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Daniel Pearl Magnet High School 6649 Balboa Blvd., Lake Balboa, CA 91406

Volume 11 Issue 2

Dec. 19, 2019

Rise of stress among teens See pages 4-5


The Pearl Post



The Pearl Post

Table of Contents

In this issue... 1 Cover 3-5

Design by Geraldine Suniga

Special Reports Trans crisis/ Stress

6-7 News

Study strategies/ Preparing for emergencies

8-9 Opinion Editorial/ Commercialism

10-11 Features DIY Christmas gifts list/ Decade in review

12-13 Entertainment

Best Holiday movies/ Artist of the month Ruel

14-15 Sports

Boys basketball/ Girls Basketball Girls soccer

16 Backcover

Letter from the Editor

For our second issue of the magazine, we knew early on that we wanted our central focus to be put on the growing number of teens who deal with stress. It was pretty clear to us that this was an incredibly prevalent issue across campus. We got concrete statistics to back up our observations. Like our last issue, we conducted another school-wide poll that aimed to find out how often students felt stressed and what sort of things were the causes. Approximately 88 percent of students polled felt stressed at some point this school year. Teens have a lot on their plate these days ranging from schoolwork, extracurriculars, family pressures and social issues that seem overwhelming at times. We wanted to focus on this issue right now in particular because


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of the large amounts of stress students can face during finals season and the stress seniors face as they turn in their college applications. We were able to cover this issue from a number of perspectives that ranged from our illustrated cover, a poll of the student body and multiple stories that looked at stress through different lenses. With this being our final issue of the semester, it seems like a good time to reflect on the work we have done. It certainly hasn’t been easy and we’ve run into various problems but on the whole, the quality of content has improved along with experience with a new format. We look forward to continue improving and producing quality content in the spring semester. -Parampreet Aulakh

THE PEARL POST Print Editor-in-Chief Parampreet Aulakh Online Editor-in-Chief Alondra Nuno Managing Editor Itzel Luna Features Editor Shannon Sullivan Opinion Editor Sam Torres Entertainment Editor Alliana Samonte Sports Editor Casey Wanatick Social Media Editor Daniela Rangel New Media Editor-in-Chief Maria Ruiz New Media Editors Harlow Frank, Christopher Sarenana, Jonathan Spahr Photo Editor Mahali Sanchez Copy Editors C.J. Gorospe, Rosa Lemus, Cassia Ramelb, Matthew Spahr Staff Writers/ Photographers Shanna Aghasi, Maribella Ambrosio, Valery Barrera, Evan Gleason, Gabriela Gomez, Marjina Haque, Valeria Luquin, Sara Marquez Advisor Adriana Chavira The Pearl Post is an open forum for student expression as allowed by California Education Codes 48907 and 48950, committed to excellence in reporting, writing and photography. The news magazine strives to inform and educate students and faculty on events affecting Daniel Pearl Magnet High School. The thought and opinions published in these pages are the work of journalism students and do not represent the position of DPMHS, its administrators or the Los Angeles Unified School District. An unsigned editorial is the opinion of the Editorial Boards, which is comprised of the Editor-in-Chief and the editors. Signed opinions in The Pearl Post reflect the views of the authors. A signed cartoon reflects the view of the cartoonist. The Pearl Post welcomes letters to the editor. They should be 250 words or less and may be edited for length. Letters with profanity and obscenity will not be printed. Unsigned or anonymous letters will not be published. Letters may be submitted to Ms. Chavira’s mailbox in the main office, in Room 22 or emailed to The news magazine is published monthly and is the official campus newspaper of Daniel Pearl Magnet High School. The magazine is also posted online at Free copies are distributed to magnet students, teachers and staff. The school is located at 6649 Balboa Blvd., Lake Balboa, CA 91604-5529.

