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DECEMBER 2007 (VOL. 14, NO. 3)








Harker Spirit Shines Through at Homecoming

Harker racks up wins in the Ludi fall miniconvention ....... 8 LS students speak on excellence ........................ 13 MS laptops are in student hands............................... 14 US students hear Billie Jean King speak ....................... 17 Junior develops integrated calendar for peers ............. 16

■ Capital Campaign Report

events Harker Winter Concert Presented By

Thurs., Dec. 6 6:30 p.m. Blackford Theater — Featuring — LS, MS and US Orchestras, US Jazz Band and Bel Canto with a special performance by the US Orchestra of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony


Adults - $8 Student/Senior - $5 Buy tickets at US Bookstore or email

Harker Homecoming 2007 was a rousing success! The festivities started weeks before in spirit assemblies and, in the US, with a Harker Eagle decorating contest that resulted in some truly unique fiberglass raptors. The whole evening had an edge due to the weather, which threatened, but did not dare interfere. The week leading up to the big game saw class pitted against class in spirit activities, and the rivalries were intense at the US. Although seniors took overall spirit honors and won the eagle decorating competition, sophomores won the rally challenge and freshmen finished ahead of sophomores in the eagle decorating competition.

Game, students added to the action with round one of a tug of war on the field, and in the main event, the Varsity Eagles carried the night, with a crushing 44-9 victory. A choir comprised of students from

kindergarten to twelfth grade, including members of the Bucknall Choir, Vivace, Harmonics, Cantilena, Guys’ Gig, Bel Canto and Downbeat, led the crowd first in Continued on pg. 7

Visit with Supreme Court Justice

As busses and cars converged on the Foothill College football stadium, excitement mounted. Gr. 1 cheerleaders and the Gr. 2 Eaglets were just two of the cheerleading groups keeping the crowd on its toes. In late afternoon play, the JV Eagles warmed up the field, tearing into their opponents, beating them 126. ‘Tween-game activities included a performance by the varsity Dance Troupe and the ever-popular faculty cheerleaders. Prior to the Big

Cindy Ellis

Supplements in this issue:

Shawn Gao - parent


est. 1893 • K-12 college prep

The eighth grade class, 146 strong, made the annual pilgrimage to the Washington, D.C., area this October, and met U.S. Supreme Cour t Justice John Paul Stevens, said Cindy Ellis, middle school head, who accompanied the group. Continued on pg. 15

editor’s note

important dates

annual giving

Who knew food facts could be so fun? (See pg. 9). We couldn’t resist putting our gingerbread cookie on the cover of this month’s edition: it seems to represent the many simple pleasures and traditions we all enjoy this time of year. So slow down, smell the gingerbread, and have a great season with family and friends!

■ Mon., Dec. 17 - Tue., Jan. 1: Winter Break - No classes, K – Gr. 12

’Tis the Season for Giving!

—Pam Dickinson, Director Office of Communications

warm drinks! quote

“They also thought the fact that she

uses Knox gelatin to hold her hair firmly in place during compe-

■ Wed., Jan. 2: Classes resume, K – Gr. 12

UPCOMING SCHOOL-WIDE EVENTS ■ Thurs., Dec 6, 6:30 p.m. – Winter Concert, BLD Theater The Winter Concert, featuring orchestras from all three schools, will include numbers by the US Jazz Band and Bel Canto. Join the crowd for this cheery holiday show! Chris Florio, orchestra teacher, noted that a highlight of the show will be the US presentation of Beethoven’s “Symphony No. 5,” a “landmark piece,” said Florio. “This will be a great concert, one of the strongest shows we have ever had as we have bigger and stronger groups than ever before!” he added. ■ Tues., Dec. 11: 3 p.m. -- Gr. 1 Holiday Show, BKN Gym ■ Thurs., Dec. 13 6:30 p.m. BKN Gym -- Gr. 2 & 3 Holiday Show Share This Holiday, the seasonal performances by Grds. 1-3, will feature singing, dancing and narration by some of Harker’s youngest performers! Come enjoy this, the cutest of shows! ■ Thurs.-Fri., Dec. 13-14 7 p.m. BLD Theater -- Student Directed Showcase These one-act plays, ranging from Oscar Wilde to Rudyard Kipling, are conceived, produced, cast and directed by the four seniors in performing arts chair Laura Lang-Ree’s directing class. Come support their final exam!

We’d like to acknowledge all of our parents who have already given so generously to the Annual Giving Campaign; your support and participation are critical and much appreciated. For those parents who have not yet made their gift and who want to do so in this tax year, please be sure to mail in your check so that we receive it before the end of December, or make your gift online no later than Dec. 31. Gifts may be made online by clicking on “Support Harker” from the Harker home page. If you have any questions about the Annual Giving Campaign, please contact Melinda Gonzales at

titions was kind of




See Inside Olympian visit story, pg. 12 for details!

80% 70%

warm drinks!

50% 40% 30% 20%


G i vi ng


5 millio

Summer@Harker2008 Watch for Ray’s news and updates in each issue! 2008 Summer Programs will be posted on the Web site in mid-January!



The holidays are great fun, but I can’t wait for the warm, fun days of summer at Harker with my friends!


10% Goa




There is nothing like a hot drink on a cold morning and the Blackford kitchen is stepping up. Starting in early November, the kitchen began serving hot drinks from 7-7:40 a.m. Along with the drinks, fresh fruit, a great day-starter, is available. The food and drinks are being provided free to give the kids something hot on fall and winter mornings. Drinks include a variety of decaffeinated teas and hot apple cider. The comestibles will be located in the kitchen area where the students pick up their trays at lunch.

The logo appearing at the end of some of our stories throughout the year indicates those activities or programs funded by Annual Giving.

Harker News — December 07



Teaching Children Resilience Helps Them Navigate the World Diana Nichols, former head of school, fielded the question during a routine question and answer session with parents, much like the ones I run at every grade level. “Couldn’t the school build more sidewalks so that students do not step into any puddles?” It seemed like a perfectly reasonable question; it was, after all, the rainy season and puddles were forming after a typical series of storms in Northern California. “Wouldn’t it be easier to teach your child not to step into puddles?” Well, given that the school cannot predict all permutations of student routes, smooth those over with sidewalks and guarantee that children won’t find the puddles anyway, yes, common sense dictates that arming children with the skill of avoiding puddles in the first place is a more effective long-term strategy. Besides, neither parents nor school will be there every time a child is faced with a puddle.

…we can, in small steps, help our children discover “their inner strengths with little acts on a daily basis,

days, parents thought of kids like waffles. The first couple might not turn out just right, but you could always make more. Now many families only have one or two kids to work with, so they focus all their energy on one or two and want them to do well.” And why shouldn’t we want them to do well? Isn’t the world, particularly college admissions, more competitive anyway? Well, yes, that’s true, but are we making our children more competitive by making everything easier for them? I found myself saying in a recent parent meeting that getting into Harvard in and of itself will not necessarily make a student successful in life. Rather, the qualities a student brings to Harvard (or Harvey Mudd) are what matters for success. A parent at a recent question and answer session thoughtfully asked how we can make our children more resilient. I am not sure if he used that word, but he said he noticed that young people in the other countries in which he travels and works seem tougher (not physically), hungrier, grittier, more resilient, and he wanted to see those qualities in his own children. I don’t have any grand societal solutions. I do think, however, that we can, in small steps, help our children discover their inner strengths with little acts on a daily basis, such as encouraging them to own their responsibilities, actions, disappointments and consequences, and giving them the freedom to discover the world, warts and all, on their own, in developmentally appropriate ways. Perhaps someday in the future when one of our students encounters a puddle, he will have the good sense to step around it, or, if he so chooses, plunge right into the middle of it with gusto, fully accepting the consequences of wet trousers for the rest of the day. Either way is not the end of the world, but the way of the world we live in.

—Christopher Nikoloff, Head of School

such as encouraging them to own their responsibilities, actions, disappointments and consequences, and giving them the freedom to discover the world, warts and all, on their own…

I think that was Ms. Nichols’ larger message – that today, the parenting trend is to ask the world to accommodate the individual versus teaching the individual to negotiate the world. The latter is far more practical, since as any young person grows, the world becomes larger and larger, until eventually it is way too big for anyone to control anyway. Resilience in the face of a changing and sometimes disappointing world is what Ms. Nichols meant, I believe; a quality that is becoming more and more rare yet equally, if not more, valuable. “The American Heritage College Dictionary” defines resilience as “the ability to recover quickly from illness, change, or misfortune; buoyancy.” We recognize it when we see it, the “water off a duck’s back” cliché in action, a quality that is easy to admire and difficult to teach. Interestingly enough, in recent question and answer sessions like the one I describe above, parents are commenting more and more that the structure of life in America, particularly in the modern suburb, doesn’t support the teaching of resilience in a way they remember from their childhoods. There are many reasons why. More screen time and less physical activity. More supervised activities, less spontaneous play. More play dates at The Jungle and less play in the neighborhood. More gated communities and less nature. More resources and less struggle. And, of course, we have the well-researched and discussed “helicopter parenting,” featured in a May, 2006 “Newsweek” article called “The Fine Art of Letting Go,” which quotes William Damon, director of Stanford’s Center on Adolescence: “In the old Harker News — December 07

Watch next month’s edition for a full-page feature and photos about the dedication ceremony of the Bucknall campus 10 years ago, along with memories from Harker faculty and staff who were here and part of the exciting opening of the campus! 3



11 a.m. Luncheon Fashion Show with Showcase Drawing ■ 5:30 p.m. Dinner Gala with Fashion Show, Live Auction, Showcase Drawing and Dancing

The Harker Fashion Show • February 22, 2008 • The San Jose Convention Center


Proceeds from Global Grooves benefit the Harker Scholarship Fund, professional training and continued education for faculty, and the new Science & Technology Center at the upper school campus.

fashions by

They Were Movin’ and Groovin’



Davis Family* Foundation Air Systems, Inc.* Hunter Labs* Diamond Quality Printing MAKEUP

Preston Wynne Spa HAIR DESIGN

James Craig Hair Color & Design PHOTOGRAPHY

Venz Fine Photography of Saratoga Denise Broderson/UBS Financial Chopra & Banerjee Family* Courtesy Chevrolet* Heritage Bank* Rector Porsche-Audi Santana Row* Sathaye Family* Smith Barney/Hal Walsworth Group Steven’s Creek BMW *Five-year sponsors, to whom we are most grateful! Sponsorship opportunities are still available - visit the Global Grooves Web site to learn more about the benefits of becoming a sponsor!


