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Vol. 4, Issue 2

Beyond These Walls: More to Life Than the Drama

PHOTO BY JESSE POTTER

High school senior, Jesse Potter, vists with his mother , in the hospital, shortly before she passes away

and then I would tell her I love you and I always held her left hand with my left hand. I always asked her to squeeze my hand as hard as she could. And I would make sure I saw her breathing.” This was the ritual. Later that night Jesse went to the hospital to visit her again after school. At around 4:30, Ms. Starre was transported to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) because she had stopped breathing. Doctors believed that she had experienced a possible heart attack. Jesse recalls calling his family members and his best friend, Robbie Cole, to tell them what had happened. Then he called his dad and asked him if he would leave work, even though his father and mother had not been a couple for a long time. Jesse and his family waited in the waiting room until they heard from the doctor. When the doctor finally came in they told them that she had a pulse and that they

had been able to resuscitate her, although they had not wanted to do so because it required shocking her cancerous breast. Jesse’s mother was also placed on life support at this time.The doctor explained that the family had a very difficult decision to make: they would have to decide to pull the plug or to allow her to remain connected to a machine. Early the next morning, the family decided to allow Ms. Starre to die. They asked the doctor to disconnect her from the machine and waited to see what happened. After the machine was disconnected, the family remained close to her. Her blood pressure dropped lower and lower and her breaths grew farther and farther apart. Jesse remembers paying attention to her breathing and especially remembers her last four breaths. He held her hand and asked her to squeeze his. Then he told her, “Mom, it’s okay for you to let go now.” He

remembers the weakness of this squeeze and the fact that last four breaths came in the following sequence: one deep breath, one shallow breath, one deep breath, and another shallow one. Then, Jesse’s brother said in tears, “That was it.” It was 11:44 a.m. Jesse stayed with his mother until everyone left. Then, and only then, Jesse cried and said his final good-byes: a simple “Love ya, Mom.” While we were talking in preparation for this article, Jesse told me, “She was awesome. Very giving. She was stubborn. She wanted to do everything for everybody, but never wanted people to do things for her. She was hard-working. She was the strongest person I know.” Jesse Potter reminds all of us that we need to remember that there is so much more to life than high school and the ridiculous drama that takes place there each and every day.

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By Sahkenya Pleasant Often, we are so caught up in our own lives that we fail to recognize the troubles that someone else is facing. If you are someone who gets involved with high school drama, it’s time for you to put the nonsense behind you. There are real-life issues that are far more important: consider the recent tragedy of high school senior, Jesse Potter. Jesse, seventeen at the time, dealt with one of the toughest things that people have to go through: death. And as if death wasn’t a tragedy in itself, Jesse lost the person the meant the most to him in his life: his mother. As young adults, most of us depend on our parents to help us as we make travel through the beginning of this journey called life. On December 6, Jesse and his family found out that his mother, Evelyn Starre Albro Shinkle, had breast cancer. Jesse recalled the doctor stating, “I do not specialize in cancer, but based on what I have seen, she has six months left.” Jesse is very strong. He said, “I did not cry because I did not want her to see me like that… hurting.” Ms. Starre (as she was known) knew all along that something was wrong and she suspected that she had breast cancer based on her symptoms. Jesse would go and visit his mother faithfully and spend the night with her as much as he could. He made sure that he stayed at the hospital with her on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve, as well. It is obvious that he loved his mother a great deal. On January 9, the doctors updated Jesse and his family and told them that Ms. Starre had around two weeks left to live. Jesse stayed strong. His mother did not want him to feel sad about the struggles she was facing. The only thing she wanted Jesse to do was to go to school and get his education. Jesse never complained about the things that were occurring nor did he miss school. He said, “I tried and still try to make my mom happy the best I can by doing what she wanted me to do because I know that that made her happy.” A few days later, on January 14, Jesse visited his mother before school. When asked how daily good-byes went Jesse said, “I would get ready to leave her room


