Math team at HPSH

The Math team at Highