Students Practicing The Fine Arts at SJHS

Kenia Martinez, SJHS Staff Writier

Here at Spingville Junior High we have students with many different talents. And the school’s curriculum offers a couple of classes for those wishing to learn more and practice those talents.
The school offers a class called Creative Writing for those who love to write. It’s a class where students can practice not only short stories, but poetry and song lyrics as well. Halley Rencher is a ninth-grade student at SJHS who has started too many stories to count, but said she’s only finished a few. She said she started liking to write at the beginning of seventh grade. “I mostly write short stories and novels, but I’m starting to like poetry,” Halley explained. She enjoys writing fiction, horror, realistic fiction and fantasy.
“I’m working on a realistic fiction about a group of teenagers who live a secret life and what happens to them because of their secret life.” She’s also currently working on a poem about a hunting creature who likes to terrorize his victims. Lately, Halley has been writing more fiction stories because “it sounds like it actually could happen.”  Halley finds inspiration in her friends, other books and dreams she’s had. She said that there was a time when she was having a particularly hard time finding inspiration, but she’s starting to get past that.  She also often finds inspiration in an unfinished novel by her friend.
SJHS also offers a choir class for those who enjoy singing and want to practice and extend their skills. Holly Whearley is a ninth-grade student of Mrs. Leslie Walker, the choir teacher. Holly has been singing for six years. She sings slow songs, and she sings in soprano which is high-pitched. Her hero is Celene Dion. “She started out as nothing and became something,’’ Holly said, “No matter who you are, you can become something.”
Holly thinks she can improve on having more power in her singing style; she wants to sing like Dion. Her favorite things to sing are classic, old songs like Ave Maria.  She advises anyone who has a passion for something, even if they’re not very good, to keep striving for success. “You should follow your dreams.” Holly said.
Every kid likes to draw. Students doodle on the margins of their homework or on their notes in class. SJHS also offers a class for students to let out their creativity and get a grade for it. Jackson Averett is an eighth-grade student in Mr. Mitch Cudney’s art course. Mr. Cudney describes Jackson as an imaginative boy with advanced technical skills, good concentration and who is serious about art. He also said that he studies outside school in private art lessons. Jackson has been drawing since he was a little kid, but he says that he doesn’t really want to make drawing a career; he used to, but not very much anymore. He said it’s just a hobby now. Jackson's favorite thing to draw with is a pencil, and he mostly does pencil sketches. “I like it because just because it’s fun.”
Steven Nunn, ninth-grade student in Mr. David Booth’s band class, plays the guitar, saxophone and clarinet. His favorite is the guitar because he said it is much more challenging than his other instruments. Steven said he would like to make a career out of music. “Only if the opportunity presents itself. There are many other careers I would enjoy doing.”
Steven's number one inspiration is Eddie Van Halen. “He is the best guitarist ever... enough said,” Steven explained.
Steven started the clarinet in the 6th grade with Mr. Booth. “He is my hero,” he said. Steven has recently started to play with his father’s saxophone, and he has been playing guitar for almost a year now. The instrument that Steven wishes he could play is the drums and other percussion instruments.
Though there is not a class offered for every talent or passion a student may posses, there are still a lot of interesting, fun, and exciting classes to choose from.

Mrs. Murdock: Finance Secretary at SJHS

Spencer Duncan, SJHS Staff Writer
Mrs. Murdock

Mrs. Janine Murdock is the finance secretary at Springville Junior High.  Mrs. Murdock’s job is to handle the school’s finances and to find substitutes for the teachers.  Mrs. Murdock’s busiest days are getting 900 students registered for school in the fall and collecting end of year fines in May so everyone can get their yearbooks.  Mrs. Brenda Bales, the attendance secretary at SJHS, said another way Mrs. Murdock helps the school is, “She’s a great friend to all the teachers, new and old.”

