Galleon Issue 3

Page 1

In This Issue: News 1, 3 Op/Ed 6, 7 Features 8, 9 Feature Focus 10, 11 Arts & Entertainment 12, 13 Student Life 14, 15 Sports 17, 18, 20

The Galleon •

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• • Dogs With Jobs: River’s New Crime Stopping Canines School police forces implement K-9 forces to mitigate drug activity

Catherine Vianale News Editor To prevent the distribution of illegal drugs at Spanish River, the school police force has implemented a new tactic- investigative sniffer dogs. Certain members of the school police force have undertaken specialized training to handle these service dogs, and the process of searching has already begun on c a m pus.

Officer Don Thrasher further explained the nature of this new security measure. “Our school force is using t h r e e dogs throughout the school year for sporadic checks of camp u s a c t i v ity,” Thrasher said. “Checks will not be carried out on a routine basis, but random inspections of lockers, locker rooms, hallways, and the park-

Art by michela mugnatto

ing lots are being carried out.” The three dogs that will be monitoring River will mainly be patrolling the student parking lots for drugs and paraphernalia in student vehicles. Parking lots are the main target of the officers with sniffer dogs, but these dogs may be coming soon to a classroom near you. “We generally will not warn a teacher about a classroom check if we have probable cause to search a student,” Thrasher added. “It is rare that dogs will be brought into a class, but we are trying to eliminate as many drug related threats as we can, and classroom checks occasionally become necessary to do so.” Questions surrounding this new program have

been raised by students and teachers alike, regarding the frequency of searches, the safety of dogs working in a busy school setting, and whether this is an excessive measure in keeping student crime in check. “It is a safe and preventative step in ensuring that no drugs are brought into school. If you don’t have anything to hide, then you shouldn’t be nervous,” said junior Lucas Bassoli, who approves of this new security initiative. Some teachers have raised their concerns about dogs entering their classrooms while class is in session. Students are not permitted to pet or distract the animals while these dogs are on duty, and some teachers worry that students will disregard

this important rule. From an early age, these special dogs are trained to develop sensitivity to substances cops wish to pursue, but this arduous life of service allows them to only be used for seven years before they must be retired. The school police used sniffer dogs three years ago at River but discontinued using them as the dogs had to be retired due to old age and decline in investigation abilities. River’s newest staff members may be seen around campus at any time of the day, and are here to ensure protection and peace as the school year goes on.

Image Courtesy of Google Images

DECA “whites out” bullying

Students campaign against bullying with a wide range of events and outreach activities bullying was the perfect choice. Kelsey Spyker “Ashley, Sami, and I came News Editor up with the idea of having a white out day so not only DECA but the whole school The common school would be involved and with supply, Wite Out, is often the help of our awesome used by students to obliterate DECA teachers we began a mistake on a homework to put the idea together,” assignment or “white out” Cardoso said. something negative. The The school-wide event color white symbolizes was held on November purity and positivity, so 26th and all students were when sophomores Ashley encouraged to wear white Clements, Sofia Cardoso, in recognition of “whiting and Sami Greenfield chose out bullying.” Mr. Latson to focus on bullying for their unveiled a poster sticker that DECA book which is in the was printed with donations public relations category, the by PE teacher Susan Donner, theme of “white out” against the PTSA, and Office Depot.

The poster sticker displays a shark crossing off the word “Bullying” in the phrase “White Out Bullying” while grasping the top of a Wite Out bottle. Copies of the poster stickers were placed in the Main Office and every River classroom. “The poster sticker will hopefully serve as a constant reminder to not be a bully and if you are being bullied the sticker poster has the bullying hotline that you should call,” DECA advisor Deb Carter said. The Bullying Hotline, 561-241-2225, is available for students who feel they are

Clements, Greenfield, and Cardoso, who organized the event, hold up sticker poster with bullying hotline.

Mr. Markwardt, supporting the White Out event, reminds students to be S.H.A.R.K.S.

being bullied or harassed. It is a safe haven for students to receive help from a trusted adult. “We want kids to recognize that bullying is still very prevalent in school and we don’t always have the speakers and awareness assemblies that we had in elementary and middle school,” Greenfield said. “Our goal is to have every shark at Spanish River to be against bullying.” According to, over 3.2 million students are victims of bullying each year and in grades Kindergarten through 12th, one in seven students

are either bullies or bullied. “Almost everyone knows someone or of someone who was or is currently being bullied and that’s honestly just ridiculous. The fact that kids feel the need to be mean, rude and just disgusting to each other is just wrong,” Greenfield said. “We, as a group, wanted people to realize what they are doing and stop their actions.” “It is a great way to take a stand against bullying and engage in school spirit,” junior DECA member Marlee Speizman said. The event brought awareness to bullying and showed River’s intent to bring a stop to a situation that affects students worldwide. “The event went great. Many students were in white, and participated in taking pictures,” Clements said. “Overall the event was a success.”

Art By Michela Mugnatto Photos Courtesy Sami Greenfield


December 2013 The Galleon


HAPPY HOLIDAYS! It is officially Spanish River’s second favorite time of the year (behind Carnival Lunch, of course): winter. With winter comes Starbucks coffee, cold weather, and Ugg boots. We are positive that you were looking forward to a new Galleon issue to add to that list. By coincidence, it is that time again. Do you know some of “River’s famous substitutes”? Check FEATURES on pg. 8. Have you ever cheated on a test? 83% of your peers have. Check FEATURE FOCUS on pgs. 10-11 for the details. Shark’s Varsity Basketball has been dominating the court. Check SPORTS on pg. 17 for a full recap. Happy Reading! Josh, Ashley, Kelsey, and Lindsay The Editorial Board

W INT ER BREAK! Graduation Date- May 20 Cold Weather

EOC Testing Cold Classrooms EXAM WEEK Image Courtesy of Google Images

Letter to the Editor Dear Editor, T his was probably one of the best issues I have read here at River. In this issue, you guys had articles that appealed to all people and that is what made it fantastic! I hope your next edition can top this one. I will be waiting for it! -Emma Dinnerstein, 10


December 2013 The Galleon

During the week of December 2-6, PTSA and the American Heart Association sponsored an awareness week to promote heart health. Events included jump roping and CPR training. Students received an hour of community service for participating.

Juniors Josh Markevich and Alex Gottlieb jump rope in the courtyard to promote cardiovascular fitness.

River biology teacher Corrine Jobe joins the fun for fitness awareness.

Junior Ian Tygar practices CPR techniques on the “CPR Annie” doll.

Students and Dance Team members bust moves to Zumba in the courtyard.

The average smoker spends over $700 a year on cigarettes.

Every 33 seconds someone in the United States dies of heart disease.

Heart Disease Awareness Week


Facts Courtesy PTSA

by michela mugnatto Cardiovascular disease is the #1 cause of death of men and women in the United States. art Photos by carly mackler

Meet Ms. Yoder, New Tech Specialist

Martha Combs, New Suite A Secretary

Rachel Horn Staff Reporter from the Rochester Institute of Technology. She is proficient in both PC and Mac computers, however she believes that Mac computers are better for movies and graphics. Not only did her two daughters attend River, but she helped start the PTSA and was the President and Treasurer for many years. “River is a great place and I am happy to be here,” Yoder said.

