September 2016

The Choir is singing their way to fame!

Article by Emma Biesinger


This year we have some very talented singers in our school choir! Most choir students have been singing for years and love to sing. Others are brand new and are learning from our great Choir teacher Mrs. Utrera.

Mrs. Utrera has been teaching Choir for 4 years. “I did some student teaching at Orem Jr. High and Timpview High School.” said Mrs. Utrera. “I like to have them sing in different formations so they get used to hearing the sound in different areas.” This is Mrs. Utrera’s  favorite method for singing and getting students ready for concerts. Her inspiration to become a Choir teacher was her High School Choir teacher. His name was Paul Larsen and he inspired her to help kids find the fun in singing.

Liz Rahmsdorf, a Master Singer in the choir says, “ I’ve been in choir since 5th grade.” Liz says she has improved in singing by vocal exercises and that helps by training her voice. She explains that it's fun at some points but it can get overwhelming. Her favorite song she sings in the Choir is called One Fine Day and it's her favorite because they did a little dance with the song. Her inspiration for choir was her cousin because she got to go choir festivals.

In the Knightengales choir have Mona Olsen. Mona has been in choir for the past 3 years. She likes choir because she has always loved to sing. Her favorite song to sing in choir in Morokei because it’s really happy to sing and upbeat. She says, “ My inspiration for choir was my grandma because she was an opera singer when she was younger.”

Next in our Men’s Choir we have Alan Ruiz. He was in choir last year and he says he hasn’t really improved because its hard memorizing words. He says that choir is fun and his favorite song in choir is called Tell My Father. He explains that it's just a good song and he likes to sing it. “My inspiration for choir is that I love to sing and it's a fun class and we have a good teacher.”

So those are the choir students! If you would like to improve your singing skills, join choir!


All About Journalism!

Eliza Whiting

Journalism is a super fun elective class for 8th and 9th graders. Ms. Piña is the new Journalism teacher at SJSH. Also teaches 9th grade english.It used to be taught by Ms. Dunn, But Ms. Dunn left SJSH in the 2015-16 year. Surprisingly, none of the current Journalism class( Eliza Whiting, Anya Kiel, Emma Biesinger, Angela Lopez, Amy Robertson, Hailey Gabbitas, Scout Benson, Corwynn Waycasy, Sakari Duvall, Kelby Jeppson, Lindsay Gardiner, Jocelynn Garner, Brenna Carlton, and  Alex Yoder) have done Journalism before.

Hailey Gabbitas, from the Journalism class, thinks that the hardest part of Journalism is writing the articles. But Anya Kiel, from the Journalism class, says that the hardest part is making it sound good. According to Scout Benson the hardest part is meeting the deadlines. Ms. Piña, the Journalism teacher, says that Journalism is a mix of hard and easy. “Journalism is self guided,”  she says this makes it easy for her to teach. Ms. Piña, the Journalism teacher, likes to read her students articles. She especially enjoys student spotlights. Most students say that the easiest thing is interviewing.

In Journalism, students write articles for the school newspaper about what is going on in the school or district. Almost every week there is a newcast done by about four students. A newscast is basically a newspaper in a video form. They are shown in Advisory period on Fridays.

Emma Biesinger, from the Journalism class, says that she did Journalism because she couldn’t do choir and she likes to write. Anya Kiel, from the Journalism class, likes it because it is a social activity. Hailey Gabbitas, from the Journalism class, says that she always wanted to interview people.

This is what they do in Journalism. It sounds like a fun elective for 8th and 9th grade.


Hope Squad: Bringing Hope To SJHS

Article by Alex Yoder

What is The Hope Squad? The Hope Squad is a group of students that are supposed to be a friend to everyone, and to help other students that are struggling. Here in Utah, we pride ourselves with creating the idea of Hope Squad in 1998. While Hope Squad was originally thought up of in our lovely home state, there is still lots that is unknown by the general student body about the Hope Squad. Hopefully by the end of this article, the unknowns will become knowns.

As we interviewed the general student body, we came to find that many students didn’t even know what exactly the Hope Squad was. The Hope Squad is a group of students with the ability to help and be a friend to everyone. Mrs. Edenfield, 7th Grade English Teacher said, “Their purpose is to provide a resource to students who are struggling.” Brenna Carlton, former Hope Squad member, told us their purpose is to prevent suicide and bullying, and to keep an eye out on the school.