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Facebook: Is It Just Another Social Toy? By Vidhi Udeshi mate fact, today, people are comfortable In a single day, almost a “billion pieces of sharing the most intimate of details with a content are posted on Facebook.” million people with a simple In a single minute, 510,404 comclick of a button. Perhaps, with ments are posted and 1,779, 736 acthe constant transformation of tions are completed. How did this the world, people have expandhappen? In a little less than seven a ed their idea of privacy and their years, a twenty-seven year old colability to have faith in people. lege dropout created an emptier Interestingly enough, Time that connects “…a twelfth of huMagazine also reported that “Somanity into a single network.” Accial media play into the parts of cording to Time Magazine, if Facehuman character that don’t Udeshi book were a nation it would be the change, even while changing the third largest, behind only China nature of what seemed imand India,” and “would definitely know mutable.” more about citizens than any government Facebook’s ability to map out what an indoes.” dividual wants and how it behaves creates So, what connects us to Facebook? Is it a model that no other existing company an addiction that we simply cannot resist can match. Mark Zuckerberg, the compaor is it the fact that we live in a society that ny’s co-founder, believes that Facebook evolves over time. While in the past, indi- gives its users a sense of power: individuals viduals were hesitant to ever share an inti- can choose to share or not to share infor-

mation. There is no doubt that his invention is changing how people relate to one another and even the way that the Internet works. Facebook replaces algorithms (a set of rules or ways to program a computer or to solve a mathematical problem) with “something more important: a human bond. There is also a difference between Facebook and Google. Google uses anticipation and your search history to match you up with results, while Facebook already knows your needs because of the choices that you have made in establishing your privacy settings. Facebook is a world of “targeted advertising,” which tries to sell products of your liking to you, your family, and your friends. Major A-listed Companies, such as Vitamin Water, Louis Vuitton, and Nike have recognized Facebook as an important source of income. In fact, Facebook’s value

is estimated at 50 billion dollars, which is “worth twice what Google was valued at when it went public” according to the publication, Financial Times. Facebook has almost six million users and its membership is growing at a rate of 700,000 individuals per day. If the growth continues at the present rate, it is estimated that by August of 2012, Facebook will have one billion users. Now, one may ask what the future looks like for Facebook, considering it’s potential growth. Will it ever crack its way into China? Let’s just say that only the foundation has been placed, and the real work has just begun. As quoted in one of the Financial Times articles, “and if Mr. Zuckerburg can get right the difficult balance between the convenience and privacy of his users, that $50 Billion price tag will one day look to have been a bargain”.

Mid-terms: How Effective Was the Change? Brendan Cooley will be re-evaluated and a decision for next How did you feel about mid-terms this year will be made. year? After the majority of both Mr. Peck indicated that there students and teachers at Watermay be no mid-terms next year: it town High School expressed their is possible that they will be reunhappiness with the way in placed with ten week tests. Mr. which mid-terms were planned Peck also indicated that he felt this year, I decided to investigate that his teaching staff adjusted the reason behind changing midwell to the changes. The question terms. (In the past, students were is, whether or not, students were dismissed from school on examiable to adjust. When Watertown nation days and only attended High students were polled, 172 when they had a test. This year, Cooley out of 192 students were unhappy tests were given in class for several with the manner in which middays at a time, which increased the stress terms were given this year. That means that on both teachers and students.) almost ninety percent of the polled stuAccording to Watertown Highs princi- dents felt that the change was negative, and pal Mr. Lloyd Peck, Watertown was one of that they affected their grades poorly. The the few schools remaining who still dis- new way of doing mid-terms was intended missed students for midterms, while to increase learning time and to cut down many other schools in New York State re- on students’ stress; however, according to quired that their students come to school students, the change did not accomplish for the entire week of midterms. Mr. Peck either goal. Therefore, it seems obvious also surveyed his teaching staff and indi- that something else needs to be done for cated that the process of giving midterms the new school year.

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Next Stop India: Cultures, Cuisines and Celebrations