Global Grooves model hopefuls turned out in full force for model tryouts on Nov. 4! The MS MPR was filled with excitement as students, alumni, parents, faculty and staff took a turn down the catwalk. Many thanks to our independent panel of judges: Sandy Baker, national aerobics champion 1998, aerobics gymnastics judge and Junior League fashion show model; Beverly Zeiss, fashion director for Santana Row, owner of Red Haute & Co. and producer for Global Grooves; Jaynie Neveras, longtime model who works with Beverly Zeiss on numerous Santana Row and local fashion show events; Harumi Rodriguez, production manager for Beverly Zeiss, who will work with our models backstage, and Kristie Driscoll, sustaining member of the Junior League of San Jose and model for the Junior League, Macy’s and Azadeh. Thanks also to Linda Lance, professional model, model judge and trainer, for her assistance with the Nov. 3 workshop, and to Eric Togami of Karaoke Kids for providing



the music to groove to throughout the tryouts. The Global Grooves Executive Team and members of the Models Committee extend a warm “thank you” to everyone who tried out. Here is the list of models selected for this year’s show: LS Models: Julia Amick, Gr. 1, Emiko Armstrong, K, Shivani Awasthi, Gr. 3, Madison Beine, Gr. 5, Adrian Chu, Gr. 2, Kathy Cutler, Gr. 4, Emma Doherty, Gr. 4, Jasper Frieberg, K, Arben GutierrezBujari, Gr. 3, Jeton Gutierrez-Bujari, Gr. 5, Regan Heslop, Gr. 4, Ellie Lang-Ree, Gr. 1, Delaney Martin, Gr. 5, Carissa Nelson, Gr. K, LeAnn Nguyen, Gr. 3, Sasha Pikiner, Gr. 1, Jonathan Schwartz, Gr. 3, Lauren Speckman, Gr. 4, Samantha Townzen, Gr. 2, Liana Wang, Gr. 2. MS Models: Isabelle Connell,

VOLUNTEERING: Lisa Blickenstaff - PROGRAM AD SALES: Trish Tobin - SPONSORSHIPS: Tina Najibi - DONATIONS: Showcases - Naren Nayak - Live Auction - Ann Linthacum - WEB SITE: - see Fashion Show under “Support Harker” tab INFO LINE: 408.345.0115 • E-MAIL:

Gr. 7, Karan Das-Grande, Gr. 7, Michelle Douglas, Gr. 7, Michelle Gorshteyn, Gr. 6, Varun Kamat, Gr. 6, Neha Kumar, Gr. 8, Cecilia LangRee, Gr. 7, Sumit Minocha, Gr. 7, Avinash Nayak, Gr. 6, Bridget Nixon, Gr. 8, Hannah Prutton, Gr. 7, Brian Tuan, Gr. 6, Sameer Vij, Gr. 6, Sarina Vij, Gr. 7, Emily Wang, Gr. 7, Karen Wang, Gr. 8, Amy Wardenburg, Gr. 7. US Models: Roshni Bhatnagar, Gr. 9, Priya Bhikha, Gr. 10, Clara Blickenstaff, Gr. 9, Daniel Cho, Gr. 9, Andrew Cutler, Gr. 9, Liz Cutler, Gr. 11, Neha Deshmukh, Gr. 12, Jazmine Eubanks, Gr. 9, Ayushi Gummadi, Gr. 12, Zena Hassoun, Gr. 9, Kevin Hwa, Gr. 12, Lauren Ill, Gr. 12, Gokulesh Killer, Gr. 9, Ruehanee Killer, Gr. 12, Tyler Koteskey, Gr. 9, Arthi Kumar, Gr. 9, Divya Mandava, Gr. 12, Michelle Markiewicz, Gr. 9, Anjali Menon, Gr. 10, Aarathi Minisandram, Gr. 12, Kyle Mui, Gr. 12, Kavitha Narra, Gr. 12, Daniel Nguyen, Gr. 12, Michael Prutton, Gr. 9, Nitasha Ranganath, Gr. 12, Sabena Suri, Gr. 12, Nicholas Sutardja, Gr. 12, Priya Thumma, Gr. 11, Becky Yanovsky, Gr. 11. Faculty and Staff Models: Jennifer Cowgill, Andrew Irvine, Catherine Le, George Monack, Le Nguyen, Emilie Robb, Lori Villareal. Parent and Alumni Models: Lilla Gorshteyn, David Heslop, Ellen Manzo-Ill, Denise McCallaCreary, Simon Prutton, Ingrid Semenza, Priya Vij, Steve Wang, Ingrid Wu. Harker News — December 07

Get In The Groove - Become an Advertiser! The Global Grooves program guide is a cost-effective method of reaching a valuable demographic: the Harker community! Harker families love to support businesses that support Harker, so place your ad and let the Harker community know about your business and services. Ads aren’t just for businesses! The Global Grooves program guide is a fun way to thank teachers and staff, congratulate your child for special achievements (or for just being a great kid), recognize sports teams or specialty groups, and more! Advertising forms and details can be found at the Fashion Show Web site – simply select Fashion Show from the ‘Support Harker’ tab on the Harker home page.

■ A Heartfelt THANKS to Our Newest Group of Advertisers: California Sports Design•CBIZ•Coelho’s Body Repair•Coldwell Banker• Dr. David Constant, DDS•Downey Savings•Dr. Alan Everett DDS Inc.• Frankie, Johnnie & Luigi Too!•Dr. Heda Koh, DDS•Neil Najibi/Zip Realty• Dr. Brian Nettleman, DDS•Notre Dame High School•Seema’s Tutoring Center.

At press time, we’re proud to announce that Santana Row has joined us as a Humanitarian level ($20K) sponsor of this year’s Global Grooves! Their support will include a cash donation, Showcase donations, a committee wrap-up party, and special shopping events. Watch next month’s edition for details!

■ Going Once, Going Twice…Sold! The Live Auction is always a fun part of the annual fashion show’s evening dinner gala. We’re pleased to announce that some of our most popular auction items will be making a return appearance – so if you weren’t the highest bidder last year, here’s your second chance! Evening with the Stars: Join the stars at the 2008 Emmy Awards at the Shrine Auditorium in L.A.! Four tickets get you and your friends the full star treatment, with VIP Red Carpet arrival by limo, exactly the same as nominees and celebrities! Indy Car Racing Package: The ultimate motorsports immersion experience! Full access for two to the Sonoma Indy Racing League race, with all the perks, including introductions to legendary drivers!

■ You Can Be Groovy Too!

2007 Graduation Package: VIP treatment on Graduation Day.

Send us the names and contact information for businesses you use on a regular basis and someone from the Program Advertising committee will call to see if they might be interested in advertising.

Custom Jewelry: One-of-a-kind creations from Deja & Co.

Academic and cultural partnerships between institutions around the globe help teach students to appreciate foreign cultures and value their contributions to the world community. Harker’s progressive Global Education Program provides rich experiences for students at all grade levels by preparing them for lives as true global citizens. Current partner schools in our global education program are in Japan, India, People’s Republic of China, Switzerland, Costa Rica, Russia and Australia.

We’ll be adding more items soon, so watch for an auction update in next month’s Harker News!

Groove with the Fashion Show team! There’s still time to become part of the Global Grooves crew – join us at our Tues., Dec. 11 meeting at the Blackford MPR starting at 8 a.m., or visit the Global Grooves Web site for more info. Executive Team: Naren Nayak Sponsorship & Finance Angela Heslop Advertising, Printing & Sales

Nikoloff is pictured here with our recent visitors from our partner school, The Tamagawa Gakuen of Tokyo, Japan. Harker News — December 07

Sue Prutton Event Production

Supplied by Kim Pellissier, parent

Students Groove on Global Education

Chef Steve, Take Me Away: Dinner once a week for the entire school year, prepared by our own Chef Steve.

Next meeting: Tues., Dec. 11, 2007 Blackford MPR, 8 a.m.

■ ■ ■ ■ ■

Committee Information Sponsorships Program Advertising Showcase Donation Drawing And More! 5



Picnic Posse Committee Thanks All for Humdinger of a Shindig! What a shindig! It was a great day for our Harker family on Family Picnic day in mid-October! Our Blackford campus was - “buzzing” - with excitement and old western flair. Ever yone showed up early and stayed late and had a good old time in between! On behalf of our Picnic Posse Committee chairs, we would like to extend a heartfelt thanks to all those who pitched in to make our Pioneer Picnic a memorable day of fun for all. From our supportive team of administrators, faculty and staff to our dedicated families, relatives and friends, your help in pioneering the trail to Blackford was amazing! Over 600 parent volunteers manned the booths and activities on picnic day, and countless others assisted for weeks or even months in preparation. Many thanks to our homeroom picnic coordinators, room parents and grade level coordinators who worked tirelessly to schedule booth volunteers, organize the grade level Curbside Days and create the fabulous themed door decorations on the Bucknall campus. And special thanks goes to the ever-energetic and creative committee volunteers listed here who generously gave their time and talents to help in so many ways ... we couldn’t have done it without you!!

ton Lynette Staple

Lynette Staple


Pioneer Picnic Committee Volunteers: Christine Apap-Bologna; Alison Axelrad; Fran Axelrad; Jonathan Axelrad; Connie Beck; Tina Benitez; Krishnaveni Bhetanabotla; Clara Blickenstaff; Lisa Blickenstaff; Susanne Bohl; Denise Brodersen; Vanessa Bullman; Patrick Campbell;

