that I can make it to,” said Schmedding. Addit ionally, Schmedding is a huge fan of the Cyclones, as well as anything having to do with fashion. She has two cats, as well as a son, who is now one and a half years old. Kathleen Schmedding describes her job as interesting. As a counselor, she has a lot of things to get done in

one day. “I’m doing lots of things in a day, meeting with teachers, meeting with students. I’m always being challenged, never doing the same thing all the time. My passion is with high school,” says Schmedding. A new year, a new counselor. Counselors, teachers, and students alike are settling in and building relationships as the school year progresses. It is important that we all wish new faces a warm welcome, and assist each other in anyway possible in order to kick off another great school year.


Photo by Sarah King

as a para or substitute teacher, so having that familiarity is nice. Kids feel comfortable coming to me because I’ve known them for years,” Schloesser said. On top of the responsibilities previously mentioned, the SAM is also in charge of managing the calendar for the ALHS principal, Bridgette Bellows, to ensure she can spend valuable time with the student body and the education department. “The SAM is a vital person to the school, Bellows said. “We would not be able to function the way we do without that position. I would be in charge of many more of the management items of a school which would take away from my ability to work with teachers and kids.”


Outside of work, Schloesser values time with his family, and bonding over movies and music. “In my free time, my family and I go to a lot of live concerts,” Schloesser said. “We usually try to go to about 200 a year, so one every weekend. Over the summer we hit up a lot of music festivals and travel. I’m also a movie buff, and want to try and start a film club for after school, where we can watch movies and dissect them and talk about the themes.” Schloesser is still adjusting to the new role, learning names and working hard. The new SAM will be busy handling both school and administration duties, such as chaperoning homecoming, and supervising football games.

A.L. graduate comes back as counselor Aidan Morgan Reporter


s the 201718 school year begins, students and staff alike begin to settle in to the new schedule of school. As students come and go, staff do as well. Last year, counselor Ginger Morgan retired from Abraham Lincoln. This year, in order to replace Morgan, AL hired a new counselor, Kathleen Schmedding. She is in charge of assisting students with last names starting with Gr-O, as well as building relationships

with teachers, students, and other staff/counselors. Schmedding is an AL graduate, who went on to Iowa State for her bachelor’s degree, and then to UNO for her graduate degree. “I feel like I’ve come full circle... I’m really excited to be back here,” said Schmedding. After graduating from UNO, she moved on to both teach and counsel at multiple schools across Omaha. “I was a school counselor for five years at Omaha McMillan middle school, and a high school teacher for six years at Omaha

Photo by Aidan Morgan

Changes in curriculum affecting Kirn Middle School Amanda Lewis Reporter


iddle Schools a round Council Bl u f f s have been changing the ways kids are learning and the way teachers are teaching due to technology, other people in their schools, and always hiring and firing teachers. Some-

times the ways of teaching and learning do not change but more often than not, they do. This year, Kirn Middle School is not only teaching according to the Iowa Standards, but also their new title. “Kirn is different this year,” said Kirn language arts teacher, Nichole McIntosh. “As we became an International Baccalaureate candidate.” This program will allow students to have varying

qualifications for entry into high school and possibly even college. The students from middle schools oftentimes wish that they could change something. Whether it’s about what they are learning or how they are learning about something. The teachers of Kirn Middle School would also like to change how their students are learning or what they are learning. Nowadays schools have been using new technology to

teach students. Some more than others and some less. “I think that it’s a slippery slope,” Kirn history teacher, Jessica Formanek, said. “I think that if you have the technology available to you, it could be used as a crutch, like any technology.” These new ways of teaching can enable students to be more prepared for the future. When it comes to understanding the material, teachers think that students gener-

ally understand what is being taught. “I think most understand the content,” Kirn math teacher Jeff Boe, said. “I fear that they don’t understand how we are trying to teach them good work habits.” Understanding what is being taught is a skill that is needed in higher levels of education and further. Students are sometimes under a lot of pressure in the school environment. This may or may

not be because of the want to get good grades. “I am not sure if it’s pressure from grades,” Boe said. “Parents seem to be more involved in middle school than in high school.” Parents being involved seems to help students by reminding them that a certain project is due the following week or that something is due that day and need to turn it in.

just as Ellefson did. During the last five years, Ellefson took the orchestra on two tours, trips to Disney World and Chicago. They overall did extremely well at concerts while Ellefson was teaching. Alex Carlson, a senior at Abraham Lincoln, enjoyed that Ellefson “always wanted to try new things.” Carlson has been involved in orchestra since 4th grade and hopes to continue playing violin while in college. Some of Carlson’s favorites part of orchestra included playing difficult music and learning fun new parts.

