The Tiger Print — April 2023

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THE TIGER PRINT blue valley high school | vol. 53 | issue 6 | april 2023 | | overland park, kansas revolutionizing our future Students, staff give insight about artificial intelligence, ChatGPT

Students stay up all night to raise money, awareness for the American Cancer Society

Women’s History Month

Staff writer reflects on what March means to them

Prom committee members discuss organizing the annual event Students share March Madness tournament predictions

Living in the Moment

Sophomores Aspen Gallentine, Katie Kennedy debate pros, cons of liking somebody


Ayesha Khan

Charley Thomas

Regan Byrnes

Brynn Friesen

Isaac Hudson

Ava McGuire

Rhylan Stern adviser

Michelle Huss

“The Tiger Print” is an official publication of Blue Valley High School, an open forum distributed to all students six times a year. This publication may contain controversial material. Kansas law prohibits the suppression of a student publication solely because it may contain controversial matter. Blue Valley Unified School District No. 229 and its board members, officers and employees may disclaim any responsibility for the content of this publication; it is not an expression of school policy. Student authors and editors are solely responsible for the content of this publication.

staff members

Gaby Ayres



Jackie Chang

Aspen Gallentine

Harris Jones

Sophomores use film cameras to capture memories Award Show or Fashion Show?

Katie Kennedy

Ella Lim

Emma McAtee

Ava McNiel

Ava Poland

Andrew Sharber

Kylee Thompson

The Tiger Print Blue Valley High School 6001 W. 159th St. Overland Park, KS 66085

@bvtigernews @bvtigernews

Publication editor reviews best, worst outfits from Oscars ceremony, party

Staff writer discusses film “Everything Everywhere All At Once.”

news march 2023 7 design by ava poland OPINION CRUSHING OR CRUSHED? Contents NEWS 10 RACE FOR A CURE FEATURE 14 DANCE THE NIGHT AWAY ENTERTAINMENT BASKETBALL BETS 25 30 editors-in-chief
web editors
Letters to the editor are encouraged for publication. “The Tiger Print” reserves the right to edit all submissions for both language and content. Letters should be submitted to Room 518, emailed to or mailed to:
contents 2
ON THE Just Be A Rock.

iews alley around


In collaboration, the Seven Days committee, Tiger Pride, and connection students have worked together to collect food donations for the newly opened BVSD food pantry. Their goal is to collect 700 hundred cans — 100 for each of the Seven Days. The donations will go to employees and families in the BV community.

“Our goal is to make this a tradition every year as a way for the students of BVH to give back during this week of focusing on kindness,” SevenDays sponsor Dianne O’Bryan said.


The Class of 2022 gifted the south gym a fresh new American flag. Since last year’s seniors could not host Prom as juniors due to Covid and had raised enough money for the flag, Student Council was asked to help pitch in.

President of StuCo, senior Amber Briere spoke on why the Class of 2022 wanted to gift the flag.

“They decided the flag works best because the whole plan was to get something [in the gym] that benefited the whole school and not just athletics,” she said.


Every four years, the BV band skies the slopes of Colorado at a ski-music festival. Continuing tradition, the band left for Colorado on April 12.

Junior Ainsley Hileman was looking forward to it.

“I’m excited for the opportunity for the band to take a trip and spend time [together],” she said.

The ski-music featival featured a competition among concert bands from all over the country and also a variety of snow activities.

3 rief lue


The beginning of spring sports includes the start of baseball. For sophomore Grady Westphal, the start brings an exciting season, starting of with a record of 4-4.

“It’s been pretty good,” Westphal said. “We’ve won quite a few games and we’ve also lost, but it’s been a fun season so far.”

Along with winning games and doing the best he can, Westphal is ready for what’s to come.

“ I’m friends with a lot of kids on the team, so seeing how we grow together and just seeing how we grow as a team [is exciting],” Weshphal said.


Track and Field is considered off-season training for many atheletes, but for senior Eleanor Warren, she has a passion for running.

“My times are faster this time — at these meets, I’m faster than I was last year,” Warren said. “We have a lot of good people on the sprinting team, and a lot of our field events are going well.”

With her time at BV ending soon, the Spring season brings some exciting moments Warren looks forward to.

“It’s fun because it’s my senior season,” she said. “I’m excited for senior night and just to run with my friends and teammates that I’ve had for four years.”

This year, BV Tiger Band members participated in the Blue Valley Solo and Ensemble Festival. Junior Lindsay Cho was one of the participants.

“You can choose a solo piece or play a trio, or do it with an ensemble,” Cho said. “Our Winter Park trip to Colorado interferes with the official District Solo and Ensemble. Because we can’t go to District, we can’t make it to State, so we did our own.”

For her performance in the Fesitval, Cho was in two trios for which she played the flute.

“At first I was really nervous, but then it just went away,” she said. “[Afterward] I felt terrible in the moment because I could remember all my mistakes, but then the recording was fine.”

Despite the anxiety that comes with playing, Cho loves doing it.

“[I like to do festival,] especially ensembles because they sound a lot cooler than a solo piece.” she said.

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design by rhylan stern

After a long time of involvement in the Performing Arts, the high school theatre career of senior Ben Samuelson is coming to a close. Nearing the end, Samuelson performed in “Rock of Ages”, a playing Drew Boley.

“The show follows the character Drew, who’s a wanna-be rockstar working at a bar and he falls in love with this girl,” Samuelson said. “Then at the end, the love story resolves with him getting what he wants, but realizing he has to give up his dream of being a rock star.”

Along with the show comes all of the behind the scenes moments.

“My favorite memory from the show is probably being backstage and kind of stressing out but at the same time, just living in the energy of the show,” he said.

Since he is a senior, Samuelson has no clue what the rest of the quarter will bring for him.

“It was sentimental because it’s definitely my last show in high school musical-wise, but also because it was with people I’ve done shows with since middle school,” he said. “It was our final thing and to see us all be leads up there was a cool, full circle moment.”

Softball — one of the many sports starting this spring. For junior Ava Bloyd, it’s time to step into her role on the varsity team.

“I’m a pitcher, so I really like coming out on the field and being in charge of the plays,” Bloyd said.

With a strong start to the season, the Tigers have for wins under their belt.

“It’s going really great — I’ve had two shut-outs in the last two games that I pitched,” she said. “It’s been really good for me.”

After a good season last year, Bloyd only has one goal in mind.

“I’m hoping to make it to the State championship,” she said. “We’ve been so close, but this is going to be the year.”

Aside from her goals, Bloyd has a few things she’s looking forward to.

“I’m excited for all the new girls we have and all the new friendships I’m making,” she said.



On March 31, Relay For Life held their annual fundraising event. Senior Kelsey Phillips was involved with the organization before she came to high school.

“Both my brother and my mom had cancer,” Phillips said. “They’re both survivors, so we’ve been connected with the organization for basically my entire life.”

BV raised over $70 thousand for Relay.

“[The event] went pretty well — our turnout was smaller than last year’s, but we’re rebuilding from Covid. We still did well and had a good time.”

As a senior, Phillips wanted the night to be the most memorable and has a recurring part of the night she loves.

“I always have fun just playing games with my friends,” she said. “My favorite is always the Luminaria Walk — it’s just a nice time.”

The impact of COVID has hit Relay For Life hard, decreasing the amount of participation in the organization.

“We’re currently talking with next year’s district team to up involvement — our biggest challenge this year was traveling during Tiger Time to talk to freshmen because freshmen are our biggest target class,” she said. “Getting them involved will be most helpful to carry the organization for the next four years.”

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design by rhylan stern

Flying ForwardKC

With the small and outdated layout of the Kansas City International Airport being a problem, renovation started in March 2019 and is now officially open to the public nearly four years later.

For junior Miles Gelman, the airport is something that he saw over spring break.

“I liked how spaced out everything was instead of it being in multiple different buildings,” he said.

