by Rachel Powell
An A for you, 75% for you, and an F for you. We are judged and criticized by random numbers and letters. And it makes me wonder why we care so much about them. I think that we shouldn’t have grades in schools anymore.
They say that grades are used to motivate kids to do better and for students to be able to gauge where they need to improve. But in the long run, grades just tear students down. Those numbers and letters judge you and work, sometimes telling you that you are good enough. If they don’t see an A in all of their classes, there is a slight tinge of embarrassment and disappointment. They want to be good students; they want to impress their teachers and parents, but like all humans, they just can’t be perfect. But we are graded on how perfect our work is anyway.
I think that if we didn’t have grades, students’ work and attitudes would improve. Students would be able to show real talent because they are not totally focused on meeting the requirements so they can get a good grade. They would be focused on learning and actual skills they will need for the rest of their lives.
A no-grading system would also benefit teachers. There would only need to be one job in the classroom, the most important, helping the students learn. Some teachers may argue that grades are used to see how good a student is and where their education could take them. Well, that is straight up judging the students. The students can prove to you how good they are in so many other ways than just getting a written A on their paper. They can show that with true talents and potential.
Now, I know that if there were no grades, then students may see no point in coming to school. But, there can be other consequences than writing an F on their paper.
You say it can’t be done, just like everyone says to anything that’s hard. But just watch and you’ll see. There is more potential here than you think.
by Rachel Powell
Do you remember back in Elementary school when there was comfortable seating, class parties, naptime, and recess? Well, what happened in between then and now that made all those things go away? We should bring them back.
Teachers say they have comfortable seating, naptime, class parties, and recess to motivate kids to come to school because elementary students are new to school. Well, high school students are sick of school, so they would appreciate some motivation other than “5 points extra credit.”
Cdc.gov once said that recess is for “Improving (kids’) memory, attention, and concentration. Helping (kids) stay on-task in the classroom. Reducing disruptive behavior in the classroom. Improving (kids’)social and emotional development (e.g., learning how to share and negotiate).” Why shouldn’t that apply to high school students? If anything, these things should be more important to high-schoolers than elementary school students.
We should have comfortable seating because we tend to focus better if we are happy and comfortable with where we are. We should also have nap time because it would improve the way we work. Our grades would sky rocket. We have to wake up at about 6:30 every morning, wear our brains out for six hours, then some of us have after school activities, then, to top it all off, once we finally get home we have another hour or so of homework. We don’t even know where to fit dinner into our schedule. If we had just an hour of relaxation and some time to calm down, everyone would be so much happier.
If high school were more like elementary school, we would find that students' grades would be higher, students would be more engaged, and they would overall be a happier person.
I know being on your phone is just relaxing. You can find funny videos, leave comments, and “socialize” but it doesn’t hurt to take some time off. Look around and read what’s around you. Addiction is a real thing and it can control people. Just having time in your daily schedule to just put your phone down can help your mental health and stress. Some other tips for this is reading a book in the morning when you wake up and before you go to bed, this reduces the chance of insomnia. Insomnia can happen easily from staying up late or waking up early to be on your phone. Don’t go onto social media in the mornings. Instead, start your day off with some light reading, a small walk, a healthy breakfast and most importantly drink some water. All these will help you have a better and happier day.
For me, I love reading on my phone and watching Tik Toks, but the more I watched Tik Tok videos the more I realized how wasteful it was of my time, I'm not saying Tik Tok is horrible and to never be on it again, I'm just saying to have your own limits. Even set limits with your friends, when you have toxic friends who just want to talk about drama then it brings you down with them. Don’t be involved with friends who want to gossip or talk about drama, it's really unhealthy and just brings your whole mood down.
The more I got onto my social media the more timid and drowsy I felt throughout the day. So I decide to change it up and instead get up in the morning, make my bed, drink a glass of water, and read a small book or go for a walk. This change made me full of energy and really improved my mood when I was off my phone away from the negativity and drama. I realized how much of my time I was wasting watching videos and playing games that I would forget about the next day. So I ask the question, “Is a one hour scroll session on Tik Tok Or Instagram gonna help your mental state and help you at all in the future?” My opinion, I don’t like Tik Tok or many social media sites now and I really like to set app limits on my online books because even though I am reading I am still damaging my eyes and it makes your health drowsy and it's unhealthy when you stare at a screen. If you know you have an addiction, which most teenagers do, then pick up a new hobby or actually socialize in person and set your phone aside.
Just simply putting your phone aside for one day and maybe going for a walk to the park or doing a new hobby and not worrying about your phone can improve your mental state a little. You will see a change for the better. People will actually notice what’s going on around them and realize that living in this moment is what you got, so why waste your time on the video game when it’s not gonna mean anything after you're done. Addictions need to be tamed or people will become weak and desperate over their phones.