Spanish River students welcome our new Computer Technology Specialist, Ms. Patricia Yoder. Yoder has lived in Boca Raton for 33 years. She previously worked at Calusa Elementary School for 6 and 1/2 years. She is currently working at River due to a promotion, a great job opportunity, and right timing. Yoder has a Bachelors Science Degree in Computer Science

Amanda Paige Staff Reporter ranz left, River welcomes new Student Services Secretary Martha Combs. Combs joined River after being secretary at Don Estridge Middle School. She enjoys being with a different age group of students for a change. She appreciates everyone for being so kind and welcoming thus far. “The students and staff have all been very nice,” Combs said.

Although second quarter is coming to an end, Spanish River is frequently adding new policies. In early November, River said goodbye to a beloved secretary and welcomed a new one. Student Services Secretary Peggy Moranz decided to take a position at Score At The Top and many people will miss seeing her daily. Even though Mo-

Photos By Carly Mackler

The Galleon 2013-2014 Josh Benrubi Kelsey Spyker Ashley Roth Lindsay Mangines Catherine Vianale Kelsey Spyker

Gianna Doxey Ashley Roth Lauren Villanueva Tedi Raphael Lindsay Mangines

Eliana Landow Alexis Dlugos Shawn Zylberberg Jeremy Freiman Michela Mugnatto Eliana Landow

Carly Mackler Rachel Horn

Michael Benrubi Amanda Paige Sarah Grubman Jack Altman

Alexis Taylor

Suzanne Sanders

Jack Altman

William Latson

The Galleon is a public forum. The Galleon is a member of the Quill and Scroll Honorary Society for High School Journalists, the Columbia Scholastic Press Association, Florida Scholastic Press Association, and the the National Scholastic Press Association.


December 2013 The Galleon

Advertisements The Rotary Club of Boca Raton and The City of Boca Raton present The Eleventh Annual

at The Mizner Park Amphitheater on March 16, 2014 The Rotary Club of Boca Raton’s Future Stars Performing Arts Competition is one of South Florida’s premier competitions for middle school and high school vocalists and dancers. Applications are now being accepted for the January 25, 2014 audition, from which the Future Stars finalists will be selected. Winners will be selected from among the finalists at The Future Stars Performing Arts Competition, hosted by the City of Boca Raton at the Mizner Park Amphitheater on March 16, 2014. Prizes include unique performing opportunities and recognition awards. All participants become eligible to apply for The Rotary Club of Boca Raton’s annual Performing Arts college scholarship. Audition applications must be postmarked NO LATER than January 16, 2014. For competition information, applications, sponsorship information and updates, visit us at Facebook/Future Stars Performing Arts Competition or email The Rotary Club of Boca Raton at

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FA C E - O F F

December 2013 The Galleon


WHEN HOURS OF HOMEWORK IS NEAR, YOU KNOW THAT WINTER BREAK IS HERE. As winter break approaches, the assignments begin to pile up. Teachers view homework as an opportunity to learn, while students view it as a punishment.

Anonymous Teacher It’s Not a Break Without Homework It seems students want to get into the great colleges and get the scholarships, but many do not want to do the required work. Every week we have some sort of altered schedule or students out for an excused absence. In order to complete the required materials for success and be prepared to compete against other students, it is necessary to assign long term projects that fall over break. If a student has ten days off, being required to complete an assignment that takes a few hours is not too much to ask. Many students have little to no sense of accountability and think life owes them something. Guess what? Success requires work. Stop complaining and get to work!

Gia Doxey Senior Who Needs a Break Thanksgiving Beak. Winter Break. Spring Break. The key word here is “break,” and there is simply no reason why assignments should hang over our heads during these well-deserved times of peace and relaxation. Some argue these assignments are “grade-boosters,” and some may tell you the real world will always throw work your way, but I say they’re cruel and unusual punishment for all: no student wants to complete them, and certainly no teacher wants more to grade. These designated vacations are here for a reason. The world isn’t meant for a constant stream of work; we all need balance, and like my good friend Wiz Khalifa says, “Work hard, play hard.” School is a full-time job for teachers and students where we all work 110% to make the grade. So wouldn’t it be nice to have a few days of serenity without reading textbook pages or writing research papers? Come on, teachers! Give us a break, and give yourselves a break too!

Super splash winter CONCERT

Presented by Spanish River Arts Department Photos courtesy of gia doxey Images courtesy of Google Images


O p / E D

December 2013 The Galleon

THINGS JOSH WISHES HE WOULD'VE DONE BEFORE SECOND SEMESTER SENIOR YEAR Josh Benrubi Editor-in-Chief I can officially say that there is one week left of my high school career. “How is that possible when you aren’t graduating until May?” Fine. Physically, I will still be attending school (almost) every day. Against my will, however, I will be mentally checked out. Second semester seniors are faced with the singular daunting task that they must accomplish- being a student. With all this said, I thought it would be a great idea to compile a list (in no specific order) of the top things I wish I could’ve done before I well, checked out. Lets get it started:

-With grape juice and lemonade, of course. I wish I would’ve used a bathroom that was not in the Biotech Building. -Only one I am shaky about. I wish I would’ve went to the beach before an LTM. -Way Beyond Bagels along with the beach sounds like an all-star lineup.

I wish I would’ve went swimming in the pool on the second floor of our school. -Freshman probably heard about the new water slide in August. I wish I would’ve been able to grow a lot of facial hair. -”No-Shave November” for everyone else was pretty much “No-Shave 18 Years” for me.

I wish I would’ve gotten a C-C split.

I wish I would’ve played some sort of varsity sport.

-Not showing up for an exam or Christmas-treeing it would be a relief.

-It is natural selection. I stick to playing with the friends.

I wish I would’ve seen -It would be nice for one period to another student parking lot avoid sitting in a desk in a room that flood. has subartctic temperatures. -Watching the Spanish River BMW’s I wish I would’ve tailgated and Camaros get completely filled for a varsity football game. with water was a highlight of last year.

This list does not have the infamous “check-off boxes” for a reason. I am not advocating you to get a C-C split, swim in the nonexistent pool on top of our school, or to go to the bathroom in the 8000 building. However, I felt that it was important to share the things I

I wish I would’ve taken a basketball class.

missed out on- because from now until May I will not have the chance to be a part of them.

