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Fisher and McBride are Golden on 90.7 FM

Breanna Peña Memorial

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How Mad Are You? Take the “March Madness” Quiz Page 10

COMBS Courier The source for Coyote news

Monday, March 21, 2011

Vol. 1/Edition 2

Gone but not Forgotten CHS Eighth Grader dies after fighting leukemia for six months Jordan Flake

Combs Courier Staff Writer

The passing of a loved one brings about pain, sadness, and even the realization of mortality. However, as bad as things may seem, death also brings people together. When Breanna Peña died, Combs High became, even if for a day, a more unified, and emotionally connected place. During the last two and a half months of Peña’s life her family and friends witnessed many miraculous things. On Christmas Eve she was declared cancer-free. However, her conquest toward recovery was far from over. Doctors felt that even though they had rid her body of cancer, Peña’s life was still in jeopardy because her body lacked an immune system to fight off infection. On January 29, Peña, stared mortality in the eye and participated London’s Run. With help from her father Rick, Peña completed the race on her own, without her wheel chair. After her death, word of Peña and her amazing character, spread like wildfire. One especially moving act was made by CHS junior, Anthony Ramirez. He wrote and recorded a song as a memorial to Peña, then uploaded the song to YouTube. It has received more than 1,200 hits in three-plus weeks. “She was someone I didn’t know personally, but I felt the need to make this song,” says Ramirez on his YouTube channel. “She is survived by her loving family and friends, and will always be remembered.”

Adrienna Foster Combs Courier Staff Writer

Photo Credit Charisa Bisbee

The death of CHS eighth-grader Breanna Peña, 13, brought many friends, family and classmates to tears at a celebration of life service held in her memory.

Wanna See my Matrix?

Brian Taylor Combs Courier Adviser

No really, take a picture, it will last longer. The matrix phenomenon has infected the Combs Courier. Never seen one before? Where have you been? Sleeping under a rock? The matrix, known as a QR codes have been around since 1994 when Japanese automotive company Denso-Wave developed the technology to track car parts. The QR code is a two-dimensional grid that replaces the need to type a long website address into your phone’s web browser. Instead, a smartphone user simply has to scan the code with an app such as

Do You Think This Place Cleans Up Itself?

ShopSavvy and the phone will do the rest. So why are these codes popping up around this issue of the Combs Courier? Because we believe that our readers deserve a more interactive newspaper. How amazing would it be to read an article on a varsity baseball game, snap a photo of the QR code at the end of the article and hear the audio of the post-game interview or watch a highlight of the game. We are not quite there yet Coyotes, but keep watch. The Combs Courier is a game changer and we plan to take high school journalism to the next level...multimedia reporting.

What works with my phone? Android • Barcode Scanner Blackberry • QR Scanner Pro • ScanLife iPhone • QR Code Reader • ShopSavvy

Ready to give it a try? Snap a picture of the QR to visit the Combs Courier online.

Can you imagine having to pick up other people’s trash all the time? As teenagers, we don’t even like picking up our own trash, let alone others. Students are constantly arguing over who’s going to be the one to throw away all of the trash after lunch each day, and that’s just one lunch table! The custodians here at CHS are responsible for way more than just the cleanliness of one lunch table. Each day after school, seven fulltime and one part-time custodian work from 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. to keep our grounds and facilities clean. Everyday workloads include vacuuming, dusting, sweeping, mopping, taking out the trash, and cleaning the bathrooms. Every once in a while, the crew comes across something more time-consuming that they need to clean. Tony Guzman, one of the custodians here at CHS, says that one red or purple Powerade stain can take up to 30 minutes to remove from the tile. Some carpet stains are also more time-consuming than others. Each task usually takes the about the same amount of time every day, so any extra time is used to clean other things, like markings on the walls. For particularly hard stains, the custodians use a product called “graffiti wipes” which aid in removing hardcore stains, like permanent markers, that students use to write on bathroom stalls and walls. Each bit of graffiti is photographed and shown to administration for documentation before it’s wiped away. About four times a year, the custodians do a “deep cleaning.” This cleaning usually occurs during school breaks or summer vacation. A deep cleaning includes repainting the walls and waxing the hallways to cover up any stains that are impossible to remove. During these breaks, the custodians prepare the buildings for use again before school starts. The custodial staff here at CHS are a close-knit bunch. “We are like a family,” Guzman said. Whether you believe it or not, students play a huge role in the custodians’ job. What you do with your trash and how you use your utensils can either make or break a day for them. “Some days the kids are nice,” Guzman explains. “Other days they are...not so nice.”

2 COMBS Courier Japan Struggles to Contain Nuclear Crisis

Monday, March 21, 2011

Mark Magnier (MCT)

SENDAI, Japan - A series of grim developments hit a shaken Japan, with reports that high-level radiation may have leaked from a second damaged nuclear reactor and emergency workers forced to temporarily abandon the crippled complex. The setbacks aggravated public fears that authorities might not be able to contain the expanding nuclear crisis. Japan’s chief Cabinet secretary, Yukio Edano said radioactive steam may have escaped from the containment unit of a second reactor at the Fukushima No.1 (Daiichi) plant 150 miles north of Tokyo. The announcement followed unsettling news that a midmorning surge in radiation had forced emergency workers to halt their efforts to try to avert a meltdown of three other reactors at the plant, work that included the crucial task of keeping water on the reactors’ overheated cores. The burgeoning crisis has imposed a deepening isolation on the earthquake- and tsunamibattered country, with foreigners fleeing in growing numbers, rescue crews mindful of exit routes and international flights being diverted from the capital. Another quake, centered off the coast near Tokyo and given a preliminary magnitude of 6, jolted the capital shortly after Edano’s announcement, further fraying nerves. In the country’s north, tens of thousands of residents within about a 20-mile radius of the Fukushima plant were essentially trapped indoors for a second day

Wednesday, urged again by authorities to avoid going out unless it was an emergency. That confinement coincided with growing hardship across the quake zone, where temperatures have dropped and snow fell overnight. “Yesterday we ate a bit of rice and one egg,” said Yoshiko Tsuzuki, 55, a homemaker waiting in a line outside a grocery store on the outskirts of the battered city of Sendai. “We’re hungry. I want to buy water and anything to eat. We need everything.” It remained unclear why a nation renowned for its efficiency has been unable to marshal convoys of supply trucks into the disaster area, as China did after its 2008 earthquake. Although military vehicles were evident, few emergency supplies were seen on the major arteries from Tokyo into the hard-hit Tohuku region and other seriously affected areas. Even in cities that lie well outside the quake zone, daily life was increasingly disrupted by rolling blackouts and the curtailment of Japan’s much-vaunted transportation network, both of which will be key to restarting the engine of the world’s third-largest economy. Stock prices stabilized Wednesday after tumbling for two days, but there was deepening gloom over the long-term financial outlook after the worst earthquake in the country’s recorded history, a concern even among people who have far more immediate and pressing fears. “I’m worried in the long term about Japan’s economy,” said Yoshiko Konno, in her 60s, as she charged her cell phone at a community center in Sendai. “Just think of one example: oysters!