With guests walking through the redesigned airport, the layout and style were not only made for efficiency but for them to feel warm and joyful as they enter. Because truthfully, the mosaics on the floor just weren’t cutting it.

With large glass windows and white tiled flooring, the atmosphere is certainly something that the designers kept in mind. From, the airport has an expansive area with “40 gates” and “150 daily departures.”

Additionally, “There are separate levels for curbside departures and arrivals” with “Clear kiosks and designated TSA PreCheck lines.” While the airport itself is new, the parking on the outside still needs some work.

“I had to park at the very top of the parking lot,” Gelman said. “It was terrible.”

Of course, maybe now there will be an excuse to arrive at the airport an hour early for your flight. As for the main terminal of the airport, it holds “10 nursing rooms, service animal relief

areas, all-inclusive play areas for children and a sensory room — a calming space for neurodiverge travelers.”

On top of that, “Throughout nthe entire design process, the Kansas City Aviation Department worked closely with local organizations like The Whole Person, Variety KC and Dementia Friendly KC to ensure the terminal was as absolutely inclusive as possible.”

While transportation is a must for guests, the food options certainly don’t hurt. With the airport holding a City Market Food Hall that consists of various restaurants, guests can pick and choose instead of being limited to a Starbucks that opens ten minutes after your flight departs.

“There were some good restaurants that showed off KC and what our specialty is,” Gelman said. “It’s a cool concept — I just feel like they could have used it a little better.”

The new airport also chose to keep artwork and the history of KC as the main style of the airport with nearly, “$5.6 million of the new terminal’s budget set aside for artwork, with impressive sculptures from international artists scattered throughout the main entrance and paintings from local artists positioned in the concourses” from a total budget of $1.5 billion.

“I didn’t realize it at first but the more I thought about it, the more impressed I was with the artwork,” Gelman said.

Not only is the amount of things in the airport impressive, but the overall design choice and improvements that have been made. Because even though you’re traveling, at least you can see a glimpse at what makes Kansas City unique.

8 news april 2022
The new Kansas City International Airport has finished construction, offering travelers a better look at what KC means

Students examine sports across Kansas City

gaby ayres|staff writer

Swish! Shout! Crack! As the weather warms and the flowers bloom, winter sports come to a close and summer sports begin. Freshmen Shea Splittorff, Caroline Gordon and Andrew Mazzapica discussed Kansas City’s favorite sports teams.

March Madness marked the end of collegiate basketball, and for fans, it is an exciting time of tension and relief to see if their favorite teams make it through the tournament.

“I hope [KU] wins again, two years back-to-back,” Splittorff said. “They’re not as good as they were last year, so I don’t think that’s going to happen.”

Unfortunately for Splittorff, KU got knocked out in the round of 32, and for KSU fans, the Wildcats lost in the Elite Eight. However, March Madness can be fun even without a team to root for.

“We always do brackets and competitions within my family,” Splittorff said. “Whoever wins gets to go out to dinner.”

Half the fun of March Madness lies within the betting, and with the historic win of Fairleigh Dickinson, a 16th seed competitor from New Jersey, this tournament was especially unpredictable.

The arrival of spring kicked off the soccer season, which is enjoyable for the “Soccer Capital of America.”

“I root for Sporting Kansas City, the local team,” Mazzapica said. “Around the world, I prefer clubs in England like Tottenham Hotspur or FC Barcelona, which is in Spain.”

KC Sporting held its home opener on March 11 and tied 0-0 with the LA Galaxy. Kansas City’s women’s team, KC Current, had their first home game on April 1 and lost 4-1.

Mazzapica is overall excited for the upcoming soccer season but not too optimistic because “the team isn’t that good this year.”

Another sport that commenced with the start of spring is baseball. The Royals began their season with a home opener game on March 30 where they lost 0-2. For some baseball fans it is not a complete summer without attending a game.

“I didn’t go when I was younger really,” Spittorff said. “I think that I’m more interested in it [now]. I go once or twice a year.”

The Royals had a disappointing season last year with a record of 65-97.

“Around when they won the World Series was when we went a bunch,” Gordon said. “Then, they kind of started getting really bad.”

Luckily the buzz of the fans, the memorable traditions, the laid-back atmosphere and a multitude of entertaining activities can make up for even the worst of seasons.

“I like getting Dippin’ Dots and the little hat,” Gordon said.

75% of students are Royals fans 54% are KC Sporting fans
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36% are KC Current fans
design by gaby ayres

so neither do we.

CANCER NEVER SLEEPS, BV Executive Chair plans for Relay For Life

Every year, BV students fervently participate in a 12hour walk hosted by Relay For Life, a global organization dedicated to fighting cancer. From all-night events to virtual fundraising, Relay For Life helps communities raise money for the American Cancer Society.

As an Executive Chair, senior Alexis Forgy was the person responsible for leading and coordinating the Relay for BV, which was hosted March 31.

“I went to Relay For Life just for fun my freshman year and it was super rewarding to get to see where my money was going,” Forgy said. “We raised over $200,000 — high schoolers can make such a big difference for people that are affected by this.”

Though taking a leadership role requires dedication, there were other ways to get involved.

“It’s a big time commitment for me and other district members — I put more time in than the other students because I am in charge,” Forgy said. “[However,] if you want to be super involved but you don’t have a ton of time to donate to it, we also have a school committee. They don’t have a lot of commitments; they just every once in a while help us with random things.”

Individual committees within the district committees exist as well, providing more opportunities to engage.

“[There’s] foods, activities and logistics,” Forgy said. “Since it’s a 12-hour event, we have to feed people and plan activities for the entire night so people aren’t bored and want

to go to sleep.”

With a plethora of factors to consider while organizing the Relay, having enough time to arrange everything was crucial.

“Last year, I was also on the district board; we didn’t have as much time to prepare last year as we do this year,” Forgy said. “It was really stressful last year because we had [around] three weeks to get everyone ready for the Relay, which you have to raise $100 — now $115 — to get to go to the event. With those three weeks, it was really stressful for everyone to rush and get that money.”

Having known since the beginning of the year what the committee needed to do, Forgy felt that planning this year’s Relay was much smoother. Even so, last year’s event consisted of her favorite memory thus far.

“We do this Relay Runway every year — and last year I got to be one of the emcees for it, and that was super fun,” Forgy said. “People get dressed up in these old prom dresses, and we ask them funny questions, [so] it’s like a mock pageant.”

This year’s Relay was equally as exciting for Forgy, albeit less successful than the last one.

“We didn’t raise as much money this year,” Forgy said. “But it was super fun and there was a lot of people, so it was really good.”

Though hard work and determination were necessary for this event, it was completely worthwhile for Forgy.

“I love doing Relay because it’s so rewarding to see how much we can help people that struggle with cancer or people that help take care of others with cancer,” she said. “I’m [always] tired after it, but it’s so worth it that I don’t really care.”

10 news april 2022 design by ella lim

ommitting to kindness

SevenDays committee members discuss 2023 Kindness Week

SevenDays is an organization dedicated to spreading kindness and remembering the lives lost in the tragic shooting at the Jewish Community Center in 2014.

For sophomore Abby Reeves, the themed week sponsored by SevenDays is not only a time of reflection and remembrance but a time to spread positivity and kindness into her community.

Becoming involved with SevenDays holds much personal significance for Reeves for various reasons, including her older brother’s extensive work in the organization during his high school years.

participating community to engage, learn and adjust mindsets in order to act on these kindness themes. The annual “mini walk” was also included in the week’s activities.

“Since the official Kindness Walk is inconvenient for high schoolers to attend, we bring it to BVHS on the track with music, balloons and an opportunity for people to write kind notes to their peers and teachers,” Reeves said.

Along with the Kindness walks that week, BV’s SevenDays committee, Tiger Pride and Connections classes will be hosting a food drive to benefit the newly opened Blue Valley School District food pantry.