Art by michela mugnatto



Kelsey’s Korner I know most of you reading this are expecting me to go off on another rant about some current event such as Miley Cyrus twerking with Santa Claus. But it is the holiday season and I am not the Grinch nor Scrooge so I decided to spare you and rant about nothing. Nothing at all. Which is exactly what I will be doing this winter break. Nothing. I. Am. Wiped. Studying for exams is awful and I am just done. My days will not consist of hitting the snooze button ten times, packing my lunch in the dark, and writing down bell ringers. What my days will consist of is sleeping, eating, and Netflixing. I will stay up late because I want to- not because I am cramming for a test. I don’t think I have had more than five hours of sleep since the beginning of this year. I never actually believed upperclassmen when they told me junior year stinks, but it truly does. Although this semester has been my most challenging, it has also been my favorite. I need the next 18 days to recover from these last 18 weeks. My brain is fried and the thought of not having any

responsibilities is the best gift I could receive. The only schedule I plan to look at is the one on my DirecTV guide. There are a lot of things I should do such as start my FLVS class or study for the ACT. But I won’t, simply because I will be too busy watching Olivia Pope fix the nation’s problems on Scandal. During school semesters, I am motivated and focused on doing my best in school. During break, I am the complete opposite. I am motivated and focused on doing my best in Candy Crush. So if you need to reach me “I’ll be lounging on the couch, just chillin’ in my snuggie, Click to MTV, so they can teach me how to dougie.” This break is exactly what I need to reactivate my brain function and prepare for the next two quarters. Although it may seem like I am lazy, I am just exhausted. And I know you are too.

“...ZZZ” Photo By Kelsey Spyker


December 2013 The Galleon


life reflections with Lindsay If YOU DO NOT LIKE THE HOLIDAYS THeN YOU ARE FELIZ NAVIdead TO ME Beginning almost immediately after Halloween, stores around town start to advertise their holiday discounts, neighbors begin to put up lights and decorations, and red-snowflake covered Starbucks cups pop-up all around Boca Raton. To me, the Holiday season brings not only festive music and distant relatives to town, but also an overall air of joy and happiness that lasts throughout the end of the year. Thanksgiving is the first holiday of the season I celebrate and it never fails to be a great start for the rest of the holidays to come. The best part about Thanksgiving is the opportunity it allows to really spend time with my family. That, and the pumpkin pie. The aroma of food and the company of others on this day do nothing but add to my joy and appreciation of this time of year. Thanksgiving also leads the way to my second favorite part of the holiday season: Black Friday.

It’s tradition for my mom and I to wake up unnaturally early to search for the best deals on all of our holiday gifts on Black Friday. For those who question why we would want to wait in such long lines or wake up so early, the answer is simple; the sounds of joyous holiday music, the smells of pine or pumpkin scented candles, and the company of dozens of other people also in the holiday spirit are what make this day of shopping an experience. It is less about the sales that we find on the items we buy than it is the pleasure we find in being surrounded by this holiday atmosphere. Another important landmark of the season for my family is picking out and decorating our Christmas tree. This multi-step process is what, for me, solidifies the feeling that Christmas is in less than a month. It starts with taking time out of the busy schedules of each member in my family to go to the Christmas tree farm and agree on the perfect tree. While there is sometimes some dis-

pute at first, we consistently have selected trees that end up pleasing everyone. The next step in this process, decorating the tree, requires the help of many hands. We invite over friends and family, turn on the Christmas radio station, pull out the boxes of ornaments we have collected over the years, and strategically arrange them on our glowing tree. The placement of the angel marks the last step to a fully decorated tree that lights up my entire house. I view the radiance and overwhelming pine-scent as a constant reminder to be grateful for another holiday season. These holidays all lead up to the best day in December: Christmas Day. This day seems to bring nothing but cheer to everyone around, even to those who don’t celebrate it. Personally, on this day I derive a feeling of merriness unlike that of any other day of the year from Holiday specials running on TV, fully ornamented houses, a slight chill in the air (if we’re lucky), and

Santa Clause hats on little children outside playing with new toys. I think the purpose of Christmas in society is to facilitate good-spirits and to remind all to be grateful for not only the gifts they open, but also the company they open them with. Overall, there seems to be a positive difference in attitude in almost everyone during the holiday season, making it my favorite time of the year.

images courtesy of google images

Ask Ashley

“Start spreading the news...” Living in Florida definitely has its perks: the beach is down the street, summer is the season year round, and each day ends with a gorgeous sunset. However, as crazy as it sounds to many people who live up north, I would definitely trade it all for a permanent residency in New York. As we all currently soak up the sun here in our own backyards, the rest of the country is peering out the window to a white winter that glistens with snow and leafless trees. Commonly, northerners spend their winters here in Florida, but what I have always wondered is how one can prefer sand to snow or a day by the pool in eightydegree weather to a day kissed with cold air while snuggling up in a big comfy sweatshirt. So, why New York? Well I believe

the better question is- why not New York? Winter in New York is the setting of at least half of the holiday movies out there. This is clearly not just a coincidence. It is proof that there’s nowhere better to live than in the heart of New York City- home to the Radio City Rockettes and the Christmas tree in Rockefeller center. The feeling that I get when I walk into NYC with the cold air numbing my face and holiday music and decorations flooding the crowded streets simply cannot be bottled up into a candleno matter how hard Bath and Body Works may try. Scents such as “winter” and “snowflake” are just false hope. Sip all the hot chocolate you want while wearing fuzzy socks and watching movies as the candles burn out- just don’t forget to walk outside your front

door to be greeted by a smiling sun. The best part about New York is by far being there in the month of December. If you haven’t experienced it- it’s an absolute must for your bucket list. The food tastes better, the people seem happier, and the lasting sense of holiday spirit is everlasting from the moment you set foot onto 34th street from the undergrounds of Penn Station. Rather than spending a night at the movies here at home, the nightlife in New York is endless. From Broadway shows to exotic restaurants to carriage rides in Central Park, there is just no better place to reside for this magical time of year. Finally, as New Years approaches, I can’t help but admire each and every person that spends his or her New

Years Eve in Times Square to watch the ball drop and celebrate in the center of it all. Sure its “clearer on tv” and “being in the house is warmer than standing outside in the middle of the winter” but I just cannot understand that logic as I would give anything to see it all first hand. Therefore, as the winter season progresses and the holidays draw closer and closer, I will live vicariously through Miracle on 34th Street and Home Alone 2 while sitting in my room to the burning of my winter-scented candle in my fuzzy socks, dreaming of the city of lights and wishing to be surrounded by the numbing cold weather in New York City.

