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Our mission: to enlighten and to entertain

the griffin Dulaney High School Timonium, Maryland

Volume 54, Issue 6 ADAPTING

A Columbia Scholastic Press Association Gold Medal Winner April 28, 2014

Cheating rises­—again C

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675 the number of Advanced Placement test takers here this year


gina lee, project manager year’s by 5 percent and 3 percent, respectively. heating has jumped for the second consecutive With that trend has come a hike in the use of technolyear, a survey of students in all grades and levels ogy. The second most popular method of cheating is usof English shows. ing cell phones to find answers or to text friends during The objective pen-and-paper survey of 285 students con- class. Some 51 percent of students surveyed confessed to ducted in March found that 95 percent of students here doing this. That’s up 8 percent from last year. admit to cheating. That’s 7 percent higher than last year’s Math remains the most popular subject for cheating for figure and 13 percent higher than two years ago. the fourth straight year. Some 66 percent of students who Students like sophomore Joyce Song said they weren’t have cheated said they cheated in this class. surprised by the increase. Math Lynette Roller uses technology to catch cheaters. “Cheating is a huge problem,” Song said. “I think a lot She employs software to pinpoint activity on each comof students are pressured to do well in very challenging puter screen, isolating the history of each computer. Late classes, and they don’t always have the time to thorough- last month, Roller specifically asked her students not to use computers for a test. Using the software, she was able ly understand the material.” A skewed outlook may play a role. to see who actually did, and the following day, she issued “Many students only care about the letter grade, so be- detention. “Fighting cheating dishonest isn’t a very big deal to ing is exhausting,” Roller said. “I have them,” Song said. The most comeven sat on a chair mon source for on top of a table to cheating is friends. watch students in the computer lab to Of those who admitted to cheating, make sure that they do not pull out notes 87 percent relied on friends to cheat when testing. I put and 86 percent in a huge mirror to admitted to copyalso try to control students cheating.” ing assignments from classmates. cheating methods. One student uses the inside label of a water bottle to hide anThese percentages swers during tests. see cheating, page 2 dropped from last photo by becca king

Homework time limit debated

christine condon, staff writer very afternoon, sophomore Marin Langlieb comes home with multiple hours of homework to complete. She grabs a snack, walks her dog and then sits down to do it all. Her desk is piled high with textbooks, binders and folders galore. For her twin brother Jonah, things are just about the

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the school’s ranking among the nation’s most challenging high schools according to the Washington Post


same. The siblings say they have between two and four hours of homework each night, adding that their workload prevents them from doing after school activities. “What you put in is what you get out,” Marin Langlieb said of homework. She added that she tries to spend more time on meaningful work, rather than the relatively point-

less “busy-work” she said some teachers assign. Like others, she labeled worksheets graded for completion as less helpful. Earlier this year, a PTSA newsletter reminded parents of the Baltimore County Public Schools’ homework limit of three hours per night for high school students. Some parents worry that teachers, especially those teaching

Gifted and Talented and Advanced Placementcourses, are not adhering to this limit. For AP Psychology teacher Kendra Swam, exceeding this limit isn’t a concern. She urges her students to take advantage of the “spacing effect”, and spread out homework assignments to decrease the

PARCC debuts


justin fitzgerald, staff writer f the freshman experience is any indicator, next month’s field test of the test coming with the Common Core curriculum should go well for juniors. “I took it in 20 minutes, and I got an hour nap afterward,” freshman Colin Stiers said. The test he describes is the reading section of the English Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers test, which will replace the HSA next year. Most of the 51 freshmen who took it during 80- and 70-minute sessions March 25, 27 and April 1 finished in about an hour, according to assistant principal Randolph Rothschild, who oversees English. “Gifted and Talented students read well, and this test is very dependent on reading ability,” he said. The freshmen—in randomly-chosen classes—read essays and fiction and then answered multiple-choice and essay questions. Selected juniors will take a different part of the English PARCC during the mornings of May 27 and May 29, Rothschild said. The test they take will be administered in two parts, each 70 minutes, he said, adding that the same is true for the coming PARCC for geometry. For the juniors’ testing, extra time will be provided to allow every student to complete all test items, Rothschild said.

see homework, page 2

Student art shows blossom inside, outside of classroom Left: SENIOR MICHAEL SACK admires artwork created by seniors Ben Jones, Ivy Gao and Peter Foltz in their April 8 senior art show titled “Not Just Black and White,” part of their Advanced Placement Studio Practice class. Right: Junior KIRA STIERS models her makeover, part of the promotional campaign for “Luminaire,” an art festival staged by several school groups, including Sequel Magazine. The event is set for May 2 at 6 p.m. in the auditorium lobby. photos by maddy brancati

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INDEX 2-4 5-7 8-9 10-16

news opinion sports features

FYI: Spring Sports Spirit Week April 28 - May 2 see page 2

In-school SAT for all Juniors April 30

Spring Dance Concert May 1 7:30 p.m. Auditorium

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Lionheart 5K May 4 9 a.m. Front Lawn

NHS Senior Breakfast

May 9 7 a.m. Satellite cafeteria


May 9-10 7 p.m. Satellite Cafeteria


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Cheating rises­—again cheating, continued from page 1

She finds herself disappointed with her students. “I feel like they should have the character to resist the impulse to cheat, but I find that this is not the case,” Roller said. Among the other subjects, science and foreign language classes were also popular classes to cheat in, with percentages of 62 and 60 percent, respectively. As for academic levels, Honors classes have the most students who admitted to cheating, with 65 percent of students cheating in these classes. In each grade level, the percentage of students who admit to cheating tops 90 percent. For freshmen, it’s 92 percent. For sophomores, it’s 93 percent. For juniors and seniors

it’s 99 percent and 97 percent respectively. Why cheat? More than half of those surveyed (53 percent) said that they don’t feel pressed to cheat in order to pass a class. Still, anecdotally, some students blame pressure from Advanced Placement classes for their cheating. That’s a cop out, assistant principal John Billingslea said. “Nobody’s making you do something immoral because you decided that you were going to be competitive,” he said. Billingslea had firm words for those who take AP classes to get ahead. “Most colleges say three AP classes total is all they’re going to accept, Billingslea said. “They want you to work at the highest level you’re

willing to work. If people want to extend themselves beyond that and then feel the need to justify cheating in order to keep up, then they’ve made a bad decision.” Perhaps students cheat because they keep getting away with it. Only 18 percent of students surveyed said they’ve been caught cheating. A lack of guilt may also be a factor. The survey shows 52 percent of students don’t feel guilty if they cheat. An anonymous student’s remark epitomized this attitude. “If you’re not cheating, you’re not trying, a coach said to me once,” the anonymous senior said. Co-editor Becca King and staff writer Noelle Li contributed to this report.

april 28, 2014 have you ever been caught cheating?





about the survey: The anonymous, pen-and-paper survey of 285 students was conducted in English classes of all academic levels and grade levels. Students were asked 13 multiple-choice questions.

Homework Homework limit debated hurting? HOMEWORK, continued from page 1

sierra prior & danielle zarachowitz, staff writers ocal reaction to a recent homework study is mixed. Many students state that students’ current homework load is large and stressful, while others see it as reasonable. “A lot of stress from homework comes from poor management and poor studying habits,” junior Adolfo Carvalho said. The study, conducted by the Brown Center Report on American Education, concluded that the majority of students nationally have an hour or less of homework per night. A Brown Center spokeman told Education Week that a small group of parents have hijacked the national homework debate, while the majority is either satisfied with homework load or say it should increase. While the study shows national homework loads to be reasonable, teachers run the risk of students not completing their homework if they feel they’ve been given too much. Junior Casey Proefrock said she occasionally disregards homework and finishes it in school so she can attend an after school event. “That’s what I’ll remember more about high school,” she said. While English teacher Kathy Roeder said students should complete their homework, she acknowledges there are students who deal with stress as a result of homework. “I think people should stop and rethink the amount of homework they give out and realize kids are taking seven, and next year eight classes,” Roeder said.


amount of time spent on homework on a nightly basis. For sophomore Lisa McCullough, who is currently enrolled in three AP classes, the rule seems unrealistic. “I think it’s a little short-sighted. BCPS students all have varied levels of academic achievement and engagement in extracurricular activities. Setting a three-hour maximum time doesn’t well account for these differences,” she said. McCullough, who admitted to having anywhere from zero to two hours of homework nightly, added that increased awareness on the part of both

teachers and students would go a long way in dealing with the so-called homework problem. Junior Aishu Jayapal, who takes four AP classes this year, pointed out that minimizing the amount of “busy work” in advanced classes and adding an increased focus on test-taking would create an experience closer to that of what students may have in college. Jayapal argued against the homework limit. “We need to get the lower achieving kids enough confidence in themselves to try harder in school, get them to understand the concepts of their material and increase their test scores. I don’t think an academic restriction will achieve any of that,” she said.

Piling on APs may jeopordize


chloe messier, staff writer chedule changes for next school year may spur unwieldy workloads for students, guidance counselor John Komosa said. “Some sophomores are signing up for three or more Advanced Placement courses for next year whereas that wasn’t happening as much before,” Komosa said.

Guidance Counselor John Komosa

photo by alex wright

He said his concern is that students are filling the eighth period with an AP, which could overload them. Lisa Ann Tang, a 2013 graduate, never took more than five APs and she was the top performing AP student in the state. Some of the highest-achieving students in the past have not taken more than five APs, so there’s question a b o u t whether the extra work is worth it. Komosa said it isn’t. Neither Komosa nor principal Lyn Whitlock have the

power to stop a student from enrolling in too many APs, but they’ve instituted an obligatory meeting for students planning to take more than four. “The purpose of the meeting is to make sure they understand the constraints an AP class is going to put on them, and that they understand the homework load,” Komosa said. He ensures that the students have been historically strong so that they aren’t taking on more than they can handle. So far, none of the students have changed their schedule as a result of the conference. Komosa reiterates the purpose of the meetings: guidance, not prohibition. “I can’t make someone feel or think my way, but that would be my advice.”

Teachers air questions, concerns about new block


maya lapinski, staff writer tudents are not the only ones with sanity on the line due to the upcoming block schedule; teachers are struggling as well. Common concerns surrounding the new four-period schedule include the increased student load, restructuring lesson plans and maintaining student engagement. “We have so many changes coming, it’s more than a little overwhelming,” science teacher Cristina Reitmeyer said. Switching from a 45-minute to 90minute lesson is a daunting task. Teachers must completely reform their lesson plans, and face entirely new challenges. With periods twice as long, it’s going to be twice as difficult for teachers to keep students interested. Students already know how hard it is to stay awake in class—

now they’ll battle for consciousness for even longer at a time. Administration has offered to accept suggestions as to how they can help, but teachers have mixed opinions on how the transition can be aided. Some are in favor of department meetings or content teams to organize restructuring. Others, like social studies teacher Julie Marx, are skeptical. “I’m not sure how much they can actively do. Anything they can do to remove extra burdens from teachers would be helpful; my biggest concern is having six classes instead of five. That’s going to mean a bigger student load. Taking other distracters out of the picture would be the most help,” Marx said. The increased student load is yet another burden on teachers. Especially now with the adjusted Com-

mon Core curriculum, teachers must brace themselves for mountains of extra work to grade. Further concerns include student absences. “You’re going to miss twice the work that you missed before, and I won’t see prep begins. Teachers wrote their questions about block you the next day. scheduling on these forms during a winter faculty That’ll be the hard- meeting. est thing,” Reitmeyer photo by kyra twohy said. Seeing students ule. only every other day “We don’t know enough about makes catching up less efficient, what the schedule’s going to be to and 90 minute periods mean twice as much information that absen- even pinpoint the problems. It’s hard to plan,” Reitmeyer said. tees miss out on. Teachers who are interested may On top of all these concerns, attend paid workshops on teaching teachers are afraid of the looming unknowns that shroud the sched- block classes this summer.

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BOARD DROPPED The school’s honor board— launched three years ago as a tool to combat cheating— has been dismantled, assistant principal Angela Berry said. Cheating issues have become too serious for the board to handle, she said, citing an incident last year when students obtained a copy of final exam answers and distributed them. The honor board’s role was to teach students what defines academic dishonesty and provide input on alleged cheating cases.

SPIRIT WEEK SET The Student Government Organization and Student Athlete Leadership Board have set a spirit week from April 28 to May 4 to draw supporters to varsity games. Boys lacrosse will start the week with a black-out game. Outdoor track’s Code Red meet occurs Tuesday. The girls lacrosse team ends their season with a white-out game Wednesday. Baseball’s Dulaney-ville tailgate game—complete with wacky fan costumes-- is set for Thursday. The girls softball team’s Thursday game features a marathon theme with fans wearing running shorts and sweatbands to promote the Lionheart 5K run May 4.

RETREAT DATE SET The sophomore retreat is scheduled for the entire school day May 27. For the fourth year in a row,teachers and students trained in team-building techniques will instruct sophomores on college and career options. Math department chairman Leanne Voos is spearheading this year’s event.

VOTE COMMENDED A local advocate for adding an elected member to the otherwise appointed school board praised the General Assembly for passing the hybrid board this session. “This represents a refreshing example of democracy in action,” PTSA member Jean Suda said of the unanimous vote April 4. She lobbied the assembly with more than about two dozen other PTSA members, arguing that an elected board member would be more likely to answer to constituents than appointed board members.

SENIOR WINS J. Gourdin is among the winners of this year’s Young Playwright’s Festival at Center Stage. She won for her original monologue, which portrays contemporary song lyrics as too often being divisive, empty and derogatory. Her performance was filmed and will be screened during the theater company’s festival May 5.

JUNIOR PLACES Jake Ebright took second place in the Jacksonville Optimist Club Essay Contest. He wrote about his inspiring grandfather.



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Exploring e-cig option


was her boyfriend’s opinion that made her quit. katie walters, staff writer enior Aubree Mandell has a secret weapon “My boyfriend bought me a vaporizer because he she uses to combat stress: her vaporizer. didn’t like the smell of smoke,” Mandell said. “You “When you’re stressed, you want to smoke,” don’t want to kiss someone who’s just smoked a cigarette.” Mandell said. Nearly 3 percent of high school students use elecLike many vape pen users, Mandell gets her vatronic cigarettes, according to the 2012 figures from porizer liquid at a shop called SS Vapes. the Centers for Disease “You go in and can test out any flavor you want. The difControl and Prevention. Recent headlines have foferent type of vaporizers range from six percent nicotine to cused on the debate over whether smoking such 36 percent nicotine,” Mandell vapor cigarettes, which said. “My favorite flavor is contain nicotine but not called ‘Jamaican me Crazy.’” Mandell’s favorite aspect of tar, is actually harmful— her vaporizer, which looks like especially to teens. A University of Califora pink pen, is its simplicity. nia study published this “It has an atomizer in it. All March found that middle you do is press the button and breathe in,” she said. and high students who used e-cigarettes were Senior Aubree Mandell takes apart her vaporizer to Taking it apart to reveal the details of the vaporizer, Manmore likely to smoke real display the different parts. cigarettes and less likely photo by katie walters dell spills cotton candy scented to quit than students who liquid all over her hands. did not use the electronic “There are different colors devices. But it’s unclear whether the e-cigarettes and flavors, it’s like…snowballs,” Mandell said, are promoting real cigarette use or if students who laughing. Despite her past usage, Mandell does not endorse already smoke real cigarettes later take up their electronic equivalents. the use of cigarettes. “I don’t think kids should smoke cigarettes. It’s Mandell began smoking real cigarettes roughly two years ago because her friend would smoke. It stupid. There’s nothing to them,” Mandell said.

april 28, 2014

Three, two, one... project blasts off

Sticking with smokeless tobacco Some athletes here use dip, despite its risk of mouth and other cancers, an anonymous user said.

ably be Longhorn which is $1.50 to $2 per tin.

How and when did you start? I started when I was 14 years old. Somebody offered it to me and I loved it, so I just kept going.

Why chew? It really takes the “edge” off so to speak. It calms me down and really helps me unwind. It also really helps my focus issues.

How much does it cost? It depends what brand you get. Skoal is the most expensive ($5 a tin). The cheapest would prob-

When do you chew? I usually dip whenever I’m driving, doing homework, watching TV, in the shower.... I’ll usually

go through about a tin a day. If I do it in school, I keep a water bottle in my backpack and spit when I can. Why take the risk? It’s what it gives me that makes it worth it. It gives that general sense of satisfaction that you can’t get every day. By staff writer Lucia Tarantino

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aerospace Rocket launch. (left to right) Seniors Adam Sulpar and Santiago Encarnacion, aerospace engineering teacher Dave Schein and senior Charlie Buonsignore ignite Buonsignore’s rocket April 3. The rockets the class built soared about 200 feet in the air. photo by kyra twohy



april 28, 2014

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Brothers choose different methods to combat A.D.D. who also has A.D.D., begins his day without medication. He was diagnosed in the seventh grade. He already experimented with medication, including Adderall and Vysanse, and it was clearly negative in his life, he said. He also said one medicine took away his appetite and made him jittery and depressed. During his freshman year, he decided it was better to just not take it at all. He said he only takes it for big tests like the SAT. “What really made me realize it was hurting me was when one of my best friends told me they didn’t really like being around me anymore,” Brandon Longest said. “It made it a lot harder to get up in the mornfreshman daniel longest compiles homework at his desk earilier ings knowing I wasn’t going to enjoy the day.” this month. photo by kalie paranzino The brothers also use other tactics to help them focus better. gina lee, projects manager t’s a new school day. To begin, freshman They both take advantage of the calendar Daniel Longest takes medication for his on their phones. Brandon Longest syncs Attention Deficit Disorder (A.D.D.). his with his parents’ calendars to prevent Medication, he said, is a big help in his fo- mix-ups and mistakes. Successfully finding cus. Without it, he knows he wouldn’t be what works for him, Daniel Longest assures other students diagnosed with A.D.D. that able to get his work done. In third grade, Daniel Longest was diag- there’s no need to be discouraged. Brandon Longest will attend University nosed and prescribed medication. Remembering to take his pill, wanting to take his of Maryland, College Park in the fall. Even pill, making sure to do all his homework though he already has an established rouand being organized became routine. His tine now, Brandon Longest said that he efficiency and focus is all thanks to this thinks being able to start over will help because he’ll be able to start his own organiwhole process and his medication. He experimented with Daytrana in the zation system. He said he will also continue form of a patch, then he took Vysanse as a without medication. As Brandon Longest continues to stay off pill and now he takes Concerta in pill form. He will continue with his medication be- his medication, Daniel Longest will continue on with his with routine checkups and cause of its positive effects, he said. But his brother, senior Brandon Longest, evaluations.

A.D.D. and A.D.H.D. medication have been making more appearances lately on the news. One of the biggest issues is the increase in the number of people diagnosed. According to an article in the New York Times, 15 percent of high-school-age people are diagnosed with A.D.D., and 3.5 million children are now taking medication. This is 600,000 more than in 1990. The article also points out the possibility that people are being diagnosed with A.D.D. too easily. The brothers’ mother, Mary Longest, said she thinks it’s the parents’ responsibility to

“They weren’t behavior issues. I think that’s what some of the misconception is for some people. There is a difference between fundamental behavior and not being able to control how you act,” Tom Longest said. The Longest family all agreed that family support was a key factor in the boys’ success. Tom Longest said that even though medication was not the fix for them, it’s important for a parent and child to work together to figure out what works best for that individual. Both parents are especially


senior brandon longest studies for a test earlier this month.

photo by kalie paranzino

ensure this doesn’t happen. She said that their process was very thorough, including research, counseling and meetings with the boys’ teachers. Mary Longest, along with the brothers’ father, Tom Longest, eventually agreed that this was more than just a lack of focus.

proud of the success the brothers have displayed, they said. “The medication has given them an opportunity to show their potential. They have a lot of it,” Mary Longest said.

A.D.D. Facts 1. A.D.D is a type of A.D.H.D. It differs from the other two types of A.D.H.D. because people with A.D.D do not show symptoms of hyperactivity. 2. Three times more men than women have A.D.D. 3. Children with A.D.D. are generally highly intelligent, big-hearted, generous, intuitive, charismatic, creative and full of positive energy. 4. Research proves that there is no connection between how much sugar a person eats and the possibility of developing ADD. Sugar simply offers a boost of shortterm energy or high activity. 5. 50-60 percent of children with A.D.D. carry their symptoms into adulthood. 6. Celebrities with attention disorders include Justin Timberlake, Will Smith, Michael Phelps, Jim Carrey, Terry Bradshaw and Adam Levine. All information was obtained from

Grassroot tournament raises big bucks

KEY CLUB SOCCER. Seniors Cooper Ramsey (left), Brandon Longest (center) and Nick Gambino (right) display a charity’s banner after their second-place win in the intermediate bracket at the Key Club’s April 21 Grassroot soccer tournament. The team of juniors Seongtae Kim, Stephen Kim and Phillip Clark took first in that bracket. The event raised $3,108 for AIDS prevention in Africa. photo by becca king

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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR HSA value assessed Dear editors, This school year, Maryland schools want to administer the HSA. But due to the cost and lack of validity, I think the exams shouldn’t occur. In school, students are taught a lesson and then tested on what they’ve learned. If the HSA is administered this year, the state would be testing skills and knowledge that are irrelevant to what the students are taught. School systems around the country are implementing a new, more relevant curriculum: the Common Core. It facilitates helping students. The Common Core provides a national standard for language arts and mathematics, but it will not have any complementary tests until next year. For now, we’re stuck with the HSA. The price of administering the tests is approximately $6 million. Spending that amount of money on the tests seems like buying a VCR player in today’s world. You wouldn’t be able to use it because all movies and shows are on DVD. It’d be useless—just like the HSA. The $6 million Maryland State Assessment was useful because it related to the curriculum and marked each individual student’s progress along with the school’s progress. But this is no longer the case. So why test us on a dying curriculum? Not to mention the valuable class time we’re wasting while preparing for and taking the test—class time that could be used to prepare for upcoming Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers exams. And let’s not forget the added stress that accompanies standardized tests. Whatever kind of test it is, a student will always stress. It doesn’t make sense to cram for and worry about a test that doesn’t reflect actual academic progression. Giving the HSA this school year is wasting valuable time and precious money. It creates unnecessary stress and inaccurately gauges the progress of schools. What’s the point? - Maddie Wilson, sophomore Questioning block schedule motives Dear editors, Why do schools adopt the four-period schedule when there is no research to say it increases student performance? Money. Only five teachers would be needed in the four-period day for every six in the seven-period model. BCPS makes it seem as if classes are still 45 minutes and there is no discovery or experimentation in the current schedule. But how will the system compensate for losing three weeks of time per class to have students understand content beyond the superficial level? Mr. Merenbloom says that there isn’t any research to show that students need to practice every day. I think the point is irrelevant as to whether they need to practice every day. Repetition facilitates retention. You sacrifice a lot of content if you attempt to provide students the same time they have at home. While there is more depth understanding, there is less material studied. Perhaps he meant that a longer time spent on discovering knowledge instead of passively absorbing content presented will be more beneficial to students. But there is a difference between discovery and doing something; teachers must balance discovery with presentation with repetition. Mr. Merenbloom stated, “The paradigm has changed, the cheese has been moved.” Are students mice, is education a maze and is understanding cheese? There is no new paradigm in the four-period day model. New knowledge and skills still need to be presented, discovered and practiced if you expect students to retain what they’ve learned.

-Paul Leroy, former math teacher



the griffin Dulaney High School 255 E. Padonia Rd. Timonium, Maryland (410) 887-7633 co-editors Franny Brancati, Becca King, Kyra Twohy deputy editors Jessica Hung, Andrew Oh, Thea Zurek business manager Kyra Twohy, Henry Harsel adviser Maria Hiaasen project managers Audrey Fanshaw, Gina Lee

Focus more, suffer less


daniel andrews, staff writer side from imparting historical facts to my head, social studies teacher John Wagner taught me a valuable work ethic: time spent doing homework can be greatly reduced by working smarter and more efficiently. This work ethic is necessary when facing the average three and a half hours of homework each night. For some this seems like a lot, while for others this seems like a little. Striking the balance between these two is a combination of students being more accountable and organized and teachers assigning less homework. We need to eliminate distractions. We text, use social network and listen

april 28, 2014 to music. But switching from homework to these tasks and back again can be time consuming. Eliminating these distractions can improve efficiency, lessen time spent working and improve absorption of material. Time management is also key. Focus first on the subjects you’re struggling with and save the easier subjects for after. By not procrastinating on the more difficult classes, you can develop a regime of focus that keeps you motivated. After a while, repeatedly tackling the harder subjects first makes it feel like second nature. When and where you work is also important. Instead of listening to music on the bus in the morning, do homework then or form study groups at lunch. I admit that the bumpiness of the bus ride provides for poor handwriting, so the better option would be to work at home or in a stationary environment. Going to a quiet study atmosphere like the library is also a viable option. Either way, productivity increases as focus increases.

These steps are highly beneficial for reducing time spent doing homework; however, time spent doing homework will only be substantially reduced if teachers assign less homework. We’ve spent all day toiling and we don’t want to go home to over three and a half more hours of it.

junior daniel Andrews studies for his U.S. history class April 22. photo by lucia tarantino

Cheating can be averted through cooperation because the completion of said assignments will result in a grade. “By reducing the number of ‘busy-work’ assignments that students must complete, cheating may be reduced,” junior Bill Houghton said. Opponents of this minimal-assignment approach pen scrolls. One cheating method developed by students involves rolling up a paper with answers may argue that assignments and hiding it in a pen. are necessary to track stuphoto by gina lee dent progress. Yes, the constant evaluation of content andres arbelaez, staff writer tionship between those who teach and comprehension is vital in here are infinite ways to cheat: those who learn. So, why is it a con- any structured curriculum. However, tapping, blinking, copying, stant struggle? Students don’t cheat at this progress can be checked by peritalking, writing on your stom- learning. They cheat at getting a grade. odic assessments. ach. Cheating is rampant; 95 percent Thus, a more focused approach to colAdvanced Placement classes of students surveyed in March admit- lecting and internalizing information throughout the building implement ted to having cheated at some point in and content should replace the neces- this strategy. History teacher Kaththeir high school career, a 13 percent sity to fill up grade books. leen Skelton’s AP United States Hisincrease over the past two years. A proposal that students should tory class is based on note-taking and As long as pupils have been cheat- learn and teachers should teach—ab- unit tests. Nightly homework is not ing, teachers have been trying to com- surd, I know. The foundation of this checked. So, by all means, students bat it. These startling statistics prompt shift is a fundamental trust that stu- can copy others’ notes, but the act of a discussion on how to counteract dents want to learn when they come note-taking is what elicits true learncheating. In the decision of these to school. ing. Those who copy notes are makmethods, it is important to consider a According to the cheating survey, ing a conscious decision to not learn. necessity in student-teacher relation- the most common method of cheating This decision is reflected in their test is copying assignments. These assign- grades—a fair system. ship—trust. Schoolwork is a cooperative rela- ments are copied, it is safe to assume,



New laws bring small but significant change


arlier this month, the Maryland General Assembly passed three bills concerning the decriminalization of marijuana, an increase of minimum wage and a hybrid school board. These bills were sent to Governor Martin O’Malley who signed them into law. Arguably the most publicized of the bills, the decriminalization of marijuana is a legitimate, albeit tentative step toward full legalization. In this case, decriminalization means that someone in possession of 10 or fewer grams of marijuana will receive a fine instead of facing arrest. It’s still illegal, but the crime has been extenuated to the severity of a traffic violation. While the passage of the bill indicates the significant shift in public perception of marijuana use, it also exudes

a puzzling hesitation by lawmakers. If lawmakers are conceding what appears to be some nominal approval toward marijuana use, then why not strive for more impactful legislation? The bill itself is promising, but overall progress is paltry. Much like the decriminalization of marijuana, the increase in minimum wage is good, but too conservative. The raise to $10.10 is ostensibly significant, but considering that this increase will come incrementally over a period of roughly four years, the real amount of change suddenly appears minimal. Understandably, there are concerns of the inevitable increase in unemployment but nevertheless, it seems odd why a more immediately effective measure was not instituted. A hybrid school board has been pro-

news editors Franny Brancati, Becca King, Meghan Reinhardt features editors Kalie Paranzino, Thea Zurek opinion editors Alex Goldberg, Ben Merenbloom sports editors Joe Pezzula, Drew Van Wagner chief technician Andrew Oh deputy technician Sarah Feustle photography/art editors Jen Siegel, Katie Walters copy editors Tyler Beckey, Christine Condon, Liz Gillum, Sophie Golden, Yusuf Mahmood, Daniela Rice deputy sports editor Andrew Sugarman Find us at

posed for years, but only now does it near actual application. The hybrid board will be composed of seven elected and four appointed members and will replace the current board in 2018. Aside from the delayed implementation of the new board, the difficulty in discovering any serious objections to this model raises the question of why this hasn’t been done earlier. Regardless, the best approach to enacting this new system is a pragmatic one. Try out the hybrid school board and if it works, keep it; if it doesn’t, try something new.

Weigh in on the issue. Tweet the editors (@DulaneyGriffin) with #recentlegislation

The Griffin welcomes story ideas, commentaries and letters to the editor. These may be brought to room 115, placed in Maria Hiaasen’s mailbox in the office or emailed to dulaneygriffin@ All submissions are subject to editing and must be signed. The Griffin Editorial Board makes all final decisions regarding content. Interested in advertising in The Griffin or purchasing any photos seen in this issue? Use the same contact information. The Griffin is printed seven times a year and is distributed in homerooms.



the griffin

april 28, 2014

Have some perspective, pace yourself S olivia golden, staff writer ix pages of history notes, a presentation on cellular respiration and the first 500 words of a four-page character analysis of “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.” Doesn’t sound like there will be much free time lying around with that lengthy list of assignments! The workload we’re expected to manage is tough to handle, but the real source of this stress comes down to Advanced Placement classes. The mounting pressure from parents and classmates to take APs has escalated each year of my high school career. Since schedule requirements gradually become fulfilled as each year passes, I, as well as other upperclassmen, have greater freedom when it comes to picking classes for the following year, which means greater difficulty as well. One of the biggest struggles students have when choosing classes is how many APs to take. According to the Baltimore Sun, over 60 percent of our school’s seniors take at least

one AP. Ironically, the motivation some students possess regarding academics is seen as a danger to their wellbeing, which is why principal Lyn Whitlock is requiring parents to meet with her if their child wants to enroll in more than five AP classes. Upon hearing this, I thought the required meeting seemed useless, considering kids

tend to be a bit stubborn. But I realized that many students have a hard time understanding the workload expected of them. After asking some students about their view on Whitlock’s new requirement, most felt it will be beneficial. “Her policy makes sense because five APs is a lot of work. Not all kids are totally

OP-ART: Jiyang Shi

ready for that,” junior Ellie Mathey said. Speaking of which, how do you know if you’re setting yourself up to fail? What if you take so many AP classes that you can’t handle it and you fail every class and you never graduate high school and you end up living in your parents’ basement for eternity? Well, my advice is to only commit yourself to subjects that grab your attention. Don’t sign yourself up for a class that you’re not interested in because you’re bound to disappoint yourself. But if you find yourself loving every AP class out there, you’re going to have to think about the classes that really matter to you. A future business major wouldn’t necessarily need the same AP math courses required of a future computer engineer or surgeon, for example. Challenge yourself, but if you’re so overloaded that you don’t have time to breathe or have fun, it’s time to drop some of those APs.

Capturing calculus class

OP-ART: ben gienow

Put down the smartphone, it’s detrimental


erin miller, staff writer t’s 11 p.m. and I’m sprawled out on my bed. Not doing homework, not studying, but instead browsing Instagram and texting. My phone controls me, every second, every minute, every hour. “I just always have it and if I don’t have it I feel like I’m missing a part of my life,” junior Veena Sivaraman said. My phone has swallowed all the time I should be taking to study for Advanced Plavement classes and practicing for the SAT. The dictator is seizing, not only my time to study, but the time I need for sleep. According to the New York Times, 61 percent of 18 to 24-year-olds sleep with their phone right next to them. That constant

stress of “Did someone text me?” or “Did I get another like?” hovers over me and makes me exhausted the next day. I know it isn’t only me when I find people falling asleep in almost every one of my classes. As phone use becomes worse and worse, it came to me: maybe it was time to take a break from the constant phone use. As lent began March 5, I thought it would be a good chance to rise up against my phone and take control of the crisis situation. I did well for the first two days, fighting the urge to pick up my phone after 8 p.m. Just when I thought I would conquer the battle, it fell back on top of me. Those two days of freedom were lost, and the power went back into the hands of my malicious phone. The safety of just holding our phones or being able to see it is one of the biggest things that keeps us from sleeping. “If I didn’t use my phone as much, I would get a lot more sleep,” Sivaraman said. We are only teenagers and we are supposed to use this beautiful technology to its fullest extent, right? Wrong. The truth is we are being dominated by this addiction to

our smart phones. Yes, addiction. As APs and finals get closer, our addiction to our phones becomes worse. That outlet of our phone allows us to back away from that stress of APs, SAT and finals, but it also disrupts our sleeping pattern. According to the National Sleep Foundation, teenagers should get 8.5 to 9.25 hours of sleep each night. A study they conducted shows that only 15 percent of teenagers get the minimum recommended amount of sleep on school nights. I find that I am in the minority, getting about seven hours of sleep each night, but I know other students who say they only get about five hours of sleep each night. We have this technology, but shouldn’t we also worry about our health, sleep and grades? We need sleep and fours and fives on our AP tests. What we don’t need? Our phones. For one time, as AP season approaches, put the phone down. It doesn’t hurt to try. So what, we may not see the most recent tweets about Justin Bieber’s latest stoop. Darn. When we disconnect, we can lshine.

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junior erin miller checks her phone before going to sleep earlier this month. photo from miller


the griffin


april 28, 2014

Keep bossy: it’s needed T

sarah feustle, staff writer here’s a movement to lump bossy with phrases like “that’s so gay” and “that’s retarded.” A feminist movement backed by women like Beyoncé and Condoleezza Rice, it aims to empower young girls and encourage them to be confident and assertive. says that the word bossy holds girls back, makes them less confident and ultimately makes them inferior to boys. I disagree. The site defends their argument with a few statistics: “The confidence gap starts early. Between elementary and high school, girls’ self–esteem drops 3.5 times more than boys’.” There’s no source citation in sight, which is one of several reasons I question this premise. As a teenage girl myself, I possess valuable insight; this decrease in self-esteem is caused by physical appearance and bullying (in some cases) more than anything else. And certainly more than by the word bossy.

When I think of bossy, I think of a girl in my first grade class who always picked what game she and

latter before, and that doesn’t bother me in the slightest. What bothers me most about this campaign is that

OP-ART: becca king

her friends would play during recess, or someone in one of my classes assigning tasks to group members for a project. I‘ve been convicted of the

the supporters are trying to say that girls are called bossy when they’re really just confident. Confidence, in my mind, has never had any

relation to being bossy. Confidence is being comfortable with yourself and standing up for what you believe in. Confidence is what gets you places; it’s what makes you the boss. Being confident and being bossy have no relation, at least not one that’s worth worrying about. I actually like the part of me that’s a little bossy, that can tell people what to do. And you know what? Sometimes someone needs to be bossy. Bossy gets things done. It can make you enemies if it’s used too much or inappropriately, but in the end, when you’re bossy you get people to work instead of letting them sit around and wait for the work to finish itself. And, as far as banning words goes— it’s the English language, and it’s (unfortunately) chock full of offensive words and phrases. There are words that we need to stop using incorrectly, like gay and retarded, but bossy ought to stay. People just need to recognize it as a positive.

Creationism debate returns to education


sophie golden, staff writer eligion influences our lives in many ways. Our currency reads “In God We Trust,” The Pledge of Allegiance describes America as “one nation under God” and the court system uses the Bible to swear truth in testimonies. Yet, “separation of church and state” is a vital component of our country. It is a constitutional right to practice whatever religion one chooses. In the public domain, particularly schools, debate surrounds this right. To what degree are teachers allowed to talk about religion? Does freedom of religion imply freedom from religion? This discussion is fundamental to whether creationism should be taught in school. According to the MerriamWebster dictionary, creationism is “the belief that God created all things out of nothing as described in the Bible and that therefore the theory of evolution is incorrect.” Its evidence is based solely on the Bible. The creationism versus evolution debate surfaced recently with new standards dictated by the Common Core, an education initiative in the United States.

According to an article from the Heartland Institute, “The standards cement evolution and human-caused global warming as central topics for K-12 students.” Objections from creationists sparked a highly publicized debate between Bill Nye, a scientist and wellknown TV personality, and Ken Ham, a creationist and advocate of literal inter-

“Does freedom of religion imply freedom from religion?“ pretation of the Bible. To teach creationism in a science class would be out of place. While it is a theory for the formation of the universe, it is a purely religious doctrine with no scientific backing. Evolution, on the other hand, can be analyzed by observable discoveries such as the extensive fossil record and Darwin’s theory of natural

selection. Bill Nye describes creationism as, “completely inconsistent with ever ything that we see in the universe.” But, creationism is a pertinent topic for a philosophy or history class. This is a belief system that has been around for centuries, impacting a large number of people. Critics who hold that creationism has no role in school believe that it is a violation of religious freedom and an irrelevant and inaccurate theory. But despite personal beliefs or position on the philosophy, creationism is one of many beliefs worth discussing. While freedom of religion is a critical right to protect, it shouldn’t prohibit students from becoming educated. Fear of unfamiliar ideas can lead to ignorance. Simply learning about one philosophy does not need to threaten another. Students should learn about a variety of religions and beliefs from an anthropological standpoint rather than as a threat to their own ideas. Just as I would analyze the Quran in world history or read a Buddhist teaching in English, the teachings of creationism are valuable.

Change needed to protect eggs, consumers


avalon bonlie, staff writer merican eggs are illegal in Europe. Why? Because in the United States, we wash our eggs. Washing eggs seems obvious. Eggs come from farms that are full of diseasefilled animals that defecate all over the place. Wouldn’t washing eggs get rid of all the bacteria and poop? Although it’s intuitive to wash anything that’s gone near a farm, it’s actually harmful. Shells are covered with a layer called the cuticle, according to The Poultry Site. The cuticle helps prevent bacteria, like salmonella, from entering shell pores. Washing eggs weakens the cuticle, allowing bacteria to enter the egg. For public safety, we wash and treat eggs with bleach. Washing eggs provides a perfect environment for salmonella to infect the inside and outside of the egg, where the bacteria originally

resided. A Humane Society report from the 1940s suggests that salmonella poisoning used to affect a few hundred Americans per year. Now, the Centers for Disease Control estimates that approximately 142,000 Americans are affected each year. There are two ways that we can reduce salmonella infection and still wash eggs, and each option adds less than a penny per carton. We can produce cage-free eggs. When chickens have room to roam, the eggs come in contact with less fecal matter. We can also vaccinate chickens for salmonella. In 1997, there were nearly 15,000 cases of salmonella in the United Kingdom. After vaccination it dropped to just under 600 cases in 2009. Despite the UK’s success, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration reports that there’s insufficient evidence to deter-

OP-ART: avalon bonlie

mine effectiveness. Europe bans egg washing because public health issues and cleaner conditions warrant more humane conditions for chickens. If we won’t improve poultry conditions for humane reasons, we should for health reasons.

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Culling sharks, though futile, is implemented

finn hasson, columnist n a move of almost unbelievable stupidity, the West Australian government has decided that the best way to prevent shark attack deaths is to kill as many geat white sharks as possible. They have chosen to ignore that the great white is listed as a threatened species, that previous shark culls have done nothing to limit attack frequency and that, as tertiary consumers, sharks have a pretty important role in the ecosystem. Ecosystem be damned though, so long as the tourists are protected. Proponents of the cull claim that killing “dangerous” sharks will drive down the number of shark attack fatalities. A worthy concern, considering that a whole seven people were killed by sharks in Australia from 2010 to 2013. Seven! That’s almost eight! What outcome are they hoping for, a drop from seven to five fatalities? How many could you possibly prevent when such a negligible number is killed? It would be like giving the entire nation a mandatory lightning rod to carry around to prevent lightning deaths. Aside from the fact that you can count the number of shark deaths in Australia on your fingers, previous shark culls have done absolutely nothing to make beaches safer. When Hawaii decided to kill 4,500 sharks in the 1950s, shark attacks stayed the same. “Hmm,” I imagine Australian legislators


“Killing sharks is an emotional response, not a scientific one.”

said. “Interesting. But maybe, when we do it, the results will somehow be different.” The methods of shark culling are as laughable and futile as the policy itself. Shark nets, intended to stop sharks from getting into swimming zones, are a joke. They don’t connect to the shore, they don’t go all the way to the sea floor and they generally leave four meters of space between the water and the top of the net for boat traffic. With a Kafka-esque twist, the Australian government has deployed baited hooks right next to the swimming beaches. Yes, it will attract sharks to swimming areas. No, apparently this wasn’t considered. To make matters worse, once sharks get caught on the hooks, they bleed and thrash around, drawing even more sharks. These are all pragmatic arguments, but it’s hard to ignore the obvious moral implications. When did it become acceptable to wipe out an entire population of animals simply because they pose a threat to some humans? Shouldn’t we also have an Alpaca cull since they might bight a child, and that child might bleed to death if the wound goes untreated? What about dogs? There are plenty more dog attacks than there are shark attacks; should we go around the streets with clubs and root out every rottweiler and beagle that could possibly attack someone? Killing sharks is an emotional response, not a scientific one. So far, 66 sharks have been caught. A whopping zero of that number have been the targeted great white. Effective. Getting the short end of the stick are definitely tiger sharks, which account for 63 of the 66 sharks caught. By the way, if 66 seems like a woefully small number, it is. It’s a drop in the bucket. Not only does the cull not prevent shark attacks, it hardly kills any sharks.

the griffin

8 sports




Laxer powers through lucia tarantino, staff writer enior Matt Eibl, a long pole defender who transferred here from Calvert Hall College High School last year, stands over six feet tall and weighs over 220 pounds. But there’s more to this laxer than his size. “He is the type of kid that will finish all his homework MATT EIBL after school and then spend photo by jen siegel an hour in the basement doing 1,000 pushups and body weight squats,” boys varsity lacrosse coach Kyle Fiat said. Fiat also attests that Eibl is a leader on and off the field; he is always willing to help others and constantly earns the respect of his peers. He said Eibl is a dominating force on the defensive end and has an “unwavering desire to win.” But Eibl was not always the strongest player on the field. In eighth grade he tore his Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL). Since it was a complete tear, he could not get surgery until he was finished growing. Eibl played without an ACL for over a year. He said that while he played without an ACL “it would just give out like a noodle.” Toward the end of his freshman year, he got surgery and by his sophomore year was back playing—an incredible recovery after a potentially career-ending injury. Eibl worked hard to come back at full capacity, and it paid off. Over winter, Eibl was awarded Eagle Scout, the highest rank win the Boy Scouts of America program. During his ceremony, Eibl wore an adult medium Boy Scout shirt, making his appearance even more prominent to Fiat. “He looked like the hulk,” Fiat said. “When I asked him about the shirt he told me his Dad didn’t have time to get a bigger one—but we all know he just wanted to show off his guns.” Eibl will play lacrosse for Virginia Military Institute, and plans to pursue a career in the military. He said it has been his dream to be a Navy SEAL since he was six years old.


junior Varsity Dedicated runner excels quickly andrew bank, staff writer fter completing a full season of winter track, junior varsity sprinter and sophomore Malik Debow is primed for a successful spring season. His strong efforts have paid off since the fall. He was called up to varsity footmalik debow ball just a few weeks into the photo by lucia tarantino season and was pulled up to varsity track at the end of the indoor season to participate in the state championships. Debow handled these moves with maturity, and his coaches noticed. “He is always willing to do what is best for the team,” track coach Chad Boyle said. Some runners would be intimidated by the challenge, but Debow was willing and ready to rise to the occasion. “I want to make it to nationals my senior year,” Debow said. Although he was initially surprised at the overall competitiveness of the varsity runners, Debow was able to adjust quickly. Boyle has high hopes for Debow this season. “I would like to see Malik qualify for county and regional championships in as many events as possible,” Boyle said. Boyle adds that Debow communicates well with his peers and gets along with everyone on the team. Teammate and junior Kita Robinson views Debow as one of track’s most charismatic personalities. “You’ll look over and he’ll be dancing during practice,” Robinson said. How does he separate his personality from the competition? According to his teammates he carries himself with confidence. “It’s a good blend of cocky and hard working,” teammate and junior Raynard Mccamie said. Outside of running, Debow is currently teaching himself to play the piano and he writes poetry.


april 28, 2014

Visualization allows athletes M

liz gillum, staff writer ost athletes know the saying: It’s 90 percent mental and 10 percent physical. Mental preparation is considered by many to be an essential part of athletic success. The majority of it deals with visualization, also known as mental imagery. Visualization is defined as experience that resembles perceptual experience, but which occurs in the absence of the appropriate stimuli for the relevant perception, according to an article on the Vanderbilt University psychology department website. In sports, visualization is mentally picturing yourself performing a certain task exactly how you would physically perform it. Swimmer Grace Hansen, a junior, said she can remember races where she wasn’t focused and ended up performing poorly. Hansen’s coaches have always stressed the importance of practicing visualization. “When I was little we would actually meditate before a meet,” Hansen said. “We would lie on yoga mats, and my coach would tell us to picture ourselves on the starting block.” Hansen said this allowed them to focus on the little details that could improve their physical performance such as making better turns. She added that before her races, she pictures herself performing previous sets she’s done in practice. Thinking of how hard she had to work and how much those sets have prepared her help her perform at her best, Hansen said. Varsity lacrosse player and junior Casey Proefrock said visualization applies to lacrosse because the team maps out of different scenarios on boards as preperation for games. “It translates directly onto the field, in a game or in practice,” Proefrock said. According to Vanderbilt’s website, a


recent study done by Roure et al shows that visualization “induces a specific pattern of automatic response.” These patterns allow athletes to train their mind and their muscles. Roure proposed that “metal imagery may help in the construction of schema, which can be reproduced without thinking during actual practice.” Varsity softball pitcher and sophomore Emma Bevard said there are three main details she focuses on for pitching: low pitches for grounders, inside pitches to jam the batter’s hands and high pitches if she notices their hands dip. Bevard also has a pre-batting thought process. “I focus on keeping my back shoulder up in my load and hitting the ball hard,” Bevard said. “If you are thinking about hitting to a certain part of the field, you are bound to have extra problems in your swing.” Varsity softball catcher Maura McGinn, a sophomore, added that it’s important to stay relaxed and keep a clear head. McGinn uses a ‘reset action’ in order to clear her mind of past plays and focus on the next play. McGinn said she usually moves the dirt around with her feet as her reset. Visualization is also a key factor in a runner’s performance, according to sophomore track runner Kira Flemke. “If you aren’t in the right mindset, if you don’t think you are going to win, then you’re not,” Flemke said. Sophomore track runner Henrique Carvalho said not only does visualization help you get in the right mind set, it also creates self-motivation. “It helps you to push yourself more,” Carvalho said. “If you just wing it then you probably aren’t going to push yourself as much.”

Facts about the shot put team

Compiled by staff writer Emma O’Grady

Top: JUNIOR MATT COOPER throws the shotput at a practice earlier this month. Left: JUNIOR VICKI WILLIAMS practices her technique during a practice earlier this month. photos by jen siegel


There are four female shot-putters this season: juniors Vicki Williams and Andrea Ruano, sophomore Jessica Ruano and freshman Alix Williams.


Junior Matt Cooper is the top male shotputter with a record of 41 feet at the indoor state championships last season.

3. Vicki Williams is the top

female shot-putter, with a personsl best of 26 feet.

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4. Boys’ shotput is 12 lb and 6. Shotput can be dangerous girls’ shotput is 8.81 lb

5. The two main challenges

shot-putters must overcome are weather conditions and the shot-putting form.

when people unknowingly walk into the circle during a throw, especially spectators who are unaware of the chotputters and are leaving the stadium.


the griffin


s to excel, focus

Spring season update co-ed allied softball: 3-1-1 boys varsity Baseball: 8 - 6 boys Junior Varsity Baseball: 6 – 4 Boys varsity Lacrosse: 8- 2 Boys junior varsity Lacrosse: 4 - 0 girls Varsity Lacrosse: 5 – 3 Girls junior varsity Lacrosse: 3 – 2 girls Varsity Softball: 6 – 6 girls Junior Varsity Softball: 6 - 2 Co-ed Varsity Tennis: 7 – 0 co-ed outdoor track : 4-0 *discludes invitational meets

Top: VARSITY LACROSSE PLAYER Casey Proefrock, a junior, runs the ball down the field during the March 21 game against Owings Mills High School. The Lions won 20-0. Left: Varsity softball player and sophomore Emma Bevard pitches in the March 21 game against Parkville High School. The Lions won 8-7.

Overall spring season records at press time were obtained from

april 28, 2014


month Varsity

Small body packs an edge ali collie, staff writer on’t let her size fool you. Standing at only five feet tall, teammates and coaches agree that senior captain Maddie Manzoni is a force to be reckoned with on the lacrosse field. As a starting attacker, she uses her size to her advantage to maddie manzoni create plays within the ofphoto by jen siegel fense. “She will not back down from anyone or anything,” girls varsity lacrosse coach Kristi Korrow said. “Defenders have a hard time playing against her because of her height.” Korrow said a notable moment was when Manzoni maneuvered around Perry Hall High School defenders, who were forced to play defense around her neck because of her short stature. Manzoni was elected captain by her teammates, and her leadership is more necessary this year than ever since the team only consist of four seniors. “In one of our first games against Loch Raven High School, Maddie took lead and directed the offense to make sure we were being effective,” junior teammate Casey Proefrock said. Senior teammate Maribeth Anderson agrees, adding that her moves give Manzoni an edge. “Her go-to move is a crease roll, which always give defenders a hard time because of her quickness. She beats them almost everytime,” Anderson said. As a senior, Manzoni has one goal in mind, a state championship. When asked what pushes her towards her goal, Manzoni said, “It’s the adrenalin rush. There’s nothing like stepping on the field with your team and performing well.” Manzoni will be attending Coastal Carolina University in the fall. She is majoring in education and plans on being a walk on for their Division I women’s lacrosse team.


photos by jen siegel

Mindset aids in win

junior Varsity Runner embraces natural ability


enior Jacob Asher earned fourth place in the state wrestling championship last month with strength and keen focus. His mantra was simple: “I don’t just want to win, I want to break him. I want to make him cry. I want to make him quit. He’s just another opponent between me and the state championship.” It took more than attitude. “I’m quick, so I know what move he’s going to do, and I anticipate and counter his move before he can react.”


Right: senior jacob asher takes his signature three-point stance during a home match against Catonsville High School this winter. photo from asher

Stand on unionization remains firm behind the plate


andrew sugarman, sports columnist ust last month, I wrote about why it was a mistake for college football players to attempt to unionize. Recent developments have made things more interesting, but I maintain my previous position. Peter S. Ohr of the National Labor Relations Board decided that the Northwestern University football players petitioning to unionize are in

holly sutley, staff writer ophomore Christina Harr came sprinting onto the track team full force and with passion. After participating in intense sessions of the Bigger Faster Stronger program during first quarter, Harr made the junior varsity track team in the cHRISTINA hARR winter and is likely moving up photo by jen siegel to varsity sometime during the spring season. “She’s really dedicated and just an amazing runner,” freshman teammate Julia Clark said. This past season, Harr finished the Baltimore County junior varsity championship in second place with a two-mile time of 12:37.3 and a one-mile time of 6:18. Her natural ability as a runner impresses teammates and coaches alike. “Christina has some very specific intrinsic gifts that I noticed almost immediately and thought that she could be very good. She has the competitive desire that is innate in champion athletes. I think we will see those traits work well for the program in the future,” track coach Chad Boyle said. Harr’s softball and BFS experience have contributed to her track performance. She played softball actively up through seventh grade and did BFS throughout last year and into this past fall. Harr decided to join track off of a whim. “After BFS ended I wanted to do something for the winter. Then, I discovered that I liked running so I decided to give track a try,” Harr said. “It took her some time, but she adjusted well and is doing great right now,” Boyle said. “It’s going to be competitive getting onto varsity for the spring, but she has a good chance.” Harr is not participating in any upcoming competitions, but said that she would like to make it to a regional or state competition someday. “I’d definitely like to keep running throughout high school. I’m really enjoying myself now and I think I’ll keep enjoying it,” Harr said.

fact employees. He referred to them in this manner in his 24 page ruling, also calling Northwestern University their “employer.” Therefore, he ruled, these players are eligible to vote in a union. This does not guarantee the students will prevail in their quest, but regardless of the challenges that remain, the athletes have cleared the biggest obstacle. Eventually, the Northwestern athletes want to bargain to have the university fund long-term concussion treatment. The NCAA is notorious for both extra rules and a long history of propaganda. Many liken it to a dictatorship and fear its response to a successful union movement. “The NCAA has too many rules as it is,” senior Matt Eibl, who will play Division I lacrosse for Virginia Military Institute next year, said. “It [will] be a lot more like business.” He added that a successful union movement would draw a harsh response from the NCAA, causing it to further over-regulate college athletics.

Senior Lauren Cahalan agrees. “I don’t see a reason to join as a student athlete,” the future Towson University gymnast said. “I think that athletes get enough perks already.” Northwestern athletes haven’t begun to enjoy any of the perks they sought. Instead they face negative consequences, chiefly diminishing relationships between them and their coaches. Eibl and others oppose the change that would occur in the atmosphere of college athletics per result of this movement, acknowledging that there would be more bad than good if it passes. In addition to loss of personal connection between players and coaches, harm could also be done in the classroom. This unionization movement could deter attention from athletes’ academic achievement. While college student athlete graduation rates have risen in recent years, shouldn’t we strive to see that all athletes make the grade?

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Accomplished teacher applies newest strategy C

jackie andrews & kristin meek, staff witers onjure an image of a classroom: rows of desks, chairs, a computer, a projector, some kind of blackboard, copious amounts of paper, textbooks strewn about, a teacher lecturing in a much-toostuffy room while the restless students let their minds wander and eyes roam. Turn the microcosm upside down, and all of the books, papers and desks fall away. What’s left is the teacher and the curriculum. Flipped classroom is a simple concept: instead of receiving instruction during class and doing practice at home, students go home to learn via video or podcast and then come to class and apply what they’ve learned in an interactive manner. Of 19 teachers surveyed, 10 said they have tried this model. Sophomore Jack Wang actually launched a club to produce flipped classroom videos for teachers to use, hoping to have them ready by next year. Science teacher and technology guru Kimberly Culbertson piloted her flipped classroom last year to supplement her stoichiometry unit in her Honors Chemistry class. One of the major instructional advantages of this model, according to Culbertson, is that students can pause, rewind and rewatch making the instructional experience much more personalized to their individ-

ual needs. “It’s really been very beneficial for the students and for me, to see their growth and see them take on learning more on their own, instead of me being the dictator right up front,” Culbertson said. She decided to try the new teaching style when she noticed students having common problems. “I felt like I was going over the same problems time and time again in class and there were some students who got it and then other students just were never mastering it,” she said. After surveying her classes, Culbertson found that 90 percent of her students preferred learning new content through the flipped classroom model. Watching the videos is the only homework for her students. They take notes on the videos and then come to class and complete a collected drill, practice problems or a lab. Culbertson, with the assistance of administrator John Billingslea, created her podcasts using an app called “Explain Everything” on her iPad. The application includes a board that you can write on and import documents, photos, and videos into. You can also link to the internet and record your voice simultaneously. Culbertson said she makes six to eight videos for each unit which she then posts

april 28, 2014

Top: Science teacher Kimberly Culbertson explains an answer to her period four chemistry class April 8 during their jeopardy review. Her flipped classroom strategy allows Culbertson to review the material with her students in class. Left: science jeopardy. (left to right) Sophomores Chris Castillo, T.J. Rhode and Tony Sheaffer select their answer on controllers during the jeopardy review in Culbertson’s period four chemistry class April 8. photos by alex wright

to SchoolTube. On average, the videos are between five and 10 minutes long, and they are posted on Culbertson’s wiki in chronological order for students to refer back to for more practice or as a studying resource. Although the benefits of flipped classroom seem innumerable, the biggest reward, Culbertson says, is the meaningful interaction that comes with the program. “I get around to the kids two or three times minimum, talk to them, see where they’re struggling with, what misconceptions they have,“ she said. One problem may arise with the flipped model. If students don’t watch the videos at home, they’re at a disadvantage in class.


Start College Now! It’s never too soon to start thinking about your future. The Community College of Baltimore County offers high school students the opportunity to get a jump start on their college education and career training with our Parallel Enrollment Program (PEP). Juniors and Seniors can enroll in college courses while still in high school. Talk to your parents and guidance counselors to see how you can start getting ready now.

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Culbertson’s solution is simple: the students watch the video in class, instead of participating in class. “Ultimately I want them to get the instruction, but I’m trying to give them a little tough love—I want to hold them responsible,” she said. Culbertson will take over next year as the new Students and Teachers Assessing Tomorrow (STAT) teacher. Instead of teaching, she will help teachers integrate technology into their classrooms. Culbertson will learn whether she will be named the Baltimore County Public School’s Teacher of the Year at a ceremony May 5.

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Gradeless system alleviates stress B

sara glasser, staff writer eeswax, wood carvings and water color paintings, still dripping wet, are scattered around the room, not a textbook in sight. A small group of first graders sit at their desks, studiously knitting after their morning German lesson. Welcome to the Waldorf School, a progressivethinking institution in Baltimore City that emphasizes a well-rounded education through play, hands-on experience,and a focus on the arts. Students at Wal-

dorf start learning Spanish and German in the first grade, participate in dance class (even the boys) and will never feel the stress of striving for ‘straight A’s’. At Waldorf, grades don’t exist. Senior Katy Trosch experienced this alternative to the traditional grading system first hand for the first eight years of her education. “They focused more on your individual, personal characteristics,” Trosch said. “Instead of putting you into a box, they understood your strengths and

weaknesses and evaluated you on that.” In place of report cards with letter grades, teachers at Waldorf write detailed and personal progress reports to track students’ growth. This unconventional method of schooling has supporters not only from alumni like Trosch, but from some students here. “You can’t measure your ability based on how you take a test or how well you complete a worksheet,” junior Kayla Glenn said. Critics of the current grad-

ing system note its emphasis on test taking, turning assignments in on time, accuracy and often the blind regurgitation of information without true understanding. “When they [the students], get an ‘A,’ they don’t want to learn anymore, and they don’t want to dig deeper,” social studies teacher Phil Bressler said. With Waldorf’s ideals, on the other hand, a student’s achievement is based on much more than these standardized expectations. The Waldorf School high-

lights individuality and an in-depth, well rounded education that no single letter grade can properly describe. “I learned how to knit in first grade-- it was just part of my education,” Trosch said. “I was forced to join chorus, I was forced to join orchestra, I learned to play the flute, I had to sing in choir and I had to be in a play. That’s why I am who I am.” For some however, a grade-less school holds less appeal. “If you don’t have a grade,


then what’s going to motivate you to become a better student?” junior Wendy Shu said.