“I’ve always had the organization on my radar — also, I’m Jewish and since the shooting was supposed to be an antisemitic attack, I remember how close to home and scary it was in the Jewish community,” Reeves said. “When I got to high school years later, I got to know Mrs. O’Bryan and she really encouraged me to get involved.”

During April 5-13, Reeves and other members of BV’s SevenDays committee planned activities for the school which will bring awareness to the tragic events of the Jewish Community Center shooting and “how to bring SevenDays to life within our school community.”

Advocating for the remembrance of Reat Underwood, a BV student whose life was taken during the shooting, continues to be one of Reeves’s top priorities.

“Now that so many years have gone by, it’s unlikely that very many kids personally knew Reat,” Reeves said. “We are going to make it a priority that people understand that he was a student here at BVHS just like we are.”

Additionally, SevenDays provides a kindness goal for each day of that week: love, discover, others, connect, you, go and onward. Each days’ goal allows for the


“I joined SevenDays because it’s important that we remember and recognize Reat, Bill and Terri. It’s important to always choose kindness and spread positivity.”

-leah martin, 11

“Our goal is to collect 700 cans — 100 cans for each of the seven days,” SevenDays sponsor Dianne O’Bryan said. “All of the items that we collect will go to the Blue Valley School District food pantry which serves employees and families in the Blue Valley community.”

The efforts of the SevenDays committee were dedicated to making this year’s SevenDays a positive experience by spreading joy and kindness.

“Our hope is that Blue Valley students honor Reat by giving back to our community through the food drive and making a genuine effort to be a person who spreads kindness to others.”

-dianne o’bryan

“It will always be important for our community to rally around those who need it most.”

-josh gordon, 11

“SevenDays is all about changing the world with one small act of kindness at a time,” Reeves said. “That is a valuable reminder everyone could use every once in a while.”

“SevenDays has been an outlet for me and others in the community to join together and make a positive impact in the world.”

-emma sandler, 12

“I’m helping plan the annual kindness walk the KansasMissouri Community puts on and I am so happy to help plan the Mini Walk at our school.”

-sami sandler, 9

“The Kindness walk is one of my favorite traditions at Blue Valley because it supports a wonderful cause that gets everyone involved.”

-aubrey hudkins, 11

“I like the message SevenDays points across to always find the positive side to bad situations.”
-caroline gordon,
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abby reeves,
design by ava mcguire



Students form club to promote environmental awareness

Earth is our home, and there’s no denying humans have been contributing to some of its environmental issues. This growing problem of the environment moved junior Quinn Sayers to find a way to bring more awareness to Blue Valley, thus birthing the BV Environmental Awareness Club.

ecosystems nearby like the pond across the street from Blue Valley High and then three or four more in the areas by Blue River.”

The group meets up after school on Mondays to pull debris and other litter out of the ponds.

“We just try to get out as much trash as possible, ” Rodriguez said. “It’s really fun and honestly crazy what stuff we find in there.”


you can help 5

1. Bike

2. Recycle

3. Shop sustainably

4. Carpool

5. Spread the word

“What inspired me to create the club was the realization of how human habits in current society are harming the Earth with ways of life we live right now,” Sayers said. “We emit a lot of carbon, and it’s destroying ecosystems and destroying animal habitats. It’s extremely unsustainable.”

Sayers’s intention with the club was to create a community for those who are passionate about the environment and want to pursue it as an extracurricular. He collaborated with science teacher Ryan Bird to sponsor the club as well as juniors Ava Viseck and Matthew Rodriguez

“We first started off as just a group of my two friends,” Sayers said. “We started meeting up in Mr. Bird’s room, and we were brainstorming ideas of how to promote the club. AP Environmental Science [students] had already made posters, so we started to put those up around the school.”

The posters successfully drew in students and, soon enough, a sizable group of passionate environmentalists was established. Members regularly go to club meetings before school on Wednesdays in Bird’s room to discuss both local and global environmental issues.

With a steady group in place, the club is ready to put plans into action to improve local ecosystems.

“What we’re currently working on right now is a bunch of cleanups,” Sayers said. “We’re cleaning up ponds in different

The clubs plans to advance their environmental philanthropy by uniting with other organizations.

“[The Prairie Restoration Club] was already doing some of the plans we’ve been discussing like brining back native plants and composting,” Rodriguez said.

Another primary goal for the club is to encourage students to make conscious decisions about the environment and even take action themselves.

“Our future plans include informing and having discussions with students in Blue Valley,” Sayers said. “It’s important that everyone is aware and contributing on how their habits can affect the world and the environment and how you should change your habits in order to benefit the environment.”

Sayers encourages all students who are interested in helping the cause to reach out to him or to visit Bird and ask about joining.

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ava poland


Student finds passion in taking care of plants

It is a sunny day in October, and Suburban Lawn & Garden has just opened its doors for the morning. Senior Ella Moore is enthusiastic about starting her brand new job working with what she loves: Plants.

Moore has always felt very close to the world of plants and has been interested in growing her knowledge in the topic.

“My mom was really into gardening ever since I was young — she would let us go to the store and pick out one plant and plant it in her garden,” Moore said. “As I got older, I said, ‘Oh, I kind of want to have my own garden’ but I do not have my own property, so I started getting into indoor plants.”

Now owning 35 individual plants just in her room with a lot of diversity, she has developed even more of a green thumb across the years.

“It’s different between the two different types of plants, which are succulents and tropical plants,” Moore said. “I have both mixed in and intermingled in my room. Succulents you can leave for much longer without watering, whereas a lot of tropical plants are more fussy and they need humidifiers and water at much sooner intervals.”

Due to her love of plants, she decided to apply at Suburban and has now been an employee for 10 months, working as a cashier. However, she also enjoys taking her knowledge of plants and using it to help customers with their decisions.

“There was one instance where this lady came up to me and was like, ‘Hi, I’m a beginner and I want you to make sure I’m not bringing home anything that I would kill immediately.’ I glanced at her cart and she had a lot of really great choices that are great for beginners,” Moore said. “Immediately, I spotted a fern that is very difficult to keep and also a Calathea plant which is a kind of tropical that I absolutely

murdered. Apparently they’re awful to keep — they’re so difficult.”

Considering her previous love for the contents of the job, she enjoys the ambiance of Suburban.

“My favorite part of the job is probably just being in that environment,” she said. “It’s outside and it makes me happy being outside so I love that. I also get to look around for discounts and things that fall on the floor that I can take home with me for free.”

As a long-time plant caretaker, Moore has her own advice on where to start when looking to begin taking care of plants.

“I would start out how I did, which is with succulents,” Moore said. “Some of the easier plants start with arsenic plants or just your general succulents that you can find in Walmart. I would start with those and then once you get comfortable with them, you can move on to different kinds like money trees and fiddle figs, which are really easy tropicals.”

Plants don’t only serve as a hobby for Moore, but they also hold much more meaning to her, giving her an opportunity to develop nurturing skills.

“I really like taking care of something,” she said. “There’s something that gives you a sense of pride whenever you’re like, ‘Oh, yeah, this is a living thing and I take care of it.’ It’s really fun.”

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design by brynn friesen

A night under the Stars

Prom Committee members discuss efforts put into the event

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design by charley thomas

charley thomas|editor in chief

As anyone who has attempted to organize plans for just one single group knows all too well, school dances are coupled with an underestimated amount of coordination. On March 24, Blue Valley’s annual Prom took place at the Hilltop venue, but as juniors Chanie Rankin and Madison Pointer understand, the preparation began far before that night.

“In the beginning, the meetings were not super organized,” Pointer said. “Everybody was just throwing random ideas around, so we decided to break into committees.”