Special Reports

She Has a Name

Violence against black transgender women is a national crisis By Marjina Haque


t only 23 years old, Bee Love to the violence they so frequently expeSlater was found burned beyond rience. recognition in an abandoned car According to law firm Sylvia Rivera in Clewiston, Florida, on Sept. 4. Law Project, “Over-policing and profilSlater was a black trans woman ing of low-income people and of trans and the 22nd to have been murdered and gender-nonconforming people inas of Nov. 18. All women who were tersect, producing a far higher risk than killed were between the ages of 18-40, average of imprisonment, police harexcept Bailey Reeves, a 17-year-old assment and violence for low-income girl who was fatally shot and killed on trans people.” Sept. 2 in Baltimore, Maryland. Last April, President Donald “I would like (black trans women) to Trump signed the FOSTA-SESTA Act be humanized and treated the same as into law. Written to combat sex trafficktheir cis counterparts,” said senior Mel- ing, this law prohibits all advertisement anie Damocles, co-president of Daniel of sexual services. This has severely Pearl Magnet’s Pride Club, a club that impacted trans women as it allows law provides a safe space and organizes enforcement officers to profile and arevents for LGBTQ+ students. “With rest women whom they think look “susTrump, he’s picious.” banned trans Trans people from discriminathe military. tion in proIn politics, it’s fessional a hope for workspaces the best, exalso doesn’t pect the worst provide a thing.” lot of work T h e opportunumber of nities for Melanie Damocles hate crimes trans womagainst trans people increased by 17 en. Those who are sex workers are percent during 2017 in the US. It’s be- criminalized and kept in prison on petty coming more dangerous for black and charges with unrealistic bail. brown trans women to live and exist in A most recent example was peace. 27-year-old Layleen Polanco, who died “According to available tracking, in solitary confinement at Rikers Island fatal anti-transgender violence in the jail in New York, on June 7 due to unUS is on the rise, and most victims were known causes that the New York Poblack transgender women,” American lice Department still has not provided Medical Association Board Member S. answers for. Polanco stayed imprisBobby Mukkamala said at the organi- oned because she could not afford her zation’s annual meeting in June. $500 bail. Black trans women are one Democratic candidates have of the most vulnerable communities in come forward and spoken out for jusAmerica. In 2015, the U.S. Transgen- tice for black trans women. der Survey reported that 51 percent “The murders of black trans womof black participants had experienced en in America are a crisis. We must call homelessness. Paired with a lack of it out and fight back until everyone is access to healthcare, substantial em- free to be who they are without fear,” ployment and safe spaces, this makes Senator Elizabeth Warren tweeted on trans women of color more susceptible July 23.

“ (black trans I would like women) to be humanized and treated the same as their cis counterparts. “

Infographic by Itzel Luna

So far none of the candidates proposed policy to combat anti-trans violence. However, candidate Bernie Sanders among others voted in favor of the FOSTA - SESTA Act. There has also been an outcry from trans public figures. Actor Indya Moore wore earrings to New York Fashion Week on Sep. 5 adorned with the portraits of 18 slain women and their clutch displayed Bailey Reeves’ image. “Existence that requires bravery is not freedom. A life that requires bravery is not freedom,” Moore said during their acceptance speech for Magazine Cover of the Year. “I accept this award in honor of the truth that the best award—the award we all deserve—is to be able to get home safe.” Twitter: @HaqueMarjina

Dec. 19, 2019


Special Reports

The rise of stress among teens

By Valeria Luquin


s finals approach, stress levels spike among high school students. Having heavy loads of homework and pressure to do well academically are a constant stressor in most teen’s lives. “I panic a lot. I overthink a lot of stuff, schoolwork mainly,” sophomore Vivian Reyes said. “ I constantly think about the next day or what I’m missing, what I need to do and how I’m going to do it.” Over the years, teen stress has become more evident. According to a 2014 study included in a USA Today article, teens reported that they felt an average of 5.8 out of 10 regarding their stress levels. That level of stress reflects how they felt throughout the school year rather than in the summer. Now, school can be found as a common source of stress in teens. According to a 2019 survey included in a neaToday article, 29 percent of teens say they feel pressured to look good while 28 percent feel pressured to fit in socially. According to a survey conducted by the American Psychological Association that was included in a PSYCOM website article, 83 percent of stress in teens comes from school, 69 percent comes from college and 65 percent is due to financial concerns for their family. In November, 231 Daniel Pearl Magnet High School students took a survey on their experience with stress. 88.31 percent of students reported that they have felt stressed this year and 63.43 percent reported that schoolwork was the biggest cause of their stress. “I think stress is high in teenagers today because of the academic


of DPMHS students have felt stressed this school year. 4

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pressure,” Psychiatric Social Worker JoAnne Tuell said. “Although I don’t believe that every student needs to go to college, there’s family pressures, financial concerns (and) peer pressure to name a few.” Teens pursue multiple extracurricular activities to make themselves stand out on college applications. Some have one or more jobs while others are on a sports team. Pressure from parents and wanting to excel academically also pile onto the mountain of stress building inside a teen. Balancing all of these activities and trying to do well 24/7 can be very overwhelming and draining. It leads to them having a lot on their minds. In a study done by the National Sleep Foundation, 73 percent of teens who are reported to feel unhappy, sad or depressed also don’t get enough sleep at night and feel tired throughout the day. “I get around five to six hours of sleep mostly,” junior Jacqueline Prava said. “(Homework and studying) keeps me up at night. I usually think about it and over analyze it. Before I go to sleep, I just worry a lot.” Getting a good amount of sleep is essential for a teen’s health and wellbeing. According to the National Sleep Foundation, teens need to get around eight to 10 hours of sleep. Destressing and taking time to relax are important as well. Writing down the things that stress you out, throughout the day or before going to sleep, can help clear

and relax your mind. “As difficult as it might be to manage stress, it is possible. A lot of the times, it’s really just taking a moment out for yourself to relax. I think that’s crucial,” senior Ivan Moreno said. “I think a lot of students are nervous about their future.” Twitter : @13_val_


of DPMHS students report that school work stresses them out the most.

Special Reports


Stress: teenagers' frenemy, mainly enemy By Sara Marquez


t’s 1 a.m. and the pile of homework is never-ending as tired eyes stare at the personal statement essay on the bright screen. High school is the stepping stone for college but through it all, the pressure and expectations seem to crack teenagers into two. Countless students stress about their future the moment they walk through the doors as freshmen. With the amount of homework given by teachers and the constant itch about “what do colleges want?” in the back of a student’s mind, sleep flies out of the window. A survey conducted by the National Sleep Foundation found that 56 percent of adolescents stay awake late at night because of the stress. Lack of sleep creates a terrible mindset for an adolescent and when surveyed, many said they felt hopeless toward the future. This isn’t as big a shock considering the never-ending list of must do’s for a prestige college. In addition to recommended requirements, colleges will ask for advanced/rigorous courses, community

How many hours do students get each night?

How to de-stress during finals

By Jonathan Spahr service, involvement in sports and extracurricular activities. On top of that, make sure to ace all classes! This is why some students end up sleeping in class or at times, having mental breakdowns during school hours. National Public Radio also conducted a survey in which they found that 45 percent of the students said that school pressure was why they were so stressed out. In this story, a girl admitted that she cried her eyes out after seeing that her GPA was not at a 4.0. This could not be more accurate. Sometimes even thinking about how my future may go wrong brings tears to my eyes while taking exams. The little things that build up a resume can destroy a teenager’s mind and leave them feeling like the reason they are not “perfect” is because of a problem within themselves. Older generations argue that stress is a good way to learn how to successfully multitask and that if they could make it to college, so can the new generation. Although pressure does make diamonds, the stress level for high school students seem to have broken the scale. After attending a graduating class reunion for John Hopkins University, an Atlantic journalist was reminded by a representative of the university that admissions requirements have drastically changed. “Chances are most of us here would not even be admitted to this college today,” the representative said. The requirements have been multiplied and competitiveness has been ramped up over the past few years. Yes, students can make their way to college but the road is an uphill climb. Some time management can help reduce stress. Staying organized can help make sure that second cup of coffee does not need to be made. Instagram: @saramrqz


ith finals week coming up, students tend to accelerate their studying habits. They often get overwhelmed by the amount of work left, so here are five ways you can destress before finals week.

1. Sleep Get plenty of sleep. Getting an average of seven to eight hours of sleep can improve your productivity and help you stay focused. Students tend to pull an “all-nighter,” where they attempt to cram all the information they have learned throughout the year on the day before the test. By spreading the work out and sleeping, you can regurgitate the information much better. 2. Exercise Along with sleep, exercise is important to help destress during finals week. Exercise helps increase your energy and drive. If you keep a controlled amount of exercise and a moderate amount of studying, you can enhance the amount of learning and lower your stress levels. 3. Music Everyone has that one playlist that manipulates their mood. Pick the playlist that keeps you upbeat and raises you to a happier place. Usually, songs with minimal lyrics are the best to help you study. Similar to exercising, you want to keep your music as background noise. 4. Meditation According to the Mayo Clinic, meditation is “A simple fast way to reduce stress.” Step aside from all of your work and take a journey through your thoughts. There are a lot of different apps you can download such as “Calm” or “Headspace” that deal with lowering stress levels in just a few minutes.

Dec. 19, 2019



Get ready for finals week with these helpful study tips

Photo by Sara Marquez Junior Ariana Islam studies for her upcoming final exams at the library during nutrition on Dec. 5.

By Valeria Luquin


ith finals fast approaching, students share their most helpful tips on making studying for finals a lot easier and less stressful. “I start with the hardest class and then go to the easier classes,” senior Emily Nasir said. “I spend at least two hours a day studying. Using notecards, looking back at notes, writing them (questions or notes) over and over until I understand them.” During finals, many students rush to go over all the notes and material they’ve covered that semester. Some students spend a lot of time studying for all their classes. Others may end up only taking a glance at their notes the night before the exam. Everyone has their own way of studying and methods that work for them but there are some strategies that you may have not tried yet. First, studying in advance rather than waiting for the last minute is a good place to start. “I usually just go over all my notes that I’ve taken throughout the semester. I don’t like to cram everything last minute and when I do study, I take breaks frequently,” sophomore Nathalie Miranda said. “Taking breaks often helps me focus when I’m done with my break.” When studying for finals, try teach-


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ing your friends the material you’re studying for as if you were a teacher. By doing this, you can answer questions your friends may have, meaning you’ll think more about the information and will have a better understanding of the material. Using flashcards, making a study guide, color coding your notes, quizzing yourself and creating a study schedule are a few more tips. Taking breaks, getting enough sleep and asking your teachers questions are some of 20 tips fastweb provides when it comes time to study for finals. Once finals week starts, sticking to a schedule can help you manage your time wisely when studying for the other subjects you’re being tested on. If your teachers gave you a study guide, going over the material on there can be helpful as well. “I start off with flashcards. I also kind of put myself on a strict limit with screens,” sophomore Benjamin Bryan said. “The rest of the days, I’ll cut myself down to different subjects depending on how hard and how much I need to study for that subject.”

Twitter: @13_val_


Information provided by Los Angeles Fire Department Graphic by Parampreet Aulakh With the recent string of wild fires in California and the constant threat of a major earthquake, these are the six things that you should be mindful of in the event of an evacutaion. They are the most important things that you should be ready to take with you in case you are forced to flee on a short notice.

Stay prepared for emergencies By Jonathan Spahr


hough many Angelenos have historically been aware of the constant threat of earthquakes, they are regularly dealing with fires. With the recent fires burning across Los Angeles County, thousands of individuals have faced calls for evacuation from their place of residence due to the horrible conditions. Those in the “fire areas” have found themselves questioning how prepared they are for future fires. Documentation Always keep important documentation in an easy access area. Birth records, passport and any proof of residency should be kept inside of a safe. Although there might not even be an emergency, it is just common sense to have these records in a safe and easy to access area inside of your home. For more information about things to do when needing to evacuate visit the LAFD website and find out more about the “Six P’s” and suggestions when evacuating.

Food and Water Have plenty of food and water not just for your family but if you have any pet, it is suggested you carry extra food. The Mayo Clinic has decided on a recommended amount of water intake you should have, for men it is recommended about 15.5 cups a day and about 11.5 cups for women. Of course you should always carry more because you never know how long the fires will continue for so if you have around two cases of water you should be fine. Always consider your pets for need food and water too. Money It is suggested keeping an extra stack of cash in your safe or go bag, along with your important documents. Money is super important, if worse comes to worse you may need to stay in a hotel for a fixed time so always remember you need money. Though many people carry credit cards in their wallet or on their person you should always have cash incase the power grid goes down. If the power grid goes down in the area you would be unable to access an ATM and credit cards wouldn’t

work. Medicine Anyone with medical problems should have extra medicine for future treatment. For example, if you have asthma you should have an extra inhaler. In case you run out albuterol or if you have diabetes you should always have extra doses of insulin. Medicine should be one of the first things on your list if you need to evacuate, the last thing anyone wants is to have an injury or problem and be in a situation where someone desperately need their medication. Go Bag Everyone should have a duffle bag full of items that they find valuable or important. It is recommended that you carry about three days of clothing, batteries, flashlights and a charger for any cellular devices. It is really up to you if you believe it is important to carry any photos. For more recommendations for a go bag visit The Red Cross and see what is recommended for a survival kit and put that in your go bag. Twitter: @SpahrJonathan

Dec. 19, 2019




Deadines and school work takes toll on publication staff


he Pearl Post staff work during the long, stressful hours after school as they fight to meet dead-

Photo by Sam Torres The Pearl Post and Prestige Yearbook have strict deadlines for their never-ending workload all year.