Senior Katy Trosch

photo by alex wright


Dr. elizabeth jaffee, an oncologist at Johns Hopkins Hospital, discusses the development of science throughout history with Marty Stranathan’s first-period Advanced Placement Biology class March 28. The class also discussed the importance of science and her research. Jaffee, the head of general internal cancers at Hopkins, runs an immunology lab and has developed a vaccine that triggers the immune system response in combating pancreatic cancer. The vaccine is entering its last stage of tests and Jaffee said the vaccine should be an approved mode of pancreatic cancer treatement within a few years. photo by jen siegel

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When I first moved to America, my mom had already been living here Kimchi lover and native of Trinidad for 15 something years, and my sisand Tobago, Arielle Williams, a fresh- ter had moved here when she was man, sat down to chat with staff writer eight, so when I was eight my mom Brianna Briggs asked me if I wanted to come live with her. I had to really think about Reading? it because it was a big decision. At the time I was living with my Right now, well this is a book that dad, my step mom and my brothI read in seventh or eighth grade, ers in Tobago, where I’m from. My the Mortal Instruments series, but dad said it would be a good thing the new book is coming out some- for me to experience. So I moved to time this month so I’m really the U.S. and went to third grade. It looking forward to the “City was really different because when of Heavenly Fire.” I don’t I first arrived I spoke with an acread much, but I like those cent and everybody’s like ‘what series because they’re very are you saying, what’s happeninteresting. ing?’ There are different Watching? words. It’s still English, but they’re “Scandal.” I really different. A love “Scandal” behair tie isn’t a cause Kerry Wash‘hair tie,’ it’s a ington is one of my ‘woogie’ in Tofavorite actors and the bago. And for the show is just so twisty. longest time, I was like One minute it’s super what is a pony tail? Do chill but then there’s you have a horses tail something that exploded stuck to you? It was just and then someone dies ridiculous but I made a and it’s just an amazing lot of really nice friends show. at Rodgers Forge Elementary School. Listening? When I moved from Towson to this area, I didn’t want I generally like Korean to at first because I didn’t music, all types of genres, know anybody and I wanted like hip hop, K and D and to go to Towson High School underground Korean rap. with all my friends. I was beMy friend showed me ing bitter because my mom a “Girl’s Generation” bought a house literally video, but then I saw anacross the street. other group that just kind The first week was rough of made my heart… just, because I didn’t know anyit just didn’t happen, and body and I was awkward sitthen I was obsessed. ting by myself in the satelphoto by jen siegel lite. When I tried to go to Following? the classic I was just a hot mess. Everybody was everywhere I’m not really big on social media, and I was just this random loner. but on Youtube I’m kind of stalk- Then I realized “The satellite is for ing Tyler Oakley because he makes me. It’s quiet and I can navigate a me happy and he’s just so loud and little better.” happy and I like him a lot. Then I found my group of friends who were really lovely, awkward Eating? and loud; and those are my type of people. Then it got better and I reI love Asian food and pizza. If it’s ally like Dulaney - minus the bathnot Asian food it’s some sort of rooms. The bathrooms are really variation of pizza. My mom made gross, but besides that it’s been a lamb last night so for the past good move. week I’ve been eating dumplings I’m ready to do the whole summer and Pad Thai and pizza. I have thing for like three months. I’ve just a variety of things that I enjoy, gotten really fed up with school bebut mainly Asian food and pizza. cause I had to take the PARCC test Kimchi has just been my life – it’s and all these tests and everything is Korean and it’s like a side dish. just accumulating. It’s made out of fermented cabbage and it just makes me happy.

Top: spring Performance. Garcia plays the Wicked Witch of the West at the spring musical “Into the Woods.” photo by mindy cheng

Left: Chorus practice. Sophomore Rachel Oh (right) joins senior Isabel Garcia (left) during a morning rehersal last semester. photo by jen siegel

an among us: Senior communicates through song


kelli goetz, staff writer ithout it, I don’t know how I’d go on,” senior Isabel Garcia said. The “it” she refers to is music. Garcia has been singing her whole life, beginning with weekly daycare performances as a small child. Her mother said she was born to be on stage. It is safe to say Garcia has graduated from being a daycare performer. Being an alto singer for Rhapsody choir, Saving the Music club, Acopoco, the school’s Glee club, and her church choir, she certainly has filled her life with music. “Music is a way I can communicate,” Garcia said. Garcia’s close relationship with her family has always been an inspiration to her especially since she has moved six times, from Cuba to Spain to the United States. Garcia said she can remember times when she had absolutely nothing, but that has not stifled her success on stage. However, she has faced some challenges with performing before. During the winter open mic night her sophomore year, Garcia forgot the words to the song “If I Die Young” by The Band Perry. Instead of running off stage crying, she stood

up and asked if anyone knew the words to the song. The crowd began to sing the words to her and she was able to swing right back into it. “I was proud of the way I handled myself in that situation,” she said. Recently, Garcia played the role of the witch in “Into the Woods.” Although there was some difficulty in transforming into an old witch, she received help from different directors and was able to successfully portray her character. She said the coaching she received will help her emote in future performances. Garcia performed in the musical “Rent” during her freshman year and said it was one of the best experiences of her life. Along with all of her musical endeavors, Garcia is involved with Key Club and La Voz. Spanish teacher and advisor of La Voz, the school’s Hispanic support club, Eva Van Horn described Garcia as being a leader and a mentor. “Isabel is destined for greatness and all of her actions up to this point serve as proof,” Van Horn said. Staff writers Caroline Wilmer and Ali Collie contributed to this report

Upcoming Performing Arts Events: Spring Dance Concert Cabaret May 1 May 9-10 7:30 p.m. 7 p.m. auditorium satellite cafeteria

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Foreign culture resonates MEMOIR:

As Rwanda marks the 20th anniversary of its genocide (the New York Times reports that in 1994, 800,000 Tutsi men, women and children were exterminated by Hutus in an effort to stronghold the country’s government), staff writer Olivia Golden recalls her connection to the African nation and its people.

ing on my flip-flops and cargo pants. Vendors pull at me, trying to get my attention while others wait patiently, using their eyes to draw me in. Each item in the market determines whether or not a family will be able to have dinner that night. This thought is startling, and I wish I could satisfy every vendor in the market. ur third day in My twin sister Sophie Rwanda, and comes up to me, and right as she starts talkI’m still not used to my surrounding, a woman behind us gasps. Sophie and I stop ings. Honestly, I don’t think I’ll ever be. Lookin our tracks and turn ing out the window, the toward her. The woman, dressed in a traditional hills encircling me are overwhelmingly beauRwandan head-wrap tiful and I’m amazed and matching dress, smiles brilliantly at us, by the women who walk down the street looking back and forth between Sophie and me. confidently balancing baskets of fruit on their She turns, picking up heads. The indescribtwo cloth objects that I can’t quite make out. Beable sense of adventure fore I know it, a small inI feel here could never digo stuffed elephant is tire me out. pushed into my hands. We get to our destinajunior olivia golden holds a Rwandan baby on the outskirts tion and park the car. of Kigali, Rwanda during the summer of 2012. Our Rwandan friend People are all over the photo from golden explained that twins are special in their culture place; there’s too much because the mother regoing on to take it all in. ceives an extra gift. Having one child is an amazing Right as we get out of the car, we’re greeted by smilblessing, but having two is a miracle. Of course, I ing, waving Rwandans pointing and shouting at us. To them, I’m a unique specimen they’ve never seen had never thought about it that way. before. Rwandan culture—its habits, thoughts and routines—are so foreign to me, yet so fascinating beIt’s approaching noon. As I walk through the aisles cause of just that. of the market, I can see the dust and dirt accumulat-


Top: junior olivia golden (left) and junior Sophie Golden (right) smile with Rwandan children in an impoverished village near the city of Kigali, Rwanda during the summer of 2012. photo from golden

Left: Rwanda, located in central Africa east of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, has a population of approximately 12.5 million and slightly smaller than the size of Maryland according to the Central Intelligence Agency. the government is currently run by the Hutus. graphic by kyra twohy

For more memoirs, including Alex Reilly’s on catching the acting bug, see our website:

New face arrives having experienced unique job training


joe pezzulla, sports editor ew English teacher Britta Schaffmyer comes here with a six-month wilderness adventure under her belt. Schaffmyer, who replaced former English teacher Jodi Wicks in March, decided to hike the Appalachian Trail, 2,200 miles of mountainous landscape and wilderness. The trail begins in northern Maine at Baxter State Park, ends in Chattahoochee National Forest in northern Georgia and covers nearly the entirety of the east coast. The mammoth hike is not easy to complete, and often those who tackle it are unable to finish due to fatigue or illness. “Within the first few days I developed very bad blisters and my feet ached all day,”

Schaffmyer said. Schaffmyer emphasized that when faced with such a massive task, it’s important to take it one week at a time. “You can’t think of the journey in terms of a four- to sixmonth long journey because then it’s hard to comprehend what you’re doing and then you get lost in the thought of it,” Schaffmyer said. “You think of the hike as five to seven day hikes.” Schaffmyer needed to remain wary throughout the hike, as the trail contains its fair share of dangerous wildlife. In fact, one instance involved a face-to-face encounter with a handful of black bears. “They were just walking around. I was frozen; I just didn’t know what to do,” Schaffmyer said. “Then I started banging the poles I had

Top: English teacher Britta Schaffmeyer takes in the view on a peak Virginia along the Appalachian Trail in last summer. Left: Schaffmeyer relaxes (far right) with fellow hikers (left to right) Ben Hedin, Nko Jones and Sarah Edwards near the end of their Appalachian Trail hike last fall.

and ran away.” Staying in the wilderness for such extended periods of time can also take a toll on eating habits. Schaffmyer’s typical meal consisted of dehydrated fruit and vegetables that were purchased prior to and during the hike; however, there were occasional exceptions, including a great meal in an unlikely place. “We tried to hitch into a swanky Connecticut town that wasn’t really hiker friendly, and we found the one bar that served burgers, so we had amazing bacon cheese burgers that day,” Schaffmyer said. Not only did the trip provide an amazing experience for Schaffmyer, it also gave her an improved insight on life. “I mean I quit my job; I told

photos from schaffmyer

everybody I was going to do this,” Schaffmyer said. “It helped me to not worry about things not in my control and to differentiate between things that I could and couldn’t control,” she said. Before hiking the Appalachian, Schaffmyer taught in Baltimore City as part of a program called Baltimore City Teaching Residency. She earned both her master’s degree and teaching license while teaching in schools. The program required her to teach in a city school for three years; however, she and several other participants made a pact to stay for five years. “We wanted to have a greater impact on schools there,” Schaffmyer said.