Are Americans and Europeans going to want to import Japanese oysters if they think there is a danger of radioactive contamination?” Five days later, the true scale of the disaster is still unknown. At least 10,000 people are feared dead, a tally that is expected to take weeks to finalize. About half a million others have been displaced by quake and tsunami damage or the evacuation triggered by the emergency at Fukushima, a once-obscure nuclear plant that is now the focus of worldwide attention. The cause of a blaze that erupted earlier Wednesday at the Unit 4 reactor _ also the scene of a fire the day before _ was not immediately known. The plant’s operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co., known as Tepco, said radiation levels were too high for firefighters to get close. Later, authorities said the blaze seemed to be subsiding on its own, as the one the previous day did. But hours later, public television broadcaster NHK showed live aerial video of a plume of white smoke rising from the reactor. At the plant, desperate and improvisational measures have become the rule. Tepco said it abandoned as impractical the idea of using a helicopter to douse a boiling storage pool filled with spent fuel rods. The spent rods are usually submerged in the pool next to the Unit 4 reactor, which was not operating when the quake struck. Dozens of emergency workers were pulled from the plant after radiation soared to levels that could cause radiation sickness. It

Reactors down

200 km 200 miles


Fukushima Dai-ichi Pacific Ocean

Reactor 1 Hydrogen blast Saturday damaged outer building; stable, cooling is being maintained Reactor 3 Explosion Monday; inner containment shell still intact; stable, cooling is being maintained

Engineers continue trying to keep reactors cool at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant.

Fukushima Dai-ichi

• Six reactors at plant; elevated levels of radiation detected • Sea water being channeled into reactors to cover fuel rods and help cool them down

5, 6

Reactor 4 Fire at fuel storage pond Tuesday

3 4 es bin Tur



ter Wa

ke inta

Source: Nuclear Energy Institute, BBC Graphic: Melina Yingling

Pacific Ocean

Reactor 2 Explosion Tuesday near suppression pool that removes heat under reactor; nuclear core not damaged

© 2011 MCT

later subsided, and hours later the workers returned. Tepco has been sharply criticized for its handling of the crisis at the plant, where three of the six reactors have been rocked by explosions caused by overheating in their core containment chambers. The quake and tsunami knocked out power to the cooling systems, triggering a series of breakdowns and missteps that exposed fuel rods to the air at one reactor and released dangerous levels of radiation outside the plant.

The company said an estimated 70 percent of the fuel rods had been damaged at the Unit 1 reactor and 33 percent at the Unit 2 reactor. Nuclear safety agency spokesman Shigekatsu Omukai said the utility reported the figures to the agency Wednesday. On Tuesday, the fuel rods inside the Unit 2 reactor were at least partly exposed to air for more than two hours during two separate incidents, allowing them to heat up and causing a buildup See Radiation on page 9


It is the policy of the Combs Courier to correct any inaccurate information printed in the publication as soon as the error is discovered. Any incorrect information printed on the front page will result in a correction printed on the front page. Any incorrect information printed on any other page will be corrected on page 2. Errors on the Opinion page will be corrected on that page. Corrections also will be noted on the online version of the Combs Courier. Please contact Adviser Brian Taylor at 480-882-3540 x 1770 or at with issues about this policy or to report any errors.

COMBS Courier The source for Coyote news


Andy Blahak Charisa Bisbee Victoria Coppola Benjamin Ellis Kat Johnson Jordan Flake

Adrienna Foster Ana Galindo Keilani Washington Gabrielle Wells Mitch Werner

Adviser Brian Taylor


Brenda Mayberry

The Combs Courier is published by the student newspaper staff at Combs High School. Opinions The Combs Courier staff, the adviser, the faculty, or the administration of Combs High School. The Combs Courier has functioned as a public forum since its inception. Unless implied by the advertising party otherwise stated, advertising in the Combs Courier advertisements themselves and not by the school or administration. Such printing is not to be construed as written or implied sponsorship, endorsement or investigation of such commercial enterprises. The Combs Courier allocates one issue to each student for free. Please e-mail all questions, comments, guest articles, or letters to the editor to All submissions must be signed; however, requests for anonymity may be honored. Brian Tayloran


480-987-2878 7343 S. 89th Place, Mesa, AZ

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Thank You!

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The staff at the Combs Courier truely appreciate your generous donation to the Combs High School Journalism Department. Your support has helped keep our newspaper running! Sincerely,

COMBS Courier

Monday, March 21, 2011


COMBS Courier

Block Schedule

Traditional Schedule


New Bell Schedule Under Construction Current 120 minute bell schedule will not be an option for the 2011-2012 school year Jordan Flake

Combs Courier Staff Writer

Over Fall Break the block bell schedule of classes was altered to meet the minute requirements for the Arizona Career and Technical Programs (CTE). This lengthened the amount of time students had in each class. Instead of 97 minutes, as it was last semester, classes were stretched out to roughly 114 minutes Tuesday through Friday. However, this change is only temporary and will change again in the fall. Students, faculty and administration are faced with a decision to revert back to the old block or opt for the more traditional six period schedule, with students attending all their classes daily for approximately 60 minutes. Approximately 500 CHS students were polled informally in their mathematics classes and showed overwhelming support for the block schedule.

“I prefer the block schedule,” said junior David Hernandez. “The extra time in the classroom will better help students to learn, instead of the traditional-sized hour” As is the case in most situations, there are advantages and disadvantages to change. Instead of playing devil’s advocate, we will examine the advantages to both schedules: Block Schedule • • •

Longer meeting times allows for more instructional time Increased opportunity to ask teacher for help Homework is due every other day

TradiTional Schedule • • •

Students meet with teachers everyday Less time for boredom Less opportunity for procrastination with homework due daily

An announcement on the new bell schedule is expected before the end of the school year. Hernandez added one more advantage of the block schedule. “It feels more like a high school and less like a middle school.”

Combs High School is now enrolling for the 2011-2012 school year! Our mission is to create motivated life-long learners and socially responsible individuals. We do that by offering 21st century learning. Combs provides the use of technology in instruction by taking advantage of Smart Boards, projectors, five com puter labs, Moodle, and PASS. In addition,CHS has an expanding AP Program,growing sports programs and an award-winning Marching Band! Couple all of that with well-rounded,

bright students and a dedicated and determined staff and faculty, and you can see why Combs High School is the obvious choice!