Ellefson said he will miss “the instruments and students” most from teaching orchestra. Black previously taught in Red Oak, Iowa. He taught quite the series of different classes while there, such as band, guitar, general music, and even computer technology. Black has also come to teach at AL as a guest teacher, stating, “I have always loved the teachers here.” Black isn’t the first in his family to embark down the path of being a music teach-

er, his father taught music for over 10 years. This sparked his own fascination with music, Black said it intrigued him that “music is always changing.” Black hopes to bring the orchestra to the community and a fun, quality experience for his students. While Carlson hopes Black will “push the orchestra like it hasn’t been pushed before.” Feel free to give Black a warm welcome to Abraham Lincoln. You can find him located in the C wing either in his office or in the choir room during fifth hour.

A warm welcome for the new orchestra teacher Sophia Cooper Reporter

Photo by Sophia Cooper

In the 2017-18 school year, Abraham Lincoln High School is gaining some changes in our facility. One of these changes is in our music department, gaining a new orchestra teacher, Daniel Black. Previously, before Black, Elmer Ellefson was Abraham Lincoln’s and Kirn Middle School’s orchestra teacher for the past five years. Black will also be making the daily driving commute between Abraham Lincoln and Kirn

3 Arts & Entertainment Doorly Zoo hosting baby snow leopard Christina Beck | A&E Editor

Tatum Schulenberg Reporter


new add i t i o n has been added to the Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium recently, and this member has caught everyone’s attention. A female baby snow leopard was born in early June and is currently staying in the cat complex. The zoo is now building a new habitat for endangered species, which will be placed in the Asian Highlands exhibit. The new exhibit should open in 2019. “Snow leopards are currently the victims of a de-

creasing population trend and are officially considered endangered,” Zoo Crew volunteer Riley Pope said. “Sadly, this is mainly due to poaching.” This baby snow leopard has been the first since 2006 and this species has been put on the endangered list since 1972 to help protect the decrease of their population, according to “Not speaking for the zoo, but from my position as the Zoo Crew volunteer, it is amazing having the snow leopards, because of how near extinction they are. One of the things I tell the public a lot about is how conscious we as the people of the world need to be of conservations,” Pope said. The loss of habitat and prey, poaching for fur and bones, and retaliation kill-

September 2017

ings by local pastoral communities are some causes of why the snow leopard is endangered, according to “They are critically allusive cats and they are not aggressive. They are very shy and there is still a lot more we can learn about them,” Arnica Luther, Snow Leopard Trust program office manager, told the Echoes. The Snow Leopard Trust program works with 5 out of 12 snow leopard range companies. “We work currently in Kyrgyz Republic, China, India, Pakistan, and Mongolia. We work in 5 of 6 nations that have the highest snow leopard concentration of population,” Luther said. Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium is part of the Species Survival Plan,

and was part of 49 snow leopard breeding and transfer plans worldwide . Nine litters were born, including the zoo’s cub. “The zoo is all about conservation, and this is the first baby snow leopard that we have had in years, so she is pretty popular,” said Karson Sachs, a Zoo Crew volunteer. The zoo has a special opportunity to have the snow leopard stay with them, due to how rare it is. “I am super excited to have a new addition to the zoo family! It is always a big event when we have a birth at the zoo. For me personally, I get excited when we have an animal birth that is notably endangered. It all ties into the performance of conservation and preservation that I feel we should all be aware of,” Pope said.