Utilizing Student Council leadership experience, junior officers Brett Jordan and Maggie Richardson joined Rankin and Pointer in creating two specialized planning teams. While Jordan and Pointer spearheaded decoration efforts, Rankin and Richardson focused on the event’s promotion.

“We picked the groups based on what we know about people and their strong suits,” Rankin said. “If anyone had strong [opinions] about being in a committee, we let them change.”

As the structural aspects of coordination began to fall into place, the planning shifted to the elephant in the room — theme.

“It was a very long process,” Rankin said. “We started out by letting everyone put all their ideas on the table — just getting everything out there. Then we let people think for a week to digest what would be the best idea.”

Though many themes sounded appealing on paper, ease and effectiveness of execution guided decision making.

“We started thinking logically,” Rankin said. “How would this pan out? How would you work this? Where would you put those decorations?”

After much deliberation, the Prom Committee came away with an idea that coalesced several unique

elements into a central focus.

“Our theme was interesting because it was a mix of two or three separate themes we had originally mentioned,” Pointer said. “We liked euphoric, dark lighting, and we wanted to tie in a garden aspect to it, so we decided it was going to be ‘A Night Under the Stars.’”

With a plan set in motion, the promotion team embarked on its advertising initiative.

“We made a lot of posters to put up around school and invitations that every senior received,” Rankin said. “We also made the slow reveal [posts] on our Instagram to promote it to the student body.”

In stark contrast to Student Council’s lofty dance budgets, the Prom Committee faced the added task of fundraising for the expensive event.

“We did two bake sales, and those have actually been really big money makers,” Rankin said. “Then we got a lot of donations from parents, which was fabulous.”

The morning of, committee members reported to Hilltop for roughly four hours of decorating. Thankfully for the group, extra assistance was provided at the dance.

“Honestly for prom itself, we hired some sophomores, made a SignUp Genius and had them do most of the work,” Rankin said.

Though the tasks could be tedious at times, Rankin and Pointer agreed that the dance experience created for BV students made all efforts worthwhile.

“I hope it’s something everyone can remember and tell their kids about — like, ‘Oh my gosh, I had so much fun in my junior or senior prom,’” Rankin said. “Maybe [prom committee] isn’t the center of that, but we accent everyone’s night so that they can have the prom of their dreams.”

“I hope it’s something everyone can remember and tell their kids about — like, ‘Oh my gosh, I had so much fun in my junior or senior prom.’”
chanie rankin, 11

16 on the cover april 2023

aboutEvenbeforetheadventofAI,sciencefictionauthorshavebeenworried century,aman-madesuperintelligencetakingovertheplanet.Inthetwenty-first AIisaveryrealthing,butwearestillwaryofaroboticuprising. easier.Morepractically,weuseAItohelpusdomenialtasksandmakeourlives advancedInlate2022andearly2023,theworldsawtheriseofanewwaveof artificialintelligencethatisnowcapableofgeneratingartand imagesthatlookphoto-real,orofwritinganentireessayforyourAPLangclass. ReadontolearnabouttheconstantlyevolvingworldofAI,students’andstaffopinions.

Issac Hudson Charley Thomas Harris Jones Katie Kennedy design by katie kennedy

In a constantly advancing world of artificial intelligence and text-generating programs like ChatGPT, it can be difficult to know what the technology we’re using really is. Technology Integration Specialist Keil Pittman has taken on the role of optimistic advocacy for the use of AI at Blue Valley.

“I think ChatGPT is an amazing resource,” Pittman said. “I am looking at it more like I would look at a calculator or the internet when it first came out. As an ELA teacher, my knee-jerk reaction is always going to be, ‘Oh, this is where we aren’t going to teach writing anymore.’ Because do we need to know how to write if it’s just going to? I think the answer is yes, but being a technology-ELA guy, I’ve used spellcheck for a long time and I don’t let spellcheck do everything. But if it underlines something I investigate it, and I make that decision.”

By looking more into the way ChatGPT works, and how it responds to his prompts, Pittman discovered more than he expected.

“It’s so much more well-rounded than I thought; it handles sports questions just as easily as it handles in-depth ELA research topic prompts — I’m just amazed at how much thought and content it generates,” he said. “It’s not always awesome, and it’s not always accurate, but it can give us a lot of content to consider.”

New AI technology has expanded beyond just text generation into image generation as well.

“We recently this year purchased a Canva subscription for the entire district. Well, Canva now has an AI text-to-image feature. For my job working with websites, it’s far better for me,” Pittman said. “Since we’ve had Canva, I’ve had more luck creating my own images, so I’m not out there trolling for images that are not mine that we’re going to use for Blue Valley purposes. That’s the plagiarism piece and the copyright issues. I can save time by just typing in a little bit, and I’m not an artist, but it will render something usable, and that’s pretty cool.”

One of the main concerns teachers and administrators might have is the difficulty of catching students using AI to write their assignments for them.

“If you copy and paste from a website, we put it

into, it’s going to say, ‘Hey, he got that from this website,’” he said. “This doesn’t do that. This has preloaded information and it is literally thinking for itself, which is why it’s hard to nab because it doesn’t point to any one website.”

Pittman believes AI shouldn’t be a shortcut for students but a tool instead.

“I look at it just like a paper. If a kid did it and said, ‘This is mine, and I created it and turned it in for a grade,’ I don’t like the ethics of that. If you said, ‘I was really struggling with the idea of how to get started so I utilized a technology,’ there are very practical reasons for its use, and it is amazing technology.”

As a teacher, Pittman feels it’s important to understand the motivation of a student who uses AI as a shortcut for assignments as opposed to doing it for themselves.

“Is it you just don’t have time? Or you’ve got so much pressure from your parents to make a grade that you’re willing to sacrifice the understanding of how to do something for yourself for that grade,” he said. “Ultimately, most of us like the feeling of knowing how to do things for ourselves. There’s great power in our knowledge, and when we rely on technology to just do it for us, that’s not the understanding I think we’re ultimately after.”

Art has been something that changes frequently throughout time, and many say that is the way it is supposed to be. But is the development of art being done by artificial intelligence a part of that conversation?

Junior Deni Bowdoin discusses her thoughts as an artist on the phenomenon. Bowdoin has mostly seen programs through videos on social media and has even found appeal in some of them.

“I love seeing color palettes and images the human mind might not be able to create,” she said. “It could be the source of trying to get a certain feeling or look that you want in an art piece, but it’s not technically a piece of artwork because it’s not generated by a source of creativity but just by a computer.”

Bowdoin finds the most useful and appealing part of AI art for herself is inspiration, and that is a large part of why so many people enjoy it.

“Creating something from the mind is very difficult, and sometimes it’s hard for people to create stuff they haven’t already seen,” she said. “An AI program can create something so fast and so simple that looks appealing that a lot of people are drawn to be like, ‘Oh, this is cool. I’m going to use this.’”

Bowdoin believes there are many things that an AI program lacks that a human artist gains over the course of time.

“As [an] artist creating something, you have the opportunity to grow as you’re creating it, and AI just doesn’t have that,” Bowdoin said. “Artists themselves create art for a sense of purpose to get something out of it. It’s not clicking a button and having something made just to be made, but it’s something that people go through as a process of development to learn about themselves.”

As for the future relationship between AI and art, it is difficult to say where it will go. Bowdoin is excited

to see how AI art will progress, but she continues to feel that her passions align more with human artists.

“I’m jealous — it makes something so perfect and that’s also one of the reasons why it’s not considered a form of art because of its structure and system that’s made specifically to create that one outcome,” Bowdoin said. “Artists aren’t perfect. No one’s going to be able to create the same thing. It’s all about certain styles and expressions, so personally, I’d rather something that’s not as well artistically drawn out as AI programming, but I find more enjoyment in looking at someone’s actual artwork [for which] they put in the effort.”