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By Vidhi Udeshi While most students have a conception that India is an extremely poor country with little technology, the truth is that India has everything from small villages to big metropolitan cities, from huts to skyscrapers, and from old traditions to today’s modern ways. The truth is that India has all of the elements to “spice up” your life and provide you with the experience of a lifetime. With a population of 1.8 billion people, 452 languages, and a vast number of traditions, India is truly the perfect destination to eat, pray, and relax. Even though India is probably best known for its capital New Delhi, one cannot truly experience India without visiting Mumbai, a wonderful mixture of both the modern and the culturally-traditional world. Every nook and cranny of this city has culture and one hundred years of tradition hidden within it. The streets of this city will keep your ears ringing with the harmony of prayers as the sun rises; and to this day, I can walk down the street and find the oldest café in the same location that it has inhabited for over fifty years. While there, I can enjoy a good garam masala chai (a tea) and some keduk pav, which is a kind of bread. India is also quite popular for its vada pav, which is a kind of fried potato rolls that are served with green chutney between a dinner roll. Since we moved to America from India, I recently spoke to my mother about our native land and asked her what her least favorite thing was. Her answer was “Because only a few pockets of India have been developed, a great deal of poverty and slums do exist. “Although India has some very prosperous cities, like New Delhi, Mumbai, and Bangalore, there are still more than one hundred million Indians living in poverty. When I asked her about her favorite thing was, she replied, “Festivals: India has a wide range of festivals. It doesn’t matter who you are or where you come from, everyone puts their differences aside and joins together to celebrate the festivals.” Just like Americans might join together to celebrate Christmas, Easter, and Thanksgiving, Indians join together to celebrate Diwali, Holi, Navrairi, and Ganesh Chirutha. Each of these festivals is unique in its own way: Diwali is a festival of lights and it celebrated with firecrackers, candles, and a feast with family and friends. Diwali is celebrated in honor of the God Rama, who returned to his home after a fourteen year exile in the forest. Holi is a festival of colors. It is celebrated by a bonfire on Holi Eve. The next day people sprinkle each other with different colored powder and water to symbolize the breaking of all barriers, including caste, creed, color, race, status, and sex. This is a festival Ganesh of unity and brotherhood. Chirutha is celebrated in honor of the re-

WHS students trying out Indian food to spice up their taste buds

birth of the god, Ganesha. This is a ten day festival, which includes, worship, prayer, Arti (a Hindu ritual involving incense and light), and a massive feast with family and friends. On the last day of the festival, families immerse the God’s statue in the nearest body of water to wish him “good-bye” so that he can return again next year and to bring happiness, wealth, and prosperity with him. Navratri, which is my mom’s favorite festival, is celebrated with nine nights of dancing. These traditional dances include “garba’ and ‘dandiya raas. The festival is also celebrated with sweets and a giant feast. My mother’s favorite memory of India may be the festivals, but mine is definitely the food. For that reason, I am sharing one of my favorite Indian recipes. I promise you that if you try this recipe, you too will have a wonderful memory of India.

CHOLE (MASALA CHICK PEAS) (Serves 3) 1 can of chick peas (15.5 oz.) 2 large white onions-finely chopped 1 small tomato-finely chopped 1 small can of tomato paste (6 0z.) 8 cloves of peeled garlic 1 inch of grated ginger 1 small green bell pepper-finely chopped 3 tbs.of canola oil ? tsp.of turmeric powder 1 tsp.of red chili powder ? tsp.of curry powder ? cup chopped cilantro

Typical Indian food eaten at festivals.

Heat oil in skillet on high. Add onions,garlic,and ginger for 12-15 minutes. Reduce heat to medium. Add green pepper,cilantro,and cook for five minutes. Add chopped tomatoes and tomato paste and stir well. Keep stirring. Add turmeric,red chili and curry powders,and mix well. Simmer for 2 minutes on low flame. Empty chick peas and water from can into a bowl and microwave for 5 minutes. Add to skillet. Garnish with a circle of sliced onions and cilantro. Serve with naan,bread,or Jeera rice.

JEERA RICE Serves 6

1 cup of uncooked Basmati Rice 2 tbsp.of unsalted butter 1 tsp.cumin seeds ? cups of chopped cilantro Salt to taste Wash the rice and soak it in water for an hour. Drain and add rice to a pot with 6 cups of water. Add salt and boil until rice is cooked. Drain the excess water and let cool. Separate grains. Heat unsalted butter over a high flame and add the cumin seeds. Add the rice when the cumin seeds start to crack. Add the chopped cilantro and stir it well. Serve hot with Chloe.


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Friday, March 25, 2011

Cychronicle

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My Trip to Veracruz and Xalapa By Michaela Castillo speaks Spanish fluently. Her Bugles and drums: these were plan was not only for us to go to the first sounds that I heard on Veracruz and Xalapa (Ha-lamy first day in Veracruz, Mexico. pa), but also for me to experiGranted, these are not the best ence the culture of Mexico. And things to hear at five in the in the seven days that I was morning, on your vacation; but I there, I gained a lot of experisoon learned that these instruences and insights so it is safe to ments created a wake –up call say that her mission was acfor the men enlisted in the Herocomplished. ica Escula Naval. We had unwitFor me, Mexico seemed like a tingly condemned ourselves to whole different world, while early mornings, by booking a people in Northern New York Castillo hotel across from the naval were potentially freezing and base. But other than that, Verdealing with snow, people in acruz was very beautiful and warm. I went Veracruz were walking around in shorts and there over winter break, with my Aunt who sandals. The temperature also never left the

PHOTO BY MICHAELA CASTILLO

The road leading to the Torres's home.