Another question the students had is how the students are chosen, and what plays a part in them being chosen. Mrs. Shepherd, dean of students, told us they are voted by fellow students on a survey in their english class, the list of the most popular votes go to counselors and teachers who then chose the students. Mrs. Droz, 8th Grade Counselor and the authority behind the Hope Squad, told us they chose around 30 students each year. She said, “We take approximately 5 seventh graders, 10 eighth graders, and 15 ninth graders each year.” The only thing that really plays a part in them being chosen is if they can help and be a friend to everyone.

The Hope Squad started with high school principal Greg Hudall when he was used to identify a young teen after he had committed suicide. That was in 1998 here in Provo Utah, and now there are hope squads all over Utah, and even outside the state. Mrs. Droz said, “Many schools throughout Utah have Hope Squads. All of the secondary schools in Nebo District have them… it goes beyond Utah now.”

Of all of the students we interviewed, every single one said that they enjoyed being on the Hope Squad. However, it wasn’t all just ‘being a friend to everyone’. Mrs. Droz told us they go through a full day training meeting, and have a weekly training/planning meeting. Some of the training procedures they use include a suicide prevention method called QPR(Question, Persuade, Refer). ¨The QPR mission is to reduce suicidal behaviors and save lives by providing innovative, practical and proven suicide prevention training.¨( It's A program using the 3 steps Question, Persuade, Refer, to prevent suicide.” Mrs. Droz said, ¨ a suicide prevention program which trains both youth and adults to recognize the warning signs of suicide...¨ QPR has recently partnered up with the Hope Squad Organization to help decrease suicide rates across the country.

Congratulations to this years hope squad, Brenna Carlton, McKay Dalley, Lydia Felix, Jacob Follette, Sara Watabe, Alyssa Badger, Kennedy Bird, Julie Brown, Caitlyn Buhler, Max Davis, Will Daybell, Ammon Elzinga, Travis Hartman, Ahna Hullinger, Jake Jackson, Carter Johnston, Michael Oman, Gracie Sentx, Tlaloc Tenorio, Nicholas Thorpe, Brayden Zubia, Abby Fales, Victoria Hunt, Averi Smith, Jenny Wallentine, Jane Wilson, Kayle Jackson, Zach Mitchell, Chandler Kiser, Arianie Perez-Diaz, Jesus Hernandez Garcia, Paige Ballard, Owen Beach, Allie Harris, Halle Platt, Ryan Glazier, Benson Bird, Cristobal Hernandez, Stockton Nelson, Braxton Gross, Monte Taylor, Brady Distefino, Evan Adams, Sage Bowers, Abby Carlton, Jenessa Crystal, Katie Jackson, Rosy Stoddard, Hannah Mason, Nayara Snyder, Mariana Garcia, Dominick Solorzano, Kinzie Lewis, and Brianna Nelson.


Football season is here!

Hailey Gabbitas

It's Football season at SJHS! Football is such a popular sport, and it always has and will be. Some of the football players had some interesting things to say about the sport, some of them also said some really helpfull things.

A seventh grader named Nash Scott said that he likes playing football because “ when you play football you stay fit and healthy.” Also a 8th grader named Hondo Quezada had some pretty good information about football and school work and how they go together. Hondo said that it just depends on how much homework you have because you have football after school, so you don't have to get out of class early or make up any work. 

Another 8th grade student at SJHS named Zach Mitchell who also plays on the Football team has a lot of good answers. One of the questions was why he is the quarterback and he said “ My dad played in the NFL.” Also we asked him if football ever gets in the way of school work and he said “ It sometimes does because we have football practice is right after school, so if you do have homework you have to wait and do it when you get home which is about 11’ o'clock at night.” The last student who got interviewed named Tyler Kelly, a 9th grade football player at SJHS, said that he likes football “because you get to make physical contact with other people.” People love tackling people in football that's what it's mostly about.

A teacher at SJHS named Mrs. Ottley, a 7th and 9th grade English teacher, said that she likes football because “ Its fast pace and really exciting,” Mrs. Porter, a 7th and 8th grade history teacher, said the reason why she likes football is “ I get to hangout with my husband and just eat.” The 9th grade school counselor, Mr. Jackson said, “ I love it I have been around football my whole life.”He also said that he would play football because he loves playing on a team and he loves his teammates.” He also said that a lot of friendships are made while playing on a football team and you also get to bond with them. Lastly, Mr Jackson explained if football gets in the way of school work and he said,“It can it's really important to kids who play, but you have to have time to do your school work to.” An interesting fact about Mr. Jackson Is that he coaches the varsity team up at the High school and has been a coach for 16 years.

Meeting the New 8th and 9th Graders

Article by Sakari Duvall

This year there are a lot of new 8th and 9th graders that are here at our school, SJHS. To get to know them and to give a nice welcome, we got an inside view. 

We wanted to know where the students had moved here from and this is what they said. “Fresno California,” said DeShaun Knuckles. Alex Yoder just moved schools. Shawn Curtis moved here from Tucson (Too-sawn), Arizona. Martinez is where Lauren Gomez is from. Cedar City used to have a resident of the name Makailee Turner. And Heidi is from Mexico.

The first question we ask is how they liked the new school and this is what they said. Shawn Curtis, in 9th grade, said that it was very welcoming. Makailee Turner said that it is good and it’s bigger.

Have you made a lot of friends? “Yes, I’m famous!” said DeShaun Knuckles in the 9th grade. “Yes!” said Lauren Gomez in 8th grade.

Another question that was asked was is this school different from your other school? Deshaun Knuckles said that it is different but in a better way. Alex Yoder, in 9th grade, had said that it is pretty much the same other than there is student advisory now that all students have to go to. Makailee said that it is different because at her old school there were no lockers.

We hope that they have a wonderful school year and will remember this wonderful school.

SJHS New Class; Photography!

Lindsay Gardiner

This year SJHS has a brand new class for 8th and 9th graders, photography! Ms. Elison the art teacher at our school is the photography teacher now as well. Some things they get to do are learning how to use a camera to take pictures, learn how to photoshop, along with framing and lighting.

8th grader Julie Rowley and 9th grader Seka Groves both said that their favorite thing to do was to go take pictures around the school and outside. Julie said “there are so many things outside that just give feeling to the picture.”

“By offering Photography to students at Springville Jr High we are increasing learning opportunities for students” Ms. Elison said “there can be many connections made with other subjects through photography (science, technology, literacy, communication, etc.)

Ms. Elison also said “Photography is a popular art form and with technologies such as nicer camera phones and apps like instagram there is a lot of interest to learn how take great photos. I believe that offering such a popular subject will also allow students to find and develop talents and skills that would otherwise be unavailable until high school.”

This sounds like it is an interesting class and the students that take it will have an amazing year!


Is the Change From Quest Time to Student Advisory a Welcome Change?

Kelby Jeppson

For quite a while, Springville Jr. High School has had Quest Time every day except on early-out days.  Starting this school year, students and staff at Springville Jr. High will have no Quest Time on Friday, but something new called an Advisory Period.  The Advisory Period is where you go to your assigned advisor for twenty minutes right after third period and learn new things such as life and social skills.  Mrs. Shepherd, the dean of students, says that the Advisory Period is a “great way for kids to connect to one adult in the school.”

So far, there has been a lot of positive feedback about the Advisory Period. According to ninth grader, Grace Elison, the Advisory Period is good because students will have a teacher that they feel comfortable talking to.  Mrs. Shepherd also explains that there will be groups of people from all grades so you can be friends with everyone.  Eliza Sorenson, an eighth grader, says that she likes the Advisory Period because “you get to meet people you wouldn’t usually meet.”  She also mentioned that in the Advisory Period, you get to learn things that you wouldn’t usually learn in your regular classes.

Although there are many people who like the Advisory Period so far, some people are still undecided.  Carmen Peterson, an eighth grader, says that it is definitely a change and she is not exactly sure how she likes it yet.  Hopefully everyone will be able to get used to the change and learn to like it.  Like Mrs. Shepherd says, it breaks up Quest Time and it is only twenty minutes long; so it’s not miserable!


Introducing… THE NEW TEACHERS!

Article by Emma Biesinger


Here at SJHS we have some new teachers that we are excited to learn about. For some of them, this is their first teaching job, others have been doing it for years. Either way we are excited to have them in our school.

This school year we had some teachers retire, or just move to a different school, although we are sad to have them leave, we are also excited to have new teachers that we can get to know!

The first teacher interviewed was Mrs. Edenfield. Mrs. Edenfield said, “I really like teaching at Springville Jr. High. The teachers are very nice and have been so friendly. I have enjoyed getting to know them. My 7th grade English teaching team is awesome and we work really well together to create lessons that the students will enjoy. I have also been really impressed with the students here. They are very kind.”

She explained that she has wanted to teach English since 8th grade after reading To Kill a Mockingbird and from a really awesome English teacher. When she is not teaching she is with her family. She lives in Spanish Fork, with her husband and her two kids, a three year old little boy and a two month old baby girl. They like to be outdoors and go camping and fishing. She also likes to take naps if there is time, although she said “there usually isn’t”.

If Mrs. Edenfield wasn’t a teacher she explained that she would try to be a celebrity stylist and also do beauty and try to live in New York or California.

Her previous teaching job was at Mapleton Jr. High. She said that our school is newer but Mapleton doesn’t offer as many English electives as we do. She explained that there are more similarities than differences.