Photo by Riley Pope

Spirit week gets everyone involved Spirit Week

would represent. They ultimately decided on the theme of Space Jam, which Monday - Beach Day gave people a chance to have an out of this world experience. Tuesday - Time Warp “The theme was super creative this Wednesday - Jersey Day year and I thought it was extremely fun getting to dress up,” Thursday - Cowboys vs. junior Gabe Albertus said. Aliens Over the past few years the homecomFriday - Spirit Day ing olympics have been a popular activity. This year’s lineup of Kylee Short dance teams consisted of the Reporter groups Running with Scissors, Tune Squad, Give us tudent Council has Freedom, The Sweet Heat been working since and Boyz N Motion. In orearly August to put der to advance to the finals, the homecoming dance toeach team competed in varigether and figure out how ous competitions, including to decorate and what days the Rocket Relay, Plunger Photo by Maddie Walton of the week each spirit day


Crawl, Worm Races, Shaving Cream Worm stick, and the Lip Sync Battle. In the end, the overall winner was Give Us Freedom, followed by Running with Scissors. Another part of homecoming that gives the student body a chance to participate in is the homecoming court. This year’s freshman representatives were Raquel Hawley and Chase Richie. “When I heard my name I was super excited,” Hawley said. “I’m so happy I get to represent the freshmen.” The sophomore representatives were Bailey Peabody and Miguel Rodriguez. The junior class is being represented by Darby Thomas and Caleb Fitch. “It’s really exciting being able to represent my grade a lot and it’s really cool that people from my grade think

of me during these types of things,” Thomas said. The senior homecoming court girls for this year were Hayley Hartman, Shaan Beaman, Haley Deal, Hope Riche, Cailey Shaa, and Macy Wheeler. The boys were Zayne Dankiw, Tristan Arrick, Spencer Decker, Preston Fant, Reed Willadsen, and David Moritz. After voting was over, students elected Hayley Hartman as queen and Preston Fant as king. Homecoming has shown how A.L. can come together and create something memorable for everybody. “I really enjoy how everybody is in a good mood during homecoming week,” said sophomore Jacob James. “My favorite memory was seeing friends and spending time with the people I care about.”

local hero of Queens, New York. Robert Downey Jr. makes quite a few appearances in the movie as Iron Man, attempting to guide the 15-year-old Spider-man. He acts as a role model to Parker and Iron Man helps to fish Parker out of quite a few problematic situations that parker manages to dig himself into. Recently it was released that one of the released movie posters where Spiderman is laying down with headphones on was actually Tom Holland sleeping on the set in between takes. This wasn’t in fact a creative genius, but instead a welltaken photo set with a great background. Although this

poster wasn’t planned, it’s still a well-liked poster by many. The after-credits scene that Marvel has held a tradition on has held high in this movie as well. Starring Chris Evans as Steve Rogers/Captain America, the end scene was hilarious and different - it could give them an out, but many hope that they will continue the tradition. Filled with shocking twists and intense action, this movie held up to the standards held by the people for a Marvel superhero film. It continues the story that Marvel is unraveling. Spider-man: Homecoming is a great watch and worth every second of it.

Spider-man: Homecoming movie review Christina Beck A&E Editor


Graphic by Tayonna Thomas

s a fan of the Marvel series, “Spiderman:Homecoming” was an exciting new film that I was ecstatic to see. Knowing that this film stars Tom Holland, Robert Downey Jr., and Zendaya, only made my excitement peak. “Spider-man: Homecoming” was released into theaters on July 7, 2017. Release onto DVD and BluRay is anticipated for October of 2017. This Marvelreleased movie was a highly anticipated creation after Spider-Man was featured in Captain America: Civil War. Other famous actors

also star in this new Marvel hit, such as Chris Evans, playing Captain America, and Michael Keaton, featuring as Vulture - Spiderman’s enemy in Spider-man: Homecoming. The relatable awkward character of Peter Parker (Spider-man) is humorous and entertaining to watch as he struggles through his teenage life and his attempt at romance while also trying to be the hero of Queens, New York. While trying to impress the girl he likes, he’s forced into situations where he must make a decision into what is right, and what he might be doing in order to catch her attention. She gets to play the damselin-distress hoping for the