80s or 90s, and there were palm trees and flowers practically everywhere. Also everything was more inexpensive in Mexico. We could get a pound of strawberries for twenties cents, and a drink, some food, and dessert for less than five dollars .The hardest thing to deal with was the language barrier. Although I am a student in Spanish II, it was still very difficult to communicate and understand the people since most of them have accents and talk low and fast. Also, everything from the radio broadcasts to the television programming was in Spanish. While my Aunt and I were in Veracruz, she had one of the local fishermen take us out to an island and a coral reef. His name was Jamie, and he was sixty-years-old and liked to drink salt water (he thought it tasted good.) He told my aunt his life story, while I went swimming in the ocean. For some reason he thought my name was Cora, maybe because we were looking at a Coral reef or maybe because he drank far too much salt water. I’m not sure. No one seemed to use my real name in Mexico. The family we stayed with officially labeled me as the muchacha (girl), and their two- year- son called me Horchata (a drink) because he thought I was really pale like the drink. Another thing that was different was the food. Everything tasted fresher and there was no candy. They also prepared their food differently; for example my aunt ordered seafood soup at a restaurant. And as she was eating it, she found a whole crab, a fish head, and some whole shrimp in it. Another time I had fish at a restaurant, and they gave me the whole thing, with the bones still intact. After staying in Veracruz for two days, my Aunt and I left for Xalapa. We were going to stay with her friends for the reminder of the trip. Xalapa is the capital of the state of Veracruz, (There is a state and a city of Veracruz). We stayed with the Torres, who lived just outside of Xalapa on top of a mountain in Xico. Our car had a hard time getting to their house because the road leading to their house was almost straight up and was made of dirt. Their house was kind of like of a little fort: they had a huge green gate in the front and twenty foot concrete walls surrounding their property. Their house was small with only three rooms for four people. They didn’t have running water or plumbing, so bathing consisted of a bucket and water; and a whole, separate concrete building housed their bathroom, which was just basically a hole in the ground with a seat built over the top. They did, however, have electricity and a stove. My aunt and I stayed in our own concrete house that was about the size of one half of a classroom. They also they kept chickens and goats on their property. The family we stayed with included a mother, Marisol, and the father, Rodolfo, who were both in their

Athletic School Budget By: Mason Phillips we will probably have to shorten the After plenty of controversy about many amount of away games that we play. local school budgets, I had questions of my As he prepares a budget, Mr. Lennox has own. Immediately, I took my questions to a model that he tries to follow. Watertown City School District This model contains costs such Athletic Director, Michael Lennox. as officials, coaching salaries, I took it upon myself to get the deplaying field, and equipment uptails on the athletic budget by inkeep and replacement. He must terviewing Mr. Lennox. During on also consider travel, sectional of our meeting, Mr. Lennox was in fees, and Frontier League dues. the process of planning his budgHe must also consider the exet. I had many questions concernpenses associated with each ining his opinions, as well as the efdividual sport. The most expenfect that budget plans might have sive sport this school supports is Phillips on sports. For example, cheerfootball. This is simply because of leading became a club as a result of last the number of participants and the imporyear’s budget cuts, and many students are tance of proper equipment that ensures wondering how sports will be affected this player safety. Every four years, one or more year. teams gets new jerseys. Jerseys are a major In Mr. Lennox’s opinion, cheerleading expense for teams because they get worn should be labeled a sport again since we our quickly. This expense is separately pay for a head coach, and we treat it like a added into our schools athletic budget as sport, anyways. He also explained how a jerseys became necessary. This year, field budget is set up and what he thought hockey and girls’ lacrosse will be acquiring about the future of sports and clubs for new jerseys. the upcoming year. A budget is very interAt the end of our meeting, I asked Mr. esting thing to create. In order to plan a Lennox his goals for next year and for the budget, every coach requests a dollar years ahead. One of his goals is to update amount that takes into consideration the the scoreboards on the athletic facilities. costs of mileage, travel, officiating, and He would also like to add an additional other expenses. If too much money is re- scoreboard at the other end of the turf. Afquested, adjustments are made. The up- ter meeting with Mr. Lennox, I realized coming year’s budget is estimated to be that he has to deal with a lot more than the same dollar amount as last year’s people realize. He certainly deserves kubudget although it is certain that there will dos for everything he does for this school be increases in gas prices. For this reason, and for our athletic programs.

