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The Joke Signal Pascack Valley High School

“Where there’s smoke there’s fire”

April 2016 Volume XII, Issue II

New suggested PV courses?

By Sydney Krantz, Staff Writer

With several new initiatives in recent years such as online classes, virtual school days, block scheduling, pascack period courses, and full-year marking periods, it is no secret that our school is on the cutting-edge when it comes to education. Though some of these advancements may face valid criticisms from members of the staff and student body, I for one applaud the administration for their efforts. In fact, if the end goal is to advance our curriculum to the point where it perfectly emulates the ever-developing world in which we live, I believe that our administrators have not nearly gone far enough. Adding new electives, online courses, and a mandatory financial literacy class have certainly put us on the right track, but I have listed below a few suggestions for a new category of courses of my own creation that are necessary to prepare students for the world in which we currently live.

Photo by Curstine Guevarra

Suggestion 1: Public Tweeting

It’s almost like a course in public speaking, but instead is designed for utilizing twitter as a vehicle for sharing opinions and information. Thanks to the English and social studies curriculums nearly everyone in this school has learned how to articulate profound and intelligible opinions, but unfortunately, nobody really cares what you have to say if it is going to take you more than three sentences to do so. Sorry, but I will be the first to admit that my attention span is shorter than the list of people who want to go to prom with me (a whopping zero). The only reason I made a twitter account was for school and it has never been my social media outlet of choice. That being said, I feel as though many students, myself included, would benefit from a class in which we could learn how to assert our opinions or express to someone that their political views are so incredibly backwards that you are willing to start a GoFundMe page so that you and your friends could raise an amount of money so significant that they would be persuaded not to vote in any national or state election ever again in only 140 characters or less. I’m sure a lot of it is learn as you go, but there are some questions that only a qualified educator is capable of answering: “What’s a subtweet?”, “Did she just throw shade at me?”, “Is it rude to livetweet a funeral?”, “How many hashtags should I use when I drag her?”, and “What privacy settings should I use so that the school newspaper doesn’t embed my personal tweets in an article?” are just a few examples.

Suggestion 2: Instamarketing

With the rise of Instagram, the social photo and video-sharing app, instafame is the newest way to feel instant gratification by being widely recognized for doing absolutely nothing, or so it appears. While it may seem like taking clumsily edited pictures of oneself requires minimal effort, there is actually an unimaginable amount of work to be done in order to ensure that each of your scantily clad photos gains you a significant amount of followers. Think of it as an expansion of our new marketing elective. It could integrate elements of the current class like how to identify a target market or determine the stage of a product’s

lifecycle while teaching how to market the most important item anyone could have, oneself. After covering some of the marketing basics, the course could include such units as “Finding Your Selfie Angle”, “How to Determine the Appropriate Filter”, “Classy Not Trashy”, “Picking a WCW or MCM”, and “The Creative Process of Captioning”. While PV offers courses to accommodate students aspiring to achieve stardom through more classic mediums such as music, film, and theater, there is an apparent lack of electives for those seeking to pursue fame via these new forums.

Suggestion 3: Dank Memes 101

Unlike any class before it, this course will answer the slew of burning questions that have no doubt kept thousands if not millions of Americans up at night pondering. How do I get that perfect freeze frame of Trump? Was the dress blue and black or white and gold? Should I brainstorm captions or just wait for the right pun to come to me? Are they really just two gals being pals? How can I get people to identify with my meme on a spiritual level? Which Pepe is the rarest of all? The one thing you won’t be asking yourself is why you took this course as you shove breadsticks into your purse.

Suggestion 4: Steps to Becoming YouTube Famous

Want to learn the secret behind internet stardom? While YouTube fame can be a tricky thing to achieve, a spike in the amount of advertising and sponsorship contracts as well as increasingly lucrative partnerships between YouTube and popular YouTubers are making it as viable a career as ever. While I will concede that PV’s video production classes do cover such things as filming, editing, and script writing, there is still more to be learned about the industry in order to be successful. For instance, what type of infliction should I have in my voice when I say, “Hey, what’s up guys!” at the beginning of each video? Seeing as capitalism is driven by competition, it is important that students learn how to create the next big thing before it happens. Someone starts a dangerous ducktape challenge? You start an even more dangerous flam-

mable underwear challenge. Someone vlogs their vacation? You vlog yourself stealing the US Constitution. This may seem like needless escalation, but you need the stupidity to stay entertaining and you need to stay entertaining to keep your subscribers and you need to keep your subscribers to keep your partnership and you need to keep your partnership because you are twenty-something years old with a minimal to nonexistent college education and you’ve never had a real job and this is all you know how to do.

Suggestion 5: How to Control Your Middle-Aged Mom on Facebook Reasoning with mothers can often times prove difficult, but you are a mature high school student now and it is time you lay down the law. Through a unique blend of psychology, technology, and language composition education, this course’s one of a kind curriculum will teach you how to respectfully tell your middle-aged mom what’s what. By the time this half-year class is over, you will have the newfound confidence and linguistic skills to tell Linda to stop stalking her kids’ friends’ profiles and stop stalking her friends’ kids’ profiles. You will be able to write a polished essay explaining to Judith why it is an invasion of personal space to comment on each and every one of your pictures. Her only friends on there are you, Dad, Aunt Susan, and the members of her wine Mom book club, and the rest of them sure aren’t going to do it. You will also have the technological knowhow to prevent Nancy from compulsively posting any more of those awful inspirational quotes. The only one they inspire is you… to unfriend her. If you ever want to enjoy social media again, you will take this class.

Other course suggestions include “How to Deal with Mobile Phone Separation Anxiety”, “Proper Texting Etiquette 201”, “Emoji Literacy” (still unsure if it counts as a an English or foreign Language class), “Congrats, You Got a 2360 on Your SATs Now Learn How to Code Yourself Some Friends”, and “Aesthetic Hunting”. Hopefully, Pascack Valley administrators will take these suggestions into consideration as they continue to innovate and educate into the future.

"The Joke Signal" Edition, Feb. 2016  

In the spirit of April Fool's day, this print edition of the Smoke Signal (dubbed "The Joke Signal") takes a humorous look at Pascack Valley...

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