Mrs. Murdock started working here at SJHS in 1989.  She started as a skill building supervisor with Mrs. Joye Wimmer, tardy secretary at SJHS.  Mrs. Wimmer has been working with Mrs. Murdock for “many years.”  Mrs. Bales has been working with Mrs. Murdock for 15 years.  After working in skill building, Mrs. Murdock spent five years as the attendance secretary.  After she was the attendance secretary she was the counseling secretary for another five years before moving into the front office to handle the finances.  According to Mrs. Murdock, she has worked for five principals at SJHS since starting in 1989.

Mrs. Murdock said, “I actually attended Springville Junior High seventh through ninth grade, many years ago. Mr. Steve Robbins was one of my classmates."  Mrs. Murdock also said, “Our lunchroom was downstairs in the area where the art room is.  Before the school was remodeled the front office was a large concrete staircase leading up to the front doors.”  Mrs. Murdock has a lot of history with SJHS.

“I love my job and the students and staff I am able to work with,” said Mrs. Murdock.  According to her, this is sometimes like her home away from home.

Mrs. Carpenter: science teacher at SJHS

Andrew Garza, SJHS Staff Writer

Mrs. Lise Carpenter has taught science at Springville Junior High School for the last 14 years.  Before she started teaching at SJHS she taught high school for four years in Tulsa, Oklahoma.  Mrs. Carpenter said, “There are many things I like about SJHS. I like the students and teachers, I love how the school is always clean and bright, and I like the motivational posters on the walls. I think there is a good energy in our school which helps all of us to succeed.”

Mrs. Carpenter said, “I teach science because before I was a teacher I was a medical technologist and worked in a hospital and clinic laboratories. I always liked science and at one point in my life I decided to go back to school, get a teaching certificate, and make a career change. It has been great for me and my family."

Collin Pope, a student at SJHS, said “Mrs. Carpenter is nice.  She makes sense when she explains science, and, I think she is a good teacher.”

Mrs. Carpenter loves to read books in her spare time, especially medical mysteries. She also likes to play the piano and go shopping. Mrs. Carpenter and her husband like to travel.  On her next trip she is going to Orlando, Florida. She is going to spend a few days at Disney World (along with Disneyland, one of her two favorite places to go).  She has five grandchildren, almost six, all girls and one boy. They love to get together and eat and play. Mrs. Carpenter is looking forward to May when her youngest son is coming home from his mission in Belgium.          


Wishes Being Granted at SJHS

Katya Wagstaff, SJHS Staff Writer
Jacob Buhler, Oscar Portillo and Jace Hartman sold stars during lunch.

The first wish granted by the Make-A-Wish Foundation was for Christopher James Greicius in Arizona.  Since that time, Make-A-Wish has grown to become a non-profit organization that has granted wishes all over the world.  Springville Junior High students have helped grant the wish of Jessenia, a seven-year-old girl who has ALL leukemia.  Jessenia wishes to go to Disneyworld and meet all the Disney princesses.

Students in the service learning class at SJHS, taught by Mrs. Diane Bird, are in charge of the Make-A-Wish fundraiser for Jessenia.  During lunch, stars can be purchased for a dollar each.  Each student puts their name on the star and places it on the wall, showing that they have donated.  If students donate $1,000, an SHS Student Council member, Josh Buhler, will have half of his body shaved.  Though the stars were a dollar each, any amount of money given was appreciated.  These stars were sold November second through the ninth. 

The service learning students in charge of this fundraiser are Jace Hartman, Oscar Portillo, and Jacob Buhler.  Jacob Buhler and Oscar Portillo both feel that they have a bond with Jessenia even though they haven’t met her.  A ninth-grade student who has helped sell stars, Cami Sumsion, said, “Even though I don’t know her, I’ve come to love her.” 

SJHS students aren’t the only ones donating money for Jessenia’s wish, Springville High and Mapleton Junior High are helping out too.  SJHS hopes that Josh gets shaved, and everyone can’t wait to see Jessenia’s wish come true!

Carnival is Held at SHS to Help Jessenia’s Wish Come True

Hayde Blanco, SJHS Staff Writer

The annual Make-a-Wish Carnival was held at Springville High School on Monday, November 9 from 6 to 8:30. This carnival helped raise money to make Jessenia’s wish come true. Jessenia has ALL Leukemia, and her wish is to go to Disneyworld and meet all of the Disney princesses. 

