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I NSI DE 8th Gr ade Tr ip

I SSUE 2, 2018-2019

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Walk the Walk brings community together

BY EL L A GREEN AND

CECI L I A STORM

Holiday Bazaar

Marilyn Greenfield, Director of Special Events who has been participating in the Walk since 1997, said that months of planning goes into the walk. The high school chairs work the whole summer planning the Walk. Starting with sponsors, students advertise the walk by telling their friends and family. Miami Shores helps advertise in their newspapers. Marilyn Greenfield added that this was the first year that the Walk had a GoFundMe page.

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PHOTO BY CECI L I A STORM

On Saturday the 20th of October, Miami Country Day School held Page 14 its annual event, Holiday Wor d Search The Walk the Walk. This event

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is a walk for cancer. This year, MCDS raised $80,000.

Ms. Greenfield, the leadership and social studies teacher, explained, "The Walk the Walk raises money for cancer research and donates for those who can't afford their child's treatments."

People from all around Miami come to participate in the Walk, including people from our very own school. Many also participate in the activities that take place at the Walk. Seventh-grader Ana Gallotta said, ?I came because I wanted to represent our school and do something for a good cause while I'm having fun with my friends. Continued on page 10

iBelong Theater: "Before the Bell" BY A L EXI S K APL AN AND TAL I A K URL ANDSK I

On the 16th of October, the drama department put on the iBelong Theater production of ?Before the Bell.? Each year, iBelong Theater presents a play put on by students that displays the values of iBelong, and the goal is to effectively teach the students in the audience a true moral. Mr. Gracy, the skilled middle school drama teacher, directs the iBelong production, and it is open for any middle school student to audition. It is the second year the iBelong program is doing the iBelong theater. Last year, the production was ?Hoodie,? and this year the production was ?Before the Bell.? The plot of ?Before the Bell? was a gripping

story that told three different sides of a story during the same period of time: First, the story of Mike, a bully who is fighting being held back so he can stay with his best friend whom he admires. Second, the story of Trevor, a bully who is trying to care for his sister on account of his mom running away, without intentions to return. And lastly for the protagonists, the story of Ethan, an innocent, PHOTO BY M R. GRACY sweet boy who is From left: L ucas Buckwell, Felipe Bautista and M ar ley Bor row struggling with his sides of the bystanders. identity, his anxiety, and the two bullies, who constantly pick on him. We also see small Continued on page 9


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8th Grade Class Trip

BY SOPHI A GUARI NI

M y classmates and I went on a trip to New Orleans and Memphis this fall. The trip went from November 13th to the 16th. It was a very educational experience where we got to learn about the unique culture of New Orleans and the rich history of Memphis. The first two days we were in New Orleans where we got to visit an old slave plantation located on the outskirts of New Orleans, we went to Mardi Gras World and got to enjoy some King Cake, we got to enjoy beignets from Cafe du Monde, we learned about the history of New Orleans at a museum near Jackson Square, we learned how to cook several New Orleans dishes, and we got to go on a bus tour around the culture filled city of New Orleans. On the third day of the trip, we all got onto our separate busses and took a long road trip all the way to Memphis, Tennessee. As soon as we got to Memphis, we went to see the National Museum of Civil Rights, which was one of the most interesting places that we went to on the trip. The next day, we went

to Elvis Presley?s old house and visited the various rooms. I The slave plantation was the first place we visited on the trip. We learned a lot about the way slaves and people lived on the various plantations in New Orleans. One of the things that stood out the most was the way people were valued based on what they could and could not do. In our times, putting a price tag on a person would be an insane thing to do; it would be inhumane. But in their time, doing so was just part of their job on the plantation. Slaves would be given a value, if they were good at a certain job, they would be given a higher value. If they BY A NTONI O JUSTO had a disability or another medical issue, they would be valued less. I O n my 8th grade trip to New think this stood out to my classmates and I because it showed Orleans I had three unique us how much our way of life has experiences that I liked. One of my experiences that I enjoyed was the changed. Steamboat. I did not think before 8th grade that there was a Steamboat that goes on the Mississippi River for about two to three hours. Not only that but there was food, a nice band playing Jazz, and hanging out with friends to explore parts of the boat. Another unique experience was playing the instruments and learning new dance moves. It was very funny how some of the boys and girls played the instruments and danced to the New Orleans

music. Even some of the teachers started to play the instruments which was very crazy and hilarious. The last thing that was very exciting was going to see all the Mardi Gras props and how they use them to create different ones. In addition, we got to decorate our own mask and they would be able to ship it back to Miami Country Day School. It was very interesting to see all the different masks that were made. I made a University of Miami mask because that is my favorite college team. Through this amazing trip I learned many different things and for sure I would go back again to see more for round two.

This experience has expanded my vision of the deep south. I have always been a city boy and have always traveled to the major cities like New York City and Los Angeles. However, my friends and I agree travelling through the quaint streets of the French Quarter that it offers a different charm. Indulging in the beignets (great donuts) at Cafe Du Mont a French Cafe beats going to Starbucks any day. Enjoying the Jazz has enhanced my culture for music and will stay in my DNA forever.


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8th Grade Class Trip BY A NNA COHEN

T he 8th grade took a very exciting trip where we started in New Orleans and then went to Memphis. On this trip I learned new things about culture, dance, and cuisine. New Orleans and Memphis are very cultural places full of very lively people, and there is music everywhere. New Orleans is a place like no other. In New Orleans we went to a place where people make the Mardi Gras parade floats called Mardi Gras World. Mardi Gras is a parade that happens once a year celebrating the last night of eating richer. This happens on ?Fat Tuesday? and begins the Lent season until Easter. In Mardi Gras World we got to see how the floats are made out of Styrofoam and trucks are covered with decoration made out of paper-mache. Preparing the floats is a long process, but to save time sometimes they reuse floats from previous years and repaint them. We also went on the Steamboat Natchez. This is a historic steamboat that cruises on the

Mississippi River. We got to see the engine room which has a hundred-year-old engine. On the Steamboat Natchez I got the chance to try my first gumbo. Gumbo is a stew soup with many ingredients such as meat, fish, and vegetables. This dish was appetizing and it was one of my favorite dishes to try because it has many flavors and spices I had never tried before. In Memphis we went to Elvis Presley's house which is called Graceland. This is now a museum dedicated to Elvis Presley?s legacy of music and Rock ?N?Roll. There we got the chance to see Elvis?s cars and private plane. The house was kept the same and you could sense the style of the era with all the wallpaper, decor, and furniture. I really liked going to visit Graceland because Elvis was known as the King of Rock ?N? Roll and it was exciting to be so close to where a legend lived. Overall, this was an amazing opportunity to visit New Orleans and Memphis Tennessee. 8th grade got to experience many historical monument and traditional foods. The music and culture that are unique to this region are a part of what made this trip memorable.


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8th Grade Class Trip BY T HOM AS ROBERT

O ur flights to New Orleans were smooth, but I got gum stuck on my jacket and it was kind of nasty. After we went to eat at a plantation, and the food was very good! Once we were done eating, we drove to another plantation and had " The civil r ights a tour of the grounds. It was museum was amazing to see where the slaves lived as compared to spectacular. We the owners of the plantation. got to see where Then we went to Mardi Gras M ar tin L uther World. We got to see all the K ing Jr. was amazing floats and how they assassinated." were made. Once we finished touring we made - Thomas Rober t. masks using glue and glitter to make colorful patterns. Then we went to a Cajun restaurant to eat. The band playing in the background was very good. Once our tummies were full we went to the hotel to sleep. Over the course of the trip we did lots of cool activities like going on a steam boat. This was so much fun. We also went into an old movie theater and saw a one-man band play. My favorite part was the cooking school. We made tons of great food. The civil rights museum was spectacular. We got to see where Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated. After four days we went home and the trip was over. It was so much fun.

BY SHAELYN DAVI S

V isiting New Orleans and Memphis was an amazing opportunity. It was a great experience, and I learned so many different things. One of the first things we did in New Orleans was learn about Mardi Gras. Learning about Mardi Gras was definitely a unique experience because it?s a completely different culture than what we are used to. We also made masks for Mardi Gras which was so amazing because we got to see what it was like making props for the parade. Mardi Gras world was definitely one of the best experiences in New Orleans. Another great experience was enjoying a cooking class which was very entertaining because I was able to taste their culture because of the different types of foods they mix together. Learning about food in New Orleans was definitely a very interesting part of the eighth-grade trip. When we went to Memphis, we explored the National Civil Rights Museum and we saw the room that Martin Luther King Jr. stayed at and where he got shot. One other moving part of the National Civil Rights Museum was seeing an actual KKK outfit and knowing what happened is already devastating but seeing the uniform in person really touched my heart. Visiting these places in New Orleans and Memphis were truly inspiring and I will never forget them. BY L EON OBERTO

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my opinion the 8th grade trip to New Orleans and Memphis was pretty cool, and I personally really enjoyed it. On our New Orleans trip, I tried new things that put me out of my comfort zone. Perhaps I would not have tried these things if I was on my own. The three things that were personal highlights of this trip are the

food, the boat ride, and the last night in Memphis. The food was completely different from back at home which was exciting. The best dish of the trip, in my opinion, was the Jambalaya and the best treat was the beignets. Beignets are little squares of dough with powder on top. The boat ride was quite unusual because we normally take ships when it?s hot outside and not freezing. The people

who worked on the boat were very kind towards us which I found amazing because they had to deal with more than 100 kids. The food on the boat was also pretty good. Finally, the last night was just like any other night but what highlighted this night from the rest was that everybody was happy, singing, and dancing. I don?t know why, but that truly warmed my heart.