Claudia Chen; Austina Chen; May Chen; Marie Cheng; Chittal Chetty; Zoe Chiaramonte; Heekyung Cho; Jessica Chopra; Cynthia D’Agosta; Terr y Del Alto; Guillaume Delepine; Quentin Delepine; Tiphaine Delepine; Al Diaz; Maria Diaz; Chris Douglas; Ana Duraisamy; Susan Eckhardt; Magdalena Enea; Sudha Gattupali; Upendra Gollapudi; Kathy Goller Schwar tz; Melinda Gonzales; Sher yl Guest; Jeanette Hajjar; Jeannine Hammersley; Denise Hayashi; Keith Hirota; Deepa Iyengar; Rachana Jain; Shalini Jain; Tom Johnson; Hrishi Kamat; Vidya Kamat; Takako Khojasteh; Hiroe Kinoshita; Lalitha Kumar; Aida Kung; Lisa Lu; Padmaja Malladi; Del Mank; Araby Mar tin; Juana Mendiola; Ruth Mohanram; Naren Nayak; Ann Nguyen; Maria Nguyen; Leslie Nielsen; Simona Nistor; Angela Nolan; Chidori Okubo; Vickie Pagnon; Solonica Pancholy; Namrata Patnaik; Mark Peetz; Darr yl Plauck; Shanna Polzin; Steve Polzin; Emilie Robb; Amy Rorabaugh; Jean Roter; Victoria Samoray; Barbara Sancen; Kevin Saxon; Ron Saxon; Bob Schick; Ingrid Semenza; Neeti Sharma; Carmela Sidrauski; Deepna Sidhu; Choolye Sim; Indira Somanathan; Yvonne Szu; Jonie Takatsuji; Shirin Taleni; Mar y Jo Townzen; Alice Tyes; Cami Tyndal; Joey Tyndal; Scott Under wood; Laura Van den dries; John Vellequette; Padma Vemuri; Aruna Venkidu; Heather Wardenburg; Paulina Wegrowicz; Carol Whitman; Roni Wolfe; Kari Wolff; Regina Wong; Toni Woodruff; Bella Yanovsky; Julia Youn; Mei-Chen Yu; Jin Zhou; Tran Vhu; Vicki Zou.

Staff Updates ■ US history teacher Heather Jackson traveled to Hawaii in early October to compete in the Ironman World Championship in Kona. An Ironman is a 2.4-mile swim, followed by a 112-mile bike ride, and then a marathon. Jackson qualified for the race by placing second in her division at the Ironman Lake Placid in July. Her time in the Kona event was 11:28, placing her 10th in her age group. According to the official Web site,, “While there are thousands of triathlons around the world, it is (Kona) that truly defines the sport. It was this race, first run in 1978 as a dare by a bunch of Navy Seals, that put triathlon on the world’s sporting map. It is triathlon’s Super Bowl, Wimbledon, World Series, World Cup and Tour de France all rolled into one.” ■ US art teacher and department chair Jaap Bongers is one of the six featured exhibitors at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art “California Sculpture” exhibit. The show runs from Nov. 7-Dec. 21 at Building A at the Fort Mason Center in San Francisco. The theme of Bongers’ five pieces is “Selected Viewing” of an image, in other words,


how we see things. The pieces are basically Mylar with patterns cut out to expose photos, attached to a panel, and framed with glass, some of which include sandblasted elements. Then the entire object is contained in a steel frame that forms part of the actual art piece. See for details. ■ There are two new faces on the LS campus! Joe Connelly has joined Harker as K-Gr. 5 dean, a role formerly held by Kelly Espinosa who will now focus her talents on Harker’s extensive summer programs. Connolly brings a wealth of experience with him, and we’ll share more about that in future issues. Sabrina Gutierrez is a new assistant to Espinosa, and is “enthusiastically crawling over and around the boxes and furniture and other crazy stuff in the Summer Office as she learns her new responsibilities!” said Espinosa. Welcome to both!

Harker News — December 07

Homecoming, Continued from Pg. 1

Desiree Mitchell

traditional coin flip, the game was on!

As the first half ended, the Harker pep band struck up a rousing tune to carr y the teams to their respective locker rooms. The wonder ful tradition of peppy cheerleaders enter taining bundled spectators led into the second round of the tug of war, followed by the parade of the homecoming cour t in conver tibles around the field, ending in the crowning of the queen, Tanya Schmidt, and king, Cayden Berkmoyer. Faculty cheerleaders took over to wrap up the halftime activities, the game continued on its inexorable path and with that, Harker closed the book on another great homecoming celebration!

Desiree Mitchell

Josh Pinzas

Josh Pinzas

In this romp, quarterback Arman Gupta, Gr. 11, picked up a pair of touchdowns, running back senior Kyle Mui had three touchdowns and 100 yards gained, running back Brian Dandelet, Gr.

11, brought in a touchdown and another 100 yards gained, wide receiver senior Brian McEuen picked up a TD and wide receiver junior Jasper Liao contributed to virtually ever y scoring drive with his 200 total yards gained.

Josh Pinzas

the Harker Anthem, then in the Star Spangled Banner, and following the

Harker News — December 07



news The Inside Scoop on Butch Keller

Harker Nabs Multiple Ludi Awards

US Division Head

Harker had great success at the annual Ludi fall miniconvention of the Junior Classical League, held this year at St. Ignatius College Prep in San Francisco.

Q. How did you discover your passion for education?

The MS was ably represented by Gr. 6-7 students, as the Gr. 8 kids were on their way to Washington, D.C. The students earned the following awards: Middle School 1 (Gr. 6 unless noted): Anika Ayyar: Daily Life, 3rd; Oishi Banerjee: Daily Life, 1st, Mythology, 3rd; Allison Chang: Mythology, 1st; Kevin Duraiswamy: Reading Comprehension, 3rd; Helena Huang: Mythology, 2nd; Zina Jawadi: Sight Reading, 2nd; Charles Manchester: Derivatives, 1st; Piyush Prasad, Gr. 7: Derivatives, 3rd.

had great success at the annual Ludi “fallHarker miniconvention of the Junior Classical League, held this year at St. Ignatius College Prep in San Francisco.

Middle School 2 (all Gr. 7): Nikhil Baradwaj: Reading Comprehension, 2nd, Mottoes, Quotes, and Abbreviations, tied for 2nd; Jenny Chen: Mythology, 2nd, Grammar, 3rd, Sight Reading, 3rd; Michael Cheng: Derivatives, 3rd, Karan Das-Grande: Roman History, 2nd; Richard Fan: Mythology, tied for 3rd, Roman History, 1st; Sean Fernandes: Roman History, 3rd; Cristina Jerney: Mottoes, Quotes, and Abbreviations, 3rd; Suchita Nety: Mottoes, Quotes, and Abbreviations, 1st; Anuj Sharma: Vocabulary, 2nd, Grammar, 2nd, Mottoes, Quotes, and Abbreviations, tied for 2nd; Pranav Sharma: Mythology tied for 3rd, Vocabulary, tied for 1st, Photography, 2nd; Shannon Su: Mythology, 1st; Ashvin Swaminathan: Vocabulary, tied for 1st; Ravi Tadinada: Derivatives, 2nd. Other attendees: Sarika Bajaj, Nikhil Dilip, Shenel Ekici, Katherine Paseman, Nicholas Samoray, Nicky Semenza, Jithin Vellian, all Gr. 6; Daphne Millard, Gr. 7. Harker’s MS students swept Mythology at both MS levels and Derivatives and Roman History at Level 2. In the quiz bowl game Certamen, at the Advanced level: Swaminathan and Sharma played on the first-place team. Fernandes, Sharma and Nety were on the second-place team, and Cheng was on the third-place team. The US students also put on an impressive showing: Second Year (all Gr. 9): April Luo: Derivatives, 2nd, Reading Comprehension, 2nd; Justine Liu: Derivatives, 3rd, Reading Comprehension, 1st; Supraja Swamy: Reading Comprehension, 3rd. Advanced (Levels 3 and above): Brandon Araki, Gr. 10: Latin Vocabulary, 1st, Roman History, 2nd, Advanced Open Certamen, 2nd (losing only to a member of last year’s California national team!); Kelsey Chung, Gr. 10: 2-Dimensional Art, 1st; Alex Han, Gr. 10: Mottoes, Quotes, Abbreviations, 2nd, Open Certamen 3, 1st; Christine Hsu, Gr. 10: Reading Comprehension, tied for 1st, Open Certamen 3, 3rd; Anjali Menon, Gr. 10: Reading Comprehension, tied for 1st; Open Certamen 3, 2nd; Aarathi Minisandram, Gr. 12: Sight Reading, 1st , Dramatic Interpretation, 3rd; Kritika Kailash, Gr. 12: Latin Grammar, 1st, Dramatic Interpretation, 2nd; Ruchi Srivastava, Gr. 12: Mottoes, Quotes, and Abbreviations, 1st; Ranjita Raghavan, Gr. 12: Latin Derivatives, 3rd, Mottoes, Quotes, and Abbreviations, 3rd. Also attending were Melissa Chen, Gr. 12, Vivian Huang, Gr. 10 and Amritha Minisandram, Gr. 9.


A. I had a college coach who made me hate getting up every day and dread the thing I loved the most. I also had coaches that I admired very much but the awful coach was dictating my life. I decided that I wanted to be like the coaches I respected and have the positive influence on people that they did. The only way you get to coach is to teach. I took a couple of education classes and they were a great change from my math and science courses. Q. Most important thing you learned from your parents? A. Good things happen to good people. Be Kind: If you can’t say something nice don’t say anything at all, treat others the way you wish to be treated, there is no substitution for a great work ethic. Q. Fondest childhood memory? A. Playing Little League baseball when my dad was the coach. Q. Most memorable moment working with students. A. When I was teaching English Literature my first year and a group of students said that my class was the first time they enjoyed reading for the sake of reading. And my team winning our first state championship. Q. Most special to you about Harker so far? A. Oddly enough...Waffle Wednesday because it is time with students. Q. What do you miss about Virginia? A. Long time friends, the weather and living downtown. Q. What’s still on your list of things to do in your lifetime? A. Dance with Jane at my 100th birthday party. Q. Favorite spare time activity? A. Reading. Q. If you could teach any course – real or made up – what would it be? A. The literature course I taught last year. Q. Next dream vacation spot? A. A Caribbean cruise. Q. Book you’re reading? A. “Kaffer Boy” by Mark Mathabane. Q. Favorite Elvis song? A. I’m not an Elvis guy. Q. Favorite Beatles song? A. “Imagine.” Q. Favorite splurge? A. Starbucks. Q. Share a little known fact about yourself. A. I was a cowboy growing up. Harker News — December 07



‘Tis the Season for Oranges Orange you glad it is December and school break is around the corner? OK, a little fruit humor here. You guessed it – oranges are the fruit of the month.

