Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/denebolasandbox/denebola_2009/wp-includes/ms-load.php on line 113

Warning: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /home/denebolasandbox/denebola_2009/wp-includes/ms-load.php:113) in /home/denebolasandbox/denebola_2009/wp-includes/feed-rss2.php on line 8
Denebola » Jessie Feldstein http://www.denebolaonline.net The Award-Winning, Official School Newspaper of Newton South High School, Newton, MA Fri, 17 Jun 2011 02:00:19 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.0.2 One too many could shatter the glass house: the honors debacle http://www.denebolaonline.net/2011/04/15/one-too-many-could-shatter-the-glass-house-the-honors-debacle/ http://www.denebolaonline.net/2011/04/15/one-too-many-could-shatter-the-glass-house-the-honors-debacle/#comments Fri, 15 Apr 2011 05:16:22 +0000 Liana Butchard http://www.denebolaonline.net/?p=5797 By Liana Butchard
and Jesse Feldstein
3.34, 4.56, and 2.51 may just seem like numbers, but to some high school students at Newton South these numbers are their future.
“How many honors are you taking?”
As we start course registration for the 2011-2012 year, this seems to be the question that everyone is asking.  Some people love answering this with the long list of difficult classes that they are taking next year.
This isn’t true for other students, however,  and hearing this bragging often produces a winner and a victim.  There is the assumption that everyone takes many honors classes, but this corollary is more a myth than a fact.
South is quite an academically competitive high school and many students push themselves very hard.  The question is: how hard is too hard?
There are many factors that should be considered before students add an honors class to their schedules.
There seems to be common thought that everyone takes honors classes.
“Only about half of the students at South take honors classes.  You can get into good schools [colleges] without them,” guidance counselor Lenny Libenzon said.
With all of the pressure that is put on so many students, it seems that some of them should just take a deep breath and relax.
The classes that you take are not going to take over the path for what you do later in life.  That being said, slacking off isn’t answer either; the point is to try hard, but don’t kill yourself.
Other interests such as sports are important, too.  Freshman Daniel Friedman plays soccer, wrestles, and runs track, meaning that he already has a lot going on in addition to his school work.  “I want to stay a three season athlete, and doing a bunch of honors classes would be too much for me,” Friedman said.
Numerous students are enrolled and continue to enroll in honors courses.  Sophomore Kitty Crowley is taking two honors courses, and she finds them to be interesting and stimulating.
“I pick honors courses based on whether or not I like them. The GPA is just an extra boost,” Crowley said.
She believes that being interested in a subject is what should factor into whether or not a student takes an honors course. When Crowley makes her choice, she thinks about what will interest her regardless of what her teachers suggest.
This year Kitty is taking honors chorus because she likes singing and music. Crowley figures, “If I was going to do it, why not get the extra credit? I enjoy chorus, and that is why I signed up, and the boosted GPA isn’t bad either.”
Another thing to consider is the time commitment.
Taking an honors class usually means at least an hour or two of homework per night.  That’s not too bad for one or two classes, but any more and it will really start to add up.
Staying up to all hours of the night isn’t a good idea.
Most doctors say that teenagers need eight and one half to nine hours of sleep per night to really excel during the day.  Countless hours of homework won’t get you even close to that.
Many teachers like the Goldrick House-Master Mr. Turner agree that taking more difficult classes and then staying up way too late is not a good plan.  “Honors classes are very challenging and require a lot of outside class time.   Staying up until one or two o’clock every night is not realistic,” Turner said.
Taking this into consideration, some students plan their schedule around getting extra time during the day to get homework done. Take freshman Anna Alsop who has chosen to take four honors classes next year, but is leaving several potential elective blocks open, so that she can have time do get work done during the school day.  “Right now I want to take as many honors classes as I can, but I’m leaving a lot of time to deal with the workload.  If I plan out my time then I think that I will be fine,” Alsop said.
Many students will take an honors class in a subject that they hate just for the honors credit.  “I’m not going to take an honors class just to take it.  The honors classes that I’m taking are ones that I’m actually interested in,” freshman Emily Kaufman said.
If a class or subject is enjoyable or interesting, then it is probably more likely that one would take away a lot from it.
Kaufman thinks that it is silly to stress over an honors class that you don’t even remotely like or want to take.
And the classes are stressful: “The more that you take, the more stressful it will be,” Turner said.