BY V I NNY M I L L AN

T he class trip to New Orleans and Memphis was an eye-opening experience because they are cities full of rich history and tradition. I was able to learn about different cultures, music, and food. This trip showed me how different cultures can blend to create two wonderful cities like New Orleans and Memphis. While visiting New Orleans I learned about the rules regarding slavery, and in Memphis I learned about the Civil Rights Movement. I was surprised to realize that depending on the heritage of the family affected how the slaves were treated. For example, if the family was French, then the slaves would have a half a day off on Saturday and get a full day off on Sunday. If the family was American, the slaves were ruled according to their master?s needs. In Memphis, I learned about a civil rights activist named Martin Luther King Jr. He fought for equal rights for black citizens. Sadly, he was murdered and with his death the civil rights movement grew stronger. Another strong root in these two cities is music. The music that was mainly played in New Orleans was jazz compared to Memphis where we learned about rock ?n roll. Jazz is the foundation to almost all of our music. This is where Elvis Presley got his inspiration from. As I was in New Orleans watching the Jazz bands play along the street, I noticed that the music we listen to today has roots from the jazzy tunes that were played on the streets. In Memphis, I got to visit Elvis Presley's mansion. As I toured the mansion I got to enjoy the music that was being played through his house. Just like jazz has inspired most of our current day music, Elvis Presley did the

same for Toby Keith, Carrie Underwood, and The Beatles. I realized how important music is in our history. My favorite thing on this trip was the food, even though it was different in New Orleans compared to Memphis. In New Orleans I ate a lot of seafood. For example, we ate a crab chowder, fried shrimp, and crayfish. New Orleans food is based on Cajun cuisine which has French roots. I noticed that a lot of the Cajun foods were fried and flavorful. In Memphis we went to one restaurant for lunch and all the food was barbecue inspired. I got the chance to eat pulled pork which had smoky flavors from the grilling. I really enjoyed eating this food. These two cities had amazing foods which I would love to try again despite their major differences. It is obvious that New Orleans and Memphis have a lot of history and culture. These two cities have a lot

in common. For example, their music, food, and history in slavery. I really enjoyed this trip because it opened my eyes to the harsh reality of slavery, how music changes throughout history, and how different types of food can really be enjoyable. In my eyes this was a really great trip. Slavery teaches how people can be at their worst and how poorly people can treat other people. It reminds us how important it is to care for and treat other people. New Orleans and Memphis are examples of how people with different backgrounds can make two cities so unique. The food and the music show how, no matter where we go, we are united. Thinking to the future, music and food will continue to unite us for generations to come. This trip taught us that all of our differences are what makes us Americans.


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8th Grade Class Trip D uring my trip to New Orleans I got to live new experiences where I learned about new cultures, food encounters and history. The most important experience that impacted me was on Tuesday, the first day we arrived, when I visited the Destrehan plantation in St. Charles, Louisiana. This plantation was owned by the Destrehan Family. It was mainly used for sugarcane. I remember feeling uncomfortable when walking into the building. As I walked, I got to see the rooms and conditions in which the slaves lived. There was also a main house where the slave owner lived. This house has a lot of accommodations, such as marble bathtubs, that only wealthy families could get. The comparison between the living arrangements of the slave?s owner and their slaves was very impacting since there was a big difference. On Wednesday we took more of a calm approach to the day. We had more time to sleep and had to be down at 8:30am. We went to Jackson Square where we broke up into two groups. My group got to go shopping first while the other group went into the museum. We shopped for about one hour and got to eat beignets which are essentially friend fluffy doughnuts with loads of powdered sugar on top. After another 15 minutes it was my group?s turn to go into the museum. In it I found lots of information. The first floor talked

BY CHI ARA M OURA

more about slaves and their history. It talked about their living conditions and what challenges they faced but more importantly it told the story of how they got to equality and that was probably one of the most interesting experiences I had on the trip. When we went up the second floor it was all dedicated to Mardi Gras which is something that makes New Orleans different than any other state. The fact that Mardi Gras can last up to two months was quite a culture shock to many of the people on the trip because holidays, particularly in the United States, are usually no more than four days. Learning about Mardi Gras was an experience I'll never forget. Later that day we got to go on an old steam boat. It took a long time for the boat to start to move. At one point I even questioned if we were going to be moving at all. I asked Mr. Fallik and he replied very sure of himself ?No, we are just going to be docked here, this boat is a very old one, it doesn't move anymore,? and, to my surprise, just five minutes after Mr. Fallik told me this, I heard a loud horn and felt the boat start to move. I panicked thinking something was wrong. I went back down to Mr. Fallik only to see him laughing hysterically as 10 other kids surrounded him asking why we were moving. I guess I was not the first person he had told this to. The steam boat was the most fun experience I had on the trip. I got to spend a lot of time with my friends and catch up with some that were on different buses that I didn't get to see as often. On Thursday we had the pleasure of visiting Mardi Gras World, which is essentially were all of the Mardi Gras floats are designed. We began our tour by watching a 14-minute video on the history of Mardi Gras and its importance to the people of New Orleans. We also got to eat King Cake, which is a cinnamon cake with purple, yellow, and green frosting. Mardi Gras, which translates to ?Fat Tuesday?, is a celebration that can last up to two

months. It is celebrated as sort of a last hoorah before Ash Wednesday. People spend around $10,000-$20,000 dollars on Mardi Gras floats and everything in Mardi Gras is self-funded by the people of New Orleans which makes the holiday even more special to the people of New Orleans. During the parades, people will line in massive crowds in the streets to see the floats pass by and maybe even get a little surprise. You see while the floats pass they throw beads, small baby dolls, and even small masks and crowns. These experiences all helped me to better understand New Orleans and why it is how it is today. I could not have asked for a better class trip.


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BY A M Y BHAK TA

S ome students in our grade could not go to the class trip for some reasons, but we still learned many new things that we can use in our future. We were fourteen girls in total which was really fun. Each day we had different and enjoyable experiences. The first day we went to a kids to kids field trip and got to tie die when we got back to school, the second day we did some cooking, the third day we went to the everglades, and the last day we got to shadow 9th graders. On November 13, 2018 on a Tuesday we came to the school at 8:00am, and were waiting for everyone to arrive. It was 8:30am and we got in the bus for the kids to kids field trip to go to a school and make turkeys using bicones and feathers with the little kids. When we got there and were assigned our different classrooms I got to be with a girl named Emma. She was so cute, and adorable she mostly did not pay attention when I was reading to her, but we found something that she liked to do which was building houses with blocks. When we got back to school we were so excited to begin to tie die the bandannas and socks we were given. It was such a fun experience because we were taught how to make different designs for each one, so when it came out it came out with the design we made. We had to wait until the next day so it would be ready. Those were only two things that I mentioned that we got to experience that day. In conclusion making the turkey with using the bicones and feathers to the girl was the best experience that I had that day because I helped little kids make their creative turkey?s. The next day on November 14, 2018 we got to cook jambalaya. It was super fun to make, and we also got learn some history behind the dish. We also made cornbread which Daniella, Alexsis, and Anna were assigned to make but also with the help of Ms.Abreu. I got to help make the jambalaya. We got to learn that this dish originated from the French Quarter of New Orleans. The Spanish wanted to create a paella in the new world, but it also has African and Native American influences. For dessert we got to make Banana Foster which is a really famous dessert in New Orleans. This dessert is made with butter and sugar, and cinnamon with black rum. We got to eat this dish with vanilla ice cream which was incredible. In BY CEL I NE A CRA

O n this trip I remained on campus. On campus we did many activities that were connected to New Orleans. One unique activity that we did was going to the Everglades. In the Everglades we walked around the park looking for alligators, birds, and many more animals. Going on this trip to the Everglades made me learn about the 13-foot python who got cut in half because the python was trying to eat an alligator. This was very interesting because I would never know about this. This tells me that I always need to watch out for snakes out there because they can almost swallow everything they see.

conclusion this experience was amazing because we got to learn how to make two famous New Orleans dishes, and some history behind it. he third day on November 15, 2018 we went to the everglades which took us an hour and fourteen minutes to get there. When we first arrived there we got to learn about the animals that were living there, and when we were walking to see the beautiful national park Ms.Abreu told us to take pictures of four different birds you see. After seeing the wonderful national park we went to this small museum were we got to eat our lunch, and then look at it. Then Ms.Abreu told us that we were going to go to this smoothie place at the beginning of the trip which we all were excited for. I got the strawberry milkshake which was amazing. The place was like a fruit market so there was also like a zoo outside were we got to see goats, horses, chickens, and a big turtle. Some of us saw this small duck which we did not know was alive, and saw someone picking it up and saving it?s life! Which was fascinating. When we got back to school it was 2:40pm and were on the field so we got to be there for the rest of the day. In conclusion we all had a wonderful time in the everglades national park.

first experience that we had in the school to the kids to kids field trip was learning how to be a better citizen in making the little kids have fun. Then the experience we had in cooking could help us a lot with our New Orleans project because for the people who have food can use this information. The most important experience that some of us had that would impact our future was shadowing the 9th graders so when you go next year to high school at least you are prepared to what to expect.

The last day on November 16, 2018 was an optional day, so if you did not come in you would have an absent excused. I came in that day and signed in at the middle school office at 8:00am, and then my friend and I got to shadow a 9th grader together for the day. We both got to see the teachers we would have next year, and how the classes would be. In my case I had an amazing experience, but also was a little bit scared for next year because I would be so focused on getting good grades, and participating on school events so that could go on my college application. In conclusion on the other side of that it was such a wonderful experience because this would prepare us for next year. All of these experiences that we had is going to prepare us for our future because they all had different meanings. The Another unique experience was working with the little kids on their turkeys. When I went I started working with this girl who was very cheerful and happy. She had the biggest smile on her face. When I finished working with the little girl, I went on to another room. In this room there were two little boys who needed more help than others. We went into the room and one of the little boys was very excited and cheerful. The other boy was not talking to anyone. Every time we would ask something he wouldn't answer anyone. We were making the turkeys with them and giving them all of our attention. We were trying to make the little boy talk by asking him what colors he wanted and asking him questions until the teacher told us he can?t talk. This was very sad to hear. This

taught me to be thankful for everything I have and for my voice. It taught me I have a voice and I should always use it. Another unique activity we did was going to the fruit market on the way back to school from the Everglades. We stopped at this fruit market where you can get smoothies, fruits, and see some animals. In this activity we didn't learn much but we saw so much animals. We saw things that we didn?t know animals can do like a goat going on a turtle?s back to reach the fence. That was pretty shocking. From going to that place, I learned that we should not judge a place just by its cover. This was a great week. for me, and I loved this experience.


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MCDSstudents participate in Geography Bee

BY CECI L I A STORM

This year the N.J.H.S put on its annual Geography Bee. The geography bee is a series of questions asked to a person or team relating to the geography of the world this has been going on for many years now. This year the team consists of eighth-grader Nate Giovannucci, eighth-grader Asher Hare, seventh grader Dylan Meyer, seventh grader Jashan Singh, and sixth grader Miguel Escobar. The geography bee is a series of questions asked to a person relating to the geography of the world this has been going on for many years now. Mrs. Pasqualin, a seventh grade English teacher, said, ?Years ago Mr. Lovett when he was a 6th-grade social studies teacher he had it here, and then it stopped when he became an upper school

teacher. I was a sponsor to of national junior honor society, and I thought I would be a fun thing for N.J.H.S club to put on and do, and we brought it back about eight years ago.? Every year the National Geographic Society Makes the Geography Bee questions and geography changes every year so most of the questions are never the same as the year before. Miss Seidel said that the 6th and 7th graders that were on the team the year before stay all the way through 8th grade. So depending on how many people left to Ninth grade new people come in every year when N.J.H.S. holds its annual Geography Bee in school to see who will be competing against each other To see who will be participating in the team throughout his year. ?I was very surprised by the test

scores of the students this year; I would like to see them scoring like this more often. I love giving students the opportunity to display their talents whether it is in dance, athletics, sports, academics or this case specifically geography,? said Alyson Greenfield a 7th-grade social studies teacher who has been very involved with the Geography Bee for a long time. Dylan Meyer, a seventh grader, participating in the Geography Bee for two years in a row said, ?; like learning about geography and what happening all over the world. It?s also a lot of fun being able to compete with a group that shares your same passion and to challenge oneself against other schools.? The point of learning about all this geography is so that eventually the team has the chance of making it to the state level and

competing against many other teams to see what team knows the most about the Geography Bee. Mrs. Pasqualin, a sponsor for the Geography Bee in the past, said, ?I got to go to the state level not that long ago, we had a student, I guess it was three years ago. He actually made it to the state level, and I got to go to these really neat geography lessons. And, it made me want to have maps all over my room, and it just made me realize that our generations don't know as much geography as much as we should, which is why I was such a proud sponsor of NJHS.? ?Last year the team went on to win the ISSF, and I was very proud of them, I hope that this year we are able to accomplish that because we have an outstanding group of students,? said Alyson Greenfield.

Annual Holiday Bazaar raises money for Parents' Association BY I SABEL L A POSSI N

The Miami Country Day School annual holiday bazaar is a great experience for everybody. It is for a great cause, and it is tons of fun. Lots of students really enjoyed the bazaar. Seventh-grader Gabriela Judge said, ?I really like the bazaar because I like spending time with my friends and shopping and my mom comes every year, and I like spending time with her. I also like

the food because it's very good here.? Seventh-grader Lekya Rojo agreed with Gabi. She said, ?Yes, I like the bazaar because I like the food and shopping and it?s a good time to spend with your friends.?

Seventh-grader Ana Gallotta said, ?I really like the bazaar because I get to buy things, I get to hang out with my friends and enjoy the day. I got to buy food. I 7th Gr ader Chloe Porosoff browses the really like the food j ewelr y at the Holiday Bazaar. because it?s really good. I like how I got to see new products and people.? Seventh-grader Julian Green loves shopping at the bazaar. Students really enjoy the bazaar. Not only do the kids enjoy the bazaar but so do parents and vendors. Vendors offer lots of amazing

things. Vendor Fanny Hausmann sells, ?Activewear and leisure wear for little girls from sizes two up to 16. They all have unique designs and the quality is very good is made in Colombia.? Vendor Pam Skordilis offers, ??World Children's Boutique?in Surfside. We carry brands from Denmark Australia, Spain, and Brazil. We carry sizes from four all the way to sixteen.? Vendor Michelle Possin said, ?I have a hair accessory company. We make bracelets that double as hair ties called Byllila. The

reason that we made it is because everybody with a black elastic around the wrist is being credible to wear a different kind of elastic and not wear that white and black elastic everybody wears.? Continued on page 9

6th Gr ader L aila I shaq shops for gifts at the Holiday Bazaar


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iBelong Theater inspires CONTI NUED FROM

However, in the end, they all come together and can A L EXI S celebrate and K APL AN understand their differences, which really displays iBelong. ?I wanted a production that was not too young but not too old, and I was actually getting quite discouraged until I came upon ?Before The Bell.?I read it, and I thought it was extremely powerful and it really just told an interesting story because you saw all of these points of views,? said Mr. Gracy. ?It REALLY, totally relates to iBelong.? ?The genesis of iBelong is to create an environment in the middle school where people felt included. The play was about how people get excluded and the true effects of that. So it relates to iBelong in that way?, said the

middle school guidance counselor, Ms. Byrne. ?Art can often inspire discussion. It can make people think about their own lives, their own decisions, and I think iBelong theater is an opportunity to do that. We have an outstanding drama program, and they work really hard to put on a powerful performance like iBelong theater.? said Mr. Fallik, a leader of the iBelong team. ?This play relates to iBelong because it talks about a lot of the problems that several students can experience,? said Pedro Silva, an actor in the play. He played the role of Mike. ?I think this play relates to ibelong because at the end of the play the kids stop the bullying and become acquaintances, which is the purpose of ibelong; to overcome

Holiday Bazaar CONTI NUED FROM

Vendor Vanesa Abramowitz said, ?My business ?Marley Lilly?is a jewelry line where everything is handmade. We try to have very different colors in front of the thighs, and the quality is very good, and the prices are not that high.? Students look for unique and creative things and like the bazaar because it gives them an opportunity to buy those things. Leyka said, ?I get a chance to buy things and see things from businesses that aren't very popular.? Julia said, ?At the bazaar, I buy things that are unique and that I cannot find anywhere else.? Not only are there amazing things at the bazaar, but the money also goes to a great cause and help the school to improve our education. Seventh-grader Mia Finvarb said, ?Yes I do like the bazaar; it attracts a lot of people, and we can raise money for different kinds of funds for the school, and we can spend time with our friends.?

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Julia said, ?I think the school does the bazaar to raise money and for people to have a good time, shop, and contribute to the community.?

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the bullying and get along,? said Erin Rubins, an actress in the play. She played the role of Karen, Trevor?s little sister. Mr. Gracy found the ideal play, and auditions commenced the very first week of school. ?I wanted to be in ?Before The Bell?because I wanted to play Ethan. And I have acted before, was previously in the musical The Lion King. For the audition, I performed a monologue about a boy who dreams of becoming an astronomer.? said Pedro. ?I wanted to be in "Before the Bell" because I thought it would be very fun and I love acting, it is one of my biggest passions. I have acted before many times in Elementary School. This was my first play in Middle School. A few of my major roles when I was in Elementary School were Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof and Molly in Annie.? said Erin. Immediately after the final cast list was announced, the intensive rehearsals began. The actors were ready to work. A lot of work went into the

production. The actors rehearsed 3-4 days a week for three hours at a time for eight weeks. ?It was heavy, and we needed to make sure the actors were alright by playing their characters, mentally, emotionally, and physically. We also needed to make sure the messages we presented were really clear,? said Mr. Gracy. ?The cast put in a lot of time and effort into creating this production. I felt that we put enough effort to push our limits and put on an exceptional performance that even the cast was shocked by the outcome,? said Pedro. ?A lot of time went into this production. I am not sure how long in particular, but I remember having to stay after school from 3:30 pm to 5 pm or sometimes 6 pm. I know the entire cast put a lot of effort into this play and we all made sure to be at rehearsals on time, which made it easier to start all of our scenes.? said Erin. Mr. Gracy wanted the audience to truly take away something from the performance, to leave the performance with an inspired and different and perspective. Continued on page 11

Leyka said, ?I think that the school does the bazaar because it?s a fun way to raise money and for the school and the materials student or teacher might need.? The bazaar has so many great qualities. Some vendors have children that go to school here, like Michelle Possin. She said, ?I love supporting the school that my kids go to.? The parent association is a huge part of the fundraising. Ms. Lubetsky said, ?The Parent Association is a group of parents that work together to create programming, and we also create a community feeling and a fun day for everybody.? ?But most importantly we raise funds for all the important work we do on campus such as help build buildings and iPads for classrooms and all the other amazing programs we do and the bazaar is our biggest fundraiser of the year.? she finishes.