tion deadlines or study for the SAT and ACT tests. On top of all our work outside of the newsroom, we have to meet our

home to household responsibiliies. A possible solution to our large lines. problem of stress from assaignments is The hardworking editors, writers for our teachers and peers to be more and photographers of The Pearl Post understanding of our workload. We have a very challenging job to do. are only teenagers, our brains have We have to make sure our sections not even been fully developed yet. have up-to-date content that satisThere should be leniancey from fies the readers. We also have to With our workload expanding and our teachers regarding our focus on keep track of the writers and phoreguar classwork. tographers and make sure they are time shrinking, the stress buildup Our teachers need to realize turning in the stories and photos to takes a major toll on us. that when we stay after school to be published. Combined with our work on the magazine they look Advanced Placement (AP) classes, forward to, combined with completcollege applications and countless ing our household duties. We have other extracurricular activities, we a difficult time finding the time and are knee-deep in stress which confocus to tend to our homework. sumes our minds every day. deadlines and make sure we are all We cannot ask for a shorter workload One of the biggest stressors we meeting our deadlines. or less work, what we need is support have to deal with is balancing our time One thing everyone should know and understanding from our teachers and work. We are in the hardest years of our entire school career. We also when working in any newsroom is that and peers. Our stress levels would be have five other classes to stay caught nothing ever goes as planned. When greatly reduced and our work quality up in. If we fall behind on any assign- the staff writers miss deadlines, the would improve. With our workload expanding and ment, it is a long and continuous climb editors struggle with meeting theirs It’s how the chain of a publication works. time shrinking, the stress buildup takes to get caught up. We have to manage It’s stressful but there’s no way to coma major toll on us. Every day is a race our demanding AP classes where we bat it. to meet deadlines with more assignreceive the bulk of our homework from When we are scrambling to meet ments put upon us right after. We are and also our time-consuming extracurour deadlines, we are always staying still students and we are trying to get ricular activities. a few hours after school up to three our education while working with this Some of us are on a sports team days a week, which leaves us with less great publication. and have to practice for several hours after school each day, while some of us time at home doing our ever-expanding also have to manage college applica- homework load. Some of us also come


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Capitalism ruins holiday spirits

Photo by Graphic by Sam Torres The shopping craze during the holiday season brings sales which ruins the spirit of the season and capiSources: Forbes, National Retail Federation, blacktalizes off the holidays., and

lessens that convenience. Holidays like Christmas, admittedlong with numerous sales and ly not the best holiday in and of itself, crowded malls, holiday comare tarnished by the depersonalization mercialsm brings violence and and newfound traditions devoid of holgreed, with 117 injuries and 12 deaths iday values as a direct result of comcoming as a result of the materialistic mercialism. Black Friday. There are so many people who When sales and bragging couldn’t care less about the price rights sourced from buying the of a gift, or receiving one at all most recent release for the lowfor that matter, being told that est price seem to not only disrupt It’s a ridiculous concept that your feel- they need to buy their friends a but harm people, consumerism Polaroid camera, their mother a ings toward someone are reflected Pandora bracelet and their father and its harmful effects really begin to show. More and more of in the price of what you got them for a brand-new watch. It’s a ridicuthe stores providing these Black concept that your feelings Christmas and that you need to put lous Friday deals open Thanksgiving toward someone are reflected in night, forcing employees to work your safety on the line to attain it. the price of what you got them for long hours and face criticism Christmas and that you need to and anger wrongfully directed put your safety on the line to atat them. Countless viral videos online imaginable and which tourist destina- tain it. You risk getting beat up or tramshow just how cruel the general pub- tion cap you should get your reserved pled over at Walmart to buy into materilic can be to these retail workers when grandfather plague the “cheery” holi- alistic holiday gift trends. driven by materialistic ideals. day season. When capitalistic greed surpassBlack Friday isn’t the only day Homemade gifts are great, but not es age-old holiday traditions and overthat is remarkably commercialistic and always the “easiest” route so people shadows family celebrations, there’s a harmful though. Sales starting in early are led to store-bought gifts, even bet- problem with the corporations, not the December ter when they’re on sale. It’s presum- mindless consumer doing as they’re Giving gifts to those you care ably the easiest and most convenient told. about can be a great way to express gift, but it’s the risk associated with Twitter: @dan1ela83 your gratitude and appreciation for going out and doing the buying that


them. While gift-shopping can be very important to some people, it is not, nor has it ever been, the basis of the holiday season. High prices and the pressure to give the perfect gift can easily become daunting. Dilemmas like what to get your pop-culture-obsessed friend who’s already bought into every trend