PHOTO BY MICHAELA CASTILLO

Where the Torres keep their animals.

forties. They also have a two- year- old son named Antonio and a nineteen- year-- old daughter named Marianna. Marisol and Rodolfo had a cheese making business, and their daughter was studying to become a cosmetologist. The whole time we were there the family was really nice and courteous. The father walked about a mile from his house, just to get Elote for us to try. Even though we said that he didn’t have to go. Elote is one of those weird combinations of food that sounds gross, but is actually really good. It’s a cob of corn on a stick, that’s covered in mayonnaise, parmesan cheese, and lime juice. The Torres family showed us around Xalapa, and the surrounding areas. We even drove up a mountain, which was just scary because there were no guard rails and we were right next to the edge. Mrs. Torres also introduced me to some of the best coffee in the world. This truly helped because I was going through caffeine and sugar withdrawal. Natural Mexican coffee is so good that it doesn’t even need sugar or creamer. Needless to say, I brought back three packets of it. People often asked me if I was worried about going to Mexico because of all the drug violence. I tell them, that like most countries, Mexico has its good and bad parts. And if one avoids the bad parts and is smart, he or she should be fine. Another question I get asked is how I could possibly live without plumbing or running water for a week. It was hard living without it, but it makes me grateful for showers and working toilets. The sad thing is that most people in Mexico live without basic utilities, but they adapt to it and I guess that’s what my Aunt and I did. Even without basic utilities, I still had a great time. Finally the most common question that I get asked is if I would ever go back. My answer to that would be definitely. Eight Things That I Learned in Mexico

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Winter Sports Summary

PHOTO BY MICHAELA CASTILLO

Life in Mexico contains the old and the new: A man talking on his cell phone riding a horse.

Women don’t drive there; it’s rare to actually see one driving. When I asked a local women why this was so, she said no one would teach them so there was simply a lack of opportunity. One should never drink the water from the tap, and everyone should use a straw. Dogs ran loose there: they were everywhere, and most of them were strays. Most of them were mixed breeds, and are even found on the roofs of houses! Not everyone speaks Spanish, in a Spanish speaking country.

They never wear seat beats and don’t have car seats There are bars on everyone’s windows. And they usually have a gate or a wall separating their house from the outside. Policemen are allowed to carry machine guns in Veracruz., and they patrol the streets by standing in the bed of trucks, while the truck goes around the city with guns bolted to them. It is easy to convert dollars to pesos: simply take off a zero. For example $100 is really $10.00.

By Brendan Cooley Watertown High School has just completed another great sports season. Boys’ Basketball finished with a record of 8 and 10, led by Tevion Cappe and Dustin Pond. Girls’ Basketball finished with a disappointing record of 1 and 15, but hope to work hard in the off-season and do better next year. Despite this fact, both Brianna Lemon and Shakenya Pleasant were recognized by the Watertown Daily Times as members of the All North Girls’ Basketball team. The Boys’ Swim Team had another amazing undefeated season. This team also broke many records Frontier League

records. The team was led by George LaBarr, Brad McKinney, Justin Ongkingco and Michael Netto. Our wrestlers finished with a record of 3 and 20 and also hope to improve for next year. Although it is important to note that junior, Mike Pleskach and freshman, Brian O’Leary, were noted as Honorable Mentions on the All North Wrestling Squad. . Girls’ Volleyball also had another good season: this is the 16th straight year that this team has participated in sectionals, and this year’s team finished 14-3 overall. As a whole, Watertown teams competed well this season, and all hope to get better before next season.

Cychronicle staff The Cychronicle Editor: Nikole Makuch Assistant Editors: Vidhi Udeshi, Sahkenya Pleasant

Photographer: Nikole Makuch Sales Manager:Vidhi Udeshi The Cychronicle Staff Advisor: Dee Shear


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Caffeine: Friend or Foe Bullying: Not just childs play By Aiden Gnadt feine “high” is over. Why do we drink beverages with caffeine? When this process is repeated on a daily The answer is easy enough: we basis, the pancreas will become acconsume caffeine because we are customed to producing this overhopelessly dependant on it. A load of insulin. It will also become harder and more relevant quesvery sensitive, and may get rid of tion to ask would be if caffeine is not only the extra glycogen, but also truly the negative substance that the other sugars that are needed to we make it out to be. To fully anstay awake and focused. This may swer this question, we need to ask make someone feel lethargic, and ourselves, “What is the actual efmay cause that individual to crave fect of caffeine on the human more caffeine. body?” On the other hand, caffeine can Gnadt Caffeine is a stimulant that also give us a much needed boost causes the adrenal glands to produce an to get us through a rough day. It causes emergency supply of sugar, called Glyco- users to become alert and attentive, and gen. The usual function of Glycogen is to helps their brain functions faster (because raise our blood sugar levels when they are of the influence of the extra amount of endangerously low. This release of energy ergy produced by the caffeine). Caffeine can make someone feel sweaty and shaky. temporarily removes all feelings of faAn accelerated heart rate often accompa- tigue, but the feeling of fatigue may be nies these symptoms. multiplied tenfold after the drug wears In essence, caffeine tricks your body in- off. to raising the levels of sugar in your blood. The final word is that caffeine is not bad Sugar is what fuels us, so more sugar for the human body. The long term effects means more energy. However, the body take place when people over- use the will also sense that sugar levels are too drug. Caffeine is a crutch to help those high. This causes the pancreas to produce who need a boost, but is not a replaceextra insulin to combat the excessive ment for proper eating or sleeping. The amount of sugar in the blood stream. Once sooner our young generation realizes this, the abundance of sugar has been deplet- the less influential this drug will be on our ed, the body returns to normal and the caf- lives.

By Danica Kellar literally. In my opinion, the very creation There have been plenty of articles on of those ads is a form of bullying. Whether bullying, and people have heard about the the person meant to cause harm or not, it subject over and over again. Despite all of still hurt a lot of people. this, the message does not seem to be getCampaigns are gruesome; all they seem ting through. Bullying needs to stop. This to do is to bring out the bad in opponents. article is about those who don’t The people in America want to even try to stop it, and about know what politicians are going to those who walk away. These indido to improve the country, not viduals are no better than the bulabout what they do in their perlies themselves if they, in fact, sonal lives. The tabloids are bulchoose to turn a blind eye to the lies, too. They scoop up on what situation. I understand that not celebrities do and post what is goeveryone is going to get along and ing on in the lives of individuals be friends; but what I do not unwhen it is no one else’s business. derstand is why we can’t be civil What people submit to the media Kellar to one another. Bullying is wrong can ruin lives. This is bullying and for many reasons. One reason is may be even worse than pushing that it does not accomplish anything, someone down or hitting them. even for those that do the bullying. AnothAdults and kids are both guilty. It is not er reason is no one is perfect. We all have just one generation; it is all generations. our imperfections. The issue of bullying People of the generations before this may would not be so controversial if more peo- not want to believe it, but they are also ple would take a stand, and help to make a guilty of bullying. It only seems worse bechange. cause of the technology that we have acI am not just talking about kids, but cess to, such as the internet, television, about adults as well. Look at the politi- video games, etc. People as a whole cians: do they really have to bring up other should make an effort. When we see peoples’ personal lives? During a recent someone being bullied, we should take a campaign, posters were created that de- stand against it. Don’t vote for those that picted a person’s face with a gun scope, slander their opponents and make crude suggesting that the individual in the pic- comments. Don’t pick up a magazine to ture should be “taken out.” Of course, the promote bullying celebrities. Don’t let posters were tended to indicate that the bullying continue. One of the bravest individuals should be removed from of- things a person can do is stand up for the fice; however, the recent shooting of a rep- victims. Be proactive and do something to resentative from Arizona suggests that stop this problem: it is not going to go some people may have taken the message away on its own.

The Effects of Cyberbullying By Taylor McCowan everyday people to connect with each In this day in age, technology seems to other in the blink of an eye. This is good be the center of everything. iPods, cell for business purposes, and more. Howevphones, and computers are a huge part of er, it has caused a lot more bullying in the average American’s life. schools. Things posted on FaceThere are positives and negabook or any of the other websites tives to modern technology. A are the basis of a lot of the bullying negative to this is cyberbullying. that occurs today. Websites like Facebook, Twitter, Cyberbullying is found everyand Tumblr are booming with where and is a major issue. Everybully-like behavior. “I can hardly day people are causing and are afever get on Facebook without fected by cyberbullying. Now, the seeing someone being rude to question is what can you do to another.” says Watertown High change this? For many people, it McCowan School sophomore, Georgiawould be too much to ask them to Raye Moore. Recently in Syradelete their accounts; but, there cuse, a young man was unknowingly are many other ways to help change this videotaped doing something embarrass- problem with today’s society. You can ing; it was released all over the Internet. He talk to your friends about what they say later committed suicide due to the bully- online. You can watch what you post oning and embarrassment that he had to en- line for other people to see. Doing these dure after this was released. To some, this things may not seem like it would do video may have been funny, but it cost him much. However, if enough people his life. change their behavior online, there will Advances in technology are growing be a positive change to this negative isgreater and greater each day and allow sue.


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Tiger Mother: How Far is Too Far? By Michaela Castillo When The Battle Hymn of a Tiger Mother byAmy Chua, was released it caused uproar across the United States. The book was about how Yale Law professor Amy Chua raised her two daughters, in what she calls the traditional Chinese way. This means that her children were not able to attend a sleepover, get any grade lower than an A, or be in a school play. Along with these rules, Chua made her daughters practice the violin and piano several hours a day. She also pushed her daughters to succeed at an early age. By the time her daughter Sophia was in preschool, she knew division, addition, subtraction and multiplication. And by the time she was three, she knew over a hundred Mandarin Chinese characters. And when she was just thirteen years of age, she played the piano at Carnegie Hall. Chua’s other daughter, Louisa, was also successful: she became a violinist and a tennis player.

Her children were definitely successful; however, incidents such as her threat to burn her daughters’ stuffed animals, which were described in the book, angered several people. For example when her daughters made Mother’s Day cards, Chua ripped them up. She said that she did this because she knew her daughters could do better. Chua also made her seven year old daughter practice a piano song for 7 hours, without any breaks for water or the bathroom. Many people were horrified by Chua’s parenting methods. One person said that “She’s was a monster”, and another said “The way she raised her kids is outrageous”. Nevertheless, Chua defended her parenting methods by saying that “To be perfectly honest, I know that a lot of Asian parents are secretly shocked and horrified by many aspects of Western parenting.” She notes how much time Westerners allow their kids to waste on Facebook and on computer

Making Another Choice By Tevion Cappe

Cappe, will be attending Milford Academy. It is a prep school that has a very good For some high school athletes, there are reputation for sending its student athletes different ways to approach your future in off to Division I or Division II schools. In sports. Young athletes may never really many ways, it will be just like being a colthing about going to preparatory lege student athlete, I will be on a (prep) school; however, it’s a good very strict schedule, and I will way to make your grades better so have extra help with my studies. that you could meet the collegiate Whenever, I am struggling with a standards (set by the NCAA). In course, the help will be readily prep school, an athlete must play a available. I feel that I may find sport in order to attend the school this experience a little overand must be a talented athlete, as whelming at first; however, I well. It is very hard to get into some know that there will be fewer disschools because there are many tractions for me. This will help students that want to play sports at me focus on two important areas: Cappe a collegiate level, but cannot do so football and academics. If I do without improving their grades. Usually, a well, I have a number of potential scholarcoach explains what the high school stu- ships from which to choose. This is an opdent must do to prepare for collegiate portunity for me to work to my full potensports, and that often means attending a tial on and off the field and to be able to year at such a school. come back to Watertown and say that I am After Watertown High School, I, Tevion going to a big Division I school. AN EXCLUSIVE TO THE CYCHRONICLE

games. She also points how poorly American parents prepare their children for the future. She reminds these parents that it is a tough world out there. Chua also explained that she pushed her children to succeed at an early age, because she believes that her children can learn more. “ As I watched American parents slather praise on their kids for the lowest of tasks: drawing a squiggle or waving a stick, I came to see that Chinese parents have two things over their western counterparts: higher dreams for their children , and higher regard for their children in the sense of knowing what they can take”. These statements by Chua have made parents across the United Stares question, whether or not, they are preparing their children to survive in a global economy. It has also reopened the United States fear that we are losing ground to China and other countries. According to testing, Shanghai has the highest reading and math scores in the world, with reading levels at 556 and math levels at 600. The United States on the other hand has a reading score of 500 and a math score of 487.In a country where Chinese students have a longer school year, and American children spend more time watching TV, there is little wonder that this is happening. But going back to Amy Chua, she wants everyone to know that she is not a monster. According to her “Everything I do as a mother builds on the foundation of love and compassion”. Chua was raised with love but also high expectations, just as she

has raised her daughters. Surprisingly, her daughters plan to raise their kids the way they were raised, but they plan to allow the occasional sleepover. Many people have written Chua, some were angry others wishful or in gratitude. Chua said that a lot of people have written to say that they had wished that their parents had pushed them when they were younger, that they think they could have done more with their lives. Chua also remembers that some adults have said that after reading the book, they finally understand their parents and why they did what they did. One man wrote that he sent his mother flowers and a note of thanks, and she called him up weeping.” Does that mean that parents should be following Chua’s methods? Regardless of whom is asked, the answers vary greatly with some approving of her techniques and some vehemently opposed to them. Still Amy Chua’s parenting methods will forever remain a controversy. My father was raised in a similar way to Chua’s parenting techniques. His parents immigrated to the United States, and they expected their children to do their absolute best. Even though my father didn’t really like growing up this way, he admits it helped him to achieve successful because his parents pushed himself to get good grades and get into a good college. I cannot justify Amy Chua’s parenting methods, but they do show that hard work, compassion, and expectations seem to go a long way.

$6450. &.#30* %&3:


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State Budget Affects City School District By Maxime Bost-Brown Governor Cuomo’s recent budget is drastically different from what has seen in the past few years, especially in terms of education. Governor Cuomo’s budget cuts 2.3 million dollars from the state aid, which will be provided to Watertown City School District. This is a 4.9 million dollar difference between what we will receive and what will be needed to run our district, and so it is obvious that the budget will have a detrimental effect on our entire school community. Although we can withdraw 2.4 million dollars from the district’s savings account, the truth is that once again the district will experience the loss of personnel. Unfortunately as Superintendent Terry Fralick explains, “There isn’t really any position that we don’t need.” Education in our district will undoubtedly experience a large setback. Budget cuts will necessitate cuts in operation support staff, a reduction in electives, and also teacher cuts in the core areas, such as Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, and English. There simply isn’t enough money to support what is currently in place. It can be expected that class sizes will increase, and that student performance will be affected. Perhaps, the Watertown City School District, which has worked very hard to increase student options and class sizes, will have to go back to the basics. Sports are another area that might be negatively affected. Nothing will be spared when cuts are made, including sports. It is almost certain that our district will have to modify the amount of equipment purchased, the distances that we can travel for games, and perhaps, even the number of sports that we are able to offer. We will need to be more” localized” in our activities, and we will need to be very conscious of every dollar that we spend.

Mr. Fralick and Maxime Bost-Brown discuss the school budget

There is little doubt that the Watertown City School District has a great deal of work to do if we are to adjust to our new financial situation. Some people feel that the governor should have spent some time speaking with education leaders before making such severe cuts. Per-

haps, these cuts should have been spread over two or three years, which would have given districts more time to make necessary adjustments. The way that things are now, it is certain that we are about to begin a very difficult journey.

Governor Cuomo Visits Watertown By Nikole Makuch freezing the salary of state employees. On January 14, 2011, Governor Andrew After Governor Cuomo finished speakCuomo made his second stop in Water- ing to the crowd, reporters, including town for a “State of the State” address. those from the Cychroncile, were allowed There were hundreds of people present, to attend a question and answer session in including a number of high school a separate room. During this sesand college students. Mayor Jeff sion, it seemed that the positive Graham and Assembly woman and friendly attitude of the govAddie Russell were also present ernor seemed to change. He and addressed the crowd before seemed to be very evasive in his the governor began. answers and was, at times, alGovernor Cuomo was both posmost abrupt. This really showed itive and convincing: he firmly beboth sides of politics. Governor lieves that his plan to close the ten Cuomo was asked abut school million dollar deficit in New York budgets and about the effect that Makuch State will be successful. He also future cuts might have on stuhopes that in working to end this deficit dents; however, he simply indicated that if situation, he will not have to raise taxes or we were interested in the answer, we borrow money. In his message, he men- would have to wait until the budget was tioned the need to establish a state spend- released. Of course, we now know that the ing cap, which will help to decrease the budget included many extreme cuts to deficit that has grown increasingly larger education, which will undoubtedly affect over the past few years. He also proposes every student in the state.

PHOTO BY NIKOLE MAKUCH

Govner Andrew Cuomo at JCC.

The Cychronicle  

The WCSD Cychronicle Vol. 4, Issue Friday, March 25, 2011

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