Volume 49 Issue 4
Freedom High School - 3149 Chester Avenue - Bethlehem, PA 18020 - www.FHSForum.com - @FHSForum
In this Issue Opinion—2
Rolling down the lanes with a strike Students have fun at the bowling alley By Bridget Hujsa Special Education Teacher
“Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.” - Special Olympics Oath Sixteen students attended the Special Olympics Bowling competition at Hampton Lanes on Thursday, Dec. 3. Freedom High School (FHS) was one of nine schools in attendance. Everyone enjoyed the Opening Ceremony, which included the Pledge of Allegiance, the National Anthem, and the Special Olympics Oath. All students bowled one game, had lunch with friends from Freedom and other schools, and then attended the awards ceremony. “I was happy to win. I was happy to see my girlfriend Lizzie,” said Luis Cordon, sophomore. Cordon won the award for highest scoring male with the
use of bumpers. “I was so happy to see my friends from Liberty High School. I was so happy to win the trophy for bowling. I like to bowl. It is my favorite game,” said Rosa Cerda, senior. Cerda won the award for highest scoring female without bumpers. The highlight of the event was the singing of the National Anthem by FHS senior Tim Moyer. He also won the award for the highest scoring male without bumpers. “What I like about Special Olympics was when I won my first place ribbon and trophy. My dad came to watch everybody, and he was proud of me,” said Moyer. If you are interested in volunteer opportunities with Special Olympics or our Freedom Family students, please contact Mrs. Hujsa in Room 203.
Freedom High School students have fun bowling at the Special Olympics on Dec. 3, 2015 at Hampton Lanes. In addition to having a great time, they were able to bring home several awards as well. (L-R; T-B): Group photo, Luis Cordon, group photo, group photo, Rosa Cerda. Tim Moyer. Photos: Mrs. Husja and Michelle Goosely
Is the value of education decreasing?
BASD changed graduation requirement for math and science By Tejpal Randhawa The Freedom Forum
In 2013, an article on US News said, “The U.S. ranked 21 out of 23 countries in math and 17 out of 19 countries in problem solving in the October study.” This ranking can only increase if students are well educated in math and science, a goal the Bethlehem Area School District (BASD) is not trying to achieve. Recently, the high school graduation requirements in the BASD have changed. Previously, students were required to have four credits in math and four credits in science, totaling eight combined credits in both subjects. Now, only seven combined credits in math and science are required to graduate. A student must have four credits in math and at least three credits in science or vice versa. This new change still follows the graduation requirements in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, which requires only three years of math and three years of science. Students are still required to
take biology their freshman year, but now have the option to take chemistry or physics their sophomore year. Both classes are recommended for students who wish to continue with math and science after high school, and chemistry is recommended for students who wish to obtain any type of college degree, regardless of their chosen field of study. Of course students who wish to pursue careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) or medicine are still encouraged to take four years of both subjects. The goal of this change is to allow students to have more flexibility with their schedule, and to have the ability to take more courses in their chosen career pathway. However, not all students know exactly what they want to do with their life and career after high school, and many students will most likely end up changing their field of study in college. “At Penn State, 80 percent of freshmen — even those who have declared a major — say they are uncertain about their
major, and half will change their minds after they declare, sometimes more than once,” says the New York Times in an article. Even though a senior in high school might say that they want to be a lawyer and therefore, do not need to take more math or science classes than the requirement,, they might end up changing their desired profession later in life and decide to be a scientist or an engineer. In college, they might regret not taking four years of math and four years of science in high school after changing their major in college. “I don’t necessarily think it’s [the new graduation requirements] a good idea because we certainly fall behind in our math skills versus other countries in the world, and taking away classes that hone those skills does not help our kids.” said Mrs. Laurie Sage, English teacher, Also, most colleges and universities have their own core courses that students need to take in order to graduate. Many of these core curriculum courses require at least one
year of math and one year of science, and most majors require some math or science courses as well. If a student does not get introduced to these courses in high school, they may not succeed in college. This new plan is very controversial, and has its critics and its advocates. Some teachers agree that important skills are being taken away from the students, while others believe that now students can focus on their chosen career pathway. “We all cry if Johnny can’t read, but it’s widely accepted if Johnny can’t add,” said Mr. Jay Kolb, math teacher. For students who know for certain that they will not pursue higher level math and science courses after high school and already know what they want to be when they are older, such as vocational technical (vo-tech) students, this new policy is helpful because they can focus on their chosen career pathway. “I think it’s [the new seven credit policy] a good idea be-
Screenshot: Tejpal Randhawa
cause it allows students to take coursework based on what they want to specialize in.” says Mrs. Amber Chiafulio, biology teacher. If four years of math and science are not required, why are four years of social studies still required? What about the students who have no interest in majoring in history, politics, or economics in college? The students who are interested in pursuing careers in the social sciences, business, or English now have more room in their schedule to take an extra history or government class, while students interested in math or science do not.