COYOTE PRIDE CHS opened its doors in August 2009 to freshmen and sophomore

classes. In August 2011 our student body will include 9th – 12th grade.

Our first graduating class will be in May 2012!

In our short history we have established ourselves as a “Performing Plus” school.

Enrollment packets can be picked up at the front office of CHS or by visiting the district office at 301 East Combs Road [located at Gantzel & Combs Rd].

Open the course catalog


Hit the Snooze

COMBS Courier

College Dreams?

Facebook Nightmares Judy Hevrdejs MCT

An alarmingly high number of students catch up on sleep in class, not at home Mitchell Werner Combs Courier Staff Writer

Picture yourself sitting in class slowly falling asleep to the sound of your teachers monotone voice. In the background you can hear the teacher is droning on about some math formula and the kid next to you is drooling, already knocked out. Your eyelids are getting heavier and heavier, it is getting harder to keep your eyes open… your arm is looking really comfortable right now. It would be so easy to just put your head down in the crook of your arm or on your backpack. Suddenly, you’re drifting to sleep in your nice and cozy bed when...WHAM! Your head hits the desk with a thud. You snap awake right as the teacher calls your name, “WERNER, wake up! And stop drooling on my desk.” Sound familiar? The Combs Courier conducted a survey that polled approximately 100 CHS students on catching z’s in class. To our amazement, 61 percent admitted to falling asleep in at least one class within the past two weeks. If those numbers hold true, that would mean that over 300 students per week are catching up on their “shut eye” in class rather than home. Whether or not they get caught is a

Monday, March 21, 2011

San Jose Mercury News 2011

THE NATIONAL SLEEP FOUNDATION REPORTS THAT 85 PERCENT OF TEENS DO NOT GET ENOUGH SLEEP ON SCHOOL NIGHTS. different story. “I yell at them and make them go stand at the back of the room,” Social Studies Department Chair Melissa Williams quipped about slumbering students. Why are so many kids wanting to doze off when they should be learning? “They’re probably lazy,” said freshman Kylie Dinehart. “I sleep in English the most, but I never get caught and I do admit to being tired from only getting 6 hours of sleep last night.” Several other students, including junior Ryan Anderson, eighth-grader Mandy Ver Meer, and freshman Bronwyn Younger-Howard all think that the main reason that other students sleep in class is because they just don’t care

about their grades, work ethic or they didn’t get a lot of sleep. Now, when asked about the amount of sleep that they think they got last night, they said about 5.5 to 6 hours of sleep. That is almost 3 hours of sleep less than the needed 8 1/2 to 9 hours of sleep a night for teens. And the right amount of sleep is essential for anyone that wants to perform their best. “Besides going to bed earlier and getting at least seven too eight hours of sleep … drink coffee no I’m kidding, um splash some water on your face, get up and do something,” Williams said. “If you are feeling sleepy, like sharpen your pencil even if it doesn’t need it do some jumping jacks or something. Just wake up!”

You rock the whole social media thing. Facebook. Twitter. YouTube. Big deal. So do several billion others. And a lot of them are applying to college too. What college applicants need to realize is that social media is a “living and breathing” extension of your application and resume, so it has to work for _ not against _ you. “Students have grown up with the Internet, with this open forum kind of communication and I don’t think they understand that their Facebook page is now their online resume,” says Nora Ganim Barnes, director of the Center for Marketing Research at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. “They could include a lot of the public service that they do. Those things instead of birthday parties on their Facebook pages _ I think they could get a lot of mileage out of that.” Halley Shefler would probably agree. “Your website, Facebook is your new resume. It’s the living and breathing resume,” says Shefler, who heads The Arts Edge, an educational consultancy for students in the visual and performing arts with offices in Boston and New York. Students, she says, should “post art portfolios online or links to videos or photo galleries from their performances. I like students to consider creating their own websites on which to showcase what they do. Help your case. Show schools who you are.” “Students need to think a little bit more strategically about their online presence and take control of it,” says Ganim Barnes, who tracks college admissions’ use of social media. “It really makes it easier for the person

on the other end to go there, rather than to snoop around and see what they can find out about you.” Don’t think they do? Guess again. Colleges aren’t scrutinizing every applicant’s Facebook page, but when it comes down to scarce resources and scholarships, financial aid or the last availability in a popular program, well ... “(Admissions directors) continue to say they’ll use any publicly available source of information to make a good decision,” says Ganim Barnes. “When they have to make a decision that’s important to the school ... they certainly want to make sure that they’re not on the front page of the paper the next day with some bad publicity.” Adds Shefler, who was dean of admissions at Boston Conservatory before starting The Arts Edge, “We all expect kids to be kids, and posting summer vacation photos and having fun is fine, but there’s a certain presence that you want to portray out there. “Social media can enable students to give admissions staff a valuable perspective on themselves,” Shefler says. “Use it!” Dos and don’ts: Social media tips from Halley Shefler: Post: Portfolios, clips of performances, etc. Be careful of copyright issues. Think: How a teacher or aunt might feel if they saw something on one of the sites. Clean it up: Delete coarse language, risky or offensive photos, bad grammar. “If you’re tagged, check and see if you’re tagged in inappropriate photos and remove the tag.”

No Place to Hide Kids who skip school are being tracked by GPS Eric Carpenter MCT

ANAHEIM, Calif. Frustrated by students habitually skipping class, police and school officials in Anaheim, Calif., are turning to GPS tracking to ensure they come to class. The Anaheim Union High School District is the first in California to test Global Positioning System technology as part of a six-week pilot program that began last week, officials said. Seventh- and eighth-graders with four unexcused absences or more this school year are assigned to carry a handheld GPS device, about the size of a cell phone. Each morning on schooldays, they get an automated phone call reminding them that they need to get to school on time. Then, five times a day, they are required to enter a code that tracks their locations _ as they leave for school, when they arrive at school, at lunchtime, when they leave school and at 8 p.m. The students are also assigned an adult coach who calls them at least three times a week to see how they are doing and help them find effective ways to make sure they get to class on time. Students and their parents volunteer for the monitoring as a way to avoid continuation school or prosecution with a potential stay in juvenile hall.