Art by michela mugnatto


December 2013 The Galleon

F e AT U R E S

R i v e r ’s F a m o u s S u b s t i t u t e s

Mr. Hurlbut Gia Doxey Features Editor Teachers are the eyes and ears of each generation of students. As the true spearheads of education, they inspire and challenge students with their worldly wisdom, and each one resonates in students’ hearts and leaves a profound impact as they instill discipline to prepare for the working world. As students reflect on their years at Spanish River, they will not only remember their beloved teachers who steered them through their high school journey, but they will also

remember their substitutes. “I absolutely adore our substitutes! They are always so jovial and excited to hear what is going on in our lives,” sophomore Morgan Kokaram said. Four of the many popular substitutes on campus took the time to express their appreciation for River’s students and love for their jobs. “River is by far the best- nice students and faculty, pleasant environment, and I get to know the students- I always see them around the supermarket and all,” River substitute of eight years Elaine Greenberg said. “Ms. Greenberg is always full of advice and wonderful stories,” junior Eliza Rosenberg said. “She really helps us prepare for the real world, and she is so encouraging.” From PE classes to Drama, Coach DeLuca has been proudly circling the perimeter for the past three years, and he is proud to be a part of the Shark family. “He’s always around, and we’re so happy he is here,” junior Brooke Boinis said. “He is a lot of fun, and you can tell he enjoys being with us wacky kids.” With sparkles in his eyes, Richard Beach Hurlbut exclaimed how he has thoroughly enjoyed his past five years as a substitute teacher at River. “Although I taught biology and sci-

ence for 35 years in Massachusetts, I call Spanish River my ‘home away from home,’” Hurlbut said. “I really enjoy watching the students grow from their freshman to senior year.” “Mr. Hurlbut is the best,” senior Nico Bolling said. “He has substituted a lot of my science classes in the past, and he was always so passionate about teaching. He truly radiates in our science department.” Pamela Reuter definitely caught the River bug, as well. Her three children graduated here, and she started substituting five years ago. Also with a background in science, Reuter taught biology about 25 years ago in Miami, Rhode Island, and Texas. “I love the kids, and it is very comfortable here,” Reuter said. “The staff knows me, and it is a very positive experience. I wouldn’t want to sub any place else.” Reuter is currently subbing for the late Mr. Klager until they find a permanent replacement, and she has provided a sense of comfort for psychology students. “She’s doing an excellent job,” senior Max Lennon said. “In this very tough situation, she was there for us on day-one, and she is preparing us for upcoming tests and exams to the best of her abilities.” Substitutes especially appreciate the students’ true desire

to learn. They were all pleasantly surprised to connect with the students on both academic and personal levels as they all exchanged their own generation’s knowledge and wisdom. The positivity and popularity from River’s finest add a special something to the experience here at River, and they are all pleased to know they feel the same way about each other. “They watch us grow up, and they teach us so much about life in the short time we had with them in the classroom,” junior Shayna Silverman said. “I hope I’ll do them proud.”

Ms. Reuter

Photos By Carly Mackler

S i x s e c o n d s t o s t a rd om Shawn Zylberberg Commentary There was a time when we were limited. I remember having a disposable Kodak camera at summer camp (The company itself stopped producing cameras in 2012, another sign of how far visual technology has come). The number “26” glared at me from under a small magnifying glass, telling me how many potential memories I had left to capture. Back then we were limited, and now we steal our friends’ phones to snap 100 “selfies”—and then 100 more. Six seconds. Six seconds is all I have to become famous. As an avid Viner, I often find myself thinking of the subject of my next video and what it will express. The application of “Vine”, created in June of 2012, is similar to its successful predecessor of Instagram. It allows users to upload short videos from their mobile devices. I created my Vine account this year, when one of my brother’s friends recommended it to me. I quickly discovered that this wasn’t just any other social media application, but a medium through which I could express

myself in six-second segments. It feels constraining, but at the same time,

don’t like how your food looks on your first picture? Rearrange it and take

Photos Courtesy of Vine

it reminds me that, these days, there really is no limit to self-expression. You

another one. Did the punchline of the joke come out wrong? Re-film it.

That’s why Vine is revolutionary. It’s a two-pronged application that gives way to a blend of past and present. I quickly became an addict, vining away each minute that passed with uncontrollable excitement. Nearly two months after using the application, I decided to chase something bigger, something more intense: Vine Fame. To do this, I had to become more professional. So I hired a cameraman by the name of Noah Zylberberg (who also happens to be my brother) to help me on this journey, and I reimbursed him with brotherly punches when he didn’t capture the scene perfectly. Some of my Vines consist of hackneyed jokes, singing in the car shirtless, and showing viewers what I really do when the fire drill occurs. I constantly find myself scrolling through my own Vine feed, laughing at my own corny jokes and remembering the stunts I did with my friends for another “like” or comment. So while my Vine memories may be more public now than ever, in some small way, I still make them for me. But I can’t help it. So next time you check your phone for your own “likes” and comments, take the time to follow @shawnzeee on Vine. Art By Michela Mugnatto

F e AT U R E S Ashley Roth Features Editor

December 2013 The Galleon



Students have resorted to a new way of communicating their opinions of their teachers on a website called On this website students select their school and have the opportunity to comment on teachers of said school about their teaching styles and work load, for example. This is an important resource that many find helpful at the beginning of each school year upon receiving their schedules with their new classes and teachers. “I find the website extremely helpful at reassuring me of the teachers I am going to have for the upcoming school year,” junior Madison Paige said. “It’s nice to walk into class the first day prepared for what the year ahead has in store.” With commentary from students who have previously had these teachers, the descriptions are very accurate and helpful to students that may be insecure about taking a certain teacher’s class because of rumors heard around school. “I was planning on taking a class during my junior year but was unsure if it was the right decision due to what I had heard about that teacher around

school,” senior Isabelle Resnick said. “After searching on ratemyteachers. com I was reassured that I could handle the course and that the teacher really did not seem so bad.” Each teacher is ranked out of five stars on three categories: easiness, helpfulness, and clarity. “This ranking system assisted me in choosing which courses I would take this year based on what I thought I could handle,” Paige said. Unfortunately, some teachers can be portrayed differently from how they actually are in a classroom setting. “Some students have nothing better to do with their time and choose to spend it by noting the negatives of a teacher,” Resnick said. “This is unfair because teachers may be offended and students may avoid taking their class due to their fear of the rumors that they have read prior to even meeting the teacher.” Overall, many would agree that this is a beneficial resource, not just an ordinary opportunity to bully teachers and mock their teaching styles. Of course it is not by any means the “end all be all” when selecting courses to take. However, it is an excellent way of getting a first hand opinion of the River staff that one will spend four years getting to know and learn from.

Mrs. Brewer

MR. Bartholomew


MR. Hesse Photos Courtesy of

Unsung heroes save the day Jack Altman Staff Reporter Spanish River is more than just a high school. It is a lively atmosphere comprised of 2,000 students overflowing its halls, parking lots, and cafeteria each day. To maintain order in a place like Spanish River, it takes a certain kind of hero. No, not someone like Mr. Latson, Mr. Sollod, or Ms. Armentano-although their work is to be admired as well. This kind of hard work goes to the unsung heroes of Spanish River. The true people who run this school. These heroes include everyone from our security guards to our lunch ladies to our very own janitors who, all in their respective fields, help make our days at Spanish River just that much b e t t e r , sometimes without us even knowing. As we go through our days aimlessly wandering the halls, learning unimportant algebra formulas, and