Valuing education over sports
By The Freedom Forum Staff
Walk into any restaurant in the area and there is a good chance that you will find one or more big-screen televisions tuned into different sporting events. In fact, many local venues advertise major sporting events that will be playing at the restaurant. This draws in diners and sport fanatics. Not only have sports been a major part of society of today, but in the past as well. Super Bowl Sunday is considered a staple holiday in many American homes. Although playing and watching sports may be very entertaining, it is very important to remember education is more valuable than sports.
In society, some see themselves as athletes before they see themselves as students. That being said, they place more of an emphasis on their athletic career than they do on school. This thinking is very dangerous because a lot can happen in a short period of time. If student athletes only worry about their athletic careers and put learning and education on the back burner, they do not have a fallback plan if a major injury occurs. For example, a recent Liberty High School graduate, K.J. Williams was touted as a fantastic football player. However, he was a lazy student--not
A publication of Freedom High School
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Editor-in-Chief Elyse Sanford
News Editor Cassie Sedler Editorials Editor Josh Christiansen Pates’ Post Editor Analisa Jeffries Entertainment Editor Kerilyn Kipp Center Spread Editor Gabriella Greenhoward Sports Editor Mitchell Coriell Chase Hoover Web Editor Gabriella Greenhoward Adviser Karla Erdman Principal Mr. Michael LaPorta Superintendent Dr. Joseph Roy For our editorial statement and correction policy, please go to www.fhsforum.com/about.html Any photo that is not directly credited is from Microsoft Office. Follow us on Twitter, send us an email, and visit our website! @fhsforum, #fhsforum firstname.lastname@example.org www.fhsforum.com
sional athletes who have come to this realization and attended prestigious colleges. For instance, Ryan Fitzpatrick, the Jets quarterback, received a degree in economics from Harvard University. Fitzpatrick is a great role model. He demonstrates that it is possible to love and play sports and balance a great education. It is important to find a balance, but hitting the books should always be the top priority. “I feel as though education is vital for success. One can’t depend on sports to get through life. You always need Strickland demonstrates the “balance” between education and a plan B,” said Hakeem sports. Photo: Gabriella Greenhoward Strickland, junior.
Boycotting the SAT’s
The Freedom Forum
Bethlehem Area School District
participating in class, forgoing assignments, and performing poorly on tests. In the end, Williams was unable to attend a major university because he was not well-rounded in both the classroom and on the football field. On the other hand, many athletes have set themselves up for maximum success by understanding the importance of always having a strong educational background. It is key to ensure that an athlete has something to fall back on. It is almost like an injury insurance, just in case players decide that sports are not for them. There are quite a few profes-
Exposé on College Board testing By: Joshua Christiansen Editorials Editor
Did you know that the $90 AP exam fee helps to pay for the million dollar salary of College Board’s CEO and upper management? Since 1900, the College Board has provided students with better access to higher education through college entrance exams, now known as the SATs, as well as other college preparation tests. These standardized tests have become the norm for highschoolers expecting to go to college, but is the College Board really what we think it is? The College Board is considered a non-profit organization. According to Investopedia. com, a non-profit organization is defined as “a business entity that is granted tax-exempt status by the Internal Revenue Service. Non-profit organizations must disclose a great deal of financial and operating information to the public, so that donors can ensure their contributions are used effectively.” That being said, it is interesting to note that upon quick research, one can obviously see that the College Board has not released a financial report or information on use of funds recently, or ever. When asked if they had any idea of where the funds go, students responded with skepticism. “I wonder if they release a report; a yearly thing that says how much goes to salary and how much is left? [If they did not,] I would say that that is sketchy,” said Sahitya Mandalapu, junior. Mandalapu is one of hun-
dreds of PSAT, SAT, and AP test takers at Freedom High School who shell out copious amounts of money in order to take these exams offered by the College Board for practice college entrance tests, college entrance tests, and college credit courses and exams. According to the College Board’s SAT Wikipedia page, the class of 2014 had 1.67 million test takers around the globe. If the average test costs around $55, and the test is taken at least once, then the starting total income for one year of SAT tests is nearly $92 million. If approximately half of those test takers took the SAT test another 1-2 times, one may add another $45 million to that grand total, give or take a few thousand dollars. From this quick math problem, one can assume that the College Board is making around $137 million per year, for just the SAT tests. Just imagine if the PSAT and AP exam costs were calculated and added up. The College Board just might be making over a billion dollars per year. So the reader might be asking, “If the College Board makes this much money per year, and it is a non-profit organization, where does the money go?” The corporation claims that it gives back to the students, as well as to pay for the cost of shipping, printing, making, proctoring and grading all of these different assessments. Unfortunately, the previously asked question cannot be answered, because as stated before, the organization has not released an open financial report to the public.
One very interesting fact about the College Board is that its current President and CEO, David Coleman, is paid a pretty hefty annual salary. He is also ranked as 43rd on Time Magazine’s Most Influential People in the Word list . “Mr. Coleman will earn a base of $550,000, with total compensation of nearly $750,000,” said a New York Times article by Tamar Lewin. The College Board has close to a dozen more administrators who are paid similar salaries. This clears up where at least a small majority of the organization’s revenue is placed. Why do students need the College Board? To take tests so that colleges can determine who they believe is fit to attend their college or university. If anyone knows anything about colleges and the application process, then they should know that most colleges require some sort of standardized exam score. “My dad called the Admissions to find out the criteria. He was told that the SAT score was looked at first, and if the SAT score doesn’t meet the minimum, then the application is basically thrown out,” said Elyse Sanford, senior. Sanford, like many students, is disappointed that SAT scores determine her college education and future as a student and individual. Some colleges see this disappointment and make submitting test scores as an option, with some universities even refusing for students to even submit their scores. According to an MTV news article, almost 200 top tier colleges no longer require SAT scores, which includes Hofstra University, Temple University,
and Gettysburg College. Additionally, New Hampshire University refuses to require SAT scores, causing the institution to be taken off U.S. News’ top colleges list. This only further demonstrates the hold that College Board has over the ranking of universities. Thus, a university is on a top college list only if it accepts standardized test scores, not if it truly is a top-ranked school. “I think that it’s not a good measure of what someone knows. It’s not a good measure of how good of a student you are. I think it measures how hard you are willing to work to get into college, because you learn so much in school that’s not applied to the test, so it’s not of your knowledge. It’s more of, taking that preparation class, that PSAT, like how hard you are willing to work, and the only reason you are working hard for SATs is to get a good score to get into college. It just measures your effort, if anything,” said Mandalapu. With colleges and universities moving away from the requirement of a standardized college preparation exam score, this leaves students confused as to whether or not they should fork out the money for the wide variety of College Board-offered tests.
Photo Illustration: Joshua Christiansen
Assessing the learning styles The pros and cons of projects and tests By Cassie Sedler News Editor
No matter what kind of classes you take, or the grade level in which you are in, every student has been there; frantically trying to study the night before the biggest test of the semester. About several hours, and a couple cups of coffee later, you think you have the material memorized, and are finally ready to ace this test. But what if, even after all that studying, you still don’t do well on the exam? It seems to be a common belief among teenagers especially that tests are the hardest
obstacle one must go through as a student. As a high schooler in particular, one is constantly bombarded with homework, papers, and quizzes. On top of it all, most students participate in sports, clubs, and/or hold a part-time job after school. Nevertheless, these are only some of the many burdens every student must carry as they struggle through their high school careers; there is just no way around it. Besides, essays, tests and projects make up the majority of assessments assigned by teachers. As a result, there seems to be a divide between
students who prefer written tests, and those who would much rather do a project instead. So, which one is more beneficial to the student? “Traditional exams with multiple choice questions and short answer problems have historically been used for content recall. Either you know the material or you don’t,” according to saberslate.org. Perhaps traditional, written tests are only aced by those with better memories, and those with more time on their hands. Acing a test is based primarily on mechanical memorization, and repetition of the material learned. However, by studying for a traditional test, considering a
student prepares several days in advance, instead of cramming the night before, the most important facts should stay in the student’s memory for much longer than just test day. According to edutopia.org, “Project learning, also known as project-based learning, is a dynamic approach to teaching in which students explore real -world problems and challenges, simultaneously developing cross-curriculum skills while working in small collaborative groups.” Many teachers include at least one project in the curriculum because it allows the student to have a deeper understanding of the topic, ra-
ther than just reading what the textbook tells them. Students also believe that projects are more beneficial than tests because they allow for more time to prepare. “I prefer projects because you can put more time and effort in them. Sometimes, teachers let you work in groups on project too,” said Mary Sampson, senior. In the end, both forms of learning are beneficial in different ways, and ultimately, it is up to your teacher which assessment works better for the particular course.
Christmas presents in the “Nick” of time Is waiting until the last minute to buy Christmas gifts a good idea? By Analisa Jeffries Pates’ Post Editor
Black Friday too crazy to go out and look for gifts? Forgot a few people on your Christmas list? Last minute shopping seems like a solution to this problem. Between Thanksgiving and Christmas, stores generally change their stock to holiday and winter themed items. Many people are also rushing to find the perfect gifts for loved ones. The earlier the Holiday gifts presents are purchased, the Photo: Analisa Jeffries higher chance there is to get the appropriate gift for the the problem of trying to find person. As the holidays near, the right one. the stores may have limited “I go shopping when I can, items, which creates and I never wait until the last
minute,” said Priyanka Patel, senior. There are some places open longer hours around the holidays to allow customers time to get anything they may need. Most stores are open on Christmas Eve, but only a few are open on Christmas day. “I have dreams that it is the day before Christmas, and I didn’t buy someone a gift. I get very anxious; my kids need lots of presents,” said Mrs. Lauren Ackerman, off-center ceramics teacher. Grocery stores and other convenience stores, especially gas stations, will be open for the holidays. So,
waiting until the last possible second for a gift could result in the best thing from a local grocery store. Another option to gift giving is ordering online. “I do most of my shopping online. I have Amazon Prime, so I get my stuff right away. However, sometimes the shipping is delayed around the holidays because of the volume of purchases,” said Mrs. Karla Erdman, English teacher. Online shopping seems like a good answer to easy shopping, but it is not the answer to last minute gifting. Holiday orders have the postal service crowded and backed up, everyone is trying to ship things
far away, to friends and family. So, even with a rush on the shipment, the package may be late. To bypass the entire shopping experience, you can make something. This can save time or money, and can be left for the very last second. Regardless of when you purchase or make your gifts, have fun doing it.
Dear Gabi By Gabriella Greenhoward Web Editor
Dear Gabi, The Christmas season has begun, and with Christmas comes Secret Santas. I have a group of friends who want to do a Secret Santa activity, and they invited me to join. Don’t get me wrong; I am all for Christmas and fun things to do with my friends. However, I don’t think I will be able to afford a gift that is up to
par. I talked to one of my friends and she said she’s buying her secret person a Sephora makeup kit with a Victoria Secret perfume set. That is really expensive stuff and way out of my price range. I have a little bit of money saved up from my summer job, but it’s not a lot. I’ve also heard my parents talking about it, and I know that they’ve been saving money wherever they can, so that they can put something under the tree for my siblings and I. I don’t want to feel left out because all my friends are participating. But, I’m really embarrassed to tell them that money is tight in my house. I am not worried that they will make fun of me, I just do not want them to start feeling bad for me. I want to be treated
just the way everyone else is. What should I do? Sincerely, All I want for Christmas is... Dear All I want for Christmas is, I completely understand how you could be totally confused about what to do in the gift giving situation. But I have some great news! There are plenty of ways to approach this situation in a helpful way. To begin with, maybe you can suggest that as a group, you set a price limit. You can explain that setting a limit will ensure that nobody feels obligated to spend a lot of money. In the end, it is the thought of the gift that really counts. That will also allow you to choose a price in which everyone is comforta-
ble. Another way to purchase gifts within a budget is to visit a local thrift shop or Goodwill store. I know some places may have a bad reputation, especially for high schoolers. However, if you go in and really look around, you may find some really good deals. If the clothes are not in tiptop shape, maybe you can take a look at the jewelry. A lot of places have nice, inexpensive jewelry in good condition. Many people donate just because they have too much, or they think someone can use it more than they can. Lastly, I have a really good suggestion that you can totally pull off with $5 to $10 dollars. You can visit a Dollar Tree Store in your area. Believe it or not, you can really stretch your money into
something really good there. My thought is that you can make a Christmas goody bag. You can buy a small Christmas style bag ($1) and fill it with a Christmas mug ($1), a bag of mini fun-sized candies ($1), a bottle of nail polish ($1), some Christmas cookies ($1), and maybe even some hot chocolate mix ($1). Total $6, and it is a wonderful gift; One that I would love to receive from one of my friends. This is definitely a great way to be able to participate and give someone in your group a cute and creative gift. Merry Christmas, and good luck finding the right gift. I hope these ideas help! Happy Holidays,
Myth: By getting the flu shot, you put yourself at risk to actually catch the flu virus. Fact: The vaccine is made from a virus that cannot transmit infection.
Myth: The flu is just a worse version of your normal cold. Fact: This is FALSE because it is actually a very serious virus that takes the life of 36,000 people per year in the United States.
Hot liquids are always a plus to soothe a sore throat.