Chef’s Recipe: Blood Orange Salad • • • •

The majority of oranges we enjoy today come from California, Arizona or Florida. Navel and blood oranges are in season right now. Soon you will see Valencia oranges available as well. A small orange is about 80 calories and contains vitamin C and carotenoids. When people say vitamin C, they think of colds. Vitamin C does play a role in the immune system but it has many roles including helping to form collagen and maintaining healthy teeth, gums and blood vessels. Carotenoids are plant pigments and are responsible for fruits and vegetables’ yellow, orange and red colors. Carotenoids serve as antioxidants and some are converted to vitamin A. Oranges also contain folate, which is needed to make DNA and RNA, the

2 blood oranges • 2 naval oranges 1 cup mache (lamb’s lettuce) • 1/2 cup creme fraiche 2 tablespoons olive oil 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes, crushed very fine OR 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Cut the peel away from oranges with a paring knife. Slice oranges into rounds. Arrange rounds on plate alternating blood and naval oranges. Dollop small amount of creme fraiche on top of each round. Place mache in small mound in center of plate. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle chili on top. Serves 8

building blocks of protein. Of course oranges also are a good source of potassium and fiber. Slice or peel an orange as a snack or add it to a salad. For some quick recipes check out —Anne Kolker, MS, RD

Holiday Traditions Include Delicious Dishes - Try Something New! We’ve entered into the Holiday Zone, a time when families and friends get together; and, no matter what the celebration, food plays a central par t. In California we are exposed to many traditions and cultures; most likely you have

to the less for tunate. The pre-fast porridge meal, sudhoor, consists of bread and fruits such as dates and pomegranates. The iftar meal ends the fast and, representing the good things in life, includes cucumbers with yogur t and either

Take a moment during the holidays to look at the “foods and beverages you consume. Compare these with your friends’ meals and even try something new. ” enjoyed the foods and beverages associated with a holiday you don’t know much about – there really is a melting pot of food in America. Check out these holiday treats and traditions from around the world. Fried okra, along with sweet potato pie, corn bread, kale and black beans are common foods eaten during Kwanzaa. Kwanzaa is a Swahili word meaning the first fruits of the har vest and is celebrated by lighting candles from Dec. 26 –Jan. 1. African-Americans began to celebrate Kwanzaa in the late 1960s to honor their heritage and histor y. During the month-long holiday of Ramadan, Muslims fast during the day. It is a time to learn the lessons of the Koran and donate Harker News — December 07

lamb, beef or chicken. Latkas (potato pancakes) and soofganiyot (fried jelly donuts) are par t of the Hanukkah meal. Hanukkah, Hebrew for dedication, is also referred to as the festival of lights. After Jewish fighters, the Macabees, won a great battle, they found a small amount of oil in the Holy Temple. When they lit the menorah (candelabrum), they expected the ritual oil to only last one night but instead it lasted eight days. Thus, candles are lit for eight nights and foods are cooked in oil. Another holiday that is referred to as the festival of lights or the row of lights is the five-day Hindu holiday of Diwali. One of the stories associated with Diwali has to do with Lord Rama. After being

in exile for many years, oil lamps called deeya were lit up to welcome Lord Rama home. Sweets play a big par t of the holiday, including lapsse, a warm sweet porridge, and kheer, a pudding made with rice. Of course when we think of Christmas, a holiday that celebrates the bir th of Christ, many different foods may come to mind depending on one’s heritage. Traditionally, European food included goose and mince pies. Other traditional foods include: carp, a fish popular in Poland, the Yule log or buche del Noel, a French desser t, and panetonne, a sweet Italian bread.

these with your friends’ meals and even tr y something new. Perhaps have friends and neighbors over for a pot luck celebrating many different holidays – a true melting pot for the holidays. Happy Holidays and, as they say in Italy, “Mangia, Mangia!” —Anne Kolker, MS, RD

New Year’s celebrations are also tied to ritual foods. In southern states, black-eyed peas are consumed on New Year’s Day for good luck, and menudo, a stew made of tripe and hominy, is enjoyed in Mexico for good health. Lumpia, an egg roll, is enjoyed by Filipinos and if you travel to Spain, you’d enjoy 12 grapes to have a sweet new year. Take a moment during the holidays to look at the foods and beverages you consume. Compare


Harker LS Sports Volleyball The D (Gr. 5) volleyball team has had an amazing run the last few weeks. They took first place at the St. Victors Tournament after defeating St. Chris 2-1, St. John the Baptist 2-0, Hillbrook 2-1, St. Victors 2-0 and Most Holy Trinity in the finals 2-0. This stellar group

sports Gr. 5 boys have been busy proving their athleticism as well this fall. According to coach Pete Anderson, “The D football team had a very successful season. Led by quarterback/linebacker Jeremiah Anderson, tight end/defensive end Eric Holt and wide receiver/cornerback Nathan Boone, the team improved tremendously as the season progressed. Added Theresa Smith, K-Gr. 8 athletic director, “The D football team found themselves competing against mostly Gr. 6 teams but held their own and took second place in the recent St. Victors Tournament. In that tournament, they defeated Holy Family, St. Leos and St. Victors, and only lost in the finals to a stacked sixth grade team, St. John Vianney.” The boys finished the season with a record of 5-2-2.

33-20. They finished their season at Woodside Priory, with scores not available at press time. Softball The MS softball team finished a strong season at 5-3, their best re-

Gr. 7, eighth. The Gr. 7 girls team came in second. On the Gr. 7 boys’ team, Michael Amick placed first and Sumit Minocha tenth, with the team finishing third. Neha Kumar, Gr. 8, took seventh place at the same meet. At the mid-October meet, Tischler again took third, as did Isabelle Connell, Gr. 7, and Bhattacharya took sixth, with the team taking first over all. With these young runners performing so well, it looks like we have some runners to watch for next year!

MS Sports also took second place in the Apostles Lutheran Tournament a couple of weekends ago! The girls ended their season the last week of October beating the Gr. 6 Carden team. Coach Daniel Stangu, a first-year coach to Harker, commented on his experience both with the team and coaching at Harker. “As a coach you start each season with a great plan. You have in mind what you will do and how you will succeed, but an important factor in everything you create is the material and tools used,” said Stangu. “Here at Harker I found a group of smart girls with good sport qualities and all the equipment needed. We worked together as a team and our efforts paid off with great success. The girls were full of energy and they worked hard, so we had a great season. I think this team has a great future ahead of it.” Football Not to be outdone by the girls, the

Football The A (Gr. 8) flag football team finished a staggering 9-1-1 this season. They rounded out their season with victories over Egan 39-18 and Valley Christian 39-22. They also played a tough Kings Academy team to a 0-0 tie, after losing to them earlier in the season 13-43!

The B (Gr. 7) flag football team has shown much improvement since the Harker tournament (see the November HN, page 20,) with a 4-0 record since that time. At press time they were 4-2 with games against St. John Vianney and Woodside Priory rounding out their schedule. The C (Gr. 6) flag football team is 5-0 with recent victories over Kings Academy 33-19, Menlo School 7-0 and Valley Christian


US Sports cord ever! They finished the season in winning fashion with victories over St. Simons 17-6, St. Joes of Atherton 7-5 and Pinewood 5-4. Cross Country The MS cross country team had another spectacular season this year, with the grades 6 and 7 girls and Gr. 7 boys teams finishing in the top three at their meet in early October. At that meet, Claudia Tischler, Gr. 6, came in third place, and the Gr. 6 girls team also placed third. Ragini Bhattacharya, Gr. 7, finished second, and Jenny Chen,

Fall sports teams have finished their regular season games and it was a great season all around! Football The varsity/JV football teams had a successful season. Against Vista del Lago, the JV team lost a well-fought battle, but varsity came out victorious 18-14 after a strong defensive stand in the final seconds to hold off Vista’s scoring efforts. Varsity pulled off a major victory against Soledad with the score of 12-6, when quarterback Arman Gupta, Gr. 11, threw for two touchdowns, one each to Jasper Liao, Gr. 11, and Brian McEuen, Gr. 12. At press time, the varsity team record was 6-2 with hopes to make it 7-2 in their final game at Rincon Valley Christian. Soccer “The boys soccer team played inspired ball against first place Sacred Heart Prep,” said Dan Molin, athletic director. “Although they came out on the losing end 2-1, our boys outshot and outplayed them most of the game and made Prep earn their win. Greg Harker News — December 07

Tennis Recently, the JV girls tennis team defeated Mercy-Burlingame 7-0 and Woodside Priory 6-1. JV defeated ICA to improve their record to 6-3. Girls varsity finished the season with a 9-6 record and second place finish in the WBAL. They finished fourth in the Santa Catalina Tournament (out of 16 teams), with senior Divya Mandava and sophomores Kelly Chen, Brittany Chu and Vivian Huang advancing to the semifinals. “Standout performers this year included juniors Sarah Christiano, Dominique Dabija, Elizabeth Liu, Lauren Moser, Tara Panu and sophomores Chen, Chu, Huang and Shizuka Tiernan,” noted coach Craig Pasqua. Golf Coach Ken Matsuda complimented his players’ improvement. “Andrea Kim, Gr. 11, and Sonya Huang, Gr. 10, were consistently scoring the lowest on the team. A few strokes behind were Rachel Wang, Gr. 11, and Tiffany Liou, Gr. 12, always within a couple of strokes of each other, followed by Jackie Son, Gr. 10, and Katie Liang, Gr. 9. “It was a joy working with the girls and I appreciated the support of their parents.”