taking tests on remote controls, our unsung heroes are making sure we eat, are safe, and that our facilities are clean most importantly. These are the true meanings of life and it is important that we are aware of the time that our true heroes spend during their days. As we arrive a t school bright and early, our lunch staff has already been hard at work slaving away for hours to begin the process of assembling our lunch for the day. “We start preparing lunch at around 5:30 in the morning before anyone else is on campus,” lunch lady Janice Brown said. “Students forget that we prepare breakfasts and snacks as well which can be very time consuming.” Hard at work just after the lunch staff arrives at school is our security staff. Right about now, most of our students are waking up and making decisions concerning equally important things like what outfit to wear or whether to skip school today in order to play Call of Duty: Ghosts. Led by Nathan Robinson, a 16 year

security veteran, the security staff at Spanish River is second to none. In the morning, the team monitors the Jog road gates and keeps track of the people going in and out of the school. “Our team works hard every day to make sure that the students and faculty at River are safe,” Robinson said. “We are aware that school security is a huge issue right now and want to help keep our school as secure as possible.” As our day reaches its end and period seven is in full swing, our students are dreaming of a nap, however, for our unsung heroes the d a y is far from over. The lunch ladies have the added responsibility of cleaning up after lunch. Whether that m e a n s cleaning the tables or wiping off dishes and trays, our lunch ladies do it all. “Our staffs’ responsibilities do not end with just preparing the meals. We clean up after 2000 students and teachers each day and at night we plan for the next day’s lunch preparations, said Brown.” At the same time, the security team

is well into their new duties, protecting the school’s usually open Yamato road gate. This is a new regimen the school has installed to increase safety during the day. Throughout the day, the security staff switches between the Yamato gate and the Jog gate in order to protect all sides of the school. “It’s never easy, but we know that if it means keeping the great kids of River safe, it will always be worth it,” Robinson said. Whether it is keeping the school safe, feeding our students, or just providing a warm smile, R i v e r ’s unsung heroes are a l ways there t o brighten up the day for everyone around them. While they may not always be recognized f o r their contributions to our school, it is important that we realize how vital they are. Take a minute t h i s w e e k t o thank an unsung hero at S p a n i s h River. Art By Michela Mugnatto Photos By Carly Mackler



December 2013 The Galleon

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December 2013 The Galleon



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December 2013 The Galleon

A R T S & E N T E R TA I N M E N T


the story line. “I think sequels usually ruin the movie. My best example is Ice Age. It was a nice movie with a nice endWith new movies coming out ing but then they keep making more every month, there are always going sequels and use more stupid humor to be sequels hitting the theaters. The every time,” senior Angela Alvarez general opinion of movie sequels, said. “Some movies have exceptions, however, is usually split in the Span- however. The Hunger Games sequel ish River community. was amazing. They didn’t rush it and Many River students like sequels it had a nice flow throughout the while others feel they fall short of movie.” their expectations. Other students believe that as “Some movie sequels can enhance many series continue, the movie the movie others just drag it on,” quality and story lines improve. Some sophomore Kerigan McCoy said. consider the original film and budget For many students, however, it for the film to largely dictate the qualreally depends on the specific movie. ity of the sequel. “Some movies are made with “The first Twilight movie was tersequels in mind, like movies that are rible because the budget was very designed to tell a larger story that minimal, but the second film was a can’t be covered in one film,” senior bit better,” senior Ariel Geraldine said. Jack Buttell said. “In that case, it is bet- “Also, the first film always seems to ter to have sequels than to try to fit be the test to see how the audience everything into one movie.” reacts to the movie and as the fan Some students feel a sequel to a base gets larger the films seem to get movie will almost always undermine better.” the movie plot instead of improving With many new movie sequels such

Tedi Raphael Arts and Entertainment Editor

as: Thor: The Dark World; Despicable Me 2; The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug; The Hunger Games: Catching Fire; and Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, opinions on the topic are constantly changing and being thrown around. But new, up-and-coming movies are not the only ones being criticized. Many River students that are in tune with their inner child have strong opinions on the old classics being updated and continued. “A lot of movie sequels have this problem where they try to recreate the original movie without actually recreating the original movie and it is not that great,” senior Divya Jawaharlal said. “However, there are those sequels that are done beautifully because they manage to capture the essence of the first movie and add certain twists. Disney and Pixar do it especially well with their sequels, especially with The Little Mermaid and Toy Story.” The continuation of a popular movie that has a final ending can turn

many off to the series, such as the unpopular sequel to Disney’s Pocahontas. While some River students do not like to go see movie sequels and believe they are a way for companies to ring more money out of an already popular franchise, ultimately others feel excited for the new installments to their favorite series and go all out in costumed attire to celebrate the event.

Celebrity Look-A-Likes Mike White- Ned Schneebly in School of Rock

Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi

Avan JogiaBeck Oliver on Victorious

AP Language Teacher Nathan Hesse

Senior Carly Weiss Senior Ken Graziosa

Photos by Carly mackler images courtesy of google images

A R T S & E N T E R TA I N M E N T taylor colson-

December 2013 The Galleon


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Pumpkin Pie French Toast Ingredients:

Lindsay Mangines Arts and Entertainment Editor Almost every student at Spanish River has an idea of what they want for themselves in the future. Some have every year from now until the day they die already planned out, and others have only a vague idea of the direction they want their life to go in. Yet not every student will take action on these hard, thought-out plans, or will simply put them off to think about in the future. However, there are a select few at River who stand out when it comes to going after what they want. Senior Taylor Colson has proved herself to be one of them. Colson has taken an early start to her musical career with the release of her hit single, “Heart Candy”. Not only is the song available on iTunes, but it was also picked up by MTV, which first aired the video on December 1st. Colson considers “Heart Candy” to be a very upbeat and fun song, and believes the video to have represented this well.

“I do consider my video to be a success,” Colson said. “Being that this was my first music video and first original song, I could not be happier!” Colson has received overwhelming support on her achievement by both friends and classmates. “I bought Taylor’s song on iTunes and then I could not get it out of my head. The video is catchy and fun, and she is so talented,” senior Zanny Swartz said. “I’m so proud of her.” “Heart Breaker” is the first song Colson has worked on, being that she had previously never tried writing anything. She co-wrote it with her producer, who taught her everything she needed to know, and she is now writing on her own. “It was such an amazing learning process,” Colson said. “I’m so excited to be able to share my music with everyone in the near future.” Colson has proved her dedication to her music career by the hours she has put in. For the production of “Heart Candy”, her and her team had to first decide what they wanted to include in the video and the direction

they wanted to take it in. They then had to create a treatment for the video, which is play by play rundown of every detail to be included in the video. It took 12 hours for the shoot, and four weeks to edit the final product. When Colson is not in school, she dedicates her time to building upon on her career, whether it be taking vocal lessons, recording in the studio, or working with her producer. “My whole life is dedicated to my music career,” Colson said. In the future, Colson sees herself recording albums and touring various places to be able to perform for people who love her music as much as she does. “I think that anything you do, no matter how big or small, is a learning experience and betters you,” Colson said. “This gave me the experience of shooting a real music video and made me realize that this is 150% what I want to be doing every single day for the rest of my life.” To keep up with Colson and her career, check out her MTV artist page at


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1. Mix the eggs, milk, pumpkin puree, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg and brown sugar in a low, flat bowl for about two to three minutes per side. 2. Heat a pan over medium heat. 3. Dip the bread into the egg mixture on both sides and grill in a pan until lightly golden brown, about two to three minutes per slide.