Myth: Y ou can get the flu by going out in the cold with wet hair or not putting on a jacket on a frosty day.
The inside scoop on E. Coli: E. Coli is the bacteria found in foods, nature, and intestines of people and animals. While some kinds are harmless, others may cause diarrhea, urinary tract infections, pneumonia, and other illnesses. According to CNN, the popular Mexican style restaurant Chipotle has been up against 35 E. Coli cases. The outbreaks have occurred in Washington and Oregon, and there have been traces of it in New York, Ohio, California, and Minnesota. All and all, there is a grand total of 17 restaurants that have been affected. This has created a chain reaction for the worst, as several restaurants have been forced to shut down. A common cause of E. Coli comes from getting a small amount of human or animal feces in the mouth, which is something that happens a lot more than people think. “You are what you eat”
Fact: In order to contract the flu, you have to be exposed to the virus.
Myth: If you are healthy, then you are completely safe from the flu, so
In November 2015, famous actor Charlie Sheen came out and announced that he was HIV positive. It took him a while, and he spent quite a few million dollars trying to keep it a secret. Major news stations announced the situation, but at first did not release a name. That definitely built up the suspense of the situation and caused more and more people to follow the story. Since the world found out about Sheen’s diagnosis, it has attracted a lot of attention about the disease. Human Immunodeficiency Virus or HIV is a virus that attacks the immune system. Someone who has HIV has a harder time fighting illnesses than the average person. In addition, it is a sexually transmitted disease (STD) which means that one can only contract it from sexual intercourse. This means that nobody can catch it from saliva, sweat, or urine. Washing your hands is a key part of preventing germs from entering your body.
Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome or AIDS is caused from HIV. It is the highest level, and
1. Do not stop washing your hands. Try and stop by a sink as much as possible throughout the day to minimize the amount of germs on your hands. Another good idea, if you don not have constant access to a bathroom, would be to carry around a mini hand sanitizer. 2. Use a disinfectant wipe or spray to clean off the area where you work, do your homework, or touch frequently. This is another way to get rid of some germs. 3. Get some exercise. It helps to strengthen your immune system, which will fight harder to get rid of any viruses. 4. Try to keep your hands away from and out of your mouth. No matter how clean you keep them, you are constantly touching germ-covered objects. You may wash your hands, but when it’ is time to leave the bathroom, you touch the filthy door handle. 5. Consider using a humidifier because it adds moisture to the air. Since the flu virus can stay in the air longer when it is dry, the humidifier can be a huge help. All Center spread photos: Gabriella Greenhoward
Sanitizing products that will help prevent you from getting sick.
There are many eating disorders that high school students should be aware of. This is a matter that should be taken very seriously because of the detrimental effects that victims may face. Below are some important facts from the National Eating Disorders website.
A potentially life-threatening eating disorder that comes from self-starvation and extensive weight loss.
A potentially life-threatening eating disorder that comes from a cycle involving bingeing and self-induced vomiting to undo the effects of the consumed food.
A potentially life-threatening eating disorder in which one eats an unhealthy amount of food and sometimes purges afterwards to get rid of the calories.
Warning Signs include:
Warning Signs include:
Warning Signs include: Preoccupation with weight, food, calories, grams of fat, and dieting Denial of hunger Consistent excuses to avoid mealtimes
Hailey Stuppino, junior, poses with the unique heart shaped birth mark on her cheek.
Unusual swelling of the cheeks or jaw area
Eating large amounts of food without any hunger
Evidence of extreme overeating, such as excessive amounts of food disappearing
Eating alone because of embarrassment about portion sizes
Frequent, unexplainable trips to the bathroom directly after meals
Eating more rapidly than normal
Each person is made differently, and there is not one mold for all people. Everyone comes in different heights, shapes, and colors. There is not one body type that is just right. Therefore, nobody should strive for the stereotypical idea of the “perfect body” because it is just that: a stereotype. You do not have to have the biggest biceps or the most toned abs. You do not have to have the flattest stomach and a perfectly shaped “hourglass figure”. These are complete misconceptions about how each individual’s body should look. There is nothing wrong with being on the thicker side. There is nothing wrong with being really tall or really short. People of all ages should look in the mirror and embrace everything about themselves. Love every curve. Love every inch. Love every freckle and birthmark. These are the little things that make a big difference in setting you apart from everyone else. It makes you unique. It makes you YOU. These are the things that make you an individual, and that is what is really important. You were not made to look like the bikini model in the magazine or the super-buff athlete on ESPN. You were made simply to be you. Find beauty in every part of yourself.
This circle of different colored hands represents the unification of people who embrace their ethnicities.