Many students are often stuck in a conundrum about whether or not they will fit in the new learning environment.
For all the irresolute students sophomore Jack Rice offers some personal advice. “I worry about what suits me. What am I capable of doing? It is absolutely an individual choice. Teachers and parents should only offer a suggestion, but I decide what classes I take,” said Rice.
Often times, however, a student’s decision is influenced by the thoughts of a teacher.
Christopher Jackson, a world language teacher at Newton South has been helping students make their choices for years.
“It is only more work for no reason if you do not enjoy the material. That is why a student must express interest before I talk to them about the option of honors,” remarked Jackson.
Jackson believes the “atmosphere is more productive” in an honors course because each student is genuinely devoted to the curriculum.
“That doesn’t mean there is less stress. Students have to pick and choose because if they took all honors it would simply be too overwhelming,” said Jackson. “Ultimately students get more out of it and every method of teaching just seems to work in my honors classes.”
Jackson believes that the enthusiasm is increased in an honors environment and the teachers are happy which in turn makes the students happy.
In the end, the power is in the hands of each student. Regardless of how many—if any—honors classes you are planning on taking, they are something to think about carefully.
Course selection is just one of many challenging decisions each student makes throughout their career at Newton South. Perhaps this decision can be utilized as a rare opportunity for a challenge.

By Liana Butchard and Jesse Feldstein3.34, 4.56, and 2.51 may just seem like numbers, but to some high school students at Newton South these numbers are their future. “How many honors are you taking?”   As we start course registration for the 2011-2012 year, this seems to be the question that everyone is asking.  Some people love answering this with the long list of difficult classes that they are taking next year.  This isn’t true for other students, however,  and hearing this bragging often produces a winner and a victim.  There is the assumption that everyone takes many honors classes, but this corollary is more a myth than a fact. South is quite an academically competitive high school and many students push themselves very hard.  The question is: how hard is too hard?  There are many factors that should be considered before students add an honors class to their schedules.There seems to be common thought that everyone takes honors classes.  “Only about half of the students at South take honors classes.  You can get into good schools [colleges] without them,” guidance counselor Lenny Libenzon said.  With all of the pressure that is put on so many students, it seems that some of them should just take a deep breath and relax. The classes that you take are not going to take over the path for what you do later in life.  That being said, slacking off isn’t answer either; the point is to try hard, but don’t kill yourself.  Other interests such as sports are important, too.  Freshman Daniel Friedman plays soccer, wrestles, and runs track, meaning that he already has a lot going on in addition to his school work.  “I want to stay a three season athlete, and doing a bunch of honors classes would be too much for me,” Friedman said.Numerous students are enrolled and continue to enroll in honors courses.  Sophomore Kitty Crowley is taking two honors courses, and she finds them to be interesting and stimulating.“I pick honors courses based on whether or not I like them. The GPA is just an extra boost,” Crowley said. She believes that being interested in a subject is what should factor into whether or not a student takes an honors course. When Crowley makes her choice, she thinks about what will interest her regardless of what her teachers suggest.  This year Kitty is taking honors chorus because she likes singing and music. Crowley figures, “If I was going to do it, why not get the extra credit? I enjoy chorus, and that is why I signed up, and the boosted GPA isn’t bad either.”Another thing to consider is the time commitment.  Taking an honors class usually means at least an hour or two of homework per night.  That’s not too bad for one or two classes, but any more and it will really start to add up.  Staying up to all hours of the night isn’t a good idea.  Most doctors say that teenagers need eight and one half to nine hours of sleep per night to really excel during the day.  Countless hours of homework won’t get you even close to that.  Many teachers like the Goldrick House-Master Mr. Turner agree that taking more difficult classes and then staying up way too late is not a good plan.  “Honors classes are very challenging and require a lot of outside class time.   Staying up until one or two o’clock every night is not realistic,” Turner said.Taking this into consideration, some students plan their schedule around getting extra time during the day to get homework done. Take freshman Anna Alsop who has chosen to take four honors classes next year, but is leaving several potential elective blocks open, so that she can have time do get work done during the school day.  “Right now I want to take as many honors classes as I can, but I’m leaving a lot of time to deal with the workload.  