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October 2010

SJHS is Alive with “The Sound of Music”

Submitted by tiffanie.miley on Mon, 10/25/2010 - 17:11
Andalyn Hall, SJHS Staff Writer
Mr. Booth directs his eighth-grade band class.

When students walk down the hallways of SJHS, there is noise and busy bodies, but once class starts a new sound can be heard in the southeast corner of the school. That’s where band class has begun. Students start the hour with scales to warm up their instruments and then move on to practice their weekly playing test. Then Star Wars theme songs and Swahili Folk Hymns can be heard.

Classes are divided up by grade. Seventh graders are split up by sections so they can learn the ins and outs of their new instruments. Then, once in eighth grade, students form a true band. Ninth graders move on to more difficult pieces. Instruments include trumpets, trombones, baritones, and tubas. Then woodwinds instruments, with saxophones, clarinets and flutes.

Mr. Booth, SJHS band teacher, has been teaching band for 15 years. He also worked as a roofer, landscaper, and at a lumber mill. According to Mr. Booth, his favorite thing about teaching band is getting to know and work with so many awesome students. Mr. Booth’s favorite instrument is “whatever is in my hands at the time.”

Some of the things students enjoy in band class are Mr. Booth’s funny stories and Mikayla Crystal, ninth grader, said, “First of all, he’s bald… automatic plus.” Emily Merrill, ninth grader, said, “He is so funny, he always makes the band laugh, and he is a great teacher at the same time!” Students appreciate how Mr. Booth helps them along the way with difficult pieces.

Band students look forward to participating in concerts and festivals. Everyone is looking forward to a great year in Springville Junior High band.

SJHS Students Explore Folk Music in Bluegrass Band

Submitted by tiffanie.miley on Mon, 10/25/2010 - 17:10
Christopher Taylor, SJHS Staff Writer
Members of the bluegrass band practicing the song "Bonnie James Campbell" during Quest Time.

Students at Springville Junior High have many ways of expressing themselves. One of these is music. There are several music classes at SJHS, but, until now, there has never been a bluegrass band. Bluegrass music is a genre of American folk music that can be played on many instruments, including the violin, viola, base, cello, ukulele, dulcimer, guitar, mandolin, and even the pennywhistle.  SJHS’s bluegrass band meets during Quest Time (SJHS’s new intervention/enrichment rotation program between third and fourth period) on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. It is taught by Dr. Samuel Tsugawa, who also teaches orchestra class at SJHS. Participating students must be fairly proficient on at least one of the instruments played in bluegrass band.        

Although there is a Folk Ensemble at the high school, no music group at SJHS has solely played bluegrass music.  However, Quest Time, SJHS’s new enrichment program, provided an opportunity for Dr. Tsugawa to have a junior high bluegrass group as well.  Last year, he asked his students if they would like to have the band during Quest Time. Many of them expressed interest, and now bluegrass band is a fun part of the Quest Time program.

“Bluegrass band is fun to teach because it’s fun music,” said Dr. Tsugawa.  Many students enjoy bluegrass music more because they are able to improvise more often and experiment with different playing styles. Ian Lindsey, a ninth-grade cellist and guitarist, said, “I enjoy bluegrass band because I get to make stuff up, and I don’t always have to play what’s on the page.” However, bluegrass band isn’t just for fun. According to Dr. Tsugawa, bluegrass band not only helps kids to have fun with music, it teaches them how to play by ear (without sheet music), and how to play a new and different style of music that isn’t played very often in orchestra class.

Mrs. Breakwell: Exciting New Teacher at SJHS

Submitted by tiffanie.miley on Mon, 10/25/2010 - 17:08
Kallie Whitby, SJHS Staff Writer
Mrs. Breakwell

Mrs. Aleta Breakwell is a new English teacher at Springville Junior High School. Here is what Mrs. Breakwell did before she became a teacher and also before she came to SJHS. “Before I became a teacher, I worked as a copy editor but wanted to become a professional musician. I began my college career as music major, but I had to switch majors because I couldn’t get over stage fright,” said, Mrs. Breakwell. According to Mrs. Breakwell, once she changed careers from music to teaching, she found that it was really fun and never looked back. When she was first a teacher and before she came to SJHS, she taught English at Utah Valley University in Orem, Utah, and also at Snow College in Ephraim, Utah. She also has been happily married for twenty-five years.

In Mrs. Breakwell’s class the theme is The Quest. “I chose the theme 'The Quest' not only because we are the Knights here at Springville, but because we all spend our whole lives questing for things that will make us happy. Happiness is the ultimate treasure, and we all want to succeed at finding whatever it is that makes each of us happy, both in the short term and the long term.” According to Mrs. Breakwell, it is important for us to recognize that each of us live our lives questing. “It’s not only one of the world’s greatest literary themes, but one of life's great models as well,” said Mrs. Breakwell.