Keep a top-ten list of things you like about yourself. Be sure to include some things that are not related to your weight or what you look like. Read your list often. Add to it as you become aware about more things you like about yourself.
[Information courtesy of National Eating
If you or someone you know show signs of any of these disorders call the Confidential National Eating Disorder Hotline at: 1-800-931-2237
6 Pates’ Post The Forum Upcoming Upcoming With great powder comes great Events: “I’m in Meet Emily Dziak, Student of the Month
Holiday Pops Concert
12/24 - 1/4 Christmas Break
Maya White News Editor
Ever met a nationally ranked athlete? Look no further than Emily Dziak. Dziak, a junior at Freedom High School, has a passion for snowboarding. She has been competing in a variety of races and competitions around the United States since she was in her early teenage years. She credits her father for first introducing her to the sport. “My dad was a really good snowboarder in Europe, he did the Euro Cup, so he’s been snowboarding since he was really young. Ever since I was three and there was a snowboard small enough for me, he started me on snowboarding,” said Dziak. Her enthusiasm and love for the winter sport is abundantly clear.
As most know, to be good at something requires not only skill, but the determination to work hard and improve. And for Dziak, hard work pays off. “I’m fourth in the nation. I got fourth in nationals last year, but I wasn’t really happy with that. I’ve been to nationals four times already, and the first year I got tenth, the second I got fifth, I got fifth the third year again, and then last year I got fourth,” said Dziak. As it goes with any other sport, there are levels of competition, held nationally as well as internationally. The Euro Cup and World Cup are examples of international competitions. Dziak, who’s been racing since she was around twelve, also has experience with some of these high-level races. Last month, she even traveled as far as Colorado to compete.
World Cup races, so that’s a lot more competitive. I went last month, and I had to race a lot of people from around the world. There were Dziak snowboarding Photo Submitted by: Emily Dziak like three girls who won the Olympics com- Dziak competes at a junior peting,” said Dziak. level. The next step up from She placed eighteenth in that Junior World Cup races are the race, something she insisted Junior World Cup Championshe could have improved upon ships, where she hopes to if the second of her two al- compete this April. lowed runs was better. After attending these, DziaThis focus is what k’s next hope is to qualify for may catapult her again to the the Olympics. national, and eventually glob“I like being good. If I lose, al, spotlight. or when I don’t do well, or if At the age of twenty two, ath- the other girls in my age group letes are considered adults and beat me, then I get really mad are eligible to compete in the at myself. So I guess I like World Cup. winning,” said Dziak, with a Because she is under this age, laugh.
Thanking the community FHS holds community service projects to benefit the community By Elyse Sanford Editor-in-Chief
1/21 and 1/22 Final Exams
1/25 Final Exam Make-Up Day
Thanksgiving is not the only time for showing thanks; Christmas is too. This year, Freedom High School (FHS) took on several community service projects to help out those in need around the Lehigh Valley right before the Christmas season. One service project that is happening at FHS is the CHEMO (caring, helping, encouraging, and motivating others) Bags. CHEMO Bags are small gift bags that are filled with items, such as pens, pencils, candy, Christmas ornaments, and notebooks that go to chemotherapy patients around the Lehigh Valley. “This is such a great opportunity, so I’m asking my students to participate as well through The Freedom Forum. It will be one of our community outreach events,” said Mrs. Karla Erdman, adviser of the
Freedom Forum. The CHEMO Bag was created by Leah Walia and her daughter Michelle. Walia was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012 and had to undergo chemotherapy several times during her treatment. Today, she is a breast cancer survivor and wants to help and give back to the people that are in the same situation as she was once in. This drive is going on until Dec. 21 and items can be dropped off in the mailroom or room 210. Another drive that was going on in FHS was the canned food drive, which was being held by the International Leadership Club. In classes, students were encouraged to bring in canned food items. The drive went from the beginning of Nov. to Dec. 4. All of the cans being donated are going to the ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) Department in the
Elves of Bethlehem
Bethlehem Area School District and 22 families will be selected to receive the canned goods as part of the Angells to Adorn program. In addition, the children of the families will also receive toys. Mrs. Karen Lynn, the adviser of the International Leadership Club, has been part of the program each year and decided that having members of the International Leadership Club would be a good fit to sponsor the can drive. At the end of the drive, a total of 1,921 non-perishable food items were donated. The typical No Shave November grew into No Shave December to help raise awareness for pediatric cancer. The fundraiser went on for two weeks and all of the proceeds will go to the Pediatric Cancer Foundation of the Lehigh Valley in the name of Mackenzie Cleffi, the daughter of Mr. Cleffi. Mackenzie Cleffi, who is
FHS is building the
By Tejpal Randhawa The Freedom Forum
By Linda Mao The Freedom Forum
To read more, scan the QR Code or visit fhsforum.com
Photo: Elyse Sanford
currently two years old, was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia in July. Mr. Joe Guido, Mr. Joe Stellato, Mr. Bill Safranek, Mr. Mike DiBilio, Mr. Jon Ayre, Mr. Eric Hatch, Mr. Eric Baltz, Mr. Mike O'Connell, and Mr. Mike Cleffi all participated in No Shave December. Each staff member had a can with their picture on it and the staff that had the most donations collected won a special gift package. At the end of the fundraiser, Mr. Cleffi was the winner and it raised over $300 in donations.