By: Sam Harper
Daylight savings time causes many annoyances. It does no good. The effective changes it has on the World are too low to be important. It causes more problems than it solves. The effects of DST can be devastating. DST can make people depressed, injured, and can cost lots of money.
Daylight savings time can have terrible effects on the brain. One of those effects is depression. That depression can sometimes go to the extreme of suicide. “As we transition into winter and the days get shorter and darker, many individuals struggle with Seasonal Affective Disorder. Less exposure to sunlight disrupts our circadian rhythms and causes both a drop in serotonin and spike in melatonin, which can lead to feelings of drowsiness and depression.” That one thing affects millions of people. Even if you don't think you're depressed, I'm sure you’ve been sad during the dark months. That darkness doesn't just make you sad, it can hurt you too.
Another tragic event from DST, is the injuries. The darker nights make it easier for people to be hit by vehicles. There are more chances to have accidents in the dark like car wrecks. The change in time can be harmful to our bodies as well. Especially when they could be extra vulnerable. Some people who are vulnerable may be pregnant, the effect on their bodies after DST can cause miscarriages. “Every cell in our bodies keeps track of the time, and changes in daily patterns can trigger stress in our brains and cause sleep deprivation, disorientation, and memory loss. It can also lead to difficulties with learning, social interactions, and overall cognitive function.” The social interactions and cognitive function can have a large role in money too.
If employees are tired and drowsy then they might not get all their work done that they could have. Employees could be depressed and tired. All those things together could make a bad unmotivated worker. Now imagine that affecting the whole USA. “A financial cost for the biannual switch is hard to pin down, but a study by Chmura Economics & Analytics estimated that daylight saving time costs the U.S. more than $430 million a year.” Money is an issue that could be easily stopped.
Though the mornings are dreadful and the nights are dark, there are some good things about DST. There are long summer evenings which are very enjoyable. “More light = more time to do what you want or need to do = a happier you.” People may think DST is no big deal. But IT IS. The Elderly’s body can’t keep track, people are being harmed left and right, everyone is grumpy and sad, we all suffer from the money, skyrocketing as we speak.
The evenings are sad and the sleeping schedule of humankind is thrown off. The few good changes of DST are far too low compared to the bad ones. We are in danger of being injured, depressed, and paying the country lots of money. DST has ruined time which would have been better off. It's time for humanity to wisen up and stop this torturous disaster so we can all have some nice, comfortable, sleep.
By: Sam Harper
Recently in English class, we talked about WWII, for a book called "The Diary of Anne Frank". So many unjust, awful things happened in that time of war. Though America helping in WW2, with good intentions, The United States of America hasn’t always made the right choices. Sometimes these decisions are stupid or even cruel. The importance of accepting these mistakes and learning from them is crucial. Especially with the confusion and problems in today's society. This article is not intended to make any race, person, or the whole USA look bad. It's just to inform. As humanity, we've done some awful things and we need to learn from them NOW before anyone else gets hurt. Hopefully, from this, you’ll see things from a new and different perspective.
Soon after the awful events of Pearl Harbor, Japanese Americans were seen as possible spies and even dangerous. “As of 1941, Japanese American communities had been growing in the US for over fifty years. About one-third of them were immigrants, many of whom settled on the West Coast and lived there for decades. The rest were born American citizens,” Ted-Ed stated. People become judgmental, rude and racist to the Japanese citizens in the days and weeks following the Pearl Harbor attack. The government had no idea if there were actual spies and dangerous people in the country. So they made the unlawful decision to put these innocent immigrants and citizens in Internment Camps. They were forced to leave their homes behind to rot or be stolen, They were forced to live in makeshift homes that were once animal stables. Their new “community” was surrounded by barbed wire, outposts, and guards.
Though their new “homes” were nothing like Concentration camps, though there was no torture, starvation, and cultural eradication, things weren’t pretty at all. Sanitation was poor and medicine supplies were short. Though they had such poor living conditions, they tried to make their new lives as normal as possible. They assigned jobs, sorta had politics and even built churches.
Nevertheless, life was hard and people did die from sickness and injuries. They were there in their internment camps for the whole war. When the war was over in 1945 and they were released, most of their homes were gone or someone else was living in it. The last camp ended in 1946. It wasn’t until 1976 when Congress finally apologized for what they did. “Congress issued a formal apology and passed the Civil Liberties Act awarding $20,000 each to over 80,000 Japanese Americans as reparations for their treatment” according to www.history.com.