Triple Chocolate Peppermint Brownies Ingredients:

for the brownie layer8 tablespoons (4 ounces) of unsalted butter 2 ounces of chopped, unsweeted chocolate 2 extra large eggs 1 cup of granulated sugar 1/2 cup of unbleached all-purpose flour 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 1/4 teaspoon espresso powder 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips for the pepermint layer2 cups of confectioners’ sugar 8 tablespoons of unsalted butter at room temperature 2 tablespoons whole milk 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract for the chocolate layer4 ounces of semisweet chocolate 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 2 crushed candy canes


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2 eggs 1/4 cup milk 1/4 cup pumpkin puree 1/4 teaspoon vanilla 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon ginger 1/4 teaspoon cloves 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg 2 tablespoons brown sugar 8 slices of bread

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for the brownie layerpreheat the oven to 350 degrees Farenheit. Line an 8x8 inch baking pan with parchment paper leaving overhang for easy removal; lightly spray with non-stick baking spray. In a bowl set over a pan of simmering water or in the microwave, melt the butter and chocolate; set aside. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs and sugar with a hand-held mixer until light and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes. Add the flour, extracts, espresso powder, and salt. Add the melted chocolate mixture and stir just until blended. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and sprinkle the top with the chocolate chips. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs, about 25 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. for the peppermint layerIn a medium bowl, beat together the confectioners’ sugar, butter, milk, and extracts until smooth and creamy using a hand-held mixer. Spread the mixture over the cooled brownies and chill in the refrigerator until set, about one hour. for the chocolate layerIn a bowl set over a pan of simmering water or in the microwave, melt the butter and chocolate; cool slightly. Pour the chocolate over the peppermint layer and and sprinkle with the crushed candy canes. Chill in the refrigerator until set, about 1 hour. Cut and serve. recipies courtesy of and

All art by michela mugnatto images courtesy of google images and youtube


December 2013 The Galleon


A History in the Making: Michael Benrubi Staff Reporter Every year, various history classes are fortunate enough to have the opportunity to create a project for National History Day. The National History Day project aims to provide students with researching skills, knowledge about history, and opportunities for scholarship money and other rewards. Many teachers at Spanish River require their students to create a project for National History Day. The project is made mandatory for students in the Gilder Lehrman History and Law Academy for all four of the students' years. Besides the Gilder Lehrman teachers, Mrs. Green, Mr. Bartholomew, and Mrs. Jones, some of the other teachers participating in National History Day include Mr. Bianchi and Mrs. Collins. There are two divisions in the National History Day competition. There is a Junior Division for students in grade 6-8, and a Senior Division for students grades 9-12. Students can choose to work as an individual or as a group composed of up to five students. Students are then able to choose what project category they are going to do. The project categories include an exhibit, documentary, performance, or a website. There is an annual theme related to history that students base their project on

History students prepare for annual National History Day Competition

for the competition. Past themes have included Turning Points in History, Revolution, Reaction, Reform, and Innovation. This year's theme is Rights and Responsibilities. Gilder Lehrman History and Law teacher Kim Green has been taking part in National History Day for about seven years now. Green assigns the

a topic of their choice and students are able to put this on their college resume if they win." According to Mrs. Green, the judges look for a project that is thoroughly researched, presents a wide array of sources, and that took time and effort to create. Judges also look at the interview process to see if the

National History Day project to her students because she believes it helps them in many different ways. "I find that National History Day is a commitment on the part of the student to see a project from its infancy to the final product," Green said. "Also, it is a wonderful opportunity for students to gain practice in researching

students speak well and the passion about their topic that comes through when answering questions. "The beauty of the project that the student gets to marry their talents and interests with a presentation format," Green said. "It really provides students with skills that will help

them succeed in projects that will be assigned in the future." The National History Day competition starts at the school level, and moves on to the county, state and national levels. The national competition is annually held at the University of Maryland in College Park. Students are able to win many prizes including scholarship money, medals, and other rewards as a result of winning at each level. Josh Davies, a senior at Spanish River, has never been able to make it past the school level in all of his years, but he still loves taking part in the competition every year. "I enjoy participating in National History Day every year because it lets me interact with a part of history in many different ways," Davies said. "Students are able to gain more knowledge about history through a variety of outlets." Davies believes it is best to work in a group because it gives everyone the opportunity to share information and ideas. Luckily, the National History Day project due date is the week students get back from winter break. Therefore, most students including Davies wait until winter break to complete the project. "I do it during winter break because I love procrastinating," Davies said. His advice to underclassmen: "don't procrastinate." PHOTOS BY ALEXIS DLUGOS

Teachers play matchmaker with student relationships Alexis Dlugos Student Life Editor

Dating in high school is hard, and that is a huge understatement. Spanish River happens to have a teacher who lives a dual-life as a matchmaker. This is the case with Visions teacher Mrs. Kimberly Green. “I was at Chilis with my husband and this couple I had in class years ago came up with their three children,” Green said. Those who have had Green have been subjected to her playing the role of Cupid’s helper. Former students have come back married, some even with kids, all due to Green’s great cupid shot. “My one reminder is don’t forget you were friends first,” Green said. This includes her advice to the students she has in class and when things don’t end so well. It is important to be reminded to end on good terms to not cause the whole class to feel awkward. As Green has shown, matchmaking is evident in the classroom. Teachers such as Green have the ability to determine perfect matches based on certain student’s overall work ethic, hobbies, and personality. Watch out River students, prepare to be matched. ART BY MICHELA MUGNATTO

STUDENT LIFE Bullying boundaries: when should you step in? Sarah Grubman Staff Reporter Spanish River is no exception to the many bullying scandals that have plagued high schools around the world. This issue seems to be an everpresent problem hurting many who experience it or simply those who do not know what to do while watching it. “I try to stand up for kids being bullied, but I do not want to be bullied myself,” junior Lauren Stein said. The dilemma of whether or not to stand up to a bully or walk away is one which students face on a daily basis. For many, it is difficult to watch someone be psychologically or physically mistreated, but it is also difficult to make one’s self vulnerable to the same cruelty. For this reason, some students may turn a blind eye to what is going on around them.

“I find it difficult to decide whether or not to intervene,” junior Skylar Crespi said. “By the time I build up the strength to say something the conflict is over.” On the other hand, some students are fearless and will risk the backlash of standing up for someone to ensure the safety of those around them. “Personally, I can’t watch someone being verbally abused and not say anything,” senior Gabbi Serrato said. “I know that if I was the person being bullied I would hope and wish someone would stand up for me. So I put myself in their shoes and try to help.” Serrato believes that by intervening she not only helps those bullied but also sets an example for those around her who might not care to say anything, or are afraid of what may happen if they do. Unlike in the past, bullying has spread from the hallways of


December 2013 The Galleon

Spanish River to the social media sites of Facebook, Instagram, etc. These new sources of bullying have created a title wave of controversy. “People can be really evil over Facebook and many times this spills into their school life,” Crespi said. “It is shocking how different someone can be in person compared to how they act on Facebook.” Social media has opened the door to a new realm of bullying. However, many students separate themselves from this controversy, allowing them to avoid conflict in their real life as well. “Facebook can be the source of a lot of bullying,” Crespi said. “But what is important to remember is that bullying from any source can always hurt someone more than you may believe.”