This carnival had games like pie throwing, an ice cream eating contest, miniature golf, face painting, standing long jump, skateboard races and pin the tail on the devil. Springville Junior High’s service learning class had the chance to help out in some of the events. The events that service learning helped out were skateboard races and standing long jump. Participants sat on the skateboard and pushed off with plungers for the skateboard races. Then for the standing long jump people stood on a line and jumped as far as they could. The further participants jumped, the more candy they won. 

Springville Junior High is hoping to raise $1,000 for Jessenia.  If they do, Josh Buhler, a member of the Springville High School student council, has volunteered to help motivate people to buying more stars by shaving half of his hair off. Mrs. Diane Bird, service learning and sewing teacher at SJHS, said, “It would really be nice to see Josh Buhler’s head shaven.” Haley Norman, a seventh grader here at Springville Junior High said that her favorite games were miniature golf and the face painting. Haley also said, “This was a really good way to earn money for Jessenia.”


Getting Published at SJHS

Cody Woolsey SJHS Staff Writer
Kaleb Barnum, Andrew Garza, and Max Schreiner, all journalism students at SJHS.

The first school newspaper was a big hit around the school. But many students school-wide do not know the hard work and dedication it took to write all of the articles and publish it into a newspaper. Read on to learn about the process it took to make the newspaper.

“We had to wait almost the entire first term before we had enough articles to publish into a newspaper,” said Max Schreiner, a journalism student at SJHS. The process of making a single article takes about a week. It starts with journalism students picking an article topic, then they brainstorm ideas for your article like who can be interviewed and what you need to know.

Next, journalism students interview people who have something to do with their chosen topic. Then they use an "inverted pyramid," which looks like an upside-down pyramid to plan out their article in order of importance, with the most important information being shared at the beginning of the article.

After planning out the article, journalism students then write the first draft; but that’s not the end of it. After that they get a "Peer Review" which is when one of the fellow journalism students read the article and make sure it is ready for the second draft. They then get their article edited by another student, and after making all their changes, turn their article to Ms. Miley for the final editing and grading process.

"I don't grade too hard--I just make sure that the basic requirements for news writing are met.  But I do edit pretty carefully since our articles end up in the newspaper," explained Ms. Tiffanie Miley, the journalism teacher at SJHS. After students get their articles back, they take a picture and email Ms. Miley their finalized article.  Ms. Miley formats the school newspaper and sends it to the Springville Herald, who then sends it to the printer.

"When I see my article published in the paper I feel excited,” said Jacob DeRosia, another Journalism student at SJHS, “it’s pretty cool to see something you wrote in a newspaper.” Even though it’s a lot of work to get the newspaper up and running, it’s very rewarding in the end. We enjoy your comments on the newspaper and hope you enjoy the new ones to come!

The Artistic Side of English

Kara Dunn, SJHS Staff Writer
Seventh graders in Ms. Neeley's English class sharing their poetry.

When most students think of English, they think of reading books, writing essays, and doing reports. However, in Ms. Rachel Neeley’s class, poetry is their focus right now.

“I love poetry; it’s like the artistic side to English,” Celeborn Stringham, a seventh grade student in Ms. Neeley’s class, explained.

“I love teaching poetry.” Ms. Neeley explained, “It allows students to be creative, poetry is also lots of fun because it’s a very different type of writing. I hope that students learn how to use figurative language effectively in their writing. I also hope that students gain an appreciation for poetry.”

Students in Ms. Neeley’s class write poetry and then turn it into her for her edit and advice. She explained that reading the poems her students write was her favorite part of the poetry unit. “I’m always so impressed with that my students write,” she explained.

Not everyone is good at the same things. Some students prefer other language arts activities, while others love writing poetry. “Teaching poetry allows some students to shine.” Ms. Neeley said, “It’s fun to try new things, even if you’re not good at them.”

Lights and Sound Crew help assemblies succeed at SJHS

Christopher Taylor, SJHS Staff Writer
Jonathan Luther and Jordan Robinson,two members of the light and sound crew, are shown here working inside the light booth.