“The idea is for this not to feel like a punishment, but an intervention to help them develop better habits and get to school,” said Miller Sylvan, regional director for AIM Truancy Solutions. The GPS devices cost $300-$400 each. Overall, the six-week program costs about $8 per day for each student, or $18,000. The program is paid for by a state grant. Students who routinely skip school are prime candidates to join gangs, police say. Because schools lose about $35 per day for each absent student, the program can pay for itself and more if students return to class consistently, Miller said. It has been well received in places like San Antonio, Texas, and Baltimore. Where the GPS technology has been implemented, average attendance among the chronically truant jumped from 77 percent up to 95 percent during the six-week program. That attendance rate dips slightly once students no longer carry the tracking device, Miller said, but many learn new habits that help them. The coaches continue talking to them for a year. Local school administrators say they are thrilled by the concept. “This is their last chance at an intervention,” said Kristen Levitin,

Student Joshua Barron, 14, shows a GPS devise as his classmate Ryan Ramos, 14, is interviewed by media during a news conference at South Junior High School in Anaheim, California, on February 23, 2011. Anaheim Union High School District is the first in California to use GPS devices to track students who habitually skip school. The program has been successful in other states such as Texas and Maryland.

principal at Dale Junior High in west Anaheim. “Anything that can help these kids get to class is a good thing.” In all, about 75 students from Dale and South junior high schools are taking part in the pilot program. District officials will decide later whether to expand it to high schools and other junior highs. Earlier this week, parents and students came to the Anaheim Family Justice Center to get the devices and talk to police and counselors. Not all parents were supportive. “I feel like they come at us too hard, and making kids carry around something that tracks them seems extreme,” said Raphael Garcia, whose 6th grader has six unexcused absences. Chronically truant students in grades

4-6, and their parents, also were required to attend and, while they won’t be required to carry a GPS device, they were warned about what they could face if they continue to skip school. “This makes us seem like common criminals,” Garcia said. Police Investigator Armando Pardo reminded parents that letting kids skip school without a valid reason is, in fact, a crime. If the District Attorney chooses to prosecute, truant students could be sentenced to juvenile hall and parents could face up to a $2,000 fine, Pardo said. Hoping to keep their child at Dale Junior High, the Cruz family brought their son, Juan, to get a GPS. He’s has five excused and five unex-

cused absences already this year; his recent report card showed his highest grade is a C and he’s failing several classes. Miller, who showed Juan Cruz, 13, how to operate the device and tried to encourage him, asked why he wasn’t going to school. “Sometimes I’m sick and, other times, I just don’t feel like going,” he said. “This will be good,” Miller told Cruz. “You looking forward to it?” “No,” Juan Cruz said, shaking his head. “I’m going to keep it in my pocket, though, so I don’t lose it.” Parents will be responsible for paying for lost devices. But Miller said that rarely happens. Read more at

Monday, March 21, 2011


COMBS Courier

Photo Credit Andrea Christ

CHS juniors Michael McBride and Miranda Fisher explore the possibilities for a career in broadcast media at the East Valley Institute of Technology. Both spend time “on-air” as disc jockeys for EVIT radio station 90.7 FM.

Strike it Rich With 90.7 The Goldmine Gabby Wells and Adrienna Foster

“We play everything from rap to country... no jazz..yet,” said McBride. Hey, Hey, Hey! This is a shout out to all the The students at the radio station are a close Coyotes who listen to the radio and love music. knit bunch. “Honestly, a person in my class, I There is a new commercial free radio station could say their whole life story,” Fisher said. that is run by high school students, including our The students have a lot of fun in addition to very own juniors, Miranda Fisher and Mike Mc- learning their new craft, and they all love their Bride. They are part of the radio broadcasting teacher. At EVIT, teachers are given Slinky as class at the East Valley Institute of Technology. awards. “He has like 15 Slinky,” Fisher says of EVIT works closely with high schools in the their teacher. East Valley to help students EVIT doesn’t just have a get a jump start on a prospecprogram for radio personalitive career. ties, however. There is some“We have a lot of fun,” said thing for everyone, in any field Fisher. “And it’s really the they choose to study. “I love best opportunity if you want to EVIT,” said Fisher. “I really go into any field having to do think that more people from with broadcasting in general.” our school should be taking 90.7 KVIT “The Goldmine” advantage of the opportunities hit the airwaves on January that are offered there.” 29th with help from American Even in the radio broadcastIdol Season 6 winner, Jordin ing class, you don’t just go on Sparks, who was there to help Check out 90.7 The air and talk. You get to try out kick-off the new station. Grosz Goldmine on the web. every part of being on the radio, had been trying to get a radio from being a producer to being station since 1998, but all of his a DJ. efforts had been thwarted. It was a happy day There are some people don’t ever want to be for him when “The Goldmine” was finally able on air, so they get to make mixes and advertiseto open its doors. ments for the station. The stations target audience is people between “It’s one of a kind unique, totally unique,” exthe ages of 12 and 24, but tries to cater to every- claimed Fisher, “And that’s an opportunity you one’s taste. can’t get anywhere.” Combs Courier Staff Writers

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© 2011 The College Board

“Once a Coyote...

In Memory of Brean

Daddy’s Girl

s ’ y m Mom

s s e c Prin

The Passing of a Coyote

Forever Young

r e e h C s b Com

“A+ Always”

By: Anthony Ramirez Now I know I didn't know you well But you were one of us You didn't deserve to go Had that Coyote trust I almost can't believe it That God had come to get you A par t of our family pack We will never forget you It seems weird that I'm writin' when I never knew you But if I could, I would keep leukemia from gettin' to you Everything you had, was gone in a second If you had grown up, you'd be a force to be reckoned With, and it's so sad to see you go Everybody at Combs loved you, you should already know Breanna Pena, yeah, a star in our eyes The day you left us was probably the biggest surprise That we've ever had on a school wide level Now your up there with God, throwing deuces to the Devil Please, everybody pray for her family and friends While they're out there, working hard and makin' ends I had to write this down just to get this off my chest You deserve a memorial for practically being the best Student that we had, an A+ always I've been thinking about it the last few days Anything is crazed, but yet I'm so amazed

All Smiles

nna Peña 1997-2011

n o s a e S e ‘Tis th

The Fa

1 1 ‘ n u R s ’ London

Pat’s Ru n Coolin’ Out


Play the song Anthony wrote for Breanna

...always a Coyote”

That usually death is something that never seemed to phase Me, but I learned a lesson when you passed Put your family first, and yourself always last Cause once a Coyote, always a Coyote DJ RED at face, but you don't really know me Like I never knew you, but you were so true Gave 110% in everything that you do Always concerned with friends, never personal wealth In the hospital, you weren't worried about your health You were worried about your class and all of your studies Now you have no worries, and infinite buddies And every family member, constantly kissin' you Don't forget about Brooklyn, you know that girl she misses you This song ain't for me, this song is for us This song is for Coyotes, to unite under a trust Inside our pack, and deep in our thoughts And inside our prayers, thank you for everything you brought To our table, you leavin' us too soon I'll remember you every time I look up at the moon You're probably up there, just watchin' below I'll be shakin' your hand, when it's my time to go But until then, this song is for you Rest in Peace B, a Coyote so true Done DJ RED, now we'll always remember In loving memory, of Breanna Pena.