Top from left: Noah M ayer-Perez, Pedro Silva, Nico De la Cadena, and Renan M ond Ramos Bottom from left: Cater ina Ser r ano-Bigles, Car men Ser r ano-Bigles and Pedro Silva


Page 10

Walk the Walk... again

CONTI NUED FROM PAGE 1

Sixth-grader, Jolie Multack said, "I came to support cancer and have fun walking with my friends." Marilyn Greenfield said, ?The Walk has become a passion of mine as so many of my friends and family members have been diagnosed. Working with the students and seeing their dedication and understanding of cancer has fulfilled my goal of making certain that each of us is aware of the disease.?

for cancer.? Ms. Greenfield explained, ?The leadership class organizes bake sales during the month of October to raise money for the walk. Members of the leadership class also assist with the set up the morning of the walk, sign in Middle School students who are in attendance at the walk, and we run a popcorn and snow cone booth at the walk to raise money for the walk on behalf of the Middle School.?

Ana said that she knows someone who Seventh-grader, Bianca Malatesta said has been affected by cancer. She her favorite part was getting to hang explained, "My grandma had breast out with friends and doing the walk for cancer and thank god she was one of service. She also said, "Another the lucky ones who survived." She activity I got to do was rock climbing further said, "My family and I prayed a with my friends and the games, but my lot for her and we were favorite was rock climbing " I cut [my hair ] very lucky." because whenever we fell because I felt that it my friends and I would just was a good thing to laugh it off.? Ms. Greenfield

do and other people explained, ?I do however work with the needed it more than Another seventh-grader, leadership class to I do." Maryam Rassif, said that her organize the Middle favorite part was "the Caer a Char les School cancer awareness powder Puff dances, the assembly that takes rides, and hanging out after place the week before the Walk.? the walk with my friends." During the Middle School cancer awareness assembly, the school recognizes a cancer survivor, 10th grader, Jack Lombardo. Each year during the Walk the Walk, people have the option to cut their hair to donate to cancer patients who have lost their hair. Sixth-grader, Caera Charles, cut her hair for cancer for the first time. She said, "I cut it because I felt that it was a good thing to do and other people needed it more than I do." She also said that she would cut her hair for cancer again. Eighth-grader, Chiara Moura said, "I cut my hair because I like donating to a greater cause and it was something I got to participate in with my friends. This is my second year cutting it

Ana said her favorite part was getting exercise. Seventh-grader Luci Pasqualin said, "My favorite part was watching people get their haircut." Seventh-grader Laura De Wilde said, "My favorite part was rock climbing with my friends. Next year I would like to try bungee jumping because it looked like a lot of fun.? Marilyn Greenfield said that in 1997, we were getting our accreditation and we lacked all school community service. We then decided to do a Walk, and it later became the current Walk the Walk

PHOTO BY EL L A GREEN

Seventh gr ader s Jolie M ultack and L ila Alonso enj oy the beautiful day at the Walk for Cancer.

NJHSInduction PHOTOS BY I SABEL L A GAL OFRE AND EL L A GREEN


Page 11

iBelong reinforces core values BY CONTI NUED FROM

?When I was a kid, I was bullied. I really wanted the audience to just take a minute to think about all the things that make us all different, and instead of hurting people about what makes them different, to really take in those differences,? said Mr. Gracy. ?Although you may not understand something about somebody, give them the benefit of the doubt. Take their differences as a positive, not something scary or negative."

?I wanted the audience to realize that a lot of people have a lot of things going on," said Ms. Byrne. "We don?t know what motivates people to do the things they do or say the things they say, and if we can all pause and try to listen to one another, I think that all incidents of people being hurtful and aggressive will diminish." ?Obviously we would love to decrease bullying at the school, so we hope they got that message,? said Mr. Fallik. ?But we also hope they got the message to look deeper into people. Somebody that you might not like, somebody that you might not get along with, maybe if you had a conversation and you better understand where they came from or why they are the way they are, maybe you would find a connection, or maybe you would find some sympathy.? ?The goal of this play is to educate the audience that the bullies also face problems and they need as much help as the victim," said Pedro. "I wanted the audience to see that the bullies aren't such bad people, but others make them who they are."

?The goal of this play was to get a message through to our peers about how bullying is not okay," said Erin. "You never know the other person's story so never judge and never tease. As the little sister who had no idea that her brother was a bully, I wanted to get the message through to the audience that even if you are trying to keep something from someone, they will find out, as my character did about her brother bullying other people.?

?As a peer counselor, I wanted the audience to realize that everyone goes through things, whether in school or at home and people need to respect that and not take things so personally,? said Danielle Respler. ?We got a lot of positive feedback," said Mr. Gracy. "The audience seemed really engaged during the assembly, and the parents certainly liked it a lot. So I really hope the play was effective, and I think it was.? ?I do think the play was effective, not necessarily for everyone, but I think it absolutely brings home the point that I said,? said Ms. Byrne. ?The cast really rose to the occasion. I was blown away,? said Mr. Gracy. ?I had many people tell me, people from the outside, people in the arts, that they were in awe that middle school students could pull off such a deep performance. I think it was really successful.? ?The production was like nothing I could ever imagine," said Mr. Fallik. "I've seen drama productions on all levels from middle school, high school, college, and professional, and I am stunned at how phenomenal these actors are . Overall, I can just not say enough positive things about Mr. Gracy and what he?s achieved with those students.? ?I thought it was just profound," said Mr. Connor, the interim head of school. ?The production went very well," explained Erin. "It was difficult when it came to the parts when we had to walk and act in reverse order, especially if someone went too fast or too slow because that would throw the timing off. When we were on the stage, though, everything went perfect in that respect. Sometimes a person missed or skipped a line, but thankfully that person or another actor covered it up by improvising. That is a part of acting that is very important; you MUST trust your partner when you are acting. Improv is also another core part of acting because it allows you to cover something up, be it your partner's

PAGE

9

mistake or your own.? Sharing experience acting in the play, Pedro said, ?I almost felt overpowered being my character since everyone feared him and did what he said. I can relate to this character not wanting to lose his one and only friend.? ?As an audience member, I think the production went very well," said Danielle. "It explained a lot, and it showed all the sides to what could happen. Such as a bystander, the bully, and the person being bullied." iBelong does many activities during the school year. The iBelong theater is just one unique activity in particular. They do a lot of other activities too, one of them being the monthly iBelong coffeehouse. Students come to the seminar room to drink hot chocolate and participate in an activity where students discuss personal issues. The iBelong team decided to have these coffeehouses to get students to learn about their differences and similarities. It is also meant for students to have a meaningful experience with their friends or perhaps alone, but it is a wonderful opportunity to connect with new people. Ms. De La Cadena, the middle school seminar teacher, said that the activities that are done at the coffeehouse really teach kids about different social issues and how to handle their emotions better, and when kids exit the classroom they have learned a lot. Like the iBelong theater, the overall goal is to have the students leave with a new perspective. One of the coffeehouses this school year was about exclusion. This was the first iBelong experience for many students. Abigail Mandel, a sixth-grader, said, ?I enjoyed the activities done at the iBelong coffeehouse, and I liked the hot chocolate. We did an activity where we had to write a time when someone left you out. We also played a game where we

threw paper balls at each other. It taught me not to leave people out because it hurts their feelings. I learned a lot, and I think it was great. It was a great experience, and I am most probably going to attend the next coffeehouse.? Eleanor Merrill, a sixth-grader said, ?It was okay. I liked the hot chocolate, and I sort of liked the activities. I might consider going to the next coffeehouse, but I am unsure.? Erika Ramirez, a sixth-grader said, ?I did an activity where I had to write a time when someone left me out. The coffeehouse taught me about friendship and kindness, and it was fun. The hot chocolate with the marshmallows was good. I might go to the next iBelong coffeehouse.? There was an iBelong coffeehouse dedicated to discussing ?Before The Bell.? ?In the coffee house, we got to ask questions to the actors that were in the play, and I feel like when they answered more people were involved in what we were talking about and even asked questions about it,? said Danielle. ?It was another great story of bullying to discuss," said Ms. Byrne. "The exercise was to read an essay of someone who had experienced bullying. There were small group discussions of why people bully and the way bullies feel. And at the end of the coffeehouse, the actors in the play were able to talk about their character and the motivation of their character.? iBelong?s mission is ?to inspire members of the community to look out for one another. Through effective communication, students will understand each other better and nurture the value of empathy, in the hopes of creating an inclusive community and improving the Miami Country Day School experience for everyone.? And this is exactly what not only iBelong theater but every activity in iBelong has achieved.


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GATEway brings Brazilian students to MCDS BY DAVI D BEJAR

Eight students from Brazil came to Miami Country Day School to shadow eighth graders and have experience here at our school and in America, or more particularly, Miami. Their names are Ana Luiza Adrien Bordim, Beatriz Fernandes De Arauj, Gabriela Chequi Zacarias, Gustavo Martinez Brasileiro Martins, Henry De Oliveira Vasconcellos, Isabella Gonzalez Souza, Isis D´alessandro Mendes Valente, and Victória Fernanda Rodrigues.

and the primary host of the Brazilian kids, said, ?They came about a year ago to Miami, and we began talking about it then and just started looking at the specifics, and we really started planning last spring when they knew they had a group coming." Mr. Turf said, ?I have I had the pleasure of spending all last week with them and getting to know them, and I thought they were a great group.?

When asked about what Isis did here, she said, ?We went kayaking, shopping, watched a Miami Heat game, and went to a cooking school.?

Isabella Gonzalez Souza also loved the Miami Heat game and said it was a really cool experience and was really fun.