By Daniela Rangel

Dec. 19, 2019



DIY Christmas Gifts

Snowman Spoons: Simple, easy and delicious diy gift. You need peppermint spoons, chocolate, marshmallows and pretzel sticks. First you melt the chocolate and then dip the peppermint spoon in the chocolate. As it’s cooling, add three mini marshmallows to make a snowman. Add the small pretzel sticks as arms for the snowman. By: Mahali Sanchez

Holidays can be stressful and gifts can be a little expensive. With these do it yourself (DIY) gifts, save yourself the money and win over your friends and family over the holidays.

Christmas Tree Piñata: Not your traditional holiday gift but it can be a good gift for those who love piñatas. All you need is cardboard, tissue paper and candy. You begin with cutting multiple cardboard pieces into a tree shape to give it the three-dimensional shape. Then you cut the tissue paper into small strips and glue them all along the tree to create the final look of the tree. Lastly, add the candy.


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Snow globes: Very aesthetically pleasing DIY gift . You need Super Glue, small fake Christmas tree, a mason jar, glitter and styrofoam to make this diy. Take the cap off the mason jar and add a small amount of Super Glue on the inside. Then place the fake tree and allow it to dry. While the glue is drying, crumple up styrofoam to create the fake snow. When that’s done put the fake snow inside the jar, add some glitter on the tree and close the jar.

Swirled melted crayon ornaments: Decorative swirl melted crayon ornaments are very fun for someone who is into arts and crafts. All you will need are clear plastic ornaments and crayons. First you will need to melt the crayons in a pot to make it a liquid and pour it into the clear ornament in a circular motion to cover it all inside. Allow to dry and there you have it. instagram: @mahalisanchezz




s 2019 comes to a close, we look back back at significant moments in pop culture from the past decade.

2010: Netflix

Photo from Flickr Netflix became more than a rental service by allowing it’s users to watch movies and shows on their mobile devices.

2011: Snapchat

Photo from Wikimedia Commons Snapchat was released marking the start of a new direction for social media with it’s interactive filters.

2012: Disney

Photo from Flickr Disney took the world by storm when they bought “Star Wars” and released the movie “The Avengers” which is largely responsible for popularizing the superhero genre.

2014: ASL Ice Bucket Challenge

Photo from The Pearl Post The ASL Ice Bucket Challenge raised awareness for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and gained popularity through social media.

2015: “Star Wars”

Photo from Wikimedia Commons “Star Wars: the Force Awakens” was released as the first movie in the “Star Wars” sequel trilogy and became the highest grossing installment of the franchise.

2017: Vine

Photo from Carlisle Theatre Vine was a spawning ground for popular memes but died when Twitter shut it down.

2018: Stan Lee

Photo from Flickr Stan Lee, best known for his cameos and for helping start Marvel Comics died at 95 years old.

2019: “Old Town Road”

2016: Pokémon

Photo from Wikimedia Commons The release of “Pokémon Go” sparked a worldwide phenomenon and had gamers take to the streets to catch Pokémon.

Photo from Flickr The song “Old Town Road” was released by Lil Nas X and was number one on the Billboard Hot 100 for a record-breaking 19 consecutive weeks. Compiled by: Shannon Sullivan, Parampreet Aulakh, Daniela Rangel, Sam Torres and Evan Gleason

Dec. 19, 2019



Jingle bells and deck the halls with these dazzling holiday movies falalalala-lalalala By Maribella Ambrosio


rab some hot cocoa, popcorn, fuzzy blankets and settle in with friends or family to watch both classic and latest holiday movies to set you into the spirit. “Elf” “The Nightmare Before Christ- “Home Alone” mas”

As a child, Buddy was accidentally sent to the North Pole. Raised among Santa’s elves, the adult yet childlike Buddy travels to New York, in full elf uniform, in search of his real father Walter Hobbs, a cynical businessman. After a DNA test, Walter reluctantly attempts to start a relationship with the Buddy with increasingly chaotic

Jack Skellington, Halloweentown’s pumpkin king accidentally falls into a magical entrance to Christmastown. Jack is stunned by the color and lights that this world brings him that he has never seen before. When the he wants to take over this snowy world, chaos happens and he realizes that bringing everything back to normal is a must.