Go, Fight, Win


COMBS Courier

Monday, March 21, 2011

Self-Esteem, Insecurities Impact Guys Too, Not Just Teen Girls

Victoria Coppola Combs Courier Staff Writer

When certain people hear the word fashion, many things run through their minds. Clothes, maybe shoes? According to, freshman Nelson Paredes, he thinks of the words “swag” and “me.” But others may think differently when they hear the word fashion. In 2011, teenage boys are seeming to care more and more about their appearance, how much time they spend on getting ready, and looking presentable to others around them. Some parents of these teenagers think it’s due to the media. When asked how long it takes to get ready for school in the morning answers varied from five minutes to 30 minutes. “I wake up, get dressed, eat, brush my teeth and leave,” Sophomore Beau Bellefeuille said. ” It was that simple. Even though Bellefeuille is considered to be in the group of adolescents who don’t revolve their life around their outfits, he still remarked, “but I have to look good.” With trends like, nerd glasses, staying ‘geeked up’, huge shirts, tight shirts, baggy jeans, and everyone’s fa-

vorite, skinny jeans, fashion constantly contradicts itself. Skinny is in one day, out the next. Yet, even with fashion trends coming in and out of high school quicker than one can name, students manage to keep current. “[Heck] Yeah, I’m up to date with the trends, it gives you swag,” Paredes said. “I wouldn’t go to school looking like I just woke up. It looks wrong, and whack, and out of style. You know what I’m sayin’?” Although clothes seem like a harmless part of everyone’s day, a common issue with teens is “fitting in.” So, how serious is it to be obsessed with self image. One in every two hundred teenagers has an eating disorder. Ten percent of those people are teenage boys. Pressure from peers, media, and other forms of self-judgment can trigger an ambition in their mind that they need to be “perfect” in the community’s eye. Guys continue to joke around, calling each other “weak” and “sissy”. Although intended in good fun, some may take it straight to the heart. Teenage boys are the hardest to read when it comes to eating disorders because they are afraid it will hurt their image if they ask one another for help. So, now not only do these individuals

We want to know: Style versus Sleep; How much time do you take getting ready before school

Christina Acosta


THOUGH SELF-IMAGE AND SELF IMAGE ISSUES ARE MORE PREVALENT WITH TEENAGE GIRLS, 10 PERCENT OF TEENS WITH EATING DISORDERS ARE BOYS. feel unacceptable, they feel alone too. Drastic measures are not taken right away. They usually start by trying not to eat as much, they change to a smaller more specific diet, or punch in a few extra hours in the gym. Some teenagers may even try and get a fake tan. If or when they feel like they are not getting the results they need, they take things to much more extreme levels. They try things like forced regurgitation, an obsessive work out, a too-strict diet plan. They will even search for a constant reminder throughout their day that “they are not good enough”. This is so that they have the motivation to continue this self destruction. Although signs at first may not be obvious to you if you only seem to

have short encounters with an individual with an eating disorder. But after more time is being spent with them things become clear. If they have sudden mood swings, a loss in old hobbies, constant conversations about self image and “how they wished they looked better”, you should consider trying to speak with them, offer your help and support in any way they need. If things still continue to get worse, the situation should be dealt with professionally. What teenagers, and people in general, need to realize is that beauty comes in many different shapes, forms, and colors. They aren’t loved for their clothes or shoes; they are loved for what comes from within.

in the first place. The media wants you to think that the people in magazines should be how you look and dress everyday to be able to “fit in” with everybody else. “A lot of people try to fit the perfect image,” said Sonia Perea, sophomore. The fact is that nobody can ever look like they do now in advertisements; unless they got major plastic surgery

and face restructuring done to them. Not even celebrities in today’s world look like that. The media will do everything they can to convince you to change yourself. Whether it’s changing how you dress, how you act, or maybe even how you eat, or don’t eat. Don’t let them change you. “The media doesn’t rule life,” said freshman Hailey Buell. There are more than ten million women and over one million men coping with the fact that they have an eating disorder. Since the media wants everyone to be thin, and the pressure is on for those who want to supposedly “fit in” with everyone; then the diet industry increases immensely right? More than you know. The diet industry is making around 60 billion dollars right now because of people wanting to become thinner. “I judge too, I’m only human,” explained Perea. Dieting may and can help you lose weight, but that doesn’t mean it’s completely healthy for your body either. Another way to lose weight and keep your body healthy is to exercise and eat right. If you eat healthy, nutritious foods, and exercise every day, you can have a strong, healthy body. So, don’t depend on the diet industry to save you, depend on yourself. Only you can make yourself change who you are and what you look like. “Body image is a self-reflecting way to express yourself, your personality, and your moods,” stated Perea. Don’t let anyone or anything convince you to change who you are because of what the media of the world wants to see you as. Be your own person. Be free and ALWAYS be who YOU want to be.

1.5 Hours “It’s actually not that important. I don’t want to come to school looking like a bum, but I’m not going to come to school like I’m going onto a runway show.

Doug Osborne

Social Perception or Self-Esteem

Many teen girls have worry about much more than an outfit and hairdo when getting ready for school Charisa Bisbee Combs Courier Staff Writer

How do you look at yourself in the mirror? Do you ask yourself questions like, “Am I overweight?”, “Am I ugly?”, Or “Do I need to change myself?” These are struggles everybody faces, boys and girls. This is called body image. Body image is the way you see and feel about your own body and others’. You may think you are too fat, and need to be thinner, or maybe that you look ugly if you don’t wear makeup every day. Anything negative or positive you think about yourself can drastically impact ones perceived body image. Many children, teens, and adults are struggling with these questions, especially now. There are many types of ways to view body image, such as body dismorphia, and most of all, not how others look at you, or how the media looks at you, but most of all, how YOU look at yourself. The media, is one of the main reasons why people have trouble with body image. Every day, every minute, even every second of your life, the media is trying to convince you to dislike the way you dress, the way you think, and especially the way you see things and people. The media believes everyone has to be thin, tan, and perfect to be a good enough person. Hate to burst their

bubble, but none of us are perfect; even the hotshots on billboards and in magazines. The media takes an average person, covers them in makeup, takes their picture, puts it in the computer and completely changes their look. They change it so much that it looks as though it was a completely different person that was posing for the picture


Juliet Robboy stands by her body tracing that she created in her art therapy session. The black outline represents how she perceives herself, while the shaded outline is her true body outline. The activity is supposed to help women understand their body image distortion.

30 minutes

“Not really important, because, like it’s just school.