Robots take over FHS
Brace your elves, the Elves are coming!
On Dec. 17, the Elves of Bethlehem will be making their third annual visit to children across the Lehigh Valley. This wonderful organization was founded by Eileen Seitz and Kerry Hathaway when they were in their freshman year of college.
Some of you may have heard of the Robotics Team on the morning announcements or through its members’ fundraising attempts. But what exactly is it? To read more, scan the QR Code or visit fhsforum.com
Photo Submitted by: Sarrah Hussain
Best deals for winter accessories The stores where you can shop for great deals and steals By Hayley Guzzo The Freedom Forum
During the holiday season, it is easy to find quality items for amazing prices. However, not everyone is into going out in all of that holiday chaos. so a lot of the shoppers will wait for it to die down. One of the best times to shop for the new trends in fashion is after the Christmas season, where stores will mark down their prices so they can empty their shelves. Online shopping is getting more and more popular. If you are into fashionable styles in clothing and accessories for a good deal all year round, one of the best places to shop is Forever 21. They will al-
ways have a special deal going on either in store or online. Almost always if you spend $50 or more online you will qualify for free shipping. Every once in awhile, if you spend $21 or more, you might receive free shipping. Forever 21 has great quality outfits for casual or fancy settings that start at just $5. Another upside is that most of these deals last all year long, not just during the holidays. So if you are looking for amazing clothes or cute accessories for unbelievable deals, Forever 21 is definitely a great place to shop. Another great store to shop at that has great styles and hot deals is Target. Target clothing is not for everyone, how-
ever they have great deals that you just can not find anywhere else. At Target, you can get the cutest jackets and blazers for under $30, which is usually a pretty reasonable deal. Many other stores, like Target, might have a code that you can put in online that can give you an extra 10 to 20 percent off your entire order. If you are looking for great deals on new shoes for the colder weather, there are two stores that you can not go wrong with. Famous Footwear is one of them. Famous Footwear is not the cheapest shoe store around, but they are pretty reasonable for all the quality shoe brands they carry. You
Screenshot: Hayley Guzzo
can get some of the most popular shoe brands like Vans, Converse, Steve Madden, and Nike. Another shoe store that has amazing deals all year round is Payless. The name basically says it all. Payless has some of the best deals around on shoes. They may not carry the most popular brands in shoes, but they have great deals on great styles. This is a great store to shop for shoes if you are not interested in spending a ton of money.
One huge thing that both Famous Footwear and Payless have in common is that when you buy one pair of shoes, you can almost always get the other pair for half the price. These are just some of many stores that have amazing deals for the hottest styles in fashion. They are proof that you do not always need to search long and hard for the best prices. Sometimes they are right in front of you.
Activities to do this winter Thoughts on how to spend your time during the winter By Keila Lopez The Freedom Forum
Yes, the most wonderful time of the year has arrived ladies & gentleman. While the weather outside is not frightful yet, it is still a good idea to plan ahead. Although it might be cold outside, the weather does not stop some people from going outside. People will get their gloves, heaviest jacket, and dig out their sled to go sledding in the brisk winter weather. It never hurts to go out and prance around in the snow to release your inner child.
their hot chocolate, and be lazy for a minute or two. If you are a hardworking student, and you remember that break is coming up, you know finals are also impending. Being “lazy” is just not in your vocabulary, and you would prefer to bust out some math or read a book than do nothing. Just remember, Skaters at Rockefeller Center in New York City it is important to have fun. Photo: Karla Erdman In addition, it does not hurt to spend some time Winter is about going out activity. with your family and friends. and playing in the snow. On the other hand, some Christmas is about happiness Making snowmen, snow an- people stay home, try to find and spreading joy, so getting gels, and forts is always a fun the comfiest spot to sit with gifts ahead of time is an im-
New Year’s Eve Ideas for what to do on New Year’s Eve By Kyah Smith Journalism Student
portant factor in a good winter season. You do not want to be the one to forgot a gift for your loved one. Getting gift shopping out of the way and enjoying yourself during the rest of the break is always much better. Family time spent wrapping gifts and decorating is a fun way to be together. Also, baking goodies or just relaxing and watching a good Christmas movie makes for the perfect afternoon or evening. “The Polar Express,” “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” or “Frosty the Snowman,” are family Christmas classics. Just remember to make the best of winter, since it only comes around once a year.