In Mrs. Breakwell’s class, the students will be working on their novels, short stories, poems, and writing all in the quest format. For an example, they have been working on writing short stories about themselves using the quest pattern. In her class they are going to be reading books like A Wrinkle in Time and Romeo and Juliet from a quest prospective.

Here are a couple of things that the students like about her class. Sean Tedrow, an eighth-grade student at SJHS, said, “My favorite part about her class is writing stories.” On the other hand Emily Haruch, an eighth-grade student at SJHS, said, “I like doing the people activities. She is also a good teacher.” 

Building Cells!

Submitted by tiffanie.miley on Mon, 10/25/2010 - 17:07
Anna Bunnell, SJHS Staff Writer

Students at Springville Junior High have a new quest! Every year, Ms. Lori Caras, a seventh-grade science teacher at SJHS, gives her students the project of making a cell model. These cells can be made out of whatever students like. Students in the past have made really creative ones out of Playdough, cake, brownies, jello, clear glycerin soap, styrofoam, and so much more. “It’s an activity that’s been around for years,” Mrs. Caras said, “I believe this allows students to use their creativity and non-scientific abilities to develop something that will ultimately help them learn the cell organelles more easily.”

The students were given a week to do this project.  According to Nate Haruch, a seventh grader at SJHS, he liked learning about how the organelles looked and worked in the cell.  “My favorite part is being able to see the creativity of my students; Every year I have a student or students who build a cell in a way I’ve never seen,” said Ms. Caras.    

Students take on Greek Mythology

Submitted by tiffanie.miley on Mon, 10/25/2010 - 17:06
Sage Petersen, SJHS Staff Writer

Greek mythology has been admired and studied for years, and it is now Springville Junior High’s turn to learn about this topic.  Mrs. Aleta Breakwell, an English teacher at SJHS, is teaching the eighth and ninth graders about mythology.

The class is also learning about some of the main gods and goddesses such as: Cronos, Zeus, Aphrodite, Athena, Hera, Hermes, and many more.

Right now Mrs. Breakwell is reading the Odyssey with the ninth graders and many more stories from the class literature anthology. The students are also making paper dolls of some of the most common gods and goddess. For paper dolls, students got into groups of two or three and traced someone on a big sheet of paper. Then they pulled out a piece of paper randomly, and whatever god or goddess name was on the paper, the students made their paper doll into that god or goddess. After the students finished drawing that god or goddess, they wrote three weaknesses and three strengths. 

According to eighth grader Haley Norman, her favorite part is how the stories about the gods and goddess are put together. Currently they are reading the myth about Daedaulus. 

According to eighth grader Hannah Parker, Athena is her favorite goddess. Hannah also likes how the gods or goddess have a family relationship between each other. 

Magic in the Hands of Students

Submitted by tiffanie.miley on Mon, 10/25/2010 - 17:05
Emilee Christensen, SJHS Staff Writer
Danny Salazar shows Mr. Rice’s class a magic trick during Quest time.

At Springville Junior High, students are learning how to become magicians. With the help of Mr. Brain Rice, eighth and ninth-grade English teacher, students can learn the secrets behind some of the best magic tricks. On Monday, October 25th, students have the opportunity to show Mr. Rice and other students a magic trick they have mastered. 

The Magic Show will be held during the school’s Quest Time in Mr. Rice’s room (23). Mr. Rice normally teaches students magic on Mondays during that time.  But on the 25th he wants his students to teach him. Magic is something he enjoys and knows other students will have fun with too. His favorite part about teaching magic is the amazed looks on the students' faces as they try to figure out the secrets behind the trick. Mr. Rice said, “Magic is an illusion of super powers.” He wants students to feel the same way about magic.

During his Quest Time activity, Mr. Rice shows students a variety of magic tricks then teaches them the secrets behind each one. Now he is giving students the same opportunity to show then teach. He’s swapping jobs with the students. Any student who meets the grade requirement can be in the Magic Show. Students are welcomed to participate in or watch this event.  Mr. Rice is looking forward to seeing what kind of tricks SJHS students have up their sleeves. He is ready to be amazed.

Mr. Rice isn’t the only one looking forward to this upcoming event. Students are excited too.  Students enjoy trying to figure out all of Mr. Rice’s tricks. Now they want to see if Mr. Rice can figure out theirs.  Jake Empey, ninth-grade student, said, “I think Mr. Rice will know all of our tricks, but will act surprised anyway.” 