As technology advances, both AI and ChatGPT have made learning both easier and less effective for the students’ sake. Not only has it made it so that student’s focus more on the grade rather than their own learning in a class but how it negatively affects how much effort they use within.

“[ChatGPT] is going to eliminate the skill of critical thinking,” ELA teacher Theresa Middleton said.

With a surplus of abilities from writing an essay to making a recipe out of certain foods you own or even writing a song, being able to make something original is probably something that will impact both society and students longterm.

“Teachers need to know that it’s not going anywhere,” Middleton said. “I think it’s like the calculator. It’s not going anywhere and I need to embrace it and teach students how to use it honestly and effectively.”

With ChatGPT being a program that is specifically designed to meet the function or request of the user, being able to cheat makes it that much easier for students.

“It will be used to generate ideas for maybe essays or other assignments and that in a way [it’s] not your own ideas,” Middleton said.

As of right now, the only known way to check to see if something is made from ChatGPT is by simply asking the program itself. This leaves students to learn on their own that while ChatGPT can be used to get ideas, it’s not something that will get them very far in life or in education.

“I feel like [students] need to learn how to regulate it themselves,” Middleton said.

With ChatGPT being an option for students to learn, it’s one that can be used to get insight or get an idea that may spark something better for them.

“This is just the beginning,” Middleton said. “This is going to be crazy how much [ChatGPT] changes the way we learn and do our jobs. This will be a jumping-off platform for everything else.”

18 on the cover april 2023

Though the viral artificial intelligence ChatGPT is most commonly painted as a nationwide mechanism for deceitful students, its origin, application and consequences are just about as complex as the microchips and programming that sustain its very existence.

The brainchild of San Francisco start-up OpenAI, the tool boasts its unique ability to form detailed, human-like responses to an infinite array of prompts. By tapping into its previously unprecedented realm of data, a CNBC article said the program utilizes the Generative Pretrained Transformer (GPT) language model to produce written responses ranging from legal briefs to graduation speeches.

Apart from the attention the AI innovation garners on its own, a couple big names associated with its development and proliferation only add to the technological buzz — the most noteworthy being co-founder of OpenAI Elon Musk and lofty investor Microsoft.

More than any celebrity endorsement or viral review, though, ChatGPT’s personal, conversational style marks a revolutionary accomplishment in the world of artificial intelligence.

According to Jeffery Wong, a global chief executive at professional services firm Ernst & Young, “What’s exciting is that the responses are more and more human-like, so what you’re seeing are things that we did not think computers could do before.”

Hey ChatGPT,

This human-thought machine only heightens its appeal to the technological community and beyond by boasting incredible accessibility that’s available with a quick sign up. As an early February note from the Union Bank of Switzerland declared, the chatbot attracted 100 million monthly active users in its first two months postlaunch, granting it the title of fastest-growing consumer application of all time.

Some point to the internet for this sudden surge of popularity. Some point to the program’s exceptional imitation capabilities. Some, such as Wong, even suggest a post-pandemic “burst of creativity,” similar to that of the Renaissance after the Bubonic Plague, may have had a hand in the application’s ascent to the top of the technological pyramid.

Uses and rise to fame aside, ChatGPT raises other consequences less aligned with its substance and more closely intertwined with its company affiliation.

Following Microsoft’s partnership with OpenAI, Google launched an artificial intelligence initiative of its own by the name of Bard.After all, with ChatGPT existing as an alluring information alternative to scrolling through pages of sites on Google, the company felt the need to respond.

Now ensues a potentially grand-scale innovation race to fine tune fast, accurate, complex Al programs fit to compete against even the brightest of mankind’s thinkers.

write a newspaper article

based on the article above.

San Francisco-based start-up OpenAI has created an artificial intelligence tool that is causing a stir in the tech community. ChatGPT, a chatbot that produces human-like responses to an infinite range of prompts, has gained popularity due to its conversational style and accessibility. The program utilizes the Generative Pretrained Transformer (GPT) language model, enabling it to produce written responses from legal briefs to graduation speeches.

Elon Musk and Microsoft are among the big names associated with the development of ChatGPT. The program’s ability to imitate human thought marks a revolutionary accomplishment in the world of AI. Jeffrey Wong, a global chief executive at professional services firm EY, commented that the responses are becoming more human-like, indicating that computers can do things that were previously thought impossible.

ChatGPT’s popularity has been phenomenal, with the program attracting 100 million monthly active users in its first two months post-launch. Some attribute its success to the internet, while others suggest a post-pandemic “burst of creativity” may have contributed to its ascent to the top of the technological pyramid.

However, ChatGPT’s rise to fame has raised concerns about its company affiliation. Following Microsoft’s partnership with OpenAI, Google launched its own artificial intelligence initiative named Bard AI. With ChatGPT becoming an alternative source of information for users, Google felt the need to respond. This has led to a potentially grand-scale innovation race, as companies strive to develop fast, accurate, and complex AI programs fit to compete against even the brightest of mankind’s thinkers.


BV schools team up to compete in KC Metro league

The typical “Tiger athlete experience” includes a team full of fellow Tigers, and of course, the thrill of competing against rival BV schools.

Now consider what it would be like to play on a team composed of these rivals, except for this isn’t just a scenario for senior Julia Walsh and junior Addi Ruisinger.

The two share the unique experience of being players competing on the only girls lacrosse team in the district — one that happens to be composed of students from all five of the schools.

“It’s really fun to meet girls from all the different Blue Valley schools,” Walsh said. “I’ve made a lot of really close friends from North and West, and it’s fun to come together with girls that are all having different types of experiences. We talk about our schools [and] what’s going on.”

Before their time on the Titans, Walsh and Ruisinger partook in different introductions into the world of lacrosse.

“I started playing lacrosse around middle school [when] they had a week where we did lacrosse, basketball and soccer, so I picked it up from there,” Ruisinger said. “There was a flier they passed out during PE class saying you could go practice with this team or just try it out, so I decided to do it. I fell in love with it.”

Despite playing soccer and softball before, the maneuvers of lacrosse were an adjustment for Ruisinger, with upper-body strength being a key aspect she had to target as goalie.

“Learning how to use a stick [to] throw and catch with it — it’s a bit of a learning process, but you get the hang of it,” Ruisinger said. “My

20 feature april 2023

biggest struggle, [is] trying to build up my strength because the goalie stick is very big, and it’s very difficult to throw with. At home, I do some strength training like lifting weights, push ups — just anything I can do to benefit my upper body.”

Walsh, on the other hand, has held a lacrosse stick for as long as she can remember.

“I started playing in kindergarten,” Walsh said. “It was a really big sport when I used to live in New Jersey, so they started really young with clinics. That’s when I picked it up and haven’t stopped playing since.”

Despite lacrosse’s relative recency to the area, Walsh’s upbringing fueled her desire to play competitively even after moving to Kansas.

“Whenever I lived in New Jersey, I was on a club team, so I really wanted to continue with that when I moved here,” Walsh said. “Lacrosse wasn’t as big of a sport, so there were a lot of new clubs starting. I’ve been on a lot of different teams, and the high school teams and middle school teams are a really fun experience. ”

Part of what makes playing on the high school team unique for Walsh and Ruisinger is the difference in schools they compete against.

“We get to play a lot of teams that our other school teams don’t play,” Walsh said. “We play a lot of private schools and teams that are further outside of the district because it’s the KC Metro League, not a KSHSAA League.”

The girls may be from all across the district, but this has had no hindrance on their closeness as a team.

“My favorite part is definitely the sense of community we have,” Ruisinger said. “We all feel like a family.”

From a club-player perspective, Walsh appreciates how this team serves as a fulfilling outlet for her.

“I love the practices — it’s more light-hearted, [and] there’s more flexibility with it,” she said. “We’re also really close with our coach, so it’s more of a fun experience — it just feels like I’m with my friends every day. At the same time, there’s still a lot of skill and talent on our team, [so] it’s fun to be able to win but also sit back and have a good time at practice.”