Cassie Davis | Feature Edior

September Health Awareness

Childhood cancer

affecting the Lives of Many


lthough it is a difficult issue to discuss, childhood cancer is a problem that needs to be addressed. The more people that know about it, the faster word will spread to help raise awareness of this issue. September is Childhood Awareness Month and thousands of people will be able to come together and participate in rallies, walks, organized events, and invest their time into this cause. Childhood cancer is a very common diagnosis in the U.S. and worldwide as well. According to St. Jude’s Chil-

Within the United States, 1 out of 285 children under the age of 20 will have cancer

For children under the age of 15, cancer is the most common cause of death

Facts from:

By Arlette Milstead Reporter

dren’s Research Hospital, “Each year, approximately 16,000 children and adolescents in the U.S. will be diagnosed with cancer and an estimated 175,000 cases of childhood cancer are diagnosed worldwide each year.” When children receive the news that they have cancer, there can be several different emotions; anger, sadness, and/or fear. Children have to deal with not only their reactions, but also their families and the outcome is unwanted. “All I could really do was look around at my family members and just seeing their hearts get ripped out of their chest,” said Autumn Sullivan, a childhood

The research for childhood cancer is underfunded by a lot

cancer survivor of Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML). “All of their eyes filled with tears and I was stunned. I didn’t want to believe or hear what I was just told.” There are many ways to raise awareness for childhood cancer, and the more people that know, the quicker organizations and research facilities will be able to fund the race to cure cancer. “Together we can help fuel the pioneering research and lifesaving care given to children fighting childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases by participating in various fundraising events, programs and campaigns for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital,” said Nicole Stuke of

American Lebanese Syrian Associated Charities, the fundraising and awareness organization for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. These are just some of the many events nationwide to raise awareness; this month, the St. Jude Walk/Run to End Childhood Cancer is in more than 60 cities nationwide. Donating online to different hospitals or organizations such as Alex’s Lemonade Stand is another option. Following Different Childhood Cancer organizations/groups on social media such as Twitter will also help you stay on top of anything new.

Because of treatment, 2/3 of the children with childhood cancer will have chronic condititions

Internationally, there are more than 420,000 childhood cancer survivors

Plus 80% of childhood cancer patients in the United States are long-term survivors because of therapists

Graphics by Tayonna Thomas



Alex Hulett | Editor


September 2017

Student talks about change in popular music


Calab Poole Reporter

opular culture was originally uplifting and intellectually provocative. It didn’t pander to the masses; but, rather encouraged originality, authenticity, and boldly carried projects into the world all the while revolutionizing the way we take in our surroundings. Giving the consumer something fresh, and inspiring was important to the artist. Now it seems to be about catering to the widest audience in a mostly disingenuous manner to receive the biggest cash payout by the time the records went platinum. People with talent

were held on a pedestal; rewarded for expertise and cunning. Now, button pressing DJ’s are deified while holding almost no musical talent, and often not writing their own songs. The lyrics themselves are either narcissistic bragging while dragging the competition’s names through the dirt and drama, or so overtly nihilist and so devoid of meaning that it’s almost depressing to listen to. A ten year analysis of top 100 billboards - done by Seatsmart - shows that popular music has dropped from fourth grade level understanding to a second grade level understanding. The experts found that mu-

sic from Maroon 5, Ke$ha, Lady GaGa, and Beyonce produced particularly ‘stupid’ music. This isn’t subject to the viewer, this is an objective assessment of the lyrics. I believe there has been no authentic music movement for the last quarter century. All my generation has contributed to music is gangster rap. Hip hop once was dominated by artist who would provide honest articulation of class struggle, but now favors the artists who encourage gang violence, drug use, and not doing your school work. Artist used to use music as an emotional outlet for their angst and

unrest, and they were often publicized on stations such as MTV. This provided encouragement for youth counter-culture, and a way to separate one’s self from the status quo. You no longer had to sing like Taylor Swift, or Justin Bieber, to succeed in the music industry. Artists like Nirvana and The Misfits gained popularity regardless of the style of music which some people consider abrasive or harsh, and received publicity despite not necessarily being the most popular at the time. The solution is simple: have outlets for underground music, and diversify the billboards. Simply

introducing new names to the list of top 100 will help introduce variety in the lyrics and style that will give the consumer easy access to many different genres and experiences. Of course, the top 100 isn’t necessarily controlled by a single entity, but the public opinion. What most people are listening to. If we introduce more ways to access diverse music, this will change the billboards in its own natural way. An outlet for underground music will encourage the masses to allow themselves to be more creative and inspire a rejection of uniformity and the homogenization of music today.