Imagine if you went to a concert or play, but you couldn’t see or hear the performers.  The lights and sounds crew’s job at SJHS is to make sure this does not happen.  They are in charge of all the lights and sounds in plays, concerts and assemblies.   The seven students on the crew are directed by Mr. Shawn Hatfield, a biology teacher at SJHS.

Being on the lights and sound crew can present some challenges. According to Jonathan Luther, an eight grader on the crew, it’s really hard to memorize all the knobs, switches, sliders and buttons. You also have to be able to think fast when something goes wrong, since you can’t stop an assembly when a light won’t turn on or a microphone breaks.  Another difficultly of serving on the crew is that there are concerts, plays, and other after school programs.  Students on the crew could have to do something at almost any time of day, from five’ o clock in the morning to ten’ o clock at night.

The kids on the lights and sound crew are given a lot of responsibility, but they get a lot of privileges as well.  They get to get out of class, and sometimes they will miss a whole day of school to do a play or special assembly.  Jordan Robinson, a ninth grader on the crew, said, “I like doing lights and sound because it makes me feel like I am in control, and I get to be with some of my friends.” 

According to Jonathan, one of the most enjoyable parts of being on the crew is working with Mr. Hatfield.  He said that Mr. Hatfield is “fun to joke around with.”  According to Jordan, Mr. Hatfield is always willing to help the students on the crew with anything they need.  Mr. Hatfield said, “I enjoy seeing the success of kids in plays. Lights and sound is one of the things that makes a play a success.” He has been helping the lights and sound crew for 10 years.

Wheel of Prizes

Max Schreiner, SJHS Staff Writer

Fridays at Springville Junior High are always fun because Friday is the day we spin the wheel at lunch. For most students, Friday is the day they get their awesome prizes such as iPods, chips, fifteen and five dollar gift cards to Wal-Mart, Yuda Bands, one dollar bills, and coming soon, Krispy Kreme Doughnut gift cards.

To spin the wheel students must get ten stickers from teachers and then they can spin. Teachers give out stickers to students for many reasons.  Students receive stickers for being effective communicators, responsible citizens, successful learners, having good attendance, and high test scores. Mr. Shaun Blakey, SJHS counselor, said, “Teachers can also give out stickers for whatever they feel students deserve them for.” When students receive stickers they can put them into their planner on the page marked for stickers, and after they receive ten stickers they can take their planner filled with stickers and spin the wheel.

The counselors and Mr. David Knudsen, assistant principal, are in charge of the wheel with little help from the student council. Students spin the prize wheel at lunch and then go to the front office and pick up their prizes after school. Kaitie Bair, a student at SJHS, said “I’ve only spun once and got a candy bar, but other kids get the big prizes like iPods and gift cards.”

So, just reminder students every Friday bring your planners and be ready to spin!

Shakespeare is Back in English Classes at SJHS

Kara Dunn, SJHS Staff Writer
Mrs. Bass and her class discuss "Romeo and Juliet."

Mrs. Elizabeth Bass’s ninth-grade English class is taking a step back in time to the late fifteen hundreds, to the time when Shakespeare was the writer of the century. 

“We’re starting a unit on the play, 'Romeo and Juliet.'” Mrs. Bass explained, “Typically all ninth-grade English teachers explore this play; I think it’s fun to study because there are lots of things that students can relate to.”   

“It’s fun to learn about this kind of stuff, and about Shakespeare’s life,” Madeline Alishbah, a ninth grade student said. 

The class is not only studying the play “Romeo and Juliet” but they are also learning about the time period of Shakespeare. “We’re learning about how they used to speak and are insulting people in that language,” Madeline explained.

“Shakespeare is one of my favorite authors,” Mrs. Bass explained. “I’m really passionate about teaching anything Shakespeare.” 

Mrs. Bass's enthusiasm must be contagious, because her stduents are enjoying the play as well.  “I like learning about Shakespeare,” Madeline explained. “It’s fun to learn about a different culture and how different it used to be.”