Our own school resource officer, Officer Kamachi, had grandparents that lived in these internment camps during WW2. Officer Kamachi says he didn't even know about this until he was an adult, and his parents didn't talk about it much. When he did ask them about it, they told him that the government had taken their farm and their house and sent them to live at an internment camp in northern Idaho. He said after the war, they were given back their house, but the government kept their land. When he asked them if it made them mad, they answered, "We were just so wanting to be considered American citizens. We didn't want to complain about it. We just figured, 'We started over once. We can do it again.'" His family went on to start the famous Chiz's restaurant in St. Anthony.
What we can learn from this? We can learn that America is a great country, but we are not without our own mistakes. We can learn not to be judgmental. Because of our racism and awful judgment, almost 120,000 innocent people had to suffer for nothing. If this was taken from a different approach, so many peoples’ lives would be normal (if you don't count the war). I understand the president had to deal and think about the war at hand, but that is no excuse for what happened to the Japanese Americans.
By: Camri Call
In spite of what many people think about Valentine's day being a depressing holiday for single people, that’s not what it's all about. I like Valentine’s Day because it’s a day that reminds me to tell my friends and family that I love and appreciate them. Life can get really busy throughout the year. So I’m personally glad that there is a day dedicated to show the special people in your life how much they mean to you. Even if you don’t have a boyfriend or girlfriend doesn’t mean that Valentine’s Day is not a day for you. There’s always someone who’s day you can make by giving them a compliment and being nice to them.
The way Valentine’s Day started is actually kind of a dark tale. It all goes back to the ancient Romans and the Catholic Church. Emperor Claudius executed a guy named Valentine which led to the holiday being created when the Catholic Church celebrated his life. That holiday eventually turned into a day of love and is now what we know it as today. St. Valentine had no idea that the date of his execution would later become a holiday to honor those you love.
My perfect Valentine’s day would be a day with my family and my bestest friends. I enjoy being around people that I like and who like me. It would be full of food and games and stuff like that. In the future I think it would also be fun to be able to travel and explore other countries and cultures. I’ve always wanted to go to Europe and that would be fun to do on a valentine’s day with my future family. All in all, Valentine’s Day is actually a pretty good holiday to celebrate every year.
by Levi Larsen, Kyler Zuccato, and Charlie Miller
by Ainsley Burns, Shelby Frisby, and Kyler Zuccato
Even though many people are unaware, language can harm a lot of people. Studies show that 17% of American students are bullied each year as well as over ten thousand students attempt and complete suicide each year. Most of these deaths could have been prevented if schools tried to limit the amount of harmful language and bullying that occurs each day.
America's Health Rankings, an online analytics website, shows that suicide is highest ranked among male students rather than females, but females have more attempts. They also say that Native American students are the most likely to attempt suicide along with students who are members of the LGBTQ+ community. The rankings also estimate that bullying is one of the biggest reasons to attempt suicide.
Webster Dictionary defines bullying as “abuse and mistreatment of someone vulnerable by someone stronger, more powerful, etc. : the actions and behavior of a bully.” The National Centre Against Bullying lists types of bullying on their website. The list includes physical, verbal, social, and cyber. They describe verbal bullying as “insults, teasing, intimidation, homophobic or racist remarks, or verbal abuse.” While verbal bullying can seem harmless, it can quickly become a real problem and target certain parts of a student’s appearance and identity.
In spite of the fact that swear words have their place in people’s vocabularies, when used against other people, they quickly become derogatory. In instances where people use swear words, slurs, and harmful insults as a way to harm someone with knowledge and intent to hurt someone’s feelings, then it becomes extremely harmful for a school’s culture. Not only does it start to set a precedent for future generations that attend the school, but it seriously affects the students. As shown in the statistics above, school can be hard for people of minorities and by allowing things like swearing, slurs, and harmful language to raise the levels of suicide attempts.
The Hope Squad is something new at our school. It’s a group that was formed to help our school have a better culture. Something we strongly recommend for the Hope Squad is to stop bullying before it gets to a point where it sets a precedent. We also challenge you to talk to the Hope Squad if you feel these emotions of suicide, self-harm or if you are being bullied. The Hope Squad is here to give us a push in the right direction, to help us change our school culture, but they can't do it alone. They need help, and by not saying hurtful words towards others, we can lessen bullying and suicide rates. In schools that use a similar program to the Hope Squad, the students took a survey asking if the program helped make a better school culture (Nobullyingschools.com). 87% of the students said that the program did in fact help the school culture. 89% of the students said that the program helped them learn to speak up for themselves and others. These programs are helping, but the students need to be helping too. We can't just sit back and wait for the Hope Squad to make all of the bullying and inappropriate use of words go away.