Isaiah White

20 minutes “It’s more better to be functional than fashionable.”

Cheyenne Lewis

10-20 min. “Not that important.”

Monday, March 21, 2011


COMBS Courier

Radiation: from page 2 of hydrogen gas that burst into flames. Spent fuel at the complex is an increasing focus of concern. Tepco had moved all of the rods from the Unit 4 reactor to the spentfuel pool sometime after Dec. 1 as part of routine maintenance, meaning the pool contained not only all of the rods accumulated from many years of service but also all of those currently in use. If the pool was jam-packed with rods, they would generate significant heat and, once the water stopped circulating after the tsunami, its temperature would begin rising, eventually reaching the boiling point. If the water boiled long enough without being replenished, it would expose the rods to the air. In 2006, the National Academy of Sciences issued a report warning that a loss of cooling water or circulation could trigger a catastrophic fire in a spent-fuel pool that would result in large releases of radioactive material. If the rods become exposed to the air, their zirconium tubes begin to react with oxygen and heat up even more, a type of oxidation fire. At some point, the material inside the tubes melts and can release highly radioactive isotopes such as cesium-137 and iodine-131. The report was prompted by concern about a potential terrorist attack, but the physics would be exactly the same in the case of a loss of coolant from a natural disaster, said Kevin Crowley, director of the nuclear and radiation studies board at the National Academies, who headed the study. The potential for a worstcase outcome in any kind of incident depends on how closely the rods are packed, the age of the rods, the size of the pool and how much fuel is in the pool, Crowley said.

“I think everybody should be worried about this situation,” he said. Uncertainty about the risks posed by the stricken plant caused nations coming to Japan’s aid to pull back and reassess deployment of rescue personnel, relief supplies and transportation services. The U.S. aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan, which steamed to the rescue over the weekend, pulled back from Japan’s northeastern shore Tuesday after detecting elevated radiation levels in the atmosphere. Some international airlines that had resumed flying to Tokyo halted or rerouted service again Tuesday to guard against entering areas with heightened radiation. Germany’s Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines, Air France-KLM and others _ European carriers still wary of radiation hazards 25 years after the Chernobyl disaster _ cited the risk of nuclear contamination and the persistent aftershocks in canceling or delaying flights. In China, officials said safety experts would monitor planes and ships arriving at its ports for radioactivity. China also announced it was evacuating its citizens from Japan’s northeast, becoming the first nation to organize a massive relocation because of the radiation fears. France also recommended that its citizens leave the Japanese capital, and Austria announced it was moving its embassy from Tokyo to Osaka to distance its diplomats from any potential worsening of the crisis. The U.S. government has recommended that Americans cancel any nonessential travel to Japan and that those already in the country heed the advice and direction of Japanese disaster-relief officials.

No. 4 Blows Away the Competition Out of this world effects make movie worth the cost of admission

Ben Ellis

Combs Courier Staff Writer

I Am Number Four, the new action packed, sci-fi adventure is now exploding in theatres near you! Alien fugitive Number Four (played by Alex Pettyfer) has been sent to planet Earth by his parents so that he will be safe from the clutches of the evil Mogadorians. Eight others like him have been sent Earth, each with a warrior guardian to protect them until they inherit their “legacy,” which is basically another name for their super powers. As it turns out, the Mogadorians found out that the nine alien children were sent to earth and now are hunting them down, and killing them in number order. In the beginning of this film, we find out that Numbers one through three are already dead. That can only mean that the Mogadorians are now searching for Number Four. At the

discovery of the death of number three, Number Four took up the name “John” and moved with his guardian Henri (played by Timothy Olyphant) to a little town called Paradise. Tired of being cooped up in the house all day, the young alien decides to go to high school, where he meets Sarah (Dianna Agron) the “prettiest” girl in school, and begins to discover his amazing abilities. On the movie’s first day it made $6.2 million in the box office, taking second behind Unknown. This movie is rated PG-13 and is intended for teenage and adult audiences. The CGI animation and effects are amazing and the actors aren’t that bad themselves. Trust me when I say this is one adventure you do not want to miss!

Play the trailer

Level: 1




Complete the grid so each row, column and 3-by-3 box (in bold borders) contains every digit, 1 to 9. For strategies on how to solve Sudoku, visit SOLUTION TO LAST WEEK’S PUZZLE


© 2011 The Mepham Group. Distributed by Tribune Media Services. All rights reserved.


Combs High School is excited to share our latest philanthropic adventure – our first annual Packs from the Pack event. The idea behind Packs from the Pack is simple - help students-in-need within the Combs Community. We are doing this by providing them with scholastic backpacks. Our project serves two purposes. First, we can hopefully offer students-in-need essential back-to-school supplies. Secondly, it pulls our community together and furthers our partnership with local residents and businesses in San Tan Valley. We are seeking the participation of our community in this exciting venture. In order for our project to be successful, we are in need of school supplies, backpacks, gift cards, cash donations, coupons for services (i.e. haircuts, basic dental care, etc.). All schools in the J.O. Combs District are accepting donations. Keep your eyes out for donation boxes in local eateries and businesses.

Mark your calendar: We look forward to seeing you on Saturday, May 7, 2011, from 10-2pm at Combs High School, where we will be putting together our Packs from the Pack—followed with a community celebratory picnic! Please do not hesitate to contact Principal Brenda Mayberry at 480.882.3540 with any questions, concerns or ideas you may have. Also, follow us on Facebook to receive future updates regarding this project! Don’t forget to record your efforts for tax purposes. Combs High School Tax ID: 86-6000557


Courier COMBS Think you’re a true college basketball fan? Get ready

Monday, March 21, 2011

for the NCAA tournament with our trivia quiz, and see if you’re ready to score or be stuck on the bench. Compiled by Chris Grandstaff/McClatchy Newspapers

How many players have won more than one tournament Outstanding Player Award? (Bonus: Name them) A. 6 B. 5 C. 3 D. 2


Who was the last team to go undefeated and win the championship? A. Indiana B. Kentucky C. UCLA D. Duke


How many times has the tournament expanded? A. 3 B. 5 C. 6 D. 7


How many teams participated in the first NCAA tournament? A. 24 B. 16 C. 8 D. 4 Since seeding began, how many championship game matchups have featured two No. 1 seeds? A. 4 B. 5 C. 6 D. 7


What is the highest seed to never win

a title? A. No. 2 B. No. 5 C. No. 7 D. No. 9


What is the lowest seed to reach the Final Four? A. No. 9 B. No. 10 C. No. 11 D. No. 12



Which team has the most all-time tournament wins? A. Duke B. Kentucky C. Michigan D. UCLA


What school has the most Final Four appearances? A. North Carolina B. Kansas C. Duke D. Kentucky


What men’s coach has the most alltime Division I wins? A. Adolph Rupp B. Bob Knight C. John Wooden D. Dean Smith

What is the lowest seed to win the NCAA title? A. No. 6 B. No. 8 C. No. 9 D. No. 11


A. 1977 B. 1978 C. 1979 D. 1980

When did the NCAA begin seeding?