If I plan out my time then I think that I will be fine,” Alsop said.Many students will take an honors class in a subject that they hate just for the honors credit.  “I’m not going to take an honors class just to take it.  The honors classes that I’m taking are ones that I’m actually interested in,” freshman Emily Kaufman said.  If a class or subject is enjoyable or interesting, then it is probably more likely that one would take away a lot from it. Kaufman thinks that it is silly to stress over an honors class that you don’t even remotely like or want to take.  And the classes are stressful: “The more that you take, the more stressful it will be,” Turner said.Many students are often stuck in a conundrum about whether or not they will fit in the new learning environment. For all the irresolute students sophomore Jack Rice offers some personal advice. “I worry about what suits me. What am I capable of doing? It is absolutely an individual choice. Teachers and parents should only offer a suggestion, but I decide what classes I take,” said Rice.Often times, however, a student’s decision is influenced by the thoughts of a teacher. Christopher Jackson, a world language teacher at Newton South has been helping students make their choices for years.“It is only more work for no reason if you do not enjoy the material. That is why a student must express interest before I talk to them about the option of honors,” remarked Jackson. Jackson believes the “atmosphere is more productive” in an honors course because each student is genuinely devoted to the curriculum.“That doesn’t mean there is less stress. Students have to pick and choose because if they took all honors it would simply be too overwhelming,” said Jackson. “Ultimately students get more out of it and every method of teaching just seems to work in my honors classes.”Jackson believes that the enthusiasm is increased in an honors environment and the teachers are happy which in turn makes the students happy.In the end, the power is in the hands of each student. Regardless of how many—if any—honors classes you are planning on taking, they are something to think about carefully.  Course selection is just one of many challenging decisions each student makes throughout their career at Newton South. Perhaps this decision can be utilized as a rare opportunity for a challenge.

]]>
http://www.denebolaonline.net/2011/04/15/one-too-many-could-shatter-the-glass-house-the-honors-debacle/feed/ 0
Powderpuff pranks turn pungent http://www.denebolaonline.net/2010/12/06/powderpuff-pranks-turn-pungent/ http://www.denebolaonline.net/2010/12/06/powderpuff-pranks-turn-pungent/#comments Mon, 06 Dec 2010 07:35:09 +0000 Jessie Feldstein http://www.denebolaonline.net/?p=5152 Although practical jokes are frowned upon at South, there is one day where these rules seem to not apply: Powderpuff.
The annual Thanksgiving event pitting the junior girls versus the senior girls in a touch-football game always involves early morning antics to some degree.
This year, however, the antics and resulting competition between the two grades reached an all time high.
“Powderpuff is one of the best school events and it’s something for the girls to look forward to, junior and coach Dan Frechter said.
“I don’t think there is really any serious violence involved with Powderpuff, but I’ve definitely heard of pranks between the juniors and seniors getting out of hand, he said.
“Unfortunately, some people ruin the event by making it into a war instead of just a game.
Although this year’s pregame festivities are being scrutinized, participants were still able to feel school spirit.
“It was actually one of the most fun days I have had all year and I really wish we had more school spirited events like that, junior Mikayla Bogart said.
The question is, did the spirit turn sour and reach a level detrimental to fun?
Chloe Rothman, the senior quarterback, thought that Powderpuff definitely “brought out some hate.
The car of one of Rothman’s friends was covered in syrup that was nearly impossible to scrape off.
“Getting tackled is bad enough, Rothman said.
Senior Rachel Davidson agrees. “The front and back windshields of my car were covered in ketchup and mustard, she said.
“I wouldn’t have cared if it were whipped cream or something, but it smelled and was hard to scrape off.
“Instead of doing cheers and walking around the halls, I had to clean my car.
Frechter, however, points out that seniors were not completely free of blame.
“A few of the girls on my team seemed worried about walking by the seniors in school or being approached by the senior girls away from school grounds, he said.
“Some juniors who put condiments [on senior cars] went a little too far but I think they honestly didn’t mean to, and they didn’t know what the effects on cars were with the condiments they used, Bogart said.
“Some of the pranks were very close to crossing the line. I feel it is up to the girls to police themselves because the pranks and events only escalate as far as they want them to, Frechter said.
“As with anything else, it is impossible for the administration to watch for stuff outside of school, but on school grounds it is definitely within the principal’s and housemaster’s jurisdiction to impose punishment.
Although Principal Stembridge thought that the spirit at the actual Powderpuff game was outstanding and the pep rally went soundly, he says there will be extracurricular activity that they will be scrutinizing.