Snow day recipes Easy-to-make recipes By Ava Markle Journalism Student
Sure, New Year’s Eve is busy in New York City, but it can be just as busy in Bethlehem as well. Bethlehem offers a wide variety of ways to celebrate the new year of 2016. Bethlehem is the perfect place for celebrating, because there are informal and more relaxed events, but also high energy and extravagant events.
When the roads become icy and the snow begins piling up, that means it is time to put on your coziest sweater and indulge in these delicious recipes for the laziest of snow days. You can make your own mouth-watering peppermint hot chocolate and puppy chow for a sugary treat while you are stuck inside. These recipes are perfect for the cold snowy days that winter will be sure to bring.
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To read more, scan the QR Code or visit fhsforum.com Peep drop at Steel Stacks Photo: Creative Commons, Flickr
Peppermint hot chocolate Photo: Ava Markle
I only love one Athletes who cut down to one sport By Roland Cash The Freedom Forum
In today’s society people can maintain two things at a time, like two AP classes, school and a job, or school and sports. Some students only want to focus on one thing. These three studentathletes have been playing two sports since their freshmen year and decided to stop when they became upperclassmen. They did it for the love of the sport, to stay focused in school, or just because they just wanted to do one sport. Juwan Northington, a senior, has been playing football and
running track for Freedom since his freshmen year. He had to give football a break so he could pursue his love for track and work on his ability to get better. Anything can happen on the football field and Northington did not want to take that risk by getting injured before his senior season for track and field. “I made the best decision by taking a break from football and following my dream,” said Northington. Morgan Weaver, a junior, was on the soccer team for two years and decided to run for cross country. Even though Weaver does two sim-
ilar sports, cross country and track, she is doing cross country to accelerate in track and field in the spring. Weaver feels by making this decision to run for only one sport, it is going to make her a better athlete and bring a huge impact for the upcoming track season. “I am happy for the choice I made. Now I am ready and focused for the track season,” said Weaver. Drew Spearko, a senior, is different from the other two athletes because he took a break in the fall to wrestle in the winter. He did not have an actual reason for why he stopped playing soccer in the fall. He wanted to focus more
on wrestling. So over the fall, Spearko did not sit around or relax, he was weight lifting and practicing on his moves, so he can be an elite wrestler. Since he is a senior, the only thing on his mind was school and wrestling. Juwan Northington and Morgan Weaver, “I made a good single sport athletes. Photo: Roland Cash decision by only sticking to wrestling because I had more free time in the fall,” Lots of athletes try to juggle said Spearko. many activities at once, so It is okay to stop doing one maybe doing one thing at a sport to achieve in another or time is always a stress relievmaybe just to take a break. er.
Does “where” matter They say individuals should only like a team if they live in the state they play in. This is not true because there are many fans that like a team for many reasons such as, a family member likes that team, maybe they once lived there, went to college there or someone they know did. However, there are many bandwagons in sports. Living in Pennsylvania, the football team people should root for is the Eagles, however that is not true in some cases. The NFL (National Football League) is the league where most people are fans because of where they live, not because of how good they are. They feel a sense of pride. Although, others may have even been born into it. Unlike college sports, if you ask fans in a state about their favorite professional teams, most of them will say the team that is in their state. However, if your team is not doing so well, they might be a hidden fan, so they will stay a fan but not be a diehard until they start to win again. Even
the “diehard” Philly fans are starting to push away from the 76ers and Phillies because of their performance, but if they begin to win more, people will route them on more. “Being in Pennsylvania and being close to Philadelphia, I feel I should root and represent for the team that is in the State I live in.” said Noah Long, sophomore. People are Lehigh and Pittsburgh fans because they are both in Pennsylvania. There are many Penn. State, Temple, and Villanova fans that have this similar reasoning. College sports have indeed the biggest bandwagon population in the country, but also have people who may not live in the state of the college they like, but are true fans of the college. People may have many reasons why they like a school. For example, Roland Cash, senior, grew up watching Ohio State because his family watched when he was a kid and this is another legitimate reason for being a fan.
Photo: Creative Commons, Flickr
By Kevin McNulty Journalism Student
Keystone Testing Schedule