Things you may not know about bullying: -Teachers will intervene only 4% of the time. -1 out of 10 students drop out of school due to repeated bullying. -56% of students have witnessed some type of bullying. -Harrassment and bullying have been linked to 75% of school shootings. -1 in 7 students in grades K-12 is either a bully or a victim of bullying.

River Students Take on Holiday Traditions

Haley DeFalco, 12 “Every Christmas morrning I make homemade cinnamon buns with my family.”

Jordana Kimelman, 11 “Every year my family gathers to share a night of Chanukah.”

Zach Marion, 11

“Every year my family and I go help people who are less fortunate by volunteering to make and serve a Thanksgiving dinner.” PHOTOS BY ALEXIS DLUGOS


“ T h a t ’s s o g a y ” i s n o t o k a y Eliana Landow Commentary

Okay, I’m just going to “come out” and say it. “That’s so gay” is not okay. You know what is super gay? A homosexual relationship between two people. According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, “gay” is defined as brightly colored, happy and/ or homosexual. So wouldn’t it only make sense to use it in the context to describe a happy, rainbow spirited person who happens to have feelings for the same sex? We have such a negative connotation for what it means to be gay these days. In everyday conversation, “that’s so gay” is usually used to describe something stupid or disliked. But for the Lesbian-Gay-Bi-Transgender community, this type of language redefines an identity. It takes away a part of who someone is and makes it seem like being born a certain way is wrong. No. The only thing that is wrong is having to feel un-

safe at your own school after overhearing a group of students joking around with each other, using the words “gay” and “fag” as an insult. The idea that being gay is a bad thing is outdated and ignorant. With a dress-code “so strict” and all of these new rules put into play in the best interest of the students and staff, you would think that one of the most important ones would be no tolerance for hate slurs

against minority groups, no matter how they are used. It is shocking how much I hear them

mentioned casually in the halls and in quite a few of my classes. Just the other day, I was waiting by my locker to get one of my textbooks while a group of students were talking nearby. I couldn’t help but hear their loud, obnoxious conversation, complaining about how difficult

school is. Talk about first world problems. They kept going on and on about how stressed they were with all of their AP’s until they finally got to the subject of that impossible question on a math test they just took. One kid w a s describing how it took h i m twenty minutes to solve the equation, when his friend replied “math is so gay.” Really? I didn’t know math had feelings? Is math

attracted to the same sex? No. I guess math isn’t so gay then. There are so many other words that can be used that will not offend anyone. If you do not believe me, get a dictionary and learn some new words. Now is your chance to wow everyone with your high vocabulary to describe how “imbecilic” you might think this article sounds. A person’s sexual orientation should not define how they are treated. And being gay is not a choice. It is not a teacher w h o as-

signs too much homework over the weekend, or the lunch line when it gets too long. Being a sexual minority in high school out or not, is nerve-wracking enough without having someone else use your identity in a derogatory manner. Trust me, I know. ART BY MICHELA MUGNATTO


December 2013 The Galleon



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December 2013 The Galleon


Varsity Basketball continues stellar season ing from senior guard Jeffery Demezier, who averages about 20 points per game. There is no doubting that Demezier has a major impact on the team, but he insists that the team’s cohesive element is what drives it to win. “We all work together,” Demezier

their offensive and defensive duties this season, and they show no signs of stopping their domination under the basket. While River does have its height, outside of Boca Raton, the Shark forwards and centers are used to seeing towering athletes from around the county. The tallest oppo-

game home stand in early 2014, which includes a rematch against West Boca. As they make their final push towards the district tournament, the Everyone knows that winters at district tournament seeding is based Spanish River are guaranteed to be only on the team’s record against disfull of action-packed trict opponents, which include Park basketball. This season, the boys varVista, John I. Leonard, and the earlier sity team has m e nt i o n e d been gainSantaluces ing plenty and Boca. of steam as This year’s it heads into tournament the second will begin on half of its February 3 season. It has at Boca been two High. Until years since then, River’s Spanish remaining River’s 2011home games 2012 dream are sure to squad made be filled with their push eager fans. to the state Photos By Jeremy Freiman “We love semifinals, when fans Left: Demezier goes over a West Boca guard to hit a three-point shot; Right: Jones and his team take a time out to draw up a play in the last seconds of a but Coach very close game come out John Jones to show continues to cook up his signature said. “Coach gives everyone an as- nent River has matched up against their support for the team,” senior mix of basketball coaching. signment before the game, but no this year? A 6’ 8’’’ center from McAr- guard Corey Mouallem said. “As in As of December 12, River has one man can win the game. It’s only thur High School in Hollywood. any sport, the crowd can definitely racked up impressive wins against 7 when we all work together as a team “It’s definitiely a battle,” Lipsky make a difference in the game. Getopponents, including district rivals that we can have what it takes to win.” said. “We always come accross some ting loud in the gym really throws off Santaluces and Boca. They have only Inside the paint, big men Bran- really big kids from time to time. If the opposing team, while boosting fallen victim to a powerful West Boca don Kemmerer, Tyler Lipsky, and we can shut them down, and win the our morale.” team. Up to this point, the team has Jack Sullivan have fought viciously rebounds, success always follows.” been able to rely on consistent scor- for rebounds. All three have done The team can look forward to a 3

Jeremy Freiman Sports Editor

Art By Michela Mugnatto

TEA CH E RS P L AY TOO Shawn Zylberberg Sports Editor Often times students can only picture their teachers in one setting: the classroom. But some teachers here at Spanish River, however, like to challenge that associated image by leading active lives outside the classroom. Currently, physical fitness and leisure activities are being looked at as an “escape” from the stressful, nonstop work. For Assistant Principal Doug Markwardt, swimming is his favorite activity. Markwardt swam competitively for both his high school team and his collegiate team at Iowa State University. After college, he stopped swimming and took a break for nearly 20 years. One day he decided to start training again in order to compete in the Master’s division. Markwardt trains 6 days a week after school. “I just got in the water just to swim,” Markwardt said. “And the next thing you know I was doing interval training.” Being back in the pool helps Markwardt keep a healthy lifestyle and also feed his competitive side as a lifelong athlete. Science teacher David Bryan also

Photo courtesy david bryan

photo by Carly Mackler

Left: Bryan sits proudly with a 50 lb. Amberjack that took about 45 minutes to reel in; Right: Hesse demonstrates his work out routine

enjoys a wide array of sports and activities. Bryan was an avid hockey player for 15 years but now enjoys fishing for most of his free time. Bryan always tries to go out and fish once a week with his own boat and a couple friends. Fishing ties into Bryan’s teaching philosophy as well. “I like fishing for the same reason I like science, because you can never stop learning about it,” Bryan said. “No matter how long I teach biology or anatomy, I’ll still be learning about it; no matter how long I fish, I’ll still be

learning about it.” Fishing gives way to a perfect blend of serenity and excitement for Mr. Bryan and it is his way to “escape” and have fun. English teacher Nathan Hesse is all about working out. He incorporates strength training, cardio, and running into his daily routine; 5 times a week. Born to a mother who taught health and wellness courses at a local university, physical education and its benefits have been exposed to Hesse from an early age.