Agrawal, and Kelsey Chung, Gr. 10.” In league championship play, the first game was close but ended in a loss; in game two Harker beat Santa Clara 13-4 and, in a tense last game, Harker beat Cupertino for fifth place with goals by Yanovsky, Comee, Agrawal, Christina Ma, Gr. 10, Daphne Gorman, Gr. 12, and Sarah Estrada, Gr. 10, and great tending by goalie Melanie Herscher, Gr. 10. Boys Water Polo The boys team ended a great season with amazing performances against Santa Clara and Cupertino in the El Camino Division League tournament in early November. At that tournament, the boys lost to third-seeded Fremont, 12-5, but came back to win against Santa Clara 9–5 with three goals by Raymond Paseman, Gr. 12, two by Michael Clifford, Gr. 10, and Stefan Schwartz, Gr. 10; and one each from Scott Liao, Gr. 12, and Chris Ng, Gr. 9. Coach Robert Zylstra noted, “Our last game against Cupertino was probably the pinnacle of our season, with Evan Maynard, Gr. 11, Liao, and Alexander He, Gr. 11, scoring for Harker … but we lost

Harker News — December 07

by three. This was one of the best games that we have ever played.” Harker finished the season 2-10, ending in sixth place. Cross Country Our boys varsity cross country team won the league championship at Coyote Hills in Fremont! Top scorers for the Eagles were Aadithya Prakash, Gr. 10, Sam Levine, Gr. 11, Evan Maynard, Gr. 11, Adam Perelman, Gr. 10 and Kevin Xu, Gr. 11. Athletic Director Dan Molin commented, “This is an amazing accomplishment and is a testament to their hard work, commitment and dedication.” The girls varsity cross country team placed second in their league

Athletes of the Month For October, the male athlete of the month was quarterback Arman Gupta, Gr. 11, for his dedication, leadership and ability. Female athlete of the month was cross country runner Elena Madan, Gr. 11. According to coach Hodgin, “She has never missed a practice, works as hard or harder than anybody on the team, does all that is asked of her and is by far my most talented athlete.”

Girls Volleyball Team Steamrolls Opponents, Advances Our girls varsity volleyball team easily won their CCS quarterfinal match against Kings’ Academy on Saturday morning in three games, 25-18, 25-10, 25-18. The first game started off with a close score until our girls warmed up, but after tying 7-7, Harker pulled away for the win.

Steven Wong - alumni parent

Volleyball The girls varsity volleyball team won the Menlo Tournament in mid-October undefeated, improving their record to 30-3 and their San Jose Mercury News ranking from seventh to fourth, giving them the highest ranking for any Harker team. They clipped Mercy Burlingame 3-0 and clinched the league championship by beating rival Castilleja. They played in the CCS quarterfinals on November 10 (see story at right). The JV volleyball team also won their league championship. Girls Water Polo Kandace Lopez, girls water polo coach, was excited about the conclusion of the season, “and what a conclusion it was,” she said. “The last game of league play ended in a hard fought win against Santa Clara with juniors Becky Yanovsky, Jenna Glasa, Kaytee Comee, Angeli

championship meet, their highest finish ever in league. Top scorers for the girls were: Kristie Sanchez, Gr. 9, Elena Madan, Gr. 11, Roshmi Bhattacharya, Gr. 11, Jennifer Dai, Gr. 9 and Niti Shahi, Gr. 10. The girls JV team are league champions! Both boys and girls varsity teams qualified for the CCS championship meet in mid-November. Congratulations to all runners and to the fantastic coaching trio of head coach Dan Hodgin, and assistants Naomi Schatz and Heather Jackson David Amm

Plauck, Gr. 10, was outstanding in goal, and George Gonzalez, Gr. 11, scored for the Eagles. “The team played well at home with a 4-0 win over Pinewood and tied their last game against a tough Valley-Dublin team, 1-1,” said Molin.

The girls were led by Santa Clara University-bound Senior Tanya Schmidt, who put forth an outstanding performance all-around, with 16 kills, four blocks, and 12 digs. Kristina Bither (Gr. 11) was

service leader with four aces. Bither also had 10 kills, including the game winning kill in game three. The hitters were assisted by setter Christy Emery (Gr. 11), who had 21 assists in the action-packed games. On defense, Junior Candace Silva-Martin contributed three blocks and 11 digs. All nine of the

varsity players put forth a great effort, demonstrating the team unity these girls have developed in their winning season. Our second-seeded girls were slated to play in the semi-final match in mid-November at Valley Christian High School against thirdseeded Harbor.




Colleen Lindsay

Alumna Olympian Visits Kindergartners Annual Food Drive a Great Success Harker alumna and Olympic synchronized swimming team member Andrea Nott visited kindergarten teacher Colleen Lindsay’s classroom in October to talk about her upcoming journey to the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. “I am calling her our very own hometown hero,” said Lindsay of Nott, who is the daughter of Debra Nott, director of nursing. Nott showed a video of her swimming and brought some of her medals and swimming outfits. “The children collectively said, ‘Wow!’ when she showed them her swan swimsuit that her mother had so beautifully sequined,” added Lindsay. “They also thought the fact that she uses Knox gelatin to hold her hair firmly in place during competitions was kind of cool.” The most unusual thing, however, was how many children spontaneously laughed each time the video showed the synchronized swimmers twirling their feet as they stuck out of the water. Above and beyond the effect of the kaleidoscopic feet, “I want the children to be exposed to this kind of success, especially given that she is an alum,” said Lindsay.

The annual Thanksgiving food drive collected box after box of food, along with cash donations, for .St. Justin’s Church in Santa Clara. The drive is organized by Pat Walsh, Gr. 5 math teacher, and managed by fifth graders, but all grades participate by bringing food to help those who need it during the holiday season. St. Justin’s provides nonperishable groceries and hot meals to anybody in need, not just the parishioners, yearround. Parents contributed time by driving the food to St. Justin’s in mid-November. Although local agencies are concerned donations will be down this year because everybody has been focused on hurricane and earthquake relief, at press time students were on track to collect about the same amount of food and cash as last year. St. Justin’s serves meals to about 2,300 people each month and provides Thanksgiving baskets for about 600 families.

Harker Halloween Haunts Halls - Teachers Use Holiday as a Learning Tool

Nick Gassmann - all photos

The Halloween spirit romped the Bucknall campus the whole month culminating in a day dedicated to fantasy and fun. On the 31st,

parties were held in individual homerooms, and included games and Halloween food. Gr. 6 students and their Tamagawa buddies (all in costume) came to Gr. 1-3 classes to complete origami projects and read Japanese stories. After the parties, the annual parade, accompanied by spooky Halloween music, snaked around the campus flanked by waving parents and family members, some also in costume. The activities started long before the actual day, though. Kindergartners took their annual trip to the


Chan, Gr. 4 science teacher, also had her students follow coordinates to draw jack-o-lanterns. Direction-following activities in some primary language arts classes required students to explain how to make a black cat or a witch’s hand. Primary math students estimated and graphed Halloweenrelated objects, and in the Gr. 1 G++ math classes of Cindy Proctor and Diann Chung, students moved through stations that included estimating the circumference of a pumpkin, the weight of a pumpkin and how many fangs were in a bag. Students also added up points they earned while playing games, including pumpkin bulls-eye.

pumpkin patch for individual minipumpkins, and as their annual service activity Gr. 2 students decorated pumpkins and delivered them to neighboring homes as a gesture of community goodwill. The gym lobby was a-haunted, too. The after-school art classes in Gr. 1-5 decorated the lobby with a Halloween display, which included creatures made from gourds decorated with natural materials, such as seashells, seedpods, petals and dried flowers. Older students hot-glued the materials for first- and second graders. “The display in the gym lobby was certainly a joint effort including students and teachers,” said art teacher Susan Bass. The display included a cardboard haunted house, ghosts, skeletons and pumpkins made by kindergartners and mummies made by fifth graders. Finally, teachers capitalized on the theme to pique student interest in exercises. On the classroom front, taking advantage of technology, language arts teacher Shelby Guarino had her students participate in an online Spooky Story Writing contest and Pat Walsh, Gr. 5 math teacher, had his students carve virtual pumpkins. Mary Holaday, Gr. 1 teacher, used online Hal-

loween sudoku and picture puzzles with her math students. Guarino also used a short clip from the movie “The Great Pumpkin” to reinforce vocabulary words, requiring students to describe scenes in the movie that reminded them of vocabulary words. An example, said Guarino, was, “Linus agitated Lucy in the pumpkin patch.” Gr. 3 students in Stephanie Woolsey’s math classes completed Halloween-themed math activities including using coordinate pairs to make Halloween pictures. Priscilla Harker News — December 07

Japan Visit Impresses Teacher

Ready, Set, Research

Grade 5 math teacher Pat Walsh and his wife, Alumni Director Terry Walsh, recently returned from a two-week exchange program with the Tamagawa School in Japan. While at our sister school, Walsh used an interactive online activity to teach Gr. 4 and 5 math classes, and Mrs. Walsh met with the alumni department. Walsh communicated with his classes back at Harker via e-mail and posted photos online, and spent time with his counterpart, Katsuhito Iizuka. Iizuka will come to Harker in January to teach math classes to Harker students.

This entrancing research game is well into its first decade at Harker. The extracurricular challenge is played by students during recess, lunch and after-school free times by researching a set of 36 questions over a four-week period in order to accumulate points. At the end of four weeks, a new round starts. The first round ran from Oct. 15 – Nov. 9; round two will be open from Jan. 14 – Feb. 8, and round three will be from March 24 – April 25.

In one e-mail to his Gr. 5 Harker math students, Walsh commented, “While I truly love being here, it is exhausting – nothing is easy – figuring out the right train, trying to decipher what food is served at restaurants, remembering that kon’nichiwa means hello, ohayoo gozaimasu means good morning and arigatoo gozaimasu means thank you. I learned right away that the kids loved to hear me say banzai (hooray) when they give a correct answer.”

Questions are sometimes inspired by curriculum in a grade level’s classes, current events, or other fun happenings. The game was started in the late ’80s or early ’90s and was expanded by Enid Davis, library director, in 1993. In 2003, librarians added a team component.

Walsh thoroughly enjoyed this cultural exchange program, and recently reflected on his experience. “I thought nothing could measure up to the experience I had on my first trip to Tamagawa almost 10 years ago. I was mistaken. Spending two weeks at Tamagawa this fall was another fabulous experience. Not being with a big group, Terr y and I had ample oppor tunities to explore the campuses and obser ve a lot of classes and informal interactions between members of the school community.” Walsh added, “I am always touched by the innocence of the students on their lower school campus. They

The game encourages use of various information sources, including the library catalog, reference books and subscription databases. “All questions must be answered using sources in the library — no Internet searching (except for the library catalog and subscription databases),” said Kathy Clark, campus librarian.