Mr. Fallik, the eighth-grade team leader,

helped coordinate the ambassadors for the Brazill students. Mr. Fallik said, ?I have spent a lot of time with them. Some of the students have actually been in some in my civics classes, and they have learned some material. On Wednesday, November 7, I took them to a cooking school where they learned to cook and then we went to the Miami Heat game.? He said, ?This is the first time Mr. Turf has done this. This trip is a part of the gateway program, and the gateway program usually sends people from here to other countries.? Mr. Turf, the director of the Gateway program

He also explained, ?We had a student he is a senior here now it was actually his idea, and he had a connection. He came into my office one-day last year and said, 'I think it would be a great idea if we got the two schools together. They are very similar to Miami Country Day School. They are looking for an American partner.' and that?s when all the Brazilian teachers came, and I met with them we could have chosen anywhere we wanted but that just kind of fell into our lap. Mr. Turf remarked, ?Just like all of our trips they are voluntary they presented the program, and we actually made a little video similar to the Panama video to encourage them to come they had parent meetings, and student meetings and the students all volunteered to sign up.? Isis D´alessandro Mendes Valente said, ?It was so cool going to a basketball game because it was my first basketball game I?ve ever been to.

Isabella said that she had learned about atoms and neutrons in physical science and then she learned about poems in English. She also had Math, Social Studies, and Seminar in addition to Physical Science and English. She shadowed Giulianna Schamy. Ana Luiza Adrien Bordim said she had Math, English, Science, Spanish, and Dance. These eight students were for about two weeks and had a fantastic experience. We all hope they can perhaps visit again!


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Teachers views REVIEW: The Hate T.H.U.G. UGive BY I SABEL L A GAL OFRE

On October 24, the faculty and staff had the opportunity to see the film The Hate U Give. Mr. Fallik, a member of the CHANGE committee, organized the teachers to come together to go watch the film and talk about it afterwards. This movie is based on a book about young black girl, Starr, who goes to a rich private school but lives in a poor neighborhood. To fit in, she switches her personality. She witnesses the shooting of childhood friend in the hands of a police officer and, later, fights to get her voice to be heard. Mr. Fallik, along with the CHANGE committee, decided to organize the trip to the movies because many of the teachers had read the book, and the trailer looked like it applied to MCDS.

and when she went to school she had to kind of put on a different kind of personality because she wanted to fit into both of the communities?, agreed Mrs. Davis.

?The most impactful part of the movie was seeing Starr switch personalities when she is at home or with her friends from her neighborhood versus being with her friends from school and at school she is two very different people," said 9th grade teacher Mr. D?Angelo. "She has to do that because of the expectations of the people around her. She can?t just be her self, so watching her two worlds collide was really impactful."

In almost all private schools in North America, people face the same issue regarding race. This movie helped the teachers at Miami Country Day School better Mrs. Davis, a 4th-grade teacher, understand the issues that kids who also is part of the CHANGE face and how to make the school committee at school decided to go better so that watch the movie " I n the USA we have a lot those problems because in the don?t happen. CHANGE

of issues with r ace that we committee they have j ust not dealt with, really want to and we are not on another start making our planet, so the things that community more are happening in our united in our approach to racial countr y are also happening issues at our in our campus." school. So she thought that this was an excellent opportunity to connect with everyone. ?I have seen a million of issues with race at our school," said MS Guidance Counselor Mrs. Byrne. "In the USA we have a lot of issues with race that we have just not dealt with, and we are not on another planet, so the things that are happening in our country are also happening in our campus.? Most of the teachers that went to watch this movie were very impacted and agreed that Starr had to switch personalities to be able to fit in at school and in her neighborhood. ?I think it was sort of sad that like Starr was like in two different communities, she had to switch her personalities, so when she was at her home she was one person

After watching the movie, the teachers when to dinner and had a discussion. about the movie and racial tensions at - M r s. Byr ne MCDS. Ms. Byrne focused on offensive language. She noticed that ?there were no teachers or administrators represented in the movie." She said, "We also talked about the different characters, the boyfriend who was trying to understand what it meant coming from a privileged class. In general, it was a very robust conversation.? Mr. Fallik tried to keep the discussions on the movie and how it made them feel about our own school. ?Thanks to you, Mr. Fallik, for arranging the details for all of us to successfully see and have a conversation about the movie and the issues it so clearly raises and expresses?, said Ms. Shank.

BY I SAAC BROWN

For some viewers, George Tillman?s recent movie The Hate U Give (T.H.U.G.) is hard to swallow -- there?s the drama, the no-compromise stance it takes on civil rights, and how it highlights instances that some of us have seen, heard, and dealt with. A faithful book adaptation, the film casts Amandla Stenberg as Starr Carter. The audience goes through a variety of emotions with her: sorrow, guilt, happiness, and pressure. Pressure is a key theme of T.H.U.G., and, importantly, oppression.

characters -- in particular, the Carter family. As the plot progressed, you could see their personalities shine through, each one representing a different part of black America. Seven and Starr T.H.U.G. can be seen as a fresh represent the teenage, developing take on the black experience, or an black American - nervous about eye-opener for the rest of their image, and beginning to feel America. But regardless of one?s the image that society has laid out own race or ethnicity, it is easy to for them. Eight-year old Sekani is see how blacks in predominantly the child - innocent, and loving to white his family. He is environments " She blends into the crowd, the next generation have to becomes invisible, 'whiter.' and already sees assimilate into This is a common problem hate and injustice society in order around him. He minor ity youth like her to feel accepted. has to deal with It is easy to see face." these issues, more how hate can - I saac Brown so than wealthier spread quickly children in affluent throughout a neighborhoods. Nonetheless, community, and how other Sekani?s innocence is as pure as a communities can just stand back cinnamon roll. His interactions and watch without involvement. with his siblings show how the purest joy that they can find is Without spoiling the plot, what I with their kin. Seven and Starr are enjoyed most about T.H.U.G. only truly happy and bright were the interactions between the around their family -- not around their school or their neighborhood. This makes their moments together all the more meaningful, and the bond that they share resonates with viewers more than any otherr.

Continued on page 23


Page 14

Arts Dance Students Visit NYC BY EL L A SM I TH

This year was the third year the dance students have gotten the opportunity to go to New York. The first year was only 35 students who went, but this year they had 62 students, so students are beginning to realize what an amazing, fun experience it is. They do a lot of cool things there to improve the way they dance, and also, how to act on stage. Sha?Quan Johnson, the dance

teacher, says that the main reason they go to New York is to learn different ways to dance and to see how dancers prepare before a show. They still have fun and go shopping and see plays, but they also learn vital skills of a dancer. Mr. Johnson said, ?They learn how to step out of there comfort zone, dive deep into a professional mind, and how to present yourself on stage.?

Sixth grader Riley Richards went on the trip for the first time this year. She said that she learned different ways to dance and different techniques. Isa Urbina, an eighth-grader, has gone on the dance trip for all three years. She said that she learns a new style of dance like house dance and modern. She also explained, ?We go to one or two classes a day and then go shopping or go to a park.? Nurse Bianca Ricart went as well for the second year. She goes with them just in case someone gets hurt. She said she loves going and the dance instructors were great this year, and the kids were enjoying it more. She also thinks that it is important for her to go so that everyone is safe. She goes to help, to have fun, and to watch the students have fun in their dance classes.

Mr. Johnson said that the students had a lot of fun. He said his favorite part was seeing their

growth over such a short period. Isa said that her favorite part was the hip-hop dance classes because the teacher was cool. She also said that her favorite year out of the three was the first because this year there were too many people. Riley said that her favorite part was learning how other people dance, and the way our school teaches dance is different. Nurse Bianca said her favorite

part was also watching the students do hip-hop. They went to lots of cool places. They went shopping; they went to parks; and they watched a play, King Kong. After all of their classes in New York and at Miami Country Day, they ended up with a great performance. They performed Spider-man and did an exceptional job. They met with people who taught them how to act on stage and behind the curtain. Riley said that she definitely learned to respect others on stage. In conclusion, the students had fun and enjoyed the trip; they learned a lot and had done a great job. Many of the students liked the hip-hop classes, and that was their favorite part. They learned a lot of teamwork skills that will help them in their dance and stage. They all had an amazing time and now wish to go again!


Page 15

MCDScelebrates Halloween BY I SABEL L A POSSI N

Halloween is a great experience for everybody because it is active and really fun. Some people have crazy experiences on Halloween. Like seventh-grader Sofia Sharam, for example. She said, ?I once when to Halloween Horror Nights on Halloween and there was a girl that was ten years old, and she thought everything was real so she started crying, screaming, and running around like crazy. This was so scary.? Seventh-grader Sophia Mendez said, ?I went to a haunted house, and it was really scary. I was getting in, and I handed the lady my ticket she had a mask on she chased us around we ran and ran and ran. Another really scary experience is when we were in line to go in a ride. But right behind us was a man with a bloody terrifying mask and he made us scream so much, it was a really scary experience.? Mr. Muhlig, the seventh-grade math teacher, said, ?The scariest experience I?ve ever had was when I was 11 years old, and I was dressed as a superhero calculator man, and I was being chased by a casket.? Halloween is really crazy and

scary and so many people love this holiday. Sophia said, ?I like that we get lots of candy.? Sofia said, ?I like Halloween because I can be with my friends and I can eat candy.?

Above from left: Annamar ie NuĂąez, Ar iana Clar ke, Ava K ulton, L indsey Temes, Gabr iella Judge, Ginger Jacob, Julia M arquevich, and M ikaela Tolles

Seventh-grader Tiana Tolles said, ?I like getting candy and eating it. I like dressing up too.? Dressing up is a really creative, fun, and a chance to be somebody else for a day. Mr. Muhlig said, ?What I like about Halloween is that you can dress up as anything you want or anyone you want.? Many kids and adults celebrate Halloween with friends and family. Sophia Mendez said, ?I celebrate Halloween with my friends because it?s fun and I enjoy it.? Sofia said, ?I do it with my friends because I have fun and enjoy hanging out with my friends.? Tiana said, ?I like spending time with my friends AND family.?