When little 8-year-old Kevin McCallister misbehaves the night before a Christmas trip with his family, his mother punishes him by making him sleep in the attic. However, his family forgot about Kevin and headed to the airport without him. He wakes up to an empty house but realizes two con men are trying to rob his home.

“Last Christmas”



Kate isn’t having the best time dressed up as an elf in a year-round Christmas shop. But the tables turn when she meets Tom, a handsome man who takes her breath away. Everything became a dream come true and the city of London fluttered with light, as Tom and Kate’s relationship becomes the most wonderful Christmas gift ever.

Kris Kringle prepares to retire as Santa and passes the responsibilities to his son Nick, who becomes overwhelmed with the stress of being the new Santa. His sister, Noelle, offered to help him out but he completely abandons his job. As Noelle tries to put everything back together, she experiences new adventures outside of the North Pole.

After the postal academy realizing that he’s the worst postman, Jester is posted to a frozen town in the North where he discovers the famous Santa Clause.


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Instagram: Photos from Warner Bros., flickr, Universal Pictures, disneyplusoriginals and Netiflix.


Artist of the month:

It all started with a simple love song Ruel brings his feelings of love to life through his music. By Valery Barrera


t just 17 years old, Australian singer-songwriter Ruel Vicent van Dijk, most commonly known as Ruel, climbs the ladder of success. Ruel is a pop artist best known for his singles “Don’t Tell Me,” and “Younger.” In 2015, he was discovered by Grammy Award-winning producer Mark Landon, better known by his stage name M-Phazes. The teen singer-songwriter made his official debut on the M-Phazes’ track “Golden Years.” Shortly after, Ruel was invited to perform on Australian radio station Triple J’s “Like A Version,” segment where he sang a basic version of “Golden Years.” The video became one of the most viewed “Like A Version” performances of 2016 after receiving over half a million plays in just 48 hours. Shortly after, in July 2017, Ruel released “Don’t Tell Me,” inspired by the feelings of 14-yearold Ruel after he spoke to his family about a girl he liked at the time. His parents told him he was too young to think about love, which frustrated him enough to write a song. “I thought ‘they can’t tell me how to feel’, so I wrote a song about,” Ruel said in an interview with VanFest. “I never thought it would lead to all of this.” In September 2017, the song sparked the attention of many fans, including singer-songwriter Elton John, who promoted the song on BBC Radio 1. “This is a 14-year-old boy with

an amazing track,” Elton John said. “It’s astonishing someone so young can write something so good.” “Ready,” Ruel’s debut extended play (EP) has already surpassed 100 million global streams and features with standout singles “Don’t Tell Me,” “Dazed and Confused,” “Younger” and “Not Thinkin’ Bout You.”With the success of his first debut EP, Ruel recently released his second EP “Freetime” on Sept. 13 through RCA records. Currently, he’s on his sold-out North American tour with a con- cert in

San Francisco’s Great American Hall. The multi-platinum seller’s newly released EP features songs with soulful lyrics about the transition to adulthood. “It did change a lot, especially the arc. The main reason that changed was just my maturity,” Ruel said in an interview with TeenVogue. “The lyrical content is a lot more mature, and production-wise I really wanted to get involved as much as possible to make sure it’s what I would want to listen to as well. I wanted to have all my influences kind of come through this EP.” Instagram: @valerybarrera

Photo from Wikimedia Commons Australian singer-songwriter, Ruel is currently on his Free Time World Tour which will continue until Feb. 2020.

Dec. 19, 2019



Patriots off to a strong start this season By Jonathan Spahr ith Birmingham Community Charter High School boys basketball season having started, there is definitely a gratified feeling throughout the players due to their five win streak. Players are excited to get back into season to collaborate with incoming players to learn and teach them new skills and traditions. “We are practicing once each day with team bonding activities and it has helped everyone get into the mentality of winning” senior forward Cuyler Huffman said. The Patriots recently beat Westlake High School 85-61. They currently have a record of 5-0. With the hope of reaching the state championships, the team doesn’t intend to lose again like last season in the second round against Etiwanda High School on Feb. 28. Coming close to the state championship has created new winning tactics that the team hopes will come into play for the up-


Photo by Harlow Frank Senior varsity forward Cuyler Huffman warms up for a game against Palisades Charter High School on Nov. 21. The Patriots won 58-48.