“I look at workouts as a way to relieve stress, escape reality, and make myself better,” Hesse said. Whether it be in a pool, on a boat, or in the gym, teachers have many different places that play special roles in their daily lifestyles. There is passion outside the classroom that many instructors have in order to stay young and keep their mind on “better” things, which creates a balance that many only dream of having.

Art By Michela Mugnatto


December 2013 The Galleon


Ranfone named Special Olympics Coach of the Year County-level award follows state championship trip

Michael Benrubi Staff Reporter There are many clubs and sport organizations at Spanish River that students may not be aware of. One of these organizations includes the Special Olympics team. The Special Olympics team consists of students with intellectual and physical disabilities. The team competes on the regional and district level against other schools in a variety of competitions ranging from bowling to track and field. It takes a caring, committed, and compassionate individual to oversee a team that needs specialized guidance. Math and ESE teacher Crystal Ranfone has committed herself to helping these students gain confidence and reach for both physical and completive goals that may otherwise be unobtainable. Ranfone has been coaching the team since spring of last year, and was first inspired after teaching these students and wanting to see them be a part of something meaningful and important in their lives. Due to this immense dedication and successful leadership, Ranfone was named Special Olympics Coach of the Year in the School District of Palm Beach County. "The way that I try to keep the kids active and excited is by simply having fun. Whether it is playing games with one another or laughing and goofing

Photos Courtesy Crystal Ranfone

Clockwise from far left: Ranfone assists a member of the team as she prepares to bowl; Special Olympics team members pose with members of Spanish River’s varsity bowling team; Ranfone is seen holding her new award; Ranfone and an athlete celebrate after a victory

around, we are always having a good time," Coach Ranfone said. "Along with the fun, I also keep the team focused and goal-oriented." The Spanish River team competes in both bowling and track and field. Last year, multiple students went to states for their individual sports. The state competitions are held at Disney World in Orlando annually. This event, in particular, has emotionally impacted Ranfone. "I was blown away when we went to state competitions in Disney World," Ranfone said. "There were opening ceremonies that were similar to the

opening ceremonies at the real olympics with fireworks, torch runs, and other festivities. It was really touching for me to see the various olympians get so excited about the event." The students that are members of this team also acquire many rewards by participating in these competitions. "They are able to gain confidence, strength, and be a part of something so well organized,” Ranfone said. Travis Young, a junior at Spanish River, volunteers as a coach on the Special Olympics team alongside

Ranfone. This is Young's third year working with Ranfone and he believes she deserves this honor based on her hard work and committment to the team. "She dedicates a lot of her time to the team and makes sure that they are excited and focused". "It's not surprising to see her receive the honor of winning Special Olympics Coach of the Year," Young said. "She really inspires these kids and helps to boost their confidence every day."

become more competitive, the girls have captured seven district championships, six conference championships and have advanced to the Regional Semi Finals three times and the Regional Final once; all while playing in perhaps the toughest Region in the FHSAA State Series. This competitive atmosphere has produced some notable athletes who have gone on to see huge success within the sport of soccer. Alumni from the team at River have gone on to play soccer professionally, like Krissy Welchel who represented Florida on the All American team. Some of the team’s athletes have even gone on to compete at recent Summer Olympic Games like Lisa Gomez of the class of ’93. Just as important as a great team is a great coach and no one does it better than the varsity soccer coach Kevin Turner. Turner, who is also a renowned AP Human Geography teacher at River, has been coaching the soccer team for 14 years. We asked him some questions recently about the team and its success this year:

passed thus far?

buy into the hard work that is necessary to achieve our team goals. Q:Why do you think the team has been so successful this year?

Girls’ varsity soccer dominates the field Jack Altman Staff Reporter After some disappointing seasons over the past few years, the girls varsity soccer team has turned themselves around. Currently, the team has a record of 8-1-2, and with only a few games to go, their chances of staying that way look very bright. “Over the last couple seasons, individually we played well, but as a whole we never reached our true potential,” Junior Sarah Grubman said. “This year, we worked harder than ever and really played as a team which is producing amazing results.” Throughout the past decade, as programs in South Florida have

Q: How long have you been coaching the Girls Varsity Soccer Team at Spanish River and what other titles or milestones have you Art By Michela Mugnatto

A: This is my 14th year at Spanish River but my 19th year coaching overall. Recently this year, we passed the 200 win milestone. Spanish River has won three State titles in girls soccer, but those came in the 1990’s. Since I have been here, we have won five district titles and been runners-up three additional times. We have captured conference titles in six seasons. Q: How would you describe your coaching style? A: My coaching style is always about trying to achieve a balance between wanting to win and giving kids a chance to grow and develop as people and players. It is never easy and nearly impossible to make everyone happy all the time. Q: Who are your captains this year and how have they made an impact this season? A: Our captain is Casey La Belle. The seniors are a big part of our leadership as well. They are: Allison Brashers, Gabbi Serrato, Marly Comiskey, Amanda Lacerda and Michelle Knoop. The biggest impact they have made so far is getting the younger kids to understand the traditions and

A: We have been successful because, so far, the team has shown a willingness to work hard on fitness, tactical training and competing rather than participating. There is a strong commitment to winning something together by working hard for each other. It is a great group of girls. It keeps me young trying to outrun them whenever my legs are up to a challenge. Q: What are your ultimate goals for this season? A: Obviously, we want to beat our rivals Boca High and West Boca. If we do that, we should win the conference championship. More importantly, we want to win Districts and advance into the FHSAA State Series playoffs. We have had some tough luck the last few years being in a really brutal district, but this season we are super positive about our chances! The season continues into early next year, and will include 3 home games. The team’s schedule is available at The Galleon’s website, Image Courtesy of Google Images


December 2013 The Galleon Locations in: Boca Raton 561-715-4006 Coral Springs 954-346-9445

2014 Test Dates



1/25 3/8 5/3 6/7

2/8 4/12 6/14


Daniela Fornabaio “Impact Player of the Year”

Ava Richards “Defensive Player of the Year”

Megan Blake “Shark Award”

Kari Peterson “All-Around Player of the Year”

Michele Knoop “Most Improved Player”

Photo By Jeremy Freiman

Hannah Watcke “Offensive Player of the Year”

Girls’ volleyball serves for success!

The Galleon SPORTS