Ms. Jennifer Dunn, seventh-grade English teacher, is now holding a Harry Potter Trivia during Quest Time in room 54 on Thursdays! Ms. Dunn is a huge Harry Potter fan. When she noticed lots of her students reading the books, she thought that a Harry Potter trivia was something a lot of students would enjoy. Ms. Dunn asks a question and then whoever raises their hand first, or hasn’t answered very many questions, gets to answer, and if they get it right then they get a piece of candy.
Sadie Clark, a seventh grader at SJHS, exclaimed, “I enjoy going and like getting a piece of candy!” According to Ms. Dunn, students really enjoy it and there’s a lot of laughter during the game.
Ms. Dunn hopes to get Harry Potter Scene It running for Quest Time in the future. She would really enjoy students who know a lot about Harry Potter to come.
Each Friday during Quest Time, a 20 minute period during the day, Ms. Rachel Neeley, an English teacher at Springville Junior High, holds a karaoke party in her classroom for any students that don’t have deficient grades. Ms. Neeley said, ”The students enjoy singing, dancing, and having fun.”
According to Ms. Neeley, the students like choosing popular musical hits from today. According to Kate Galbraith and Abby Coleman, two seventh- grade girls, there are also popular songs from the past. They like going to karaoke because you can just have fun and hang out.
There are approximately 30-50 students that attend the karaoke every week. If any student enjoys singing or dancing, go to room number 58 on Fridays.
On October 26th at Springville Junior High School, the seventh-grade pod attended a celebration assembly. A pod is a group of students who are taught by the same teachers; in this case those teachers are Ms. Tiffanie Miley and Ms. Rachel Neeley, English teachers, Mr. David Kindrick, science teacher, and Mrs. Angel Nilson, pre-algebra teacher. Ms. Neeley said, “I really like the pods. I think it is good for the students to stay together for part of the day.”
The assembly was a boys vs. girls assembly to have fun and celebrate a celebration of the term. The teachers kept points by playing games and having relays. Ms. Miley said, “I think the kids had a lot of fun at the assembly.”
About eight games and relays were played and each game had three girls and three boys come up on stage to compete. According to the pod teachers, the boys kicked butt. The students played a game where the boys put on girl clothes and the girls put on boy clothes. Cami Dallin, seventh grader, said, “I had to put on boy clothes and run around in a circle.” They also played a game were they pulled tissues out of its box with one hand. Colton Tuttle, seventh grader, said, “I’m glad I was in the pod assembly because I got to make a fool of myself.” The students also played a game where they filled pies with whip cream and then threw them at Mr. Kindrick. So if this sounds like fun grab some friends, tissues, whip cream and pies and have your own little relay and game day.
Springville Junior High School has many cheerleaders in the student body. Girls from seventh to ninth grade can sign up for the opportunity to cheer for football teams. Seventh graders cheer for either Rotary Mustangs or S.O.S Drug Bears, eighth graders cheers for either Quality cleaner Vikings or Reams Badgers, and all ninth graders cheer for Springville High Schol freshmen Red Devils.
The football teams have sponsors, such as Springville Rotary Club, S.O.S Drug Store, Quality Cleaners and Reams grocery store. Ciara Snapp, an eighth grader at SJHS and cheerleader for Quality Cleaners Vikings, said, “I think it’s very nice of them to care for the fact that people want to play football and support them.”
Cheer is a fun way to get to meet new people. Alexa Kroneberger, an eighth grader at SJHS and cheerleader for Reams Badgers, said, “I enjoy it, everybody is always positive and fun.” It is also a good way to spend time with friends. Ciara Snapp said, “When I first started, I didn’t think I’d like it. But I ended up loving it! It’s a lot harder than people think. I had friends to interact with it was a good learning experience.”
If girls from seventh to ninth grade are interested in cheering next year, sign-ups are around the end of the school year at Springville High School or the recreation center. Girls will receive a cheer uniform, socks, sweat pants, jacket with their name on it, pom poms, and a bag to keep their things in.
Springville Junior High School took a jump into learning this year by combining English, history, and science into an intertwined system called the pod. Mrs. Elizabeth Bass, English teacher, said, “The major purpose of the pods is to provide a small-school, student-centered environment that allows students to feel a part of something.”
According to various teachers at SJHS, the pod gives teachers a better opportunity to focus on individual students and collaborate across content areas. It gives students the opportunity to create better relationships between the other students in the class, resulting in students taking larger risks with their learning. According to Ms. Miley, English teacher, the seventh-grade pod has allowed students to make an easier transition from elementary school to junior high.
According to Mr. Ken Van Ausdal, principal, it was a combined effort from the administration to incorporate the pods into the school system. They went to different schools and saw how podding worked. Teachers that volunteered to be involved in the pod attended training sessions to understand the system better; afterwards the pods were scheduled for the 2011-2012 school year.
Mrs. Lise Carpenter, science teacher, said, “It’s hard to tell if student learning has increased. It will take at least another term to gather and analyze data regarding student learning. But I do think that the pods have helped students feel more comfortable because they have a core group of students they see three periods a day.”
According to students in the seventh-grade pod, the pod system helps students to become more comfortableat the junior high. The pods also help to make friends faster. Jeremy Sumsion, seventh grader, said, “The pod helps because we learn the people in our class faster so we can start learning sooner.”
Here at Springville Junior High School the Hope Squad is helping students with problems like depression, bullying, and making friends. One of the ways the Hope Squad helps is through the buddy box.