We are excited to have Mrs. Edenfield teaching at our school and we wish her good luck!

Another teacher is Mr. Jackman. He is also a new 7th Grade English teacher. Mr. Jackman explained how he likes the school by saying, “I think everyone has been really welcoming and the faculty is really nice.” Mr. Jackman said that he wanted to teach English after High School. He likes watching T.V., listening to music, and spending time with friends. If Mr. Jackman was not a teacher he explained, “Anything being made into a movie, a T.V. show or music they would send to me first and I would say ‘you need to change this or this’.” And this is his FIRST TEACHING JOB! We are so happy to have him in our school and we are excited to get to know him better.

Mr. Taylor is our new Orchestra Teacher and replaced Dr. Tsugawa. Although we are sad to have Dr. Tsugawa leave, we are excited to know our new Orchestra teacher. Mr. Taylor said that he does like the school because he likes the people he works with and he loves the students here. He has also wanted to teach Orchestra since High School. When he is not teaching he likes to watch College football, play with his kids, and go on dates with his wife. “I’d probably be a performer in an Orchestra, Jazz Band or Jazz Ensemble.” said Mr. Taylor if he was not an Orchestra teacher. This is not Mr. Taylor’s first teaching job, before Springville Jr. High we taught at Heritage Academy, and explained that the school was a lot smaller and said that there were 600 students total from grade 7-12.

We are all excited to meet and learn about these new teachers and we are excited to have them for years to come.


SJHS WheelSpins

Article by Corwynn Waycasy


At SJHS the students' reward for good behavior is the WheelSpins. How you get a WheelSpin card is simple, you just do your best and have good behavior. 

Mrs. Shepherd explained students get Wheel Spins by being “above and beyond normal. Teachers give them them to kids for being helpful” Mr. Rowley, the vice principal, mentioned that each teacher only gets 4 Wheel Spins to give away. You can get a Wheel Spin by just being helpful like pushing in chairs and picking up trash. 

So if you want to get a Wheel Spin just try to get a teacher's attention by going out of your way. Some students might get a lot because they are always willing to be helpful and being nice. 



Meet the Seventh Graders!

Article by Brenna Carlton

When school started about 4 weeks ago, the 8th and 9th graders continued school, but the seventh graders moved from elementary school! It was all brand new to them. Have you started to wonder how they’re doing, or how they feel about school? Well in this article, we’ll answer those questions.

If you’re not currently in seventh grade, do you remember how you felt on the first day of seventh grade at a brand new school? Having one to two classes a day and then seven classes a day is definitely a big switch. Worrying about having seven A’s for seven classes instead of one A for one class was really hard, right? Remembering your locker combination was always a struggle. Think about it: these new seventh graders are having to worry about all of this. You eventually got used to it, but they might still be adjusting. Let’s find out.

Kate Pexton, a seventh grade girl, said that she loves junior high. “It’s way better than elementary school, and I love meeting new people.” She loves her teachers and classes. Her favorite class is College and Career Awareness (CTE) with a new teacher at SJHS, Mr. Parker. “It is kind of hard to get around though,” she says.

Seventh grade boy, Nick Jackson says that he loves his classes and the lockers. “It’s all great, and it runs smoothly,” he said. The first couple days are pretty hard but then it starts to get easier. When you really stop and think about it, it just becomes a habit and you figure it out. Nick’s favorite class is Math with Mrs. Jackson and Science with Ms. Paxton.

Libby Hodson, another seventh grade girl, really likes junior high. “The lockers are nice, and I like having different classes and teachers,” she says. It’s something new. In elementary school it’s usually one teacher, one class, all day. Libby goes on to say, “It’s sometimes stressful having seven classes a day, but not that much.” Her favorite classes are Language Arts and Spanish.

Maizie Thompson, also a seventh grade girl, says the school isn’t really confusing and getting around isn’t that hard. The signs that are around the school help. “I love that I don’t have to sit in one class all day,” she says. She says that sometimes it’s really stressful because it’s just a big change. She likes her classes and teachers, and her favorite is Science with Mr. Dahl.

Lastly, Zack Antonino is another seventh grade boy who said that he loves junior high. “Having lockers is nice, and I like having multiple classes,” he says. He doesn’t have many problems, and likes the school. His favorite class is PE, and his favorite teacher is Coach Gerhauser. All of them only have a few problems, and seem to be doing okay.

Overall, the seventh graders are doing pretty good. But still, look out for them and look out for each other. Handling junior high can be hard sometimes, so just be kind and be an ally. To all seventh graders, good luck!