Fashion industry exposed for wasteful disposable fashion

Sarah King Reporter

The world’s fifth most wasteful industry may surprise you. Dubbed fast fashion, the clothing industry produces some of the most global waste and violates countless human rights. Also known as disposable fashion, the modern textiles industry is

sustained by the mass-production of runway styles for questionably affordable prices. Big brands such as Zara, H&M, and Forever21 dominate the fast fashion industry, releasing new apparel collections as often as every 6-8 weeks. Modern fashion is comprised of trends that are stylish today and obsolete tomorrow, encouraging consumers to purchase more. Therein lies the problem. With an abundance of styles for cheaper prices, people are not only buying garments in large amounts, but also disposing of them in large amounts. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, an estimated 12.8 million tons of clothing waste was discarded in 2013. While many fabrics are eco-friendly, the process these materials go through

to become garments makes them near-toxic, with the amount of bleaching, dying, and chemical baths the fibers undergo. In landfills, the

surplus of clothing releases large amounts of methane gas, sometimes seeping into groundwater. Incinerating the clothes releases the gas into the atmosphere, so

we have almost no way to handle all the waste being produced. Let’s focus on H&M for a bit. A company whose branding re-

lies on sustainable and affordable fashion, known for collaborating with celebrities, making garments from recycled materials, and mistreating their supply chain

employees. There have been incidents in which the workers were paid less than the country’s minimum wage, with employees in Cambodia earning only $172.51/month according to the Clean Clothes Campaign. This goes against H&M’s entire Fair Wage Method Project that was initiated in 2013. Granted, H&M seems to be making an effort to regulate their independently-owned supply chains. The issue still stands, though. Large corporations look to the world’s poorest countries to find cheap labor, often times overworking and underpaying their outsourced employees. Donating unwanted clothes is a great alternative to throwing them in the trash, but as the fast fashion brands produce such a surplus of clothing,

there is less of a demand for secondhand donations. Because of the cheap polyester and poly-cotton blends that are used in the production of fast fashion garments, many thrift stores and charities can’t resell fast fashion clothes. The Trans Americas Trading Co. for example uses 30% of their donations as wiping rags for auto shops and other businesses because the quality of the clothes is so low. In our American consumerist society, it’s important to understand how products are made and what we can do to reduce our contribution to pollution and shop as ethically as possible. Thrift stores and known ethical brands such as Goodwill, Patagonia, and Green Room by ASOS are the best bet in buying guilt-free clothing.

How music in school affects students in class and hallways

Ethan Shellito



istening to music is something lots of students at Abraham Lincoln High School like to do. Students enjoy listening to all sorts of different genres and styles of music. Most of the time music can be very good for passing time and hanging

out, although not always in school. When students are in class they need to have full focus so that they can learn in class. If you’re listening to really upbeat music and moving about in your seat not only are you distracted, but you’re also distracting others and students need full attention in class. Certain classical music is actually really great for focus when you’re trying to study or complete an assignment. Meanwhile, even if students are trying to complete an assignment, some students aren’t very good at keeping their music to themselves. I notice a lot that when students use headphones that if it’s really loud other students can hear it and it can be very distracting. Ear buds are a great choice if you’re going to be

listening to music in class because you can choose to put in just one earbud, in case there’s something you need to hear. I personally think that if a teacher is going to allow students to listen to music when trying to complete an assignment or study that the teacher should play the music on speakers and select the music themself so they know their students are focused. In the hallway it’s really not a good idea to have ear buds in or to have headphones on or even have a speaker blaring music. The hallway is always very hectic because it’s crowded with students. The problem with having earbuds in and headphones on is because most students turn the music up loud and they could miss something they were sup-

posed to hear. Sometimes when listening to music you can space off and if you’re walking down the hallway and you space off, someone isn’t gonna be happy with you if you run into them. Therefore, it’s probably best not to listen to music in the hallway. Plus if you’re blaring music on a speaker you could be interrupting a conversation and still, everyone around you could miss something they were supposed to hear. I love listening to music but it’s not good for school. Listening to music in the hallway is dangerous and listening to music during is distracting. If you’re trying to complete an assignment or studying then certain classical music is great for helping the mind focus on what you’re doing.