What was the first year all four semifinalists played in the same city, creating the Final Four? A. 1952 B. 1956 C. 1960 D. 1963 Which team has scored the most points in a tournament game? A. Loyola Marymount B. Syracuse C. Michigan D. Duke


Kansas State’s Michael Beasley, top, drops a shot in over Iowa State’s Bryan Peterson, left, and Jiri Hubalek, right, during a 2008 game.




University of Minnesota coach Tubby Smith

Can you match the coach with his real first name? 1. Phog Allen 2. Lefty Driesell 3. Doggie Julian 4. Digger Phelps 5. Tubby Smith

A. Orlando B. Forrest C. Charles D. Richard E. Alvin

Can you sink these 3-point questions? 1. What prompted the NCAA to allow more than one team from each conference to reach the tournament beginning in 1975? 2. What was so unique about CCNY’s national title team in 1950? 3. Name the only two players to have a triple-double in a Final Four game. 4. Who were the Fab Five? 5. Who was Phi Slamma Jamma?


Forward Carmelo Anthony (15) drives against Kansas forward Michael Lee (25) during the 2003 NCAA Championship game.

Can you match the player with the record he holds?


1. The most points in his tournament career. 2. The most points scored by a freshman in a Final

Four game.

3. The most points scored in a single tournament


4. The most points in a single tournament. 5. The most blocked shots in a single tournament



A. Carmelo Anthony, Syracuse B. Glen Rice, Michigan C. Christian Laettner, Duke D. Austin Carr, Notre Dame

ANSWERS: 1. C; 2. A; 3. D; 4. B; 5. E



Which team has scored the fewest points in a tournament game? A. Kentucky B. Pittsburgh C. North Carolina D. UCLA



What city has been host to the most NCAA finals? A. Kansas City B. St. Louis C. Indianapolis D. Minneapolis


How many No. 15 seeds have defeated No. 2 seeds? A. 6 B. 5 C. 4 D. 3



What is the record for most consecutive weeks at No. 1? A. 51 weeks B. 46 weeks C. 42 weeks D. 40 weeks

How many times has a No. 16 seed defeated a No. 1 seed? A. 3 B. 2 C. 1 D. 0

1. When fourth-ranked Maryland missed the big dance by losing to North Carolina State in the 1974 ACC tournament. 2. CCNY became the only team in history to win the NCAA and NIT postseason tournaments in the same season. 3. Cincinnati’s Oscar Robertson (39 points, 17 rebounds, 10 assists) against Louisville in 1959; and Michigan State’s Magic Johnson (29 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists) in 1979 against Penn. 4. It was the nickname given to Michigan’s all-freshman starting lineup, which reached the NCAA tournament final in 1992 and again as sophomores in 1993. The players were Jalen Rose, Chris Webber, Juwan Howard, Jimmy King and Ray Jackson. 5. The Houston Cougars team that featured Akeem (later Hakeem) Olajuwon and Clyde Drexler. The Cougars reached the NCAA championship game in 1983 and 1984.



ANSWERS: 1. B; 2. C; 3. E; 4. D; 5. A

How many schools with a city in their name have won a national championship? (Bonus: Name them.) A. 10 B. 9 C. 7 D. 5

1. C. The seven schools are City College of New York (CCNY) (1950); San Francisco (1955, ’56); Cincinnati (1961, ’62); University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) (1964, ’65, ’67, ’68, ’69, ’70, ’71, ’72, ’73, ’75, ’95); Louisville (1980, ’86); University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV) (1990); and Syracuse (2003). The answer is eight if you include University of Texas El-Paso (UTEP), which won the national title in 1966, but was called Texas Western at the time. 2. B. UCLA for 46 weeks from Feb. 9, 1971, to Jan. 15, 1974. (Ohio State is second at 27.) 3. A. Kansas City has been the host of 10 finals. 4. B. Five. Bob Kurland (Oklahoma State 1945-46), Alex Groza (Kentucky 1948, ’49), Jerry Lucas (Ohio State 1960, ’61), Lew Alcindor (UCLA 1967, ’68, ’69) and Bill Walton (1972, ’73). 5. A. Indiana in 1976. 6. D. Seven, the last being in 2001 when it added the play-in game. 7. C. Eight. 8. B. Five: 2007 (Florida vs. Ohio State); 2005 (North Carolina vs. Illinois); 1999 (Duke vs. Connecticut); 1993 (North Carolina vs. Michigan); 1982 (North Carolina vs. Georgetown). 9. D. Zero. 10. C. Four (Richmond, Santa Clara, Coppin State, Hampton). 11. B. No. 5 (Florida in 2000 and Indiana in 2002 are the only No. 5 seeds to reach the championship game). 12. C. No. 11 (LSU in 1986 and George Mason in 2006). 13. B. Eighth-seeded Villanova won in 1985. 14. C. 1979. 15. A. 1952 in Seattle. 16. A. Loyola Marymount scored 149 against Michigan in 1990. The Wolverines scored 115. 17. C. North Carolina scored 20 against Pittsburgh in 1941. The Panthers scored 26. 18. B. Kentucky with 98. The Wildcats also have the most tournament appearances with 47. 19. A. North Carolina, 16 appearances. 20. B. Bob Knight, 902 wins.



COMBS Courier

Monday, March 21, 2011

Spring Sports Ready For Action The start of the spring sports season brings with it the debut of varsity baseball, softball, tennis and boys volleyball Keilani Washington Combs Courier Staff Writer

Spring is finally coming our way! So say goodbye to 25 degree weather, walking to the bus stop in the dark, and winter sports. Say hello to flowers blooming, cleaning, and spring break and spring sports! The spring sports season features baseball, softball, track, tennis and boys volleyball. Baseball, softball, and volleyball will be competing at the varsity level for the first time. MAKE SOME RACKET WITH THE TENNIS TEAM! This is also a special year for tennis because they will have their first boys’ tennis team. Deborah Kangas, tennis coach and librarian, is focused on improving on their skills because most haven’t played the sport before. Kangas definitely knows her way around a tennis court though! This is her second year coaching at Combs and seventh overall including coaching for five years in Wisconsin. GET DOWN AND DIRTY WITH SOFTBALL! Now that softball tryouts have reached an end, combs softball team has been established with new players a new varsity team. There are four returning players and nine newcomers making it a total of 13 varsity softball players. Coach Var Rowley