coming season. “Last season, we were all learning to play together, and this season we have new and returning players that are trying to work on team chemistry,” Huffman said. With new players and a new strategy, the Patriots are building their players up and preparing them for the long road ahead. The team is excited to con-

tinue their win streak. “I am really excited for this upcoming season and think we can accomplish many things one being winning league and the other winning city,” Huffman said. Twitter: @SpahrJonathan

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Lady Patriots aim for new goals By Daniela Rangel

a bond between the girls and being more comfortable speaking to each other on and off the field,” Nava said. “We’re not there yet but we’re talking, which is good.” Aside from communication between players, the team has conditioned to get prepare for their upcoming games. During practices, they ran ten laps and did practice games that built their strength as a team. “Last year when we went against Notre Dame and private schools in pre-season, we lost pretty bad,” Nava said. “This year, I think we have more experienced players so they already know what to do when they play a game.” Nava and other girls on the team are hopeful that they’ll earn wins from schools they previously didn’t. “I think it’s going to be exciting to actually have a good competition with big schools like that,” Nava said.


unior varsity captain Rosalinda Nava of the Birmingham Community Charter High School (BCCHS) girls’ soccer team did much preparation for their current season. “Last season, we didn’t have much talent,” center-mid player and senior at Daniel Pearl Magnet High School, Nava said. “A lot of the girls were just beginners. It was hard to teach beginners when you don’t have much time between the season and when you start practicing.” BCCHS recently lost to Chaminade College Preparatory High School 2-0 on Dec. 3. They currently have a record of 2-1 as of Dec. 5. Last season, the Lady Patriots had a record of 8-12-1 and averaged one goal per game. The team has been working together to become closer than they were last year. As a group comprised almost entirely of new players last year, they didn’t know each other well or have the communication they needed. “We’re focusing more on creating

Photo by Valery Barrera Senior junior varsity captain Rosalinda Nava receive the ball from a teammate during practice game on Nov. 21.

Twitter: @dan1ela83

Girls basketball strives for back-to-back championship appearances this season By Valery Barrera


Photo by Valery Barrera Sophomore varsity player Janna Holley makes eye contact with a teammate as she goes to pass the ball during practice game on Nov.18.

ophomore Janna Holley and freshman Kennedy Guzman dribble their way down the court in hopes of winning a championship this upcoming season. “I’m really looking forward to winning a championship because I know it will mean a lot to my coach,” Holley said. Their most recent game was on Dec. 2 against Palisades Charter High School where the team lost 62-44. Having lost the 2019 CIF State Girls Basketball Championships - Division II last season only encouraged the girls to work harder. Getting faster and stronger is one of their main goals in order to succeed this season. They’re also looking for improvement and aim to stay healthy to finish the season

strong. “I just want to beat the teams that we lost to last year,” varsity point guard Holley said. “ I just want to stay injury-free because last year I got two concussions” Last season, the team went 1513. They averaged 53.1 points, 32.8 rebounds, and 11.8 assists per game. With lots of practice and guidance from the girls’ basketball varsity coach Victor Koopongsakorn, there’s sure to be a change. “I’m just hoping we all try hard and hopefully win most of the games that we play,” junior varsity point guard Guzman said. “As long as we work as a team, then I think we’ll do fine.” Instagram: @valeerryy

Dec. 19, 2019


Student Photography Spotlight About the Photographer Valery Barrera is a first-year staff writer for The Pearl Post. With a smaller staff for this school year, she has been willing and able to produce a variety of content. She may be asked to take pictures at an event or write multiple stories at once and has been producing quality work, like the picture above in a timely manner. She received honorable mention in photography at CSUN’s Journalism Day back in October. She hopes to continue improving her writing and photography going forward.

Behind the Photo Senior Elizabeth Cortez shares a smile with a friend during the Day of the Dead event on Nov. 1. After receiving a positive response from students and staff last year, Spanish teacher Martha Rodriguez decided to organize the event once again. The students and fourth-graders from Lake Balboa College Prep Magnet School were welcomed with a variety of booths such as a Loteria station, a temporary tattoo station, word searches, ring toss, bowling, a coloring station and tamales were sold.The event was able to bring the community together creating a family environment. Submit your best photos with a brief description to for a chance to be featured in the next issue of the The Pearl Post news magazine.

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The Pearl Post December 2019 news magazine  

The bi-monthly news magazine of Daniel Pearl Magnet High School in Lake Balboa, CA.

The Pearl Post December 2019 news magazine  

The bi-monthly news magazine of Daniel Pearl Magnet High School in Lake Balboa, CA.