This season has been memorable for Walsh in a multitude of ways.

“I’m excited to have a little bit more leadership because I’ve been a freshman and sophomore on varsity, and I was very close with the upperclassmen,” she said. “It’s fun to have my turn to be an upperclassman and lead girls I’ve become so close with. I’m also excited because we have a big team this year, so there’s a lot more opportunities. I’m excited for the tournament at the end of this season, which is always a big deal.”

With the close relationships she has built over the past four years, Walsh acknowledges the difficulty of being a friend and a captain to her team mates.

“It’s hard to tell people what to do and find that happy medium of ‘I need to be helping you, but also, you’re one of my really close friends — I don’t want to be yelling at you,’” she said. “Learning from my coach has been really helpful — [we] make practices fun, but also have seriousness where we’re able to really improve our skills. We’ve won State in the past, and we’ve always made it far in the tournament, so I wouldn’t want to give that up this year just to mess around at practice. ”

Walsh and Ruisinger encourage people of all skill levels to give lacrosse a try.

“I don’t think it requires much prior knowledge,” Ruisinger said. “We have some new girls on the team, which I love. The best part is how supportive everybody is — if you mess up or do something wrong, all we’re trying to do is help you fix it. I’m always asking people if they want to come out and try it because honest ly, it’s so fun — you just have to get the hang of it.”




Students enjoy visiting KC’s River Market

kylee thompson |staff writer

In downtown Kansas City, Missouri, at Fifth Street and Walnut, you can find the historic Kansas City River Market, home to one of the largest farmers’ markets in the region with about 140 vendors offering local handmade jewelry, fresh produce, seafood, plants and baked goods.

Many students enjoy experiencing what the River Market has to offer such as senior Kate Bowersox and junior Amira Dvorak

“I like picking out fresh fruits — it makes me very happy,” Dvorak said. “I go with my parents. We started going more because I really liked it and we could get lots of fruits.

Pineapples aren’t the only thing Dvorak looks for when shopping at the River Market.

“Sometimes, if there’s something that catches my eye, I’ll buy local honey,” she said.

With Spring in full swing, the opening of the outdoor market brings in people from all over the region, including Dvorak who is eager to return.

“I normally go 10 times or so [in a year],” she said. “It is a fun little thing to do with family.”

Ranging from fresh fruit to vegetables to jewelry, Bowersox appreciates the diversity of options at the River Market, often times buying a different kind of fresh produce.

“I always buy mushrooms,” she said. “There’s this one vendor that sells all different kinds of mushrooms, and they are so good.”

In addition, the River Market offers many handmade crafts by regional artisans.

“There’s a lot of local artists creating jewelry there that I like, such as crystal necklaces and bracelets,” Bowersox said.

On occasion, Bowersox enjoys dressing up and making a day out of the trip.

“I wear a cute hippie outfit [with] a flowy skirt,” she said. “I always get flowers — it’s fun to take some photos with [them].”

Bowersox encourages people to go experience what KC has to offer and hopes she can go often this Spring and Summer.

“I try to go there, normally with my friends, like four or five times [a year],” she said. “I am going to go there as much as I can again.”

H i s t o r ic
I always get the best pineapples from there. amira dvorak, 11
22 fea april 2022
design by kylie thompson

Flying through the Finish Line

sophomores participate in elite track club

The club’s recent travels include indoor events in Topeka, Wichita and Arkansas.

“The most exciting was definitely the meet at Arkansas,” Jones said. “It was great to be at the place where so many top runners ran and one of the best indoor tracks in the nation.”

Training with KC Flyers helped Jones and Means jump right into the high school season.

Girls track head coach Andrew Reeves believes it’s important for all athletes participate in off-season training.

“Track and field is a very hard and demanding sport on your body, and it’s important to prepare your body for those demands,” Reeves said. “Athletes that come into the season who haven’t been preparing have a much higher risk for injury.”

As the track season continues, athletes are getting into their best shape; however, sophomores Phaelin Jones and Jazzmyne Means have been rigorously training all year with the running club KC Flyers.

Jones has run with KC Flyers since the summer of 2019 and Means has run with them for almost a year. The runners practice four to five days a week for about three hours each day, putting in extensive work and honing their skills in order to participate in both the 200- and 400-meter dashes.

For Means, track has become a passion over the past year.

“When I started running freshman year for the school, I realized it is something I really wanted to do and something I would like to get better at,” Means said. “I wanted to do it more than just at school.”

KC Flyers helps athletes with their endurance and overall speed while preparing them for their high school season.

“It’s mostly long distance [and] long sprint stuff,” Means said. “To help us prepare for the 400, we run around 450s and 600s. It’s just a lot of footwork, form and long sprints.”

With the club, athletes compete around the country. Thorough training comes with a worthwhile reward for Jones.

“I love being able to travel to new cities and states to run at different tracks,” Jones said. “It’s always great being able to compare the tracks and to see different colors or shapes from what I’m used to.”

Due to the preparation from Jones and Means, Reeves has noticed tremendous improvement from both.

“They honestly look like two completely different athletes,” Reeves said. “Phaelin was injured for most of last season so we were never able to see her true potential. Jazzmyne had a great freshman season, but you can tell they both came into this season with much more to prove. They are going to be major contributors to our sprints group this season. I’m excited to see what they can accomplish — I think we’re going to surprise some people.”

april 2023
design by emma mcatee


participates in animal version of March Madness bracket

harris jones | staff writer

Every year as mid-March draws close people flock to create their brackets for March Madness. Whether it be for fun or for money, it’s a cultural phenomenon. The science department at Blue Valley decided to participate in Mammal Madness, a March Madness bracket filled with various mammals.

“You put which animal you think could beat whatever other animal it’s against,”

sophomore Lillie Mikuls said. “A random simulated winner is chosen, and the science teacher behind it makes a fake play-by-play of how Animal A logically could’ve beat Animal B.”

Despite the bracket being left up to fate, Mikuls did not stray away from having a strategy.

“For some parts I picked animals where I felt it logically made sense [for them to win], but other parts I just picked the animal I liked more,” she said. “I’d talk to my friends in class about it and they’d genuinely question my choices.”

Her winning choice was the Okapi, also known as a forest giraffe — her logic being: “because I want it to win so it will.”

If students submitted their brackets digitally, they became eligible for extra credit through the competition, which Mikuls was trying for, as of March 17, sits at fifth place. But, despite the extra credit, she did not find that to be the most appealing part of it.

“It’s just something fun we got to do for class,” she said. “It’s just super silly and fun.”

Student Picks

24 fea april 2022
Shanum Ghafoor, 10: Wolverine Max Rudman, 12: Okapi


Let the begin!

Students share predictions and opinions on this year’s March Madness tournament

Final 4 prediction: “I think UCLA will probably end up doing well in the tournament.”

National championship prediction: “I feel like there’s a chance that KU could go back-toback.”

Favorite team: “I didn’t expect K-State to even be here, but we are.”

Favorite player: “I think that Keyontae Johnson has a cool story coming back from the injury that many people thought might even affect his entire life regardless of basketball.”

Final 4 prediction: “Texas, Alabama, K-State and Gonzaga.”

National championship prediction: “Either Alabama or K-State.”

Favorite team: “K-State because I love their team and coach.”

Favorite player: “Markquis Nowell or Keyontae Johnson because they’re good teammates and they work really hard.”

Final 4 prediction: “UConn, Alabama, Texas, and K-State.”

National championship prediction: “Alabama.”

Favorite team: “KU because my dad went there but they lost, so that was disappointing.”

Favorite player: “I like Jalen Wilson because he’s good and I’ve watched him all year.”

Final 4 prediction: “Alabama, Texas, UConn and I think K-State has a good chance.”

National championship prediction: “I think Alabama will [win], especially with the upsets that happened in the past rounds.”