September 2017

How to access your submind

Alex Hulett | Editor

Graphic by Sara Truong


ECHOES Editors-in-Chief Alex Hulett Kylee Short Section Editors

Christina Beck Nasia Collier Cassie Davis Jonathyn Stiverson Bailey Peabody

Graphics Editors

Callee Adkins Reporter

The mind and the brain are not as alike as some might say. The brain is a physical thing--the thing that’s in your head. That being said, the mind is a

more figurative or more spiritual thing. “In the field of psychology when we discuss the concept of the ‘unconscious mind’ we typically start by identifying with Sigmund Freud,” said Associate Professor of Psychology at Iowa Western Community College Jeff Bonsall. “According to Freud, unconsciousness is the part of our mind that is always hidden, yet it can have a tremendous impact on our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Around these basic ideas came his theory of psychoanalysis.” Psychoanalysis is a theory and therapy method that is used to treat mental

disorders by analyzing the conscious and subconscious mind, usually by using methods such as dream interpretation and free association. “So through psychoanalysis, which is a form of approach to psychology, you can use techniques like hypnosis, dream analysis, free associations to access what is in the unconscious mind,” psychology teacher Jennifer Bonham said. “For example, a therapist might use free associations where they ask you to say whatever comes to mind when you see a certain picture and by doing that then the hope is that they would access the

unconscious mind.” The subconscious and unconscious mind are terms that are used interchangeably by Freud in his theory of psychoanalysis. Accessing the subconscious mind is possible but cannot be scientifically proven, it is more of a theory or spiritual thing for most people. “ T h e subconscious mind is the part of the mind that’s kind of not at our everyday awareness,” said school psychologist Debra Schwiesow. “So a lot of people talk about when you’re in a very relaxed state like in meditation or hypnosis or when we’re asleep and dreaming

then parts of our brain are activated that aren’t activated when we’re consciously working in the world so yes it is possible during different altered states of consciousness.” By accessing the subconscious mind, new doors open to the possibilities of what can happen, though it is not scientifically proven that there even is a unconscious or subconscious mind, accessing it will allow those to see different things or having different experiences. The possibilities are almost endless when it comes to accessing the subconscious mind whether it’s for therapy or just for fun.

Foreign correspondent explains her experiences in Japan

Mia Kawamitsu

Foreign Correspondent

Late August of 2016 was when my life and myself would change more than I could ever possibly imagine. I decided I wanted

to experience something for myself and that decision I made - now more than a year ago - leaves me here, writing from Japan. When I first applied to become a foreign exchange student, I’ll be truly honest, I was attracted by the idea of traveling and merely having the time of my life eating all the glorious food I’d be able to eat. However, as I attended numerous orientations and preparation camps throughout the year, my motives shifted. I’m still ecstatic that I get to see the world, but now, I’m excited to see the person I’ll become by the end of this exchange more than anything. Whether that new person means being

40 pounds more than I was at the beginning of my journey or having pink hair, I’m anxious to see how much I’ll have changed. I’m sure you’re curious as to what in the world I’m doing half way around the world so I’ll spare you the details of the journey I took to be where I am right now. I’ll save that for another time. On Aug. 18, I landed at Kansai International Airport in Osaka, Japan. After getting through customs, I faced the automatic doors that would open a brand new world to me. Once I stepped through those doors, I was immediately greeted by strangers that I would soon call mom and dad. An hour later, I found

myself unpacking in my new room, in my new home. Fast forward exactly two days, and I faced a new challenge. School. Despite still being slightly jet lagged, I got through the day introducing myself to the whole entire school of over 2,000 students and smiling and nodding my head more than what I would call desired. Rewind back to before school started. I had exactly two days before I would start school which didn’t give me much time to explore my new home. I did my best though. Within those two days, I’m proud to say I conquered many of my fears and checked a few things off my