Senior reflects on test of willpower, endurance


meghan reinhardt, news editor ’m doing a half marathon in the fall,” my friend Lindsay White was telling me as we lounged at the pool on a hot summers day, but before I could tell her she’s crazy, she shocked me even more. “You should do it with me!” What? Me? Run a half marathon? At this point, my personal best “long run” mileage record was a whopping two miles. I was surprised and slightly complimented that Lindsay wanted me to complete this feat Senior Meghan reinhardt (center) and her friend with her. I was ready to shoot her down Lindsay White (left) run the final stretch of the gently, but she somehow coerced me into Baltimore Running Festival half marathon Oct going to the introductory meeting with her. 13, 2012. Sitting at the introductory meeting mophoto from reinhardt

tivated and scared me all at once. I looked around the room filled with a few 20someth ings, a lot of 30-somethings, and some people who looked like they were 40 or older. I figured if these people could run 13.1 miles, so could I. They all looked fit, but I thought since I was younger and played sports my whole life, I could train faster and easier than most of the people in the room. However, the training schedule was more than intimidating. I looked at the outline for the first two weeks and felt the soreness I’d be feeling after doing all this running. Eventually, Lindsay convinced me, and we were planned to run our first “long run” two weeks after the introductory meeting.

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We were supposed to run five miles, but we picked up the four mile route sheet and were on our way. Our four mile run quickly became a combination of a two mile walk and a two mile jog. We weren’t really sure how we were going to run 13.1 miles in 14 weeks. After our four mile “run,” Lindsay and I were sore, but still determined. As the weeks went on, Lindsay and I became more and more invested in our training. We bought new running shoes, new clothes and even one of those dorky water belts. It got easier, and we actually started looking forward to training. Some days, instead of cutting the mileage, we would add.

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club close-up : Junior Classical League Entertaining club reenacts ancient activities


sierra prior, staff writer hattering students line the walls, pressing into each other in the crowded hall. The mouth-watering aroma of chocolate wafts from the chocolate fountain in the corner, and students, clad in red shirts reading “Veni Vidi Ambulavi,” rush back and forth carrying trays of pretzels, Oreos, marshmallows and more. To top it off, there is a loud shrieking that is unmistakably Latin teacher Dawn Mitchell echoing from room 202. It’s Latin Club, also known as Junior Classical League, a club where Latin students meet once a month to take part in different Latin-based activities. This ranges from gladiator fights in the classic cafeteria to watching “The Hun-

ger Games” and eating pizza. “I took Latin last year and was in language clubs in middle school, but they weren’t as elaborate as this. The activities are so more than just learning Latin and I got hooked,” sophomore and club historian Marin Langlieb said. For Latin students, JCL provides a unique place to learn while still having fun. “People think of it as a dead language, but we make it alive with our activities,” president of JCL and senior Ashley Mistretta said. Sophomore Rachita Kansal cites gladiator fights as her favorite activity. “They line us up like a Roman army, and they have us fight one-on-one,” Kansal said.

Latin Club Meeting. Left to right: Latin club members and juniors Matt Cooper, Michael McClelland and Jake Carter and senior Kanta Mendon wander down the hall in search for clues for the scavenger hunt. The hunt was a part of JCL’s Cupid and Pysche meeting, which took place last quarter. photo by chloe messier

april 28, 2014

Latin teachers see speaking as integral

Another winner? Dining on the club’s version of garum (fish sauce) made with vanilla pudding and Swedish Fish instead of sea bass and wine. The club is busy preparing for the Maryland JCL State Convention at Easton High School on April 26 and 27. Approximately 40 students will attend the convention. Members plan to begin meeting every day to prepare. That job includes tuning up the club’s chariot, which two members will pull in the convention’s chariot race. Members are also preparing a scene from the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius made entirely out of candy and making a Roman standard, a decorative pole Romans used in battle. The convention itself will have art contests, costume contest and academic competitions for students from all over the state to participate in. Another perk Latin club members enjoy is membership in the National Latin Honors Society. Members in good standing at JCL (meaning they have accumulated a total of eight points over the years) are eligible for membership. But JCL’s not just all fun and games. According to club sponsor and Latin teacher Jason Slanga, JCL was originally founded to support Latin programs. “They found a while ago that enrollment in Latin was declining and they needed a way to generate interest in taking Latin and studying the classics. JCL was a way for students around the country at various levels (local, state, regional) to get together and celebrate studying the classics. It’s really a way to make studying Latin more fun.”

kelli goetz, staff writer n l i k e teachers in most Latin programs, here Latin teachers Jason Slanga and Dawn Mitchell see speaking Latin—something often seen as futile in the Latin teacher dawn Mitchell photo by jen siegel modern world— as necessary. Slanga sees it as a way to help students learn over the traditional grammar-translation approach. “It’s about speaking it as a way to learn more effectively.” Mitchell said the speaking component is what makes her class a foreign language class. She aims to activate the language for students and also help with reading and translating. “It changed everything for me,” Mitchell said. “It has fed my ability to read.” Mitchell said she must arm students with the tools to learn other languages by teaching them how to speak Latin. Both Slanga and Mitchell visit conferences where they learn better ways to teach and speak Latin including the Northeast Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, and Immersion, a program requiring participants to speak in only Latin for a week.

Staff writer Kelli Goetz contributed to this report.

photo by jen siegel

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How to soldier through stress-inducing test season

Pending Advanced Placement exams, HSAs and finals, the Griffin staff talked to students, alumni and faculty regarding stress relief, study methods and the importance of grit.

1. Try go-to stress relievers Junior laura hillard: Nutella, Yoga photo by kyra twohy

“We have SATs, APs and SAT IIs coming up. I am a nutella-holic at the moment. I’ve always been a chocolate lover and the late night snack originated when I started to stay up late studying in high school. I do yoga when I am stressed and need to meditate, especially when I am doing history. Usually history notes stress me out because they are very time consuming. I also do it when I am getting too tired to focus. I started taking yoga lessons freshman year. I started doing midnight yoga at the beginning of this year, but I have been spending more time doing it and doing it more often ever since I started going to yoga club on Fridays.”

sophomore emily shipley: smoothies

photo by kira stiers

2.Use methods that work for you

healthy energy. Shipley enjoys one of her dad’s homemade smoothies. photo by becca king

photo from tang (right)

In a 2013 study called “Improving Students’ Learning Techniques” (ISLT), researchers said they have proven that while students think techniques such as practice tests, flashcards and short student sessions are helpful, the sad reality is that these habits don’t do much to gain students test points. This puzzled sophomore Haneyah Johnson. “Well then, I disagree. Where did this come from?” she said. But, ISLT shows these habits are an advantage under limited conditions. They are only “for short term retention intervals” said an August article in The Washington Post. One junior here agrees. “Highlighting and underlining are useless. It just makes the page colorful. This isn’t art class,” Rhajni Gooden said.

Advanced Placement Teacher John Wagner

“Ultimately it is up to the student. Each student has to find a system and a method that works for them,” Wagner said. Wagner recommended reviewing material as you go. “That way you’re keeping the stuff fresh and you’re constantly dealing with it and you’re learning where you’re strong and weak so that when you get to a couple of days before the test, then you can focus on bolstering up where you’re weak.” He also recognized the effectiveness of working in small groups as long as you are able to stay on task.

“I’m a vegetarian, so it’s better for me to eat protein. I like to eat healthy, so instead of having waffles and syrup and unhealthy stuff, I like to use like, fruit or sometimes vegetables, like asparagus or spinach. It’s kind of weird, I know, but it helps get your protein and all. I just really like different types of super-foods. It fills you up and it helps me energize. When I eat well, I feel better. I think that eating well just makes you feel energized in general. If you eat McDonald’s, you’ll feel like crap. But if you eat a healthy, well balanced meal, you’ll feel better, and then you can work and do better.”

class of 2013 graduate lisa ann tang

Sophomore eva bacas I frequently: • Read everything over and over • Make little flash cards • Read them out loud obnoxiously to all of my family members.

For many it is that time of year to start getting couch-cozy with Barron. Lisa Ann Tang, class of 2013 graduate and recently named the female Maryland Advanced Placement Scholar of 2013, shares about her time and success here, where she took and earned fives on 16 AP exams. So how did Tang prepare? “No magic formulas or secrets,” Tang said, insisting that the best way to prepare for an AP exam is to work hard during the year, working efficiently and taking the time to understand the material. “It will be a lot easier come review time.” Tang said she used either Barron or Princeton review books for the majority of her classes,. “Don’t trust CliffNotes,” she said.

3. Get good at grit

Contributing Writers: Kalie Paranzino Becca King Maya Hoke Maya Lapinski Stephanie Rountree Anastasia Strouboulis

sophomore hojin yoon “I don’t think there’s any such thing as natural talent when it comes to things you haven’t learned yet. The hardest working people, or grittiest, I guess, are the ones that turn out to be the most successful.”

AP english teacher debbie hamilton

graphic by avalon bonlie

Hamilton noted the importance of grit when rewriting assignments and essays. • “Nobody likes to re-write, but it takes grit to go back and scrap the whole thing.” • “Sandpaper is rough. It has abrasive particles used to polish a surface. You need abrasion to smooth things out.” • “If everything was easy you wouldn’t learn how to re-write.” Find us at

AP social studies teacher phil bressler

“I think the research would point out that grit is more important than intelligence for success. “Now of course the best is to have a combination of natural intelligence that would develop into a gritty person. “Grit is important to success because it is the ability to be passionate about a subject for a long period of time. Most people who are great at things usually work hard at it and push themselves to the limit. You take a great athlete like LeBron James, he has a talent that is natural, but he has worked hard every year to push himself to be great.”

“Just get back on the treadmill” - Bressler

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