Favorite team: “KU because my family are all alumni and it holds a place dear to my heart.”

Favorite player: “[Keyontae Johnson] because I find his story really inspiring.”

Final 4 prediction: “Kansas, Kentucky, UCLA and Duke.”

National championship prediction: “KU.”

Favorite team: “KU because they’re local.”

Favorite player: “Grady Dick because his name is funny.”

Final 4 prediction: “Alabama, K-State, Texas and UConn.”

National championship prediction: “K-State.”

Favorite team: “K-State because my siblings both go there, and purple is my favorite color.”

Favorite player: “Markquis Nowell because he shoots lights-out and he’s crazy.”

Johnny Perkins, junior Elina Goldstein, sophomore Brett Jordan, junior Maia Bajich, junior Katy Thompson, sophomore Simon Menees, junior
april 2023
design by ava mcniel

stylish trending fashion, beauty of the season

rhylan stern |publication editor


Throughout the year, trends occur in fashion, beauty and more. But these trends can be based on seasons. With the start of Spring, new trends surfaced with many high schoolers following them and buying certain popular items. Included are some of the popular 2023 Spring trends.

baggy, light-wash jeans

$59 Light-wash jeans are a staple for everyone’s closet and are always good to have on hand. Recently, baggy styles have replaced skinny jeans and are trending in different colors and washes. While this pair is from American Eagle, you can get them from Hollister, PacSun or even Amazon.

missactiver twist top $20

With the start of warmer weather, tank tops and strapless tops come out of storage. A trending summer style on TikTok is a strapless, twist top ranging in over 10 colors on Amazon, from the brand MISSACTIVER.

liquid blush $23

Rare Beauty is a makeup brand that has been trending for a while, but one of its biggest products is the liquid blush, as liquid makeup products have been trending across social media. Other brands with liquid blush include Glossier or Charlotte Tilbury.

crossover flowy shorts

$55 Aerie is famous for their activewear but also for their crossover styles. One of their new crossover styles is the Crossover Flowy Shorts, which come in 12 different colors.

flared jeans $90

Because of the popularity of the new show “Daisy Jones & The Six,” there has been a resurgence of ‘70s style across social media. Flared jeans is one of these trending items. While these are from Abercrombie, there are similar jeans from American Eagle, Hollister or H&M.

26 a&e april 2022
design by rhylan stern

design by ashling bahadursingh

start cleaning this spring

ashling bahadursingh|staff writer

As the weather warms up, people are preparing for the new season by spring cleaning. Whether it be cleaning out living spaces, workspaces or headspaces, Spring is a time to discard the old and welcome in a new, cleaner life.

why do spring cleaning?

All across the world, spring cleaning has been a part of many cultures, whether it’s to ring in a new year, prepare for religious holidays, or just because spring is the easiest season to clean in.

The benefits to spring cleaning are numerous.

Cleaning out your space allows for better focus in other areas, and gives you a sense of control over your life. When the your room is cluttered, there is a likelihood your mind is, too.

So this Spring, put on some music or a podcast and get to cleaning.

51% of students partake in spring cleaning

Tips To Clean

“Clean first, organize last.”

-Neha Katakamshetty, 10

“Take the time to make life more efficient.”

-Ava Aslinia, 10

36% of spring cleaners do a deep cean

21% of spring cleaners throw away unwanted items

52% of spring cleaners say it is both mental and physical cleaning

Tips To Clean

“Have a goal, and know what you want to achieve with your cleaning.”

“Set managable goals.”

-Catherine Bahadursingh, 11

|98 students surveyed
-Ella Hibbard, 11 a&e april 202327

Short Summary

“It’s going over different [methods] in law and how court would work. [Also it’s] just describing how lawyers do things and how [the court system] generally works.”

Why is it your favorite?

“[It’s] my favorite because I really enjoy and have passion for law — maybe one day I could do something with that.”

The Hunger Games


Why is it your favorite?

“I love a good mystery.”

Short Summary

“It details a high school girl figuring out how she fits into the world. She also makes a friend with this kid who was intertwined in this murder case [she’s working on].”


ook ook

book recommendations

Why is it your favorite?

“I really like the idea of somebody being transported to Mars and there being life there.”

Why is it your favorite?

“It’s got twists and turns I didn’t really expect, and it’s kind of a thriller [that] keeps you gripped throughout the book.”

Short Summary

“[Its] about a woman that is in a mental facility, and there’s some dynamics that happened between this patient and a doctor that filters back to [the patient’s] prior memories.”

Short Summary

“John Carter, a Confederate veteran of the American Civil War, who finds himself transported to the planet Mars. There, he discovers a dying world of warring alien races and becomes embroiled in the conflicts between them. Along the way, he falls in love with Dejah Thoris, a beautiful princess of the humanoid Red Martians, and becomes a hero in their struggles.”

VSong of Achilles Harry Potter
tudents , staf
Brooke Poskin, business teacher Nicholas Deffer, science teacher Anna Schumacher, 9
28 a&e
Ethan Kohl, 11
design by regan byrnes


social development.

Growing up, I always had more girl friends than boy friends. Being friends with girls seemed just as normal to me as being friends with boys.

Though those dynamics changed a bit when I started to be more interested in some of the girls I was friends with, for the most part we were always just that: friends.

I can distinctly remember in middle school, probably 6th or 7th grade, being confused why all of my male friends were distancing themselves from our female friends. It didn’t help that this division was reinforced by everyone around us, from our teachers and parents to the movies and TV shows we watched.

In media, this stereotype is most often found in tropes such as childhood friends to lovers or the girl next door — think “Sky High,” “How I Met Your Mother” and “When Harry Met Sally.” These TV shows and movies set an unrealistic precedent: when boys and girls are friends, they will inevitably fall in love.

Not only is this unrealistic, it is harmful to our

If we don’t feel comfortable just being friendly with each other, how are we supposed to socialize later in life without an expectation of romance?

On top of all that, this outdated idea is incredibly heteronormative. It assumes a lot about the identity of a pair of friends who are not the same gender.

There just isn’t a lot of reason to keep this idea around anymore outside of Hallmark movies and Netflix shows.

There is no reason that having a friend of the opposite gender should be expected to lead to a romantic relationship, nor is there any real evidence that boys and girls can’t be friends without developing such feelings for one another.

If we stick to these boys-only and girls-only cliques, how are we going to get to know each other and get along?

According to a 2020 Pew Research Center study, 32 percent of adults say they met their partner through friends and family, 18 percent met through work, 17 percent met through school and 12 percent met online. The other 21 percent met in some other public place.

None of those sound like childhood best friends to me.

opn april 202329
the idea that boys and girls can’t be “just friends” is an outdated stereotype

L is for the way that I Love Love. It’s happy, it’s all over the place, IT’S PINK, and gosh-darn does it make a good dramatic show, and I LOVE the drama.

Love itself though, is arguable over whether it’s good or bad, and I see it the same way I see bugs. There might be a few scary bits … maybe a LOT of scary bits, but that doesn’t mean it’s all bad — just look at a butterfly; they can single handedly fight my fear of bugs because, for some reason, they don’t scare me.

ButterfLies dOn’t eVer liE

It’s just like non-literal butterflies — the ones you get in your stomach when you start to get feelings for that special little someone. Those silly feelings are scarier than actual bugs, which is saying a lot, because I am terrified of bugs.

O is for being Open about your love. Love can bring so many good things, and it can have so many positives, but some still hate it. Crushes are a good thing, and even though the good doesn’t always show, it is. Crushes are normal — healthy even — even if your mindset says the opposite of that.

I’ve heard time and time again about how bad crushes are — butterflies feeling like a sinking in your stomach, the fear of a heartbreak or being afraid that something negative in the past will happen again, or maybe, you’ve accepted that love isn’t real, and how you’ll be alone with your 20 cats for the rest of your life.