Horoscopes of the month


bucket list. I visited the top of the highest building in all of Japan, held an 11-pound snake, and ate a live worm. I can’t believe I did all those things myself. I’ve only been in Japan for less than three weeks and I’ve already done so many things that I would have never even thought of doing in America. It’s funny to think that I’ve already begun to change. As I continue to get settled in, I still have to remind myself everyday that this is real. I can’t stress how many times I find myself being shocked all over again that I’m not in America. Aside from that, the food is absolute gold so I’m a happy camper.


Looking back at some old goals and setting new ones can ScorpioYour dreams and plans are becoming more prominent, work be beneficial keeping your mind busy. A new romance is flourishing but keep your friends close hard and dream big. when love is on the mind. However, don’t underestimate a new lover and the connection they might give off. LOVE- Some serious romance is in the air, however LOVE- Flirting comes easy when you and your crush’s con- dating is coming to a screeching halt and it’s time to put versation is flowing. LOVE- Don’t be afraid to show off what your momma dating in the pastime. gave you, stay positive and accept yourself. FRIEND OR FOE- Having a harmonious friendship comes FRIEND OR FOE - You can rely on this friend due to the in handy with compromising, cooperatively and healthy living. fact that they’ll love you unconditionally and adore you, FRIEND OR FOE - Never try to change, suggestively try to love and accept yourself for who you are. hold this friend close to your heart.




Spend some time to yourself this month, work hard on trying to improve externally and internally.

It may seem like you’re in a rut right now, wanting to curl up in a ball and just be alone but your social and personal are in high demands, there is no time to be sad.

LOVE- Although a romantic relationship disappeared, it doesn’t mean you should dwell on it.

LOVE-Keeping vocal during a relationship can benefit the odd LOVE- Vocalizing how you feel can be very beneficial to a relationship to further it in depth. sensation of distance.

FRIEND OR FOE- Your friend has an immense impact on you with their charismatic and loving outlook for life, they may bless you with luck and opportunities coming your way.

FRIEND OR FOE- Keep a loyal and devoted friend close to your heart, your friends are solid and always have your back through thick and thin.

Time is going by fast, enjoy having some quality time with your friends and family.

FRIEND OR FOE - Your friend has you wrapped around their finger. This friend is all talk,but no show, keep an eye out on them.

Sara Truong Tayonna Thomas

Reporters Sarah King Callee Adkins Mackenzie Koesters Arlette Milstead Mia Kawamitsu Aidan Morgan Anna Boes William Jones Amanda Lewis Tatum Schulenberg Ethan Shellito Lilli Thompson Calab Poole


Gerry Appel The Echoes is published by the newspaper staff at 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 publications 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 contact us by:

Phone: 712-328-6481 Facebook: ALHS Echoes Twitter: @ALHSJournalism NSPA Member

Sports 8 Lynx grab win against Sioux City North September 2017

Bailey Peabody | Sports Editor

William Jones Reporter

September is usually known for its transition into the fall months and the start of a new school year. It is also, however, known for the start of a new season of high school football with the ALHS players and coaches hopeful both for the season and the future of the program and despite the criticism from many students the Lynx football team beat Sioux City North 53-12. “I still think we’re a very good football team,” said head coach John Wolfe. “We’ve played two very good football teams (said before the Sioux City game). We’re not very deep but we’re still a good football team we just don’t have the easiest schedule.” Amid criticism from the student body, many members of ALHS football