So in conclusion, bullying is terrible, between calling people “dumb” to calling people “gay” (in the sense of an insult) it leads to people being depressed and killing themselves. 17% of students are bullied in some way. If we dumb that down to how many kids are in our school– let’s say 1300–that would be 221 people in our school alone, being bullied! Our call to action for you is to not only think about the words you choose to say but to let the Hope Squad help. Everybody is going through something. No matter who they are, what they look like or who they associate themselves with, everyone is going through something.
Written By: Rachel Powell
Imagine this: “Ding-a-ling!” You have one new email. It reads:
“Dear Parents and Students, we are switching to a 4-day school week. Bonneville and Rigby have either already considered or already started this. We are going to start it as well. All students will be expected to come to school Monday through Thursday. Friday will become a “flex day” where students with low grades will come to improve their grades and students with good grades can stay at home. We will continue to provide bus services, breakfast, and lunch to all the students that do need to come on Fridays. Sincerely, your superintendent, Randy Lords.”
Wouldn’t it be amazing if you received that email? Madison School District (MSD) should switch to a 4-day school week because it would help students get better grades and students would be able to spend more time with their families.
One reason why MSD should switch to a 4-day school week is because it would help students get better grades. As indicated in the fake email, students with good grades would not have to go to school on Fridays. Students with a D or below, in any class, are required to go to school that day. If the student with low grades doesn’t come, they will be marked absent. Mr. Carlson did some research and found that more than 29% of MJHS students have a D or below in at least one class. Students with low grades would also be more motivated to get good grades so that they wouldn’t have to go to school on Fridays. There would also not be as many people at school on Fridays because many students would be at home, enjoying their life. Because of this, students with low grades would be more motivated to get good grades so that they wouldn’t have to go to school on Fridays. Students with low grades would also get more one-on-one time with their teachers, which would help the students understand the material better, which would help the students get better grades.
Mr. Allison, an amazing counselor at MJHS, said, “It’s unfair that the students with bad behavior are taking away reward and attention from the students with good behavior.” Having the opportunity to stay home from school on Friday would reward the students who do have good grades by letting them have a break from working their brains so hard.
Another reason why MSD should switch to a four-day school week is because it would give students more family time. According to www.un.org article 16, “The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.” Students at MJHS need to spend time with their families because families are so important.
An anonymous student from MHS said, “More time should be spent with family because it helps build good relationships. Family time is crucial.” Some families like to spend time together by going skiing every Friday in the winter, but they don’t have much time to do so because the kids have to go to school. If students had Friday off of school, then they would be able to spend more time with their families.
Some people may argue that some families have two parents working all the time. They wouldn’t be able to be home with their kids. If they are working on Friday and they don’t feel comfortable leaving their kids at home because they wouldn’t have anywhere to go, going to school on Fridays would still be an option. So basically, even if a student does have good grades, school on Fridays would be optional. School lunch and bussing would still be offered to all students. Students can come if they want/need, or they can stay home (if they have good grades) and relax after the long week of school, sports, and homework.
Overall, there are so many benefits to having a 4-day school week. Madison School District should switch to this schedule because students would get better grades, be able to spend more time with their families, and much more. It would benefit students, teachers, and families. There is almost no downside to switching to this schedule. If you are interested in this and you want to receive an email like the one in the first paragraph someday, go to madisonrundown.com and tell Mr. Bobcat that you want to switch to a 4-day school week.
Written By: Sawyer Summers
I think that students should be allowed to call their teacher by their first name. It will help the students to better bond with their teacher. Tory Parker, a student from MJH stated, “I feel like we should call our teacher by their first name because it sounds more natural.” Many students call their teacher by first name and get points taken away because of it. They don’t understand why they get in trouble because they feel like it is so awkward to call their teacher by their last name.
People say that calling their teacher by their first name defines the boundaries between the students and teachers. They argue that this is how it should be. Emily Meyer, another student from MJH stated, “I feel like if there was a young teacher, calling her by her first name would make her feel like she’s our age, and then there wouldn’t be a defined line between teacher and student.” But even though we would call them by their first name, they would still be in charge of us and teach us. There would still be defined lines that separate teachers from students. It would develop a mutual respect between teachers and students.
Some leading psychologists say that students are more likely to get good grades if they have a good relationship with their teachers. Neal Brown, principal of a school in Maryland, wrote, “Students (who call a teacher by their first name) begin to develop strong relationships with their teachers and they are less afraid to make mistakes or advocate for themselves.” They would feel more comfortable asking for help. So they would all get better grades and feel less stress about school. That is why students should be allowed to call their teachers by their first names.