That fear of love shouldn’t hold you back — you have to accept when you’ve fallen in love because you won’t get away from it just by pushing it away. You can try to convince yourself you can’t fall in love, try to build walls to gaslight yourself, but when you get butterflies, it’s already over — you’re in love, so let that love in. Anything can happen.

“But what if I get hurt?” Well, V is for being on the Verge of crying. Love isn’t easy, it brings joy and sadness, the happy and the heartbreak. Everyone’s seems to look at love through rose-colored glasses when it comes to love, but love itself is HARD. It’s not just a Disney movie where you’ll end up with the first man you ever meet.

Love has challenges — everyone knows that — but I think that’s the fun part. It’s like your heartbeat, or a graph of one. Your heartbeat needs to go up and down for your heart to function, just like your love story needs those ups and downs. There WILL be good parts and there WILL be bad parts, but if it was always good, it would just be a flatline — dead, boring, lame, and not worth your time. If love was always sunshine and rainbows, it would get repetitive. Love wouldn’t mean anything.

E is for not Everyone will love you back. I feel like that’s obvious, but it is something I’ve seen a lot.

Let’s say you’ve gotten your crush, you’ve figured it out, you know you like this person, but they don’t seem to love you back, and that sucks — it does.

From there, you can do two things, try and pursue them and see if they will fall in love with you or accept they don’t like you like that. You can try to make them love you, and it might work out for you, but it also might not.

That’s when you have to acknowledge they don’t love you. It sucks, but don’t keep chasing someone who won’t give you the love you deserve, and don’t become delusional either.

I’ve witnessed people create entire imaginary relationships with others in their heads, convincing themselves that this other person is head over heels for them when that person wants nothing romantic with them.

I’ve seen it where you’d buy the world for them if it meant they loved you, but you can’t force someone to love you, and that’s just how it is. It’ll hurt, but that hurt will go away soon enough. You’ll find someone who appreciates you for you someday. It may not be now, but there will always be someone who loves you for you because you are gorg.

I love love, and LOVE was made for me and you.

You might roll your eyes at that, but trust me, love was made for everyone.

Love is an amazing feeling. When you really love someone, it’s like nothing can get you and your special someone down. Love is waiting for you — you just have to let it in.

It might take a second — it might take two seconds even — but whether you believe in love or not, it was made for me and you.

Yes, love was made for me and you.

opinion april 2023

Butterf lies are a Lie

Disgruntled member of High School Relationships™ rants

Everyone has heard that feeling you get when you have a crush referred to as “butterflies in your stomach.” I don’t think I’ve ever seriously used this phrase in my life. Not because I haven’t felt it, but because I don’t call it “butterflies.” I get moths.

I’ve been in love exactly once. I’ve really liked someone exactly twice. I can’t count the number of times I enjoyed the feeling of butterflies on one hand — mostly because that number is exactly zero.

My first real exposure to the “butterflies” began in early 2022, when I was a freshman. I’d never really had a crush before, and it was terrible.

I was nauseous, I was nervous, I was super excited yet terrified to see the object of my affection at the very same time. I cried, I ranted, I went through all five stages of grief, plus some. It was bad, believe me.

It took me six months of mostly silent suffering to go up to this man (that’s a strong word for him) and actually tell him how I felt. We don’t talk about how that relationship actually played out (the simple descriptor is poorly), but the moral of that story was: “Aspen does not like love. She will not be doing it again.”

She was wrong, and she will probably continue to be wrong for a very long time. Because the chances of finding your high school sweetheart are terribly low, and I’m already two years in. Aspen will probably be doing this dance for a solid amount of time, and to be honest, I (Aspen) am very afraid of that.

So why did I use this page to tell you the tragic story of my first relationship? Shouldn’t that have been irrelevant the moment it progressed from my crush to my boyfriend? No, because it is relevant. Because it’s an example of a bad feeling — butterflies — devolving into a worse feeling — heartbreak.

That relationship lasted for about five months, and don’t get me wrong, I was insanely happy during it. Any of my friends could probably tell you how my face lit up every time I talked about my boyfriend.

But relationships are complicated, and butterflies aren’t easy to get rid of. The feeling of those butterflies is bad. Actively being in love is nice but terribly uncertain, and heartbreak is one of the worst feelings I’ve ever felt; and honestly, the short period of

joy isn’t worth that to me. If I could go back in time to that first crush, I don’t think I would’ve done anything about it.

“Why though, Aspen? It taught you an important life lesson.”

Because the butterflies of love are a lie. The crush stage is messy, and when it ends poorly, as a large portion of relationships do, it’s just not worth the period of bliss compared to the period of pain. But that’s just the way of life sometimes. There are things you don’t want to do that you have to anyway.

Love is hard, and love is scary. My first relationship crashed and burned, and I’m quite honestly terrified to try for another one. My second crush wasn’t nearly that dramatic — they simply didn’t like me, which, while not nearly as messy as the first, it’s still not great to feel. After that first one, people told me it won’t always be that bad, but even so, it’s not a good feeling.

So I’m going to continue with my tenuous coping mechanisms of complaining to my friends and listening to love songs to get me through whatever crushes I may develop until I no longer have the need for crushes and coping mechanisms.

And while people may have different opinions on the moths or different methods of dealing with them, it’s a feeling that nearly all of us share, and that’s pretty rare — which kind of makes it cool, in a deeply upsetting and somewhat annoying way.

I may want to violently sob about every cute boy or girl that makes the moths fly in again, but I’m violently sobbing with company, which almost makes it better.

Artificial intelligence will affect the future

In science fiction, AI is depicted as a dangerous, otherworldly force that typically loves to conquer the world. We all know these are just movies; however, some part of us is wary of this happening with technology on the rise.

This over exaggerated depiction of robots with murderous tendencies might hold some truth in real life, while much more understated. On the other hand, AI might serve as something truly advantageous to society.

All in all, the debate over whether AI is good or bad shows what it truly is: Somewhere right in the middle.

In the movies, robots take over the lives of humans, and in real life, this is mirrored by the increased amount of jobs becoming automated.

AI is beginning to take over the workplace, causing people to lose their jobs and potentially have no other option of where to work next.

This is detrimental to the already precarious state of unemployment across the country.

At the restaurant Magic Noodle here in KC, there is a robot that carries the

food to its customers and even interacts with them. The only human workers necessary for the restaurant are those who can work in a kitchen, proving that robots are beginning to take over even the simplest of jobs like serving.

Alternatively, AI can make our lives much easier and simpler, as it is able to complete tasks too difficult for humans.

It can also help people with decision making and problem solving, such as the well-known site ChatGPT.

People can have conversations with a chatbot, allowing users to ask it to write essays, help with projects or anything else that requires problem solving.

While some might be afraid of this for its possibilities of cheating in school, it can also be a very beneficial tool.

It helps students discover the best way to solve a problem and thus be able to transform their own ideas and words.

If students use this bot as a learning tool, rather than a cheat system, it could prove to be very beneficial to education.

According to Harvard Business Review (HBR), AI can also personalize education, helping increase student


Every student would be able to choose an educational path to go down that applies to their own specific needs, helping with the lack of focus in schools.

HBR describes that professors could use AI to discover information about their different students’ varying learning styles and adjust their lessons accordingly.

A study commissioned by Microsoft says that 99.4% of 509 higher education institutions now view AI as vital to the future of education.

If even colleges are recognizing the pros of AI, then perhaps it isn’t as frightening of a concept to society as it may seem.

While it does have its cons, with the elimination of jobs in certain workforces, it will also prove to be beneficial in educational ways.

If AI goes rogue and takes over the planet, the cons would definitely outweigh the pros — but if we continue to live with it and try to understand what its true purpose is, life could be much simpler.

32 staff ed april 2022
staff editorial is
representation of
opinion of The Tiger