Photo by Lyric Reed

have spoken out in defense for their team in hope of more positive support from the student body. “We want your support,” Wolfe said, “it does no good to be critical of your peers... of the program...the biggest thing I would like to see is negativity eliminated in any form and I would like to see more positivity.” Some players on the football team go as far as Junior Ben Price who said: “I wouldn’t say stuff to us in the halls about how trashy our team is...and realize that the reason we aren’t doing well in some of our games is because they are too scared to go out for the sport.” Some players have even gone as far as senior Lanny Herzog who publicly tweeted “not a single one of you can say anything about us. Talk smack. Join the team make a difference.” Price also points out that

the Abraham Lincoln football team has a dramatically smaller roster than many of the other 4A teams within the Missouri River Conference and throughout the state making it much harder for the Lynx to play up to these large programs. He wants to encourage more students to come out for the sport to really show to the other schools what Abraham Lincoln is truly capable of when it comes to football. Over the course of the season, the Lynx are matched up with some of the top ranked teams in the state such as Dowling Catholic who almost went undefeated last season, only losing to West Des Moines and Ankeny Centennial who last year only lost two games both of them were to Dowling Catholic. The next home game is Sept. 29, against Ankeny Centennial.

Lynx volleyball is more than just a sport Mackenzie Koesters Reporter


f t e r weeks of p r e p a r i ng t h i s summer, the volleyball team kicked off the season with a win against Stanton High School. AL’s volleyball team spent the summer conditioning in open gym twice a week, focusing on agility and vertical work especially, as well as participating in several team camps. The team went to the Creighton and the Iowa State team camp, where they learned a lot of their new drills. One of the team’s goals this season is to make it to state championships Nov. 7-10 in Cedar Rapids as well as become conference

champs this year. “I watched the 2014 Volleyball State Championships and saw the winning team and my first thought was: I want to be up there and I want to go to state championships,” said sophomore Samantha Christiansen. Besides conditioning and practices, the team works hard to overcome any obstacles thrown at them throughout the season. “To me, one of the most difficult parts of being an athlete is finding that balance between your school work, social life and athletics. Education, family and friends are just as important to the team as the sport itself,” said senior Caitlin Spurgin. Along with the practices, conditioning and training, there is a lot of bonding that goes into creating the team. The team has several team meetings, a running text

thread and has even had a camp out overnight to help the team bond. “We’re just such a close team, these girls are my family and best friends,” said sophomore Taylan Keefer. The team’s motivation stems from a passion for the game, and the majority of the team has been playing volleyball since they were younger. “I mean the feeling of winning is great, we strive to win every game we play and work our hardest, but it’s also about the game itself and having fun with your friends,” said Keefer. The team has won 11 out of their 21 games this season as of press time, and intends to only improve from there. “We’re really determined, we want to prove to everybody who we really are and how far we can go, because we can go far,” said Spurgin.

Photo by Mackenzie Koesters

Cross country takes a running start into the new season Lilli Thompson Reporter


Photo by Paige Messenger

eet have started to pound on the ground as Abraham Lincoln’s cross country season began. August 7 was the initial start date for boys cross country as well as the initial start date for girl’s cross country. “I run daily, sometimes long, sometimes fast to prepare my body,” senior boys runner Joe Harding said. Cross country is full of

open space for the runners to run on, either on dirt or grass, while running through the path Harding pushes through by seeing the finish line. “I think about how the team would get mad if I don’t finish,” said freshman runner Ethan Leinen. Not wanting to let down fellow runners makes the team grow closer than they already are. Harding says the reason why he started cross country would have to be the friendships. AL’s girls cross country team coach is Traci Stoop. Stoop has been coaching girl’s cross country for about

nine years now, with each season she want’s the girls to leave with an important life lesson. “Lifelong health and wellness. Get up, get out, run. Mental toughness,” Stoop said. “This sport isn’t for the faint of heart. It takes serious mental toughness--which will pay off for these girls in the future.” Tough sport indeed, girls cross country starts off each morning at roughly 5 am, running around the track a quarter of a mile, shortly after stretches are taken place on the track. ALHS’s junior girls

runner Kenadie Doty, has been running with the team since her freshman year. What keeps Doty going is herself and also she takes pride in herself and also the girl’s team. For each meet that occurs Stoop thinks that the girls team will be successful as long as they keep improving at every meet. Both of AL’s cross country teams have the opportunity to continue their season until Oct. 28 at the state cross country meet and the state qualifying meet is on the 19th of October at Iowa Western.

September Issue - 2017-18  
September Issue - 2017-18