?This has impacted my relationships with my friends because we grew closer and we bonded.? Halloween is a holiday of traditions of dressing up, carving pumpkins, eating and getting lots of candy, spending time with friends and family, and going to Halloween parties. Lots of students celebrate these traditions.

daughter trick or treating, and I have candy at home, but I celebrate Day of the Dead more. Day of the Dead is November 1st and 2nd the days after, and that's more of a family thing, and I did it when I lived in Mexico. It?s a way to celebrate the people that have died in our family and close friends. You think about them,

Tiana said, ?I get the pumpkins and carve them. I go trick or treating and dress up.? Sophia said that she celebrates Halloween by going to parties and trick-or-treating. Sofia said, ?I dress up and go to parties, or trick-or-treating.?

Above from left: Remi Rosenfeld, Bella Brod, Olivia Cooper, and M ackenzie Behlman

This holiday has brought families and friends together.

Not only is there the traditional American way to celebrate, but there are also people from different cultures that celebrate this day a different way, like Ms. Rodriguez, the seventh-grade English teacher

Sophia said,

Ms. Rodriguez said, ?I take my

and you can have people over to your house and show them your ofrenda. It is a table set up with pictures of the people that have died, and you put things that they loved and symbolic things as well like skulls and fruit and sweet thing and salty things and water as well as a sweet bread.?


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Entertainment REVIEW: Bohemian Rhapsody Bohemian Rhapsody is a movie based on the true story of the band Queen and BY A NNAM ARI E their journey to NUNEZ becoming the greatest rock band on the planet. It explains everything from the beginning and creation of the band to their amazing performance in 1985 at the Live Aid concert. The story is about the lead singer, Freddie Mercury, and his tough journey as an outcast immigrant struggling to find his place in a harsh society, to becoming a famous artist. For Freddie Mercury, it wasn?t easy becoming one of the most inspiring artists on the planet. It was a struggle, and he faced many challenges. After Queen became very successful, Freddie decided to leave the band to pursue a solo career. Later on, he realized he had made a horrible choice, and he wasn?t doing well in his career. Then, Freddie decided to reunite with his bandmates for the Live Aid concert. Freddie had been recently diagnosed with AIDS,

Rami M alek plays the legendar y Freddie M ercur y in the film.

but that didn?t stop him. He leads the band in one of the best performances in the history of rock music. Ever since then, Queen has inspired so many music lovers to pursue their dreams and talents. In Bohemian Rhapsody, Freddie Mercury is played by Rami Malek. It was a hard role because he had big shoes to fill since Freddie was such an inspirational person. During the process of

filming the movie, Rami Malek said, "I kept searching for ways into the man and then I realized, he left us a diary and in it is all of the songs.? What he meant by this was that Freddie had written about his life in songs and he just had to put it all together. The movie is important because it shows us the story of one of the best rock bands in history. Eugene Bernabe rated this movie four stars on Rotten Tomatoes and

said, ?Rami Malek delivers boldly as the eccentric Queen frontman, and the musical vibes and sequences will have you chanting, clapping and singing throughout.? The average rating for this movie was 62% as some people did not agree with parts of the film and they said that it could have been better. If you like listening to Queen and other rock bands, I recommend you watch Bohemian Rhapsody in theaters now!

REVIEW: Mamma Mia 2 BY A NA GAL L OTTA

L

close period. et me tell

you about the movie/musical, ?Mamma Mia!? This movie is about a woman named Dona and her daughter Sophie. Back in the day, Dona fell in love with three men, Harry, Bill, and Sam. She first met them on an island in Greece, where she grew up and worked in a hotel. Dona fell in love with each of them, but they would always seem to leave her. After all three men left, she found out she was pregnant. She raised her daughter, working in a hotel. Dona had her daughter, Sophie, growing up surrounded by all the curiosity of who her father was. As a matter of fact, Dona did not know who the father was since they all appeared to her in a very

Sophie grows up and finds her soulmate at a young age, then soon wishes to get married. She really wants her dad to be there on that special day, so she ends up finding her mom?s diary. Then, she does her research and finds the three men?addresses and invites them to the island. She then tries to hide them from her mother, but Dona finds them. Dona gets really upset at first but

ends up falling in love again with one of them, Sam. On the day of the wedding, Sophie decides she is too young to get married and goes exploring the world with Sky since it was their dream. A plot twist happens, and Sam asks Dona?s hand in marriage, then they get married. This movie/musical is super entertaining, romantic, funny,

dramatic and somehow emotional. I remember watching it as a little girl in my grandma?s house, back in my hometown. From then until now it is still my favorite movie. I also love the music in it, especially ?dancing queen.? I remember dancing and singing to it when I was about four years old. Not only romantic, but it is also hilarious. Especially when the three best friends, Dona, Tanya, and Rosie, are together. I think this movie is more of a female film, but if you are a male, enjoy it, I am sure you will like it a lot! I am certain you will love it, you will even want to watch more of it. Guess what? There is a Mamma Mia 2! I really do recommend you watch both because it is the best movie ever to exist! I rate this movie a 100%!


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REVIEW: Fantastic Beasts 2 BY EL L A SM I TH

The Movie Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald is the new film from the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling. It is a prequel to the Harry Potter story and a sequel to the first Fantastic Beasts movie called Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. The Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald movie tells the story of Grindelwald?s powerful rise as an evil wizard and his mission to put pure-blood wizards in charge of the non-wizarding world.

It begins by showing the dark wizard Grindelwald?s escape from captivity by using his incredibly powerful wand. The wizards transporting him unmatched his powers, and he was able to free himself. It also goes on to explain Dumbledore?s early life when he was a teacher at the Hogwarts School Witchcraft and Wizardry.

Professor Dumbledore comes up with a plan to upset Grindelwald?s scheme. Grindelwald?s idea is to make pure-blood wizards the rulers of the world without the

Recently, I went to the movie theater and watched the movie, ?Instant BY SYDNEY Family.? Even M ANDEL before I went into the theater, I knew I was going to enjoy this movie. I had heard that it was a good movie from my friends who saw it already. Additionally, some of my favorite actors/actresses, like Mark Wahlberg and Octavia Spencer, were in it, so I thought it would be a good idea to see it. Also, knowing my absolute favorite actor in this movie, Mark Wahlberg, I knew this movie was going to be like the other movies he?s in, like Daddy?s Home, Daddy?s Home 2, Invincible, and more, funny, action-packed, and full of emotion. My predictions were more than 100% right. It was amazing! It was sad, but the sad that movies have that make the movie better than it already is, but it was also hilarious, so it had the perfect balance to make the movie so amazing. Most people don?t like movies that have a lot of emotion,

current law of having to hide their magical powers to non-wizards, muggles. He gives a task to his former student, Newt Scamander, to find a guy named Credence Barebone. At first, Newt turned down the offer but is later convinced and proceeds to look for him in Paris. He persuades other wizards to help him and eventually find Credence. They find out other interesting characters?backstories in the journey through London, New York, Paris. When they eventually find Credence, they learn that he is a pure-blood wizard who has powers similar to Dumbledore and Grindelwald, although Credence did not know this about himself.

At the end of the movie, Newt and his wizard friends disrupt Grindelwald?s meeting where he escapes again after a massive explosion. Newt, Credence and the others return to meet Dumbledore at Hogwarts. Newt learns that Dumbledore and Grindelwald had a blood pact as

children, which is why Dumbledore needed Newt to help him defeat the dark wizard. The movie ends with Credence realizing the extent of his powers as he makes a mountain explode.

I enjoyed the movie except at times it could get confusing, even if you knew the story well. It definitely had too many explosions, which I feel is part of the reason it was so long. The movie was two hours and fourteen minutes but seemed longer, and the story was hard to follow. I would recommend this movie mostly for people that have read all the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts books and know all the details of the whole story and character?s

backgrounds. In the end, I think that the movie was again, good but confusing. It is rated PG-13. I give it 3 out of 5 stars because it could have been shorter than 2 hours 14 - there were many unnecessary parts.

REVIEW: Instant Family

that make you cry a lot, but this movie is definitely worth the tears. I really like this movie because it shows that

family is everything to all of us, even when we don?t show it. It also shows that even though it?s hard to get along with particular

people sometimes, especially when you?re always with them, that they will always be there for you, no matter what. Even if they yell at you for doing something you do, they still want what?s best for you, and that?s something that?s very important in life, being there for your family. So that?s why I think that the movie ?Instant Family? is such a great movie. It spreads a great message about family, and how you should always be there for your family because they will always be there for you. Also, it really takes you along on the journey of the story, though all the parts that made up the story, and that?s a great thing for a movie to have, a way to reach out to the viewers that are watching the movie. If I were given a chance to watch it again, I would definitely do it. I could watch this movie over and over again and still love it. If I were rating this movie 1-10, I would 100% give it a 10, and I bet when you watch this movie, you will too.