Mr. Rice would like to invite all students to come and show their classmates what kind of magic they know.  He and the students who like to participate during Quest Time say it should be fun.

Students at SJHS Learn About Famous Author

Submitted by tiffanie.miley on Mon, 10/25/2010 - 17:02
Rachel Standley, SJHS Staff Writer

Students at SJHS in Mrs. Mary Rice’s English class are learning about Edgar Allan Poe.  Some things that the students are learning about are his life and his works like “The Raven,” “The Telltale Heart,” and “The Masque of the Red Death.”

Students learned that Poe was an American author and poet. They also learned that Poe was a very brilliant man, and that his writing shows it. Students also learned that Poe was very good at describing things and that he was a very unique kind of writer and person, and that the way he wrote showed his personality.

Courtney O’Halloran, eighth-grade student at SJHS, said, “I think that his writing is really good. My favorite thing out of all that we read was the ‘Raven’ I liked it because Poe used excellent details describing the bird. And I love how the bird talked to people and only used one word the whole time.”   

Mrs. Rice said, “I teach about Edgar Allen Poe’s work because of the word choice in meeting academic literacy goals.” She also said, “studying the words and dissecting them helps students build the kind of vocabulary knowledge that helps them learn.”

After students read Poe’s stories, they had a trial to see if the narrator that Edgar Allan Poe constructed in The Black Cat was sane or insane. After the trial, the students talked about the verdict. Students had fun doing this trial, and they understood more about good writing because they were able to read some good writing and discuss it

SJHS Expresses Itself through Reflections

Submitted by tiffanie.miley on Mon, 10/25/2010 - 17:01
Sarah Cheney, SJHS Staff Writer

Ever since 1970, kids of all ages from all across the nation have been getting together to express themselves through a program called “Reflections.” Reflections is an annual program sponsored by the PTA that encourages students’ artistic talents. This year, Springville Junior High is participating in the Reflections program again.

This year, the theme is: “Together We Can…” When a student does Reflections, they create something that has to do with the theme. They can make or create anything in the categories of musical composition, dance, photography, 3-D art, visual arts, film/video, theater and/or literature.  Reflections entries are due Wednesday, October 20th for Springville Junior High.

So many schools in America do Reflections because they want to help the students express themselves, and receive positive recognition for their efforts. Their efforts seem to be working well, because many students at SJHS like this program.  Erika Frischknecht, an eighth grader at the junior high, said, “It’s pretty awesome, because I get to express myself.”  According to Lauren Brinton, another eighth-grade student at SJHS, Reflections is a good opportunity to show people your work and your accomplishments throughout the year.

For more information go to:

Science Enrichment Blasts Off at SJHS!

Submitted by tiffanie.miley on Mon, 10/25/2010 - 17:00
Amanda Ripley, SJHS Staff Writer
Mr. Dahl's class shooting off rockets at SJHS.

A few weeks ago, Mr. Sam Dahl’s science enrichment class started an unusual and exciting project: rockets. According to Alexandria Sorenson, a seventh grader at SJHS, students got to decorate rockets, build them with a team, and launch them in the field. Some students, including Alexandria, decided to name their rockets.

According to Mr. Dahl, science enrichment is a class where students get to explore science in more depth than they do in regular science classes. “The rockets were really mostly for fun,” said Mr. Dahl, “but I think we learned a lot about the history of space travel along the way.”

The activity was a big success, and, according to Garrett Carr, another seventh grader, his group’s rocket went the highest in his class. “It made a hole half an inch deep in the road, and it was made of only paper!” Garrett said.

According to Mr. Dahl, this is the first time science enrichment has fired off rockets at Springville Junior High. “I plan to do it again next semester and hopefully each year after that.” It’s safe to say that the rocket assignment was a blast.

SJHS Wants All Parent Email Addresses

Submitted by tiffanie.miley on Mon, 10/18/2010 - 14:45
Andalyn Hall, SJHS Staff Writer

Teachers at Springville Junior High keep parents informed about what is happening in their child’s classroom through email.  If parents have questions for a teacher, or vice versa, emailing helps get answers faster and easier. According to Ms. Rachel Neeley, seventh grade English teacher at the junior high, her emails to parents help keep them informed as to what is going on in class.

Parents can update their contact information on the Nebo website. This allows teachers to email all of their students' parents at once. Mr. David Knudsen, assistant principal at Springville Junior High, sends out student grades to parents during end of term and before parent teacher conferences. Parents can turn in updated contact information at the SJHS front office or update information online at the Nebo District website ( Speaking to all parents, Mr. David Knudsen, assistant principal, said “We would encourage parents who have changed their emails or have not given us our emails to contact us with this information, so we can include their email on our list.”


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