At the end of the year, the top point earner in each grade is designated Researcher of the Year. Questions are written for each grade level, and the grade level with the highest cumulative points is honored with by having its grade and year engraved on the RSR Knowledge Cup trophy. Any interested students may come to the library to learn more about how to play. For more information, see the “Kids’ Spot” on the Lower School library’s Web page.

kid talk Editors note: The Harker crest motto is Praestantia, Scientia, Constantia, Beneficium (translated: Excellence, Knowledge, Character and Service). We thought we’d ask students what they think those words mean. Read on!

Photos supplied by Pat Walsh

When Gr. 5 students were recently asked to explain what excellence means to them, they were glad to share their opinions. Christina Andrus feels that, “Excellence means what’s great about you.” don’t seem nearly as caught up with what other kids might think about them and thus are more free to act as they think they should. They always get so excited when they see a man of my size walk into their classroom.” For Walsh, a San Francisco Giants and general baseball fan, one of the highlights was attending a Tokyo Giants baseball game at the Tokyo Dome, where the Tokyo team clinched a spot in the championship series by beating their rivals, the Swallows. Both the Walshes enjoyed mastering the Japanese rail system, exploring the area by going to a different place each night and as many places as possible on the weekends. Several times during their two-week stay, they passed through Shinjuku station, repor tedly the busiest train station in the world with 2-3 million people passing through it each working day. The Walshes also had the opportunity to meet with the school president, Mr. Obara. Walsh explained, “He values his international program because he believes exposing his teachers to teachers from other cultures frees them from some of the structure and rigidity that exists in the Japanese educational system. I told him that allowing me to experience his school has changed me as a teacher. When I first went there 10 years ago, I was most impressed with the relationship between the teachers and students. There is a great deal of mutual respect that I love to see in a school community.” Harker News — December 07

Rahul Balakrishnan said, “I think that excellence means trying your hardest. You don’t really have to succeed, but you should try your best and at least try to succeed.” To Brandon Riddlesprigger, “Excellence means being the best that you can be.” Neel Bedekar would make his language arts teachers proud. He stated, “Excellent means really good, so excellence would be the quality of being very good.” Sriram Somasundaram commented, “The word excellence means to me that the Harker school is very clean and excellent, and the students think it’s excellent.” Neil Movva thoughtfully added, “Excellence means academic excellence. Academic excellence is getting good grades and doing well in school.” Aadyot Bhatnagar added to that. “I think that excellence basically means academic excellence like Neil said, and then behavioral and character excellence. Academic excellence is getting good grades, behavioral excellence means you should be helping out everyone and stuff like that, and character excellence I suppose goes with that.” Amy Burke: “Excellence means we’re good.” Rishabh Jain looks at excellence from a more holistic perspective. “Excellence to me means if you’re doing the right thing and you get good grades and if you excel in everything you undertake.”




Laptop Rollout is Officially On

Sixth Graders Explore Yosemite

Laptops have been officially rolled out! Students received their laptops in early November and have been coping with the changes, good and less good. The 320 machines were configured by Harker technicians and students did their part by all passing the laptop test with 100 percent correct.

The annual Gr. 6 trip to Yosemite was fun-filled and a great experience for the new middle schoolers, joined by visitors from the Tamagawa school in Tokyo. The weather cooperated wonder fully and the group, staying at Curry Village, spent many hours walking the trails of the fabulous park, culminating the days with campfire time. Harker students arrived a day early, as planned, and the two groups of students from opposite sides of the Pacific met the next day at a river, where buddies paired up and were skipping stones together after a few minutes.

Angela Neff, assistant director of technology, has been coordinating the entire process and sent a copy of the test out to faculty and staff so they would understand student responsibilities and constraints. One of the more surprising constraints is prohibiting power cords at school. Aside from the technical benefit of letting the battery discharge entirely, thus prolonging its life, classrooms don’t have the power to support them and the cords would be a nuisance to keep track of. Students whose batteries fail can borrow a loaner from the library or book store. Neff said the best way to conserve and manage battery power is to leave the laptop in sleep mode during the day instead of shutting down and rebooting, run down your batteries completely during the day and recharge nightly. She noted that even teachers will find the laptops add an interesting new dimension to classrooms. “The technicians and academic technology team are ready to support you all,” she added. Laptop tip: designated laptop picnic tables have a red stripe around the edge. More news as this inaugural laptop year unfolds!

In the ensuing days, the students broke into four groups and, accompanied by a chaperone and Yosemite Institute instructor, each group explored the park section by section. Activities included various hikes, including the tough Vernal Falls hike, lectures, and challenges including the spider caves, where students were asked to remain quiet in the dark to contemplate their surroundings. On the same trip, the students had to pass on instructions to the person behind them as they traversed the darkened cavern. The last evening was spent in camaraderie gained from sharing long days and physical challenges with each other as teachers and students improvised skits, comedy pieces and singing acts around the campfire.

Grand Trip to the Southwest for Seventh Graders life, including constructing a Navajo ‘Hogan’ home, making fry-bread, creating Navajo sand painting and more,” said Gelineau.

Scott Klay Contini

Stacie Newman

The group visited Moonlight Springs, a Navajo reservation. “The Holliday family brought us to their land and demonstrated traditional aspects of Navajo


The evening culminated with the grandfather, a Navajo medicine man, leading the group in the traditional Blessing Way* dance around the fire under a full moon. “Amazing experience,” Gelineau stated. At least one student grew after being in contact with the Holliday family. “They are such a close family. It makes me want to become closer to my family,” said Randall Riedel.

Lana Morrison

Once on the ground the real action began. “The trip was fantastic,” said Mark Gelineau, English teacher, who accompanied the group. “The weather was amazing. The highlights have to be the off-roading jeep tour around Sedona, the river trip on the Colorado River, and best of all, the Navajo experience,” he said. Stacie Newman

Seventh grade Grand Canyoneers returned in late October from a dynamic trip to various national parks in the southwest. The trip “allowed ever yone, students and staff, to bond together while viewing these awe-inspiring national parks,” said Lana Morrison, dean of students. Students braved chilly desert weather to enjoy a variety of activities. The trip started with a bumpy plane ride, but three of the flight attendants had been teachers in a previous life and kept the students occupied.

*According to Wikipedia and other Web sites, the Blessing Way is one half of the Navajo song ceremonial complex, the other half being the Enemy Way. The rites and prayers in the Blessing Way are concerned with healing, creation, harmony and peace. Harker News — December 07

Fresh Every Year: Tamagawa and Harker Students Gain Cultural Appreciation

Jennifer Abraham, Harker’s new director of Global Education reports on the annual visit by Tamagawa students: Upon arrival in late October, the 24 students from Tamagawa were thrilled to be met at the airport by the Harker Mascot. They were soon whisked off to Yosemite (see related stor y on page 14). This sixth grade exchange is based on the ‘Our Tree’ curriculum, which students in both

countries learn about in class. The first leg of their journey was a success as the Japanese guests had the opportunity to learn more about

California trees. Following the Yosemite trip, the Tamagawa students’

first day at Harker was exciting; not only did they meet their host families for the first time but they were greeted at a brunch by Harker administrators and staff and Jay Alexander, an amazing magician. Harker students spent their weekend entertaining their guests with San Francisco, the Monterey Aquarium, and In & Out Burger

being popular destinations. Their busy week continued with a trip to the San Jose Tech museum and a Halloween Festival attended by the entire middle school. Their last evening here they had the unique opportunity of experiencing Halloween for the very first time. The Harker students were sad to see their buddies leave — but in May it will be their turn to travel to Japan to visit them. I would like to extend a wholehearted thank you to the sixth grade for extending such a warm welcome to our guests, and especially to the students and families who so graciously hosted them. It is through this support that Harker is able to have such wonderful exchanges!

Visit with Supreme Court Justice, Continued from Pg. 1 Weather in the 70s kept spirits high, and the group started with viewing settler life at Jamestown on Sunday, followed by colonial architecture and life in Williamsburg on Monday. One of the highlights of the trip is always participation in the reenactment of a Civil War-era activity at Pamphlin Park.

Keith Hirota - both photos

The group moved on to D.C. Monday evening, and continued the high-intensity history lesson with a visit to the Iwo Jima Memorial and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier where the students, represented by Daniela Lapidous, Jun Hee Lee, Veronica Bither and Daanish Jamal, laid a wreath, an important act of patriotism that transcends current affairs. Students, with their 13 chaperones, attended an evening per formance of “Shear Madness” at the Kennedy Center to put a cap on the day. “Visits to the Holocaust Museum, Smithsonian museums, Gettysburg, Library of Congress, National Archives, Mount Vernon, the White House and many memorials were sprinkled through Wednesday, Thursday and Friday morning,” noted Ellis. “Thursday held two very special events; the students were addressed within the U.S. Supreme Court by Justice Stevens, who answered student questions about the judicial process for well over 30 minutes, an access that is exceptionally rare and was arranged for us through Harker parent Ken Manaster (Cole, Gr. 8),” a professor of law at Santa Clara University. The whole group wrapped up by pounding the dance floor on a dinner cruise on the Potomac on Thursday night. “Everyone had a great time!” Ellis said. Harker News — December 07

A hauntingly good time was had by all on the MS campus and there were plenty of spooky activities to howl about! Winner of the Halloween costume contest was Gr. 8 Angad Randhawa, as the tooth fairy.




Clubs Collect Over Two Thousand Cans New Post Assists Teachers, Students

Never at a loss to turn a ton of food into a ton of fun, the organiza-

tions sponsored a Stomp-like percussion festival with – what else? – empty cans and bottles as instruments and a canned food sculpture contest between classes. Coinciding with Harker’s homecoming, the events fit in nicely with the annual weeklong celebration. Freshmen gathered 359 cans; sophomores, 451; juniors, 598 and seniors had almost 40 percent of the total, with 919 cans. “An important part of the world … is our own country and county,” says WAC member David Kastelman, Gr. 11. “A canned food drive is a great way in which WAC can benefit the local community. Seeing all those bins overflowing with cans was an awesome sight.”