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REVIEW: The Meg

REVIEW: Smallfoot BY CECI L I A STORM

I would give this movie a five out of five because it's a very creative story making you want to watch it more than once. Smallfoot takes place at the top of a mountain where humans can't survive. The protagonist of the story is Migo, a Yeti, who loved his life up in the summit of a mountain until he learned the terrible truth. Migo was walking along the edge of a mountain when he came across the legendary Small Foot (human). When Migo when back to the village to show everybody of his findings the small foot, and all evidence that he was ever there disappeared. This tells of an exciting adventure that Migo undertakes to find evidence that the supposedly mythical Small Foot exists. I enjoyed this movie because it was a new flip on how we imagine Yetis or Big Foot. Instead of seeing the Yeti as a big monster we see a modern society. The director of this movie was Karey Kirkpatrick. Channing Tatum plays the voice of Migo, James Corden as Percy, Zendaya as Meechee, Common as the Stonekeeper. Some other characters in the movie are LeBron James as Gwangi, Gina Rodriguez as Kolka, and Ely Henry as Fleem. This movie has so many twists and turns that you're going to end up holding your breath for every scene. My favorite scene was when the Stone Keeper showed Migo the history of the Yetis and the reason that the laws of the stones were made, to keep the village safe. Migo is shocked and scared after the revelation that the Stone Keeper tells him and ends up lying to everyone even his friends to protect them. Even thought Migo had good intentions gis friends were very disappointed in him. Migo eventually realizes that his friends were right and he sets upon another quest with his friends to save Meechee. You will be satisfied after watching this movie and eager to share it with your friends and family.

The Meg was a good movie about a shark that was supposed to be extinct millions of years ago, but in BY NATAL I A the film, there are two of them M ARQUEZ alive. They live deep under the ocean under ?the cloud? that lays on the bottom of the Mediterranean sea and only come up when there is tons of prey or noise. The oceanologists in the movie had a theory that the Mediterranean sea had no actual floor, but it's cloud so when they sent three oceanologists down to investigate the Mediterranean seafloor, they realize that it was a cloud and that their theory was correct. Later in the movie, they go under the sea and see something they have never seen before. Closer to the middle of the movie, the megalodon gets killed, and they think they have solved their problem, but they were stunned to find out there were two sharks and the other megalodon eats the dead one. Soon, the second megalodon goes to one of the most popular beaches in the world, and of course, it is filled with people, the shark kills hundreds of people, but some of them were quick enough to react.

How Eddie became Venom was by sneaking into the lab where Symbiotes are. Eddie tries to save a friend from Venom but gets it himself. Eddie gets freaked out by this because Venom controls half of Eddie?s brain. When ever Eddie says mask he goes into Venom mode.

Eddie was very funny when he was combined with Venom because Eddie was more of a scaredy cat when Venom would climb up a building. Carlton was a mad scientist because

I would rate this movie 4.5 out of 5 stars because there were some boring parts in the movie. I definitely recommend watching this movie if you like historical creatures and action movies.

REVIEW: Venom he has created dangerous creatures in his lab and tests them on normal people.

The movie Venom has very impressive cast. The cast consists of Tom Hardy as Venom aka Eddie Brock, Michelle Williams as Anne Weying, and Riz Ahmed as Riot aka Carlton Drake. The cast did there job very well.

I liked this movie because it had a lot of action and mysteries about the sea. It was thrilling, and I always wanted to know what came next and when the megalodon shark was going to come. It was also kind of sad because people get hurt and even die. They have to find someone to save the people that were in the first submarine that got attacked. At one part in the movie, the shark actually ends up saving one of the scientists from a squid that was squeezing the submarine and was going to overload the pressure. Later the shark comes back not yet satisfied with his meal and tries to eat the women. The women luckily escape, but the shark comes back and kills a baby whale and its mother, and bites the glass of the underwater headquarters. These to whales belong to the oceanologists and live outside of their bases.

Venom can shape shift and regenerate. He kind of looks like Spider-man but is a lot bigger and has a big mouth full of sharp teeth. The symbiotes only weakness is fire. Eddie was a journalist that was interviewing Carlton. He got fired, which was a big part of his life because he lost his fiance. Carlton?s symbiote, Riot is a lot more powerful than Venom but not as smart.

BY M ARCUS PAPUNEN

Riot and Carlton are sending a rocket to get more symbiotes which is bad because they might kill you. So Eddie and Venom fight Riot and Carlton at the rocket. The fight is very intense because the whole world depends on this fight. Eddie gets disconnected from Venom and gets stabbed by Riot. I honestly Thought he wa dead but then venom connected to him and brought him back to life. Then the battle begins as Riot and Venom start fighting on the rocket. Venom knocks down Riot and Blows up the rocket Riot and Carlton die and Eddie lives but venom ?dies? as we thought but at the end of the movie he comes back alive. I loved the movie and I think they should make a sequel because what could happen with Venom and Eddie. I definitely recommend watching this movie.


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MSgoes to See Phantom The middle school drama students got the opportunity to go on a field trip to see the fantastic BY DANI EL L A Phantom of the JUDGE Opera production. We went to a theater in Fort Lauderdale, and before seeing the show, we got to go eat lunch at The Cheesecake Factory which was a really fun time with friends. ?Phantom of the Opera? is about how Christene, a young dancer (who can also sing) is being taken by the phantom of the opera, who is falling in love with her; however, she is in love with a man named Raoul. It?s romantic and dramatic. The acting is super dramatic and theatrical. Reading about the plot before the performance really hooked me in and got me excited to watch the show.

As an audience member at this performance, I enjoyed it very much. There was lots of singing, which I really liked. The singers were extremely talented and I loved hearing their voices. They clearly practiced a lot to hit some notes in the songs. But some of the songs made me rather sleepy because of the slow, gloomy vibe, but I stayed awake. Plus, I liked the classical style. The sets were incredible. They were so well-built, and the people who built them had to be so talented and experienced with their work in set-building. They had a vast, shiny chandelier and creepy basement with lots of detail. There were also some things about the set, stage, and lighting, that frightened me because I do get scared easily. There was some fire that looked

Quentin Oliver L ee played the Phantom, and Eva Tavares played Chr istine Daae realistic and a bunch of bangs and other sound effects. There were lots of abruptly moving set pieces, too. But undoubtedly, my favorite part of the play was hearing the amazing voices of the cast. They had me in absolute awe because of their talent. If you like to hear truly talented singers, Phantom of

the Opera is the show for you. I also was engaged throughout the whole performance because the plot was interesting and quickly building up and I really wanted to see what would happen. I am so glad I took the opportunity to watch this show with the drama club, and if you have a chance to see this performance, I recommend you do!

RESTAURANTREVIEW: Lettuce and Tomato BY A L EXI S K APL AN

When I first walked into Lettuce & Tomato Gourmet Gastrobar, I got a very ?bohemian? vibe. The restaurant has quite a modern ambiance with a nice patio of thickened and fleshy plants. Luminous golden fairy lights on the ceiling beat down on the dimmed restaurant making it glow, and there is a lot of dark wood and tiled flooring. Overall, the setting of the restaurant is extremely minimalist, and I can easily say it?s one of the best parts of the restaurant. I felt transported to Brooklyn post-gentrification. Then, I got to take my look at the menu. I was shocked at the wide spectrum of food, ranging from Italian food to sushi rolls. It was a food court on a menu, and I couldn?t possibly decide on one sector of the court! Although the menu was incredibly diverse, the restaurant definitely knows how to make it work, as I got this impression from each of the multiple dishes I ordered. I started off with two appetizers. The first was the Robata Chicken Wings, chicken wings coated in hoisin sesame barbecue sauce,

menu confused me, but they worked together in an inexplicably smooth and delicious way. The roll was as good as any I could try around the grand city of Miami, and I would undoubtedly order it again.

sitting on top of blue cheese emulsion and sprinkled with some chimi churry. These wings gave such a luscious, sweet taste in my mouth that it completely made up for the sticky mess they made. The way they were described on the menu made me expect something spicier, but I definitely enjoyed the palatableness. They also could?ve been crispier which would have improved the overall quality. The other appetizer impressed me far more than the wings, which is saying a lot. I ordered the House Meatballs, expecting them to be typical meatballs from spaghetti. They were the opposite; it wasn?t the meatballs that were so special,

it was the sauce. It?s not regular marinara sauce; they incorporate a lot of middle-eastern spices giving it a unique flavor profile. The sauce is such a tangy, interesting spice mix especially with the exquisitely cooked meatballs. This dish was exceptional, and it really shows the restaurants?diversity. For the main course, I ordered my favorite dish from any simple Japanese restaurant - a spicy tuna roll. It was a very well composed dish with fresh fish on the inside and out, a creamy, spicy mayo, fresh mango for sweetness, and crispy shallots to top of it that gave it a nice textural contrast. Reading the flavor combination on the

It was hard to leave without getting a dessert, so what better, simpler option than to stay? I ordered some sort of caramel custard; it was basically a flan. Laying next to it was a fruity raspberry sauce topped off with actual pieces of fruit, blueberries. I bit into the custard and was disappointed because of the bitter, unsatisfying taste, but the raspberry sauced mixed with it on my second bite was delectable. It was a fantastic way to finish off the meal. I had a great experience at Lettuce & Tomato Gourmet Gastrobar with my dad. Everything I tried was really creative and delicious. What I like is that there are so many things on the menu that I didn?t have the opportunity to try, which is why I?m looking forward to my definite next visit.


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Sports Fall Sports Awards BY I SABEL L A GAL OFRE

On December 4, 2018, the sports department held its annual Fall Sports Awards ceremony. For most of the athletes, the challenge is to practice to prepare for the season that began in the summer

and over a hundred athletes participated in sports this year. There were four sports participating, Golf, Swimming, Volleyball, and Cross Country. 4 to 5 athletes won an award per team for each girl and boys. The most important award is the MVP (most valuable player) award that is regularly won by many people on the same teams at the ceremony.