Much like the junior girls, Principal Stembridge was most concerned with the safety of students at Powderpuff.
“Anytime there is competition, there is always the danger that things will go too far, he said.
“It is important that things stay safe, rather than unhealthy and destructive. I need to make sure that students are always safe.
Thankfully, it seemed that in face of the pranks, students were in fact safe.
“There was no serious harm. At the end of the day, kids know their limits, Rothman said. “The nature of it is a battle and if that aspect were compromised, then it wouldn’t be nearly as intriguing.
Bogart agrees. “I don’t think it will become more aggressive each year, because coming into it people know their limits and they know what crosses the line into something dangerous or harmful, she said.
To the reassurance of the upperclassmen players, Principal Stembridge promised students that he wouldn’t do anything overly dramatic in limiting Powderpuff accents.
“It is a fun day for students, and it is not my intention to change that in any way, he said.
In the end, tempers have been mollified, and “everyone is over it now, Rothman said. “In the words of the White Stripes, I can tell that we are going to be friends.

]]>
http://www.denebolaonline.net/2010/12/06/powderpuff-pranks-turn-pungent/feed/ 0
New Lindy Hop club revives a retro form of street dancing http://www.denebolaonline.net/2010/12/06/new-lindy-hop-club-revives-a-retro-form-of-street-dancing/ http://www.denebolaonline.net/2010/12/06/new-lindy-hop-club-revives-a-retro-form-of-street-dancing/#comments Mon, 06 Dec 2010 07:15:53 +0000 Jessie Feldstein http://www.denebolaonline.net/?p=5160 In a school where risk takers are few and far between, a group of dancers congregate in room 1101 every Thursday J-Block to dance in a form called Lindy Hop.
Lindy Hop is a fast paced, yet relaxed street dance, which originated in the 1920′s when jazz musicians such as Benny Goodman and Duke Ellington performed.
English teacher Jodi Daynard, one of two supervisors, believes that “the dance is infectious and “a whole lot of fun.
A problem that the club has’€like many first year groups’€is that people are frightened by the idea; consequently, only three members have joined so far.
According to Daynard, however, people only need to be “ready to have fun and move to the music. Daynard has been dancing for over 10 years and believes that the club can offer a lot of information about African-American History in Harlem, as well as provide an excellent cardio workout.
Requirements¦there are none. Simply bring a good attitude and an inclination to “spread the joy.
Senior Leo Candido believes that “the club is great because it teaches people about the dance and also teaches people a new dance that they have never heard of before, and it’s something to do on Thursdays if there is nothing else going on.
Candido, who is the only male member, also feels that his prior experience was “ not exactly his strong-suit, but that in no way affects his ability to enjoy himself every time the group convenes.
When asked what her motivation was in starting the club, Daynard simply responded, “it might be something fun. Although the group is only in its early stages, members have high aspirations.
Daynard believes that if the member tally can rise to six, given there are at least three leads (male dancers), then the club will be able to put on a magnificent display at Tertulia. “Ultimately that is our goal, she said.
According to Candido, the club “is working on a routine, so we can display our hard work at the end of the year.
The club is definitely not lacking in the talent department, especially considering the addition of math teacher David Deutsch.
“Mr. Deutsch is a beginner, but he definitely displays some potential, Daynard said. “In little time we will get him spinning aerials all over the place¦He catches on quick.
When asked what Lindy Hop can be compared to, Daynard explained, “It is kind of like Hip-Hop, because it is truly an art form. It allows me to express myself.
Her most recent outlet for this self-expression was at a dance conference in North Carolina that she attended, much to the dismay of the members of the Lindy Hop club who were faced with a gloomy Thursday J-Block in her absence.
When asked what could make her travel to such great lengths for a hobby, Daynard replied, “I love dancing to the music, and I am sure all who dance with me can definitely empathize.
She wants other people to try out this new and exciting genre of dance because she believes they will find as much joy as well.
“You might also learn a thing or two, she said, “but first you’ve got to come.
For those interested,. Daynard suggests a “pair of good comfortable flat shoes, something that you can move around in while doing something kind of crazy.

]]>
http://www.denebolaonline.net/2010/12/06/new-lindy-hop-club-revives-a-retro-form-of-street-dancing/feed/ 0