“We have the Buddy Box as an anonymous reporting option. If a student sees someone who is being bullied, or needs help with something, but would rather not tell an adult, you can just leave an anonymous note in the Buddy Box,” said Mrs. Courtney Droz, the ninth-grade counselor and Hope Squad advisor.
The counselors will read the notes every week and get the help the students need as fast as possible. The buddy box is located in the library and there are informational posters located at the library and cafeteria.
Cassie Buhler, an eighth grader at SJHS and member of the Hope Squad, said, “The buddy box will help students in the long run, but if students don’t put their name in the box then they won’t get the help they need” The person who came up with this idea is Marisa Nielsen, Miss Utah's Outstanding Teen for 2010. She wanted to help students through this buddy box.
According to Tyree Strong, a seventh grader at SJHS and a member of the Hope Squad, this is a really good idea and she thinks that it give students a comforting feeling that someone is helping them. This is a way for students to help themselves and their friends.
The Springville Junior High School choir will be performing a candlelight concert for parents on Friday, December ninth at 7:30. Mrs. Leslie Walker, SJHS choir teacher, said,“It’s a very nice concert because we honor people who have given service to the school and to the community.”
The Master Singers, who are ninth graders, will be singing five songs. The Journeymen, who are eighth graders, will also be singing five songs. The Knightingales, who are eighth-graders, will be singing four songs. The Master Singers and the Journeymen will be singing three songs together.
Ninth graders Anne Lange and Josh Dalley will be performing a duet. Eighth graders Quinn Gleave and Ethan Swendsen will each be singing solos. Mrs. Walker said, “I hope they will learn to sing with precision and beauty, and that they will be able to feel something special by singing this beautiful Christmas music.”
Aubrey Wasden, a ninth grader, is also excited for the concert. Aubrey said, “I think the concert runs smoothly and orderly. And I think it’s very beautiful to see all the students walk down the aisles with candles.”
Mrs. Walker said, “We have been working on music for the concert all year, but now we are really working to get it polished.” Some students feel confident on how they think they will perform. Aubrey Wasden said, “If we were going to have the concert tomorrow I think we would be able to perform it well.”
Mr.Mitch Cudney, the art and photography teacher at SJHS, is letting imagination and creativity be expressed through the hands in his sculpting class. For one of these sculpture projects, the students had to sculpt a humanistic head out of clay. However, according to Mr. Cudney, there is a process you go through before you start sculpting. Mr. Cudney said, “The students will sketch out their sculpture, get ideas from other artists, and create an original design.”
Mr. Cudney sometimes has to help his students sculpt by demonstration. Mr. Cudney said, “If, say, one of my students is having trouble sculpting an eye, I’ll do one, and have the student do the other.” According to Mr. Cudney, you need to have the right tools, and patience, to make a sculpture.
Porter Benson, an eighth grader at SJHS, said, “My favorite part about Mr. Cudney’s class was sculpting humans and being able to sculpt whatever I want!” Sculpture class is definitely hands-on creativity!
On October 27, Brian Smith, or “the man” as lots of kids call him, came to SJHS to teach kids about how to make Japanese food. Brian is related to Mrs. Luke, the foods teacher at SJHS, and so she was really happy to see him again. Brian spent two years in Japan, and he LOVES to cook Japanese food. It’s his seventh year coming to teach kids how to cook. He has been teaching ninth graders only, but two years ago, he started to teach eighth graders too. He has taught them how to make salads and salad dressings. He also taught them about fruits and other healthy foods.
On Thursday, he taught the ninth graders how to make Sukiyakidonburi, a Japanese beef and tofu dish. Mrs. Luke said, “I really enjoy having Brian come, because I think that he likes to come and I know that the kids like having him come too.” Brian answers the students’ questions about his travels to Japan, and he’ll tell them crazy stories about his mission to Japan. The kids enjoy it because some of the stories are real funny.
Caden Swendsen, ninth grader at SJHS, claims to be Brian’s biggest fan. Caden said, “He is my hero. His food is amazing, and he inspired me to grow a beard and to be amazing at life. If I could cook like him, my life would be set.” Emilee Christensen, another ninth grader at SJHS, said, “Brian is just plain awesome. My favorite thing that he’s made for us is the beef and bread thingy, the tofu dish, and Tony’s salad. He makes super good food, and it fits in to what he talks to us about when he answers our questions.”
The journalism class at Springville Jr. High School is an elective class for students who like to write. The journalism students write articles about junior high happenings and spotlight articles about members of the SJHS community.
During journalism the students choose a topic they want to write about that is going on at school. Once the journalism students choose their topic they brainstorm everything they already know about it and think of questions to ask a person who knows a lot about the topic. After the students write the first draft of their article, they have other journalism students peer review and peer edit it to give them ideas about how to improve. After journalism students make all the improvements to their article they email it to Ms. Miley who then emails the articles to the Springville Independent News. Students get extra credit when their articles are published in the Springville Independent News.
Emma Johnson, a journalism student at SJHS, said, “I took journalism because I wanted to feel more responsible and improve my social skills and also become a better writer. I thought it would be fun to try.” According to Clarissa Scott, she thinks that journalism is fun because you get to interview people and then write interesting articles that people will get to read.
Ms. Miley, the journalism teacher at SJHS said, “I hope journalism students learn a variety of skills, everything from learning to ask good questions to organizing their thoughts to writing clearly. I also hope that over the course of the semester they get better at interviewing and are more comfortable talking to both adults and students they don't know.”