Each year Mr. Hayes, the middle school athletic director, along with other assistant coaches choose the winners of the Fall Sports Awards ceremony based on outstanding performances, work ethic in practices, positive attitude, and have to also have to have great sportsmanship to be a great teammate. Over the years many of the same people have won an

award twice, MVP has regularly been repeated by the same people. Lucia Cartolano, a 7th-grade volleyball player won the MVP Award said, ?I was very happy that I won this award because I felt honored and I worked very hard this year.? Overall Lucia thought of this season as a very good one ?I don?t know how much I expected to win the award, but I was the captain of the team so I just felt like whether I got it or not, I just felt like I had a really good season.? Coach Sennett, an athletic director, said that over the years volleyball has had the most progress. ?The fact that all of our four middle school volleyball teams have won 66 games is really impressive.?

very good, cross country along with the other sports went to districts, regionals, and states in Tallahassee.

Continued on page 22 Even though volleyball has been

MScommands the soccer field BY EL L A GREEN

This year's Miami Country Day Middle School soccer teams have been described as very focused and talented The boys' team has 25 players, and the girls' team has 18. On the girls' team, many of the girls have not played soccer before. Mr. Pineda, the girls' soccer head coach said, half of the players on his team have not played before. His expectations are that he "would really like to see the experienced players really mentor and kinda guide the younger players." The boys' team has only lost against two teams for the last two years. Knowing this, Coach Luis, the boys' soccer head coach said, "We expect the same thing from this team and hopefully make it to the finals, which we haven't done in a while."

Although many of these athletes haven't played before, some have and are very talented soccer players. The star players on the girls' team are, "8th grader Logan Sennett, 8th grader Lauren White, 8th grader Chaya Hazan and 7th grader Remi Rosenfeld?, said

Coach Eleni, the girls' soccer assistant coach. Eight grader, Lauren White said, one of the things that her coaches and teammates do to help her improve in soccer is, "they tell me if I'm doing something wrong or if I need help with something."

Seventh grader, Remi Rosenfeld said that her coaches and teammates help her improve by "by teaching me new skills and helping me make the skills I already know a lot better.

Continued on next page


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Soccer

CONTI NUED FROM

coach, and we do Dives, and he helps me."

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Mr. Pineda said that the best parts about being a coach are "Interacting with the students, seeing how they progress over the course of the year, seeing how they can work together as a team and when we can, winning is a lot of fun."

Remi and Alec have similar opinions on why they joined soccer this year. Remi said, "I joined the soccer team because it is my favorite sport." Alec said, "I joined soccer this year because I really like soccer and I've been playing for a long time."

Coach Eleni added that the best parts about being a coach for her are "getting to see the progress that the players make through the years, like this year I know, I've been with the varsity team since they were in 6th grade, so it's nice to see them all in Juniors and Seniors now."

Mr. Pineda said that the girls' team's biggest competition is "Carrollton and Ransom. Gulliver, we'll usually play good against, but it depends but the toughest teams are going to be Carrollton and Ransom."

On the boys' soccer team, 7th grader, Alec Miller explained that In soccer every day, they usually do "foul work, shooting, dribbling, passing, and sprints at the end along with stretches and everything." The girls' team does different things to warm up. They do passing drills, and while being the goalkeeper, Lauren White said, "I go with Peterson, the goalie

Coach Luis said that the boys' team's biggest competition is "Ransom and Gulliver, we always have a tough time playing them, and Hillel is considered one of our rivals just because they are close and in previous years, we have had great matches against them. Those three will be the

competition that we look forward to." Coach Eleni said that the best parts about being a soccer coach are, "Getting to see the progress that the players make through the years, like this year I know, I've been with the varsity team since they were in 6th grade, so it's nice to see them all in Juniors and Seniors now." Coach Luis said that his favorite parts about being a coach are, "sharing my knowledge and my skills with the boys' middle school team as well as the varsity team and it's gratifying when I see them playing on the field and have a great time."

Lauren White said that her expectation for her team this year is to "do really good against most teams but then like some teams like Carrollton and Ransom, they will beat most likely beat us."


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MSBoys Basketball starts its season BY DAVI D BEJAR

The basketball season started on Monday, November 26, 2018. There are two basketball teams for the middle school Junior Varsity and Varsity. Each team has 15 players and their names for varsity are Matthew Finvarb, Alex Mendelson, Marcus Papunen, Nathaniel Giovannucci, Ryder Rosenberg, Cody Halliwell, Evan Hurwitz, Edoardo Figari, Max Ruskowski, James Deering, Tristan Bradley, Tristan Bradley, Artyom Trukhachev, Justin Williams, and Hendrix Lee. The Junior Varsity team consists of Issa Dinar, Nicolas Margarit, Max Toyos, Jashan Singh, Carson Goodman, Colin Freeman, Aarin Singh, Joao Kaschny, Avery Sinnes, Samuel Storch, Julian Mellado, Justin Claramonte, Marcos Mellado, Tanner Sennett, and Julian Erez.

Coach Ochiel Swaby said that ?I?ve been coaching at Miami country day for 16 years 15 as a head coach and 1 year as an assistant.? Coach O remarked ?I played basketball and once I was done with my playing career I thought coaching was a good way to share my experience and what I did as a player.? Coach O commented ?I would say for me I watch basketball on television as much as I can. I mean the game is always changing and you can?t just stay the same you have to change when the game changes.? Coach O also said that ?Normally there is a tryout for two weeks and we try to get 15 people on each

team.?

being a multi sport athlete.

Coach O said that ?We have a lot of coaches who keep a close eye on players and we have conversations with each other and it?s never a single decision it?s always a group decision.?

Julian remarked ?I have enjoyed playing basketball because I like to play on a team and it happens to be my favorite sport.?

Coach O also remarked ?Usually there is skill work and then we try to play scrimmages and then we put plays our system to stay organized in games.? Coach O commented ?We have a personal trainer and if someone is seriously injured we call the trainer.? Coach O said that he encourages multi sport athletes, but if it interferes with basketball he asks that the athlete tell him in advance. Lastly Coach O said that education comes first. Sports is extra, and sports always comes after school. Never first. Julian Erez, a 6th grader who plays on the Junior Varsity basketball team, said, ?I love to play the game and to play on a team.? Julian said that he plans to play tennis in addition to basketball and said that he does not mind

Sixth grader Matthew Finvarb is on the Varsity basketball team. He said that his brother influenced him from a young age in sports and mainly basketball. Matthew remarked about the Middle School Boys Varsity team having lots of potential to be a great team. Matthew also plays football when he is not playing basketball and he loves playing sports in general. Colin Freeman 6th grade junior varsity basketball player Colin Freeman said that it is very fun to be on a team and play with your friends. Colin said as of today I?m very proud of myself because I?m averaging four points a game as a point guard. Colin said that Lebron James is a role model of his because of all the great basketball he plays.

Fall Sports Awards CONTI NUED FROM

Cristina Hernandez, a 7th-grade cross-country runner won the Spartan Award said, ?I felt very happy when my name was called to win the Spartan Award because

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everything that represents this award is what I did and they were all good things so I was really that people thought of me as good.? This year the Fall Sports Award ceremony changed. Instead of every sport joining in the gym to then separate to go to their specific room, this year everyone went straight to their room. Coach Hayes helped choose this change along with Coach Sennett, Coach Parizo, Coach Polite, and Coach Haderer. Coach Hayes thinks that this change in the ceremony is better. ?I think it went well and

we had a good turnout. Many people liked the shorter format with all the things going on with their tests, homework, and Hanukah.? This year?s fall sports had a lot of success, even though not everyone won an award, everyone had the great opportunity to be on a team and to play for MCDS sports. Many of the athletes like Cristina Hernandez have already joined one of the winter sports teams and the sports department

along with the other athletes hope to accomplish a better or just as good winter sports season as the fall sports season.


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T.H.U.G. Review CONTI NUED FROM

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The Hate U Give does a fantastic job of showing this kinship, and the pride that they can (privately) express in their identity. I mentioned that Starr is only happy around her family and friends this is not an exaggeration. She is secluded and isolated at a place where she is supposed to feel a kinship -- her school. Elite private schools like Williamson Prep are easy to be comfortable in, with their beautiful campuses and many resources -- if you?re part of the majority. If you happen to be a minority, you can feel choked in the halls, in the class, and around the students. If you happen to attend a school that is predominantly white, like most private schools (and many elite public schools), you are encouraged to leave your culture at your door. This is something that a lot of minorities can sympathize with. If you attend a prestigious New England school, or university, you may not be fully comfortable expressing your true self, because that could taint your reputation. The transition can become automatic for some, including Starr. She blends into the crowd, becomes invisible,

?whiter.? This is a common problem minority youth like her face. The Hate U Give might be seen as ?one-sided? by some, or dismissed as overly political, or preachy. Some might feel that it is exaggerated, unrealistic, or that these experiences are untrue. All of these feelings are expected, but what the real story drives home is the reverse. The character Khalil is based on Oscar Grant, an unarmed 22-year-old black man who was killed on New Year?s

Day in 2009. The fictional neighborhood that Starr grows up in, Garden Heights, is the neighborhood that writer Angie Thomas grew up in -- every aspect of it was taken from her life and her experiences. And the emotions that each character feels, the decisions that they make, the actions that they take, as unfamiliar to a range of viewers they may be, are all organic. With that said, if you decide to watch The Hate U Give, my first words would be, ?Congrats.

You?ve taken the first step.? But afterward, as an audience, it is our job to continue to have an open mind to the issues of injustice it presents. The film, which has received critical acclaim and is widely accepted as an Oscar contender, grossed $31.6 million, and deserves at least some level of consideration. Characterized by an unvarnished message, this movie sings a truth that black America has been humming for centuries. It is our duty to see this not as a dividing movie, but as one that unites us in listening to the experience it describes.

MScompetes at Regional Thespians Competition

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