The newly minted office of assistant director of instructional technology is being ably administered by Fred Triefenbach, former Harker technology teacher and computer science department chair (Gr. 9-12). One of the busiest sectors of Triefenbach’s domain is managing the checking in and out of video equipment. “There is regular demand for still and video cameras and cables for downloading,” he said. “I have had a number of people coming in for tripods, camera bags and headsets with microphones, which are used quite a bit by students and teachers.” Triefenbach is available to help with a wide range of soft- and hardware problems, having taught a spectrum of computing classes. Another duty is coordinating the Tech Angels, which are “students who have computer skills they are willing to share with other students or teachers,” he said. “This year their biggest role is checking laptops for proper antivirus protection and helping get the wireless connections working.” Finally, Triefenbach is deep in planning the multimedia recording studio in the new science and technology building. He is in the process of consulting with experts on equipment requirements and pricing.

Student Creates Calendar Software to Assist with Time Management One thing students, like many professionals, struggle with constantly is calendaring, so when junior Kartik Venkatraman demonstrated his integrated student calendar application in an assembly in October, he provided a needed solution.

my own assignments, I would have something useful. The timing of my thoughts coincided with the end of my computer science course, where we were given about two weeks to write anything. I wrote the beginnings of the Harker Student Calendar.

“I first perceived the need for this type of application sometime towards the end of the last school year, probably around April,” said Venkatraman. “I was experimenting with different programs to manage my time, but realized any program I used would lack access to my homework assignments, a sizable portion of my ‘to-do’ list. I thought that if there was some way I could harness the information on HHMS (Harker Homework Management System) and couple that with

“When I first began the project, it was almost an experiment to see if I could, in fact, use what I already knew to create something like a calendar that would be useful. I was slightly skeptical that the program would work well and function the way I wanted it to. After the first version, where one could add their classes and sort them by class and type, I realized that this program could actually benefit other Harker students. I then added features to make it generally


usable, and it finally became what was demoed,” he said. Naturally, Venkatraman used his project management training to set up the project and began a threepart process: determining what feature is to be implemented, figuring out how to implement it, and then actually implementing. “That final step, the actual code-writing, was probably the easiest part,” he noted. “I spent most of my time figuring out the best way to implement a new feature, be it adding extracurricular activities or exporting events into the iCal format*. For the former, I had to first decide how my program would interact with user-defined events, and, for the latter, I had to learn the actual format and test it on various programs to make sure it worked,” he said. Following software development protocol Venkatraman moved to an active test bed. “I did run a beta version by various people, mostly just

people who were around when I was using the program. I did not want to force it on anybody, because I wanted people who would actually use it. I had the program in the hands of about 20 students in the high school and one in the middle school who played around with it to make sure that it was usable and ready for general student launch. I would still call this a public beta because, as one person, I haven’t had the time to completely test every different possible user action, and I have created a blog,, for people to post feedback.” The project isn’t finished yet. “My plans for the program are to expand Harker News — December 07

Kartik Venkatraman - both photos

Harker’s World Awareness Committee (WAC) and Key Club teamed up to collect canned food in support of World Hunger Day, October 16. WAC and Key Club members inspired Harker students to gather 2,227 pounds of food – that’s 2,327 cans – which was donated to the Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties.

*According to Wikipedia and other Web sites (http://www.faqs. org/r fcs/r fc2445.html, etc.), iCalendar is a standard (RFC 2445) for calendar data exchange.

CD Raises Awareness for Liver Illness Harker’s Music Outreach Programs Society (MOPS) is up and running with a Harker-produced CD it is selling to benefit hepatitis B and liver cancer awareness. “Mr. Florio personally recorded each track,” noted senior Catherine Chiu, club president. “I decided that, after teaching the students about these health issues, it would only be fitting for us, as a chamber music club, to create a CD to help support and fundraise for this cause. “The tracks are per formed by Harker students and recent alumni and the music represents the best classical chamber works that MOPS members per formed live throughout the year. The last track, which we call the ‘Bonus Track,’ is actually the vocal piece, ‘The Girl from Ipanema’ -- a special track from the 2007 graduates.” Chiu noted that the recording process took a couple of weeks. “MOPS is extremely grateful (Chris) Florio (US/MS orchestra teacher) spent all his free time helping us record all the pieces,” she said. “The publishing process actually happened over the summer. It took longer than expected to get the case designed and a MOPS logo created. The case was designed by Nikita Jeswani, Gr. 12, and myself and the MOPS logo was designed by senior Natasha Wu. The CD will be available as long as there is demand for it,” Chiu added.

Update Debate From floor speeches to strategic motions, senior Stephanie Benedict wowed judges and fellow senators at the St. Mark’s Heart of Texas invitational tournament Oct. 20-21. With 42 schools from 17 states in attendance, Benedict took 7th place in the Student Congress competition and missed getting a bid to the Tournament of Champions by one tenth of a point. Bids at this tournament are awarded to the top six Student Congress competitors.

Billie Jean King Speaker at Event Each fall, Harker supports the YWCA of Silicon Valley’s annual fundraising event, a luncheon held at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center. This year, five students, Veronica Pugin, Gr. 12, Dominique Dabija, Gr. 11, Jennifer Dai, Gr. 9, Tanya Schmidt, Gr. 12, and Cynthia Shwe, Gr. 9, attended, along with staffers Pam Dickinson, director of communications; Theresa Smith, athletic director K-Gr. 8; Terry Walsh, alumni director; Chris Daren, activities director; and alumna Casey Near ’07. More than 1,700 community members also attended, Diane Dwyer, NBC11 weekend anchor, emceed and keynote speaker Billie Jean King shared the valuable lessons she has learned throughout her life, speaking to three key points: being true to yourself, living in the moment while looking to the future and not the past, and the importance of community involvement. Dickinson noted, “Harker has hosted a table at this event since 2004 to provide an opportunity for a group of students each year to hear outstanding keynote speakers — such as astronaut Sally Ride, Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, and author and feminist Gloria Steinem — and to demonstrate community support to a worthy organization at this highly visible event.” At press time the event had raised an estimated $382,000!

Siemens Semifinalists Announced This fall four students, all seniors, from the Harker research program were semifinalists in the Siemens Competition in Math, Science and Technology. Here are the students and their projects. Sushant Sundaresh (not pictured): Toward nitrogen fixing symbioses with mutual consent; Hassan Shenasa: Soliton resonance: a novel high frequency power combining method; Thomas Roxlo: Small molecule induction of the heat shock response; and Senan Ebrahim: Properties of silk III fibroin at the air-water interface. Ebrahim and Roxlo worked at Stanford University under the mentorship of Harker parent Dr. Chris Contag (Caitlin, ‘07, Greyson, Gr. 7), and Dr. Gerald Fuller. Congratulations to all!

Earlier this month, six Harker students attended the New Trier policy debate tournament in Chicago. With 142 teams in the tournament from 31 schools, juniors Kunal Modi and Pratusha Erraballi represented Harker in the double octofinal elimination rounds. This is Modi and Erraballi’s first varsity elimination round appearance and we expect great things of them in the future. Coming up for our forensics team: 35 students will attend Stanford’s Model United Nations conference. Harker will represent the United States, Austria, Finland and Singapore. Stay tuned for a wrap-up of that event in the next HN. The forensic teams also participated in Stanford’s Model United Nations Conference. See story on p. 19. —Carol Green, Communication Studies Department Harker News — December 07


Supplied by Chris Daren

it into a time-management tool for students and possibly anyone else. I would add more calendaring features, combined with e-mail capabilities to work hand in hand with the existing calendar. The most fun part of the project was seeing the program evolve from an idea to a full-fledged calendar that allows users to see all their assignments and then some. It is also exciting now to see that a lot of people are using the program.”


Junior Mentoring Underway

Service Lights Lives

Juniors began their mentoring program in October with the traditional kickoff luncheon. For this program, each student chooses from a list of professions and then meets with an industry professional. Students submit resumes to assist with matching mentors, and will meet periodically with their mentors throughout the year.

Community Service activities continue to affect the lives of students. In early October, half a dozen students participated in the Walk ‘N Wag event sponsored by the Humane Society of Silicon Valley (HSSV). “They helped with everything from face painting, selling raffle tickets, an agility course, clean up and walking around with signs,” said Kerry Enzensperger, community service director. Those who participated were Anthony Chen, Gr. 11; Priya Banerjee, Esther Belogolovsky, Carina Fernandes, Akum Gill, all Gr. 10; and Jennifer Nguyen, Gr. 9.

The program is designed to help students make informed career and college decisions as mentors provide information about their own careers. The mentor also can advise appropriate steps and hiring requirements to enter that career. Along with networking, mentors serve as a sounding board and coach and offer insight about upper level management. One important component for mentors is to share knowledge so that students gain a realistic understanding of their career paths.

Students also participated in the Light The Night walk, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s annual event to raise funds. “Funds raised through Light The Night Walk support the work of hundreds of the world’s best and brightest researchers in their search for better therapies and cures for leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma,” according to the Web site.

Small groups of students meet with the mentors throughout the year, often at the workplace, giving students a front line view of the industry. Watch future issues for student comments as they get to know their mentor and industry!

J8 Attendees Bring Activism Home, Launch New Club

FAB Member David Kastelman, Gr. 11, explains, “By the end of the summit we finalized our plan to start our own chapter of FAB. By bringing the club to Harker and our local community we could further a J8 connection and partnership while best effecting change and engaging teenagers.” The organization, which is busy planning a spring activism fair, has adopted the motto “Children Helping Children Helping Change the World.” Senior Rachel Peterson admits the J8 experience helped facilitate the birth of FAB but adds, “The club is about much more than the J8 experience. Many of our members did not participate in the J8 but decided to join us anyway.” The club’s local and international focus on the issue of youth rights “makes it unique” says Peterson. “We consider our work to be part of a larger worldwide movement. We would love to have our club spread to other schools.” FAB meets during the Wednesday lunch period in adviser Carol Zink’s classroom and enjoys active participation of about 15 students. Other J8 participants and FAB co-founders include seniors Kavitha Narra, Rohit Nalamasu, Kelly O’Reilly, Kritika Kailash, Aarathi Minisandram and Sudha Gollapudi.