ON YOUR MARK...GET SET...GO -TRACK! Now that track season has begun once again, many people are tryingout! This year we have three returning coaches and one new coach. Coach Miller coaches pole vault and relays. Coach Hart coaches the long jump, shot put, and disk throw. Coach Flowers coaches sprint and high jump. Coach wise coaches long distance. With about 34 players, and 12 returning players it’s no wonder they need four coaches. Coach Flowers expectation for this season is to

March 15 16 NC-Ashville

16 Ala. St.

16 Ark.-Little Rock

Freshman Abby Ellis, Karla Alfaro and sophomore Sheina Lopez warm up before a JV softball game. have at least half of the team to be eligible for regionals and a good part of that to be eligible for state. Flowers has a lot of experience in coaching track. He has been coaching for nine years and has coached here for two years now. It was said that they will have set a lot of personal records

and the team has a lot of enthusiasm. Coach Flowers is hoping that next year they get some new athletes and also some more girls on the team! Come on girls, show them what you’re made of! DIG IN WITH BOYS VOLLEYBALL!

2011 NCAA men’s basketball tournament


March 16 16 Texas-SA

Combs Courier File Photo



Dayton, Ohio

UAB Clemson


March 25-27

March 25-27


March 18


Boston U.


16 8



March 19

March 19

12 Play-in 4 Kentucky







Morehead St. 13

March 20

March 18 Georgetown

11 Marquette


3 Syracuse


14 Indiana St.

St. Peters

March 20

March 20

10 Georgia


2 UNC 15 LIU

April 2


March 18

1 Duke


March 20



March 18 Texas A&M


Florida St.


Kent St.

2 15



March 24-26

3 14

Notre Dame

April 2



March 24-26


March 19

March 17



16 Hampton



8 Michigan



9 Tennessee

Old Dominion 9

March 18 5 Arizona

March 20

March 19

12 Memphis

Utah St.


4 Texas March 17 6 Cincinnati

March 19

11 Missouri


Reliant Stadium



New Orleans

March 19

April 4

3 UConn

4 13

March 17 St. John’s



11 3

BYU Wofford

March 19

March 19


March 17 UCLA

10 Penn. St.


Michigan St. 10

2 San Diego St. 15 N. Colorado

5 12


14 Bucknell March 17 7 Temple

March 17 Kansas St.

13 Oakland

Florida © 2011 MCT


San Antonio

UC Santa B.

Washington D.C.



March 20


13 Princeton

March 17


March 20



Cleveland Tampa Cleveland



March 18 7 Washington



9 Villanova

March 18 6 Xavier



8 Geo. Mason

5 W.Va.


March 16 11

16 Play-in

March 17

Washington D.C.






March 15 12


E A S T March 18 1 Ohio St.

This year is Combs first year with a boys volleyball team! How exciting! A lot of guys have tried out/ made the team. They’re are about 13 players on the team. There is no JV or freshman team, only varsity this year! Unfortunately they’re will most likely be no tournaments this year for them.

2 15



is in charge at the varsity level and Nikalya Mayberry is responsible for preparing our young JV ladies for varsity competition. Coach Rowley expects growth from his players this season, both individually and as a team. STEP UP TO THE PLATE WITH BASEBALL! Probably one of the more popular spring sports is boys’ baseball. The varsity boys baseball coach this year is Coach John Scrogham. He was also the eighth grade boy’s baseball coach last year. Angel Larranaga, a freshman on the JV team, says that hiss goal in baseball is to do his best. He also played last year on the 8th grade boys’ baseball team.

The World Cultures Club got to spend about four hours in the museum soaking up the history. They now are going to a project about what they learned. “We are going to recreate a dig site!” exclaimed Plimley.

The Arizona Museum of Natural History was founded to help inspire people and to help them understand the cultural history of southwest Arizona. Mission accomplished. Students were inspired by the museum and had a great time there. They got to excavate a dinosaur and search for gold. The rich history that the museum provided helps students learn so much about the very state they live in. Plimley even said, very happily, “To see the kids excited…it reminds me how I felt and it makes me happy to see that.”

“I actually did my own internship at that dig site,” said Plimley. Rohrer jumped at the opportunity with full enthusiasm, “I love looking at the land, I love being outside and I absolutely love dirt!”

Howard had told Plimely wonderful news before they all left. If they want to, can receive internships at the Arizona Museum of Natural History.

Photo Credit Wendi Anderson

Photo Credit Wendi Anderson

Photo Credit Wendi Anderson

Kevin McLaughlin searching for “gold” at the Arizona Museum of Natural History.

Chelsea Psomas (left), Gary Garcia (middle) and Tylor Phillips (right) looking at shards of pottery in the archaeology lab.

Ryan Anderson (far left) and Ashlee Caldwell (middle) listening to Dr. Howard (right) tell a story about a shard of pottery in the Natural History Museum’s archaeology lab.

COMBS Courier

At the ruins their tour guide, Jerry Howard, Director of Arizona Museum of Natural History, showed them other places the Hohokam tribe built. Such as, a huge ditch that was excavated but that ditch was really a Hohokam room. Also, an open area that was used as playing ground for the Hohokam’s sacrificial events. These events included a game or challenge, that was

The mound, irrigation systems and other places in and around the ruins were built by the Hohokam Native American tribes approximately 900 years ago. They are now being excavated by archeologists and an open tourist attraction to help promote the good of archeology. At the dig site the students got to sift through dirt and find animal bones, shards of pottery and interesting rocks.

“With the smaller amount of people in the group, we were allowed to do a lot more things,” said Katie Rohrer, CHS sophomore. This year was Rohrer’s second trip to the Mesa Grande Ruins. So, once more she got to see the mound and tour the ruins.

A select group CHS students got to go on a trip to the Mesa Grande Ruins, located in Mesa. “We live in this state and I want the kids to know about it,” said Deborah Plimley, CHS U.S. History and English teacher and sponsor of the Arizona Ancient Cultures and History Club (World Cultures Club). They took this trip last year, but they had about 35 students go, where as this year 17 students went.

digging up history with the world cultures club

After their tour of the mound, the students went to the Arizona Museum of Natural History to go into the Archeology laboratory with Howard. “We did an activity in the lab with different kinds of pottery, where you had to look at the front and back [of the pottery] and compare them and put them into different piles.” Rohrer said excitedly. The lab is usually occupied by archeologists after they excavate and collect items they have found. In the lab, they sort and identify the types of pottery and sometimes even reconstruct artifacts to their original state.

similar to our modern day basketball, and the winners of these games would be sacrificed to the gods.


Combs Couirer Issue 2  

The student news publication for Combs High School in San Tan Valley Arizona

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