Junior Sabrina Paseman walked with others that evening. “Over the summer, I helped organize a team for an American Cancer Society walk, Relay for Life,” she said. “I really felt good being able to contribute to cancer research, and Light The Night seemed like a good opportunity to do so again.” Supplied by Stephanie Herh, student

If you think living in the afterglow of international news attention would signal a period of rest for the J8 Harker students who traveled to the G8 Summit last summer, think again. Besides gearing up for classes and managing college applications, Harker’s team, which represented the entire U.S. in Wismar, Germany, is busy launching Friends Across Borders (FAB), a new club meant to promote international youth rights through heightened teen awareness. The group is loosely affiliated with other student-based FAB clubs that grew from the 2006 J8 meeting, and there is no connection to the Maryknoll Ministry FAB.

Kerry Enzensperger


Paseman is now preparing for the two-day, 39-mile Avon Walk for breast cancer. “It is required that each person raise $1,800 dollars. I am very excited about the challenge and the chance to make an even greater impact on my community,” Paseman said. Paseman said she finds participating in the walks rewarding. “I know many people affected by cancer, and I feel good about being able to help them, even indirectly,” she said. “There were so many parts I loved about the [Light The Night] event. Not only did we meet new people, but they were all motivated to raise money for the same cause. I really loved the lighted balloons, and they made me think of the hope we were giving those with cancer. I really felt like part of the community raising money for a noble cause.” Paseman is far from just a walker though. She helped organize the Light walk, recruited a team from Key Club members and organized bake sales to raise money for the event. Now that’s community service.

Harker News (USPS 023-761) is published Monthly except July, Aug., and Sept., by the Harker School, Office of Communications, 500 Saratoga Ave, San Jose, CA 95129. Periodicals Postage Paid at San Jose, CA and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Harker News, 500 Saratoga Avenue, San Jose, CA 95129.


Harker News — December 07

Robotics Team Learns Lessons

Harker Shines at Stanford MUN

The Robotics team fired up for its first competition, a Cal Games event at Woodside High School, but came away chagrined after numerous technical issues arose. “It will take me a bit to put a good spin on the Cal Games event,” noted science teacher and adviser Eric Nelson frankly. “It was a serious learning experience for the team, particularly the newly elected team management.

The Stanford Model United Nations assembly was held in mid October and was the largest conference in the history of the meetings. There were 407 delegates from 27 schools, five states and two countries. Harker sent 27 delegates to the conference. “The conference ran late into the night and started early each morning,” noted Carol Green, MUN Advisor. The students worked hard in session and it paid off, she noted. Harker won a number of awards, starting with the Research Award, which went to Jane Yuan, Gr. 11, representing Singapore in the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Outstanding Delegates were Kelsey Hilbrich, Gr. 10, representing the U.S. in the World Health Organization and Richard Ly, Gr. 11, representing the U.S. in the General Assembly 1: Disarmament and Security Committee.

“The event had more than 30 teams participating in the 2007 game of Rack-N-Roll where six robots at a time, each weighing some 120 pounds and moving up to 20 miles per hour, go wheel-to-wheel for the top award. Harker’s Team 1072 may have taken a licking this time, but they’ll be back!” Nelson promised.

Oncologist Dr. Von Gehr Visits

Nick Gassmann

In the second of a series of guest medical lectures, Dr. Ann Von Gehr of Kaiser Permanente Medical Group spoke to a pair of science department chair Anita Chetty’s classes. A nationally recognized oncologist, Dr. Von Gehr spoke on the diagnosis, staging and treatment of cancer. “She is also very unique in that she is a former chief physician, a lecturer at Stanford and a businesswoman who is working on a software program for putting medical records online while preserving confidentiality and security,” noted Chetty. “She’s a great role model.”

In addition, Verbal Commendations were received by Aditya Yellapragada, Gr. 11, representing the U.S. in the International Olympic Committee, Mohit Bansal, Gr. 11, representing Austria in the International Court of Justice, Elaine Song, Gr. 10, representing Singapore in the United Nations Development Programme, Carissa Jansen, Gr. 10, representing Finland in the International Monetary Fund Executive Board, David Kastelman, Gr. 11, representing the U.S. in the Security Council and Natasha Chitkara, Gr. 10, representing Austria in the World Health Organization.


Musician Visits Language Classes

■ Fencer Isaac Madan, Gr. 11, continues to prove his ability in competition. Madan finished sixth at the Junior Bay Cup held at Cardinal Fencing Club in late October and earned his C-07 rating, finishing ahead of six B-rated fencers. Madan has progressed from an E-07 rating in September to the C-07 rating in just a month! Ratings run from A to E, A being the highest, and can be earned by finishing in one of the top places in a tournament. (Madan would have had to finish third or better to earn a B rating). Read more about Madan, who fences for Elite Musketeers Fencing Club, Mountain View, in the November 2007 issue of the HN, pg. 18.

Harker News — December 07

The study of Japanese language and culture came to life in mid-October when Harker hosted Baisho Matsumoto, a master per former of Japanese folk music. Some 30 students, including members of the Japan Club and several Japanese language classes, witnessed Master Baisho’s per formance of the shamisen – a three-string guitarlike instrument – and shakuhachi – a bamboo flute.

Masako Onakado

■ Julian Wise, Gr. 9, recently qualified for membership in Mensa by scoring in the top two percent on Mensa’s intelligence test. Wise joined the San Francisco regional chapter. He was the youngest winner on record of Mensa’s Texas Hold ’Em Tournament held during the annual regional gathering, and was recognized in the Los Altos Town Crier. According to Mensa International, “Mensans range in age from 4 to 94, but most are between 20 and 60. There are some 100,000 Mensans in 100 countries throughout the world. The society welcomes people from every walk of life whose IQ is in the top two percent of the population, with the objective of enjoying each other’s company and participating in a wide range of social and cultural activities.”

Honorable Mentions included, Denzil Sikka, Gr. 11, representing the U.S. in the International Monetary Fund Executive Board, Priya Thumma, Gr. 11, representing the U.S. in the UN Human Rights Council, Christine Yu, Gr. 11, representing the U.S. in the Economic and Social Council and Nikita Sinha, Gr. 11, representing Singapore in the World Health Organization.

Carol Green - both photos

“They learned that you cannot treat a team event like some do their homework, i.e., waiting until the last minute and then staying up all night to get that research paper done. A bad day for the group, but it should have good long-term effects for the team,” he said.

The concert was arranged by language instructor Keiko Irino. Irino observed that her students especially liked Master Baisho’s upbeat accompaniment to contemporary rock music. Senior Brian Ma was surprised the music was not slow and noted, “the shamisen can compare in volume with modern instruments.” Master Baisho, a resident of Japan, has practiced his music for over 35 years and has per formed throughout the United States, Asia and Europe. Following the per formance, Harker Japanese language students flexed their language skills and interviewed Master Baisho. And the interview? “Mr. Baisho was really supportive and encouraging,” said senior Rachel Yuan.




Tragic Tale of Macbeth Unfolds to Rapt Audiences

“Double, double, toil and trouble…” “Eye of newt…” “Lay on, Macduff…” You’ve heard these phrases, but did you realize they all come from Shakespeare’s “Macbeth”? The US Conservatory produced a fine version of this tragic tale Nov. 1-3 in the Blackford Theater. Director Jeff Draper’s innovative concept included three actors (D.J. Blickenstaff, Cailin Mackenzie and Sophie Newman, all Gr. 11) playing the title character. The triumvirate appeared on stage

together at all times, dividing the lines to represent different facets of Macbeth’s character as his nature became warped by ambition and murder. In fact, Macduff (Joe Hospodor, Gr. 11) had to kill all three personae in a dramatically staged sword battle before Macbeth was truly dead. Three Lady Macbeths also graced the stage with their aggressive (Shilpa Rajgopal, Gr. 12), desperate (Ananya Anand, Gr. 11) and finally guilt-ridden and mad (Neha Sabharwal, Gr. 11) tag-team

portrayals of the thane’s wife. Paul Vallerga’s set brought us to a replica of Shakespeare’s own Globe Theatre, the way it might have looked after being bombed. With the actors in modern camouflage, dress uniforms and dog tags, the message that the horrors of war are timeless was clearly made. Low rumbling sound effects accompanied Banquo’s (Alex Underwood, Gr. 12) reappearance as a ghost, while the three “weird women” (the witches) (Lauren Ammatuna, Gr. 12, Kriti Lodha, Gr. 12 and Lexi

The Harker School is a K-12 independent, co-ed, college-prepschool. Grades K-5: 4600 Bucknall Rd., San Jose CA 95130; Grades 6-8: 3800 Blackford Ave., San Jose CA 95117; Grades 9-12: 500 Saratoga Ave., San Jose CA 95129 Harker believes that all persons are entitled to equal employment opportunity and does not discriminate against its employees or applicants because of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions), national origin, ancestry, age (over 40), marital status, political affiliations, physical or mental disability, medical condition, sexual orientation, or any other basis protected by state or federal laws, local law or ordinance.


Ross, Gr. 11) were accompanied by striking lighting effects and fog whenever they slithered on the stage from underground holes. The 35-person cast ably conveyed the military setting of the story, and delivered the difficult lines with nary a struggle. Lizzie Cutler, Gr. 11, called the show seamlessly in her first outing as stage manager. Many congratulations to Draper, the cast, crew and technical staff for an outstanding production! Visit Web galleries for more photos!

The Harker News provides timely information, news and features about the Harker community to current and alumni Harker families. Editor: Pam Dickinson; Asst. Editor: William Cracraft; Copy Editors: Catherine Snider, Jennifer Maragoni, Vikki Bowes-Mok; Production: Blue Heron Design Group, Jaja Jones; Photos: Mark Tantrum, unless noted; Contributors: Lauri Vaughan, Stephanie Woolsey; Printing: Carol Sosnowski; Mailing Coordinator: Desiree Mitchell. Harker News — December 07

Profile for The Harker School

2007 December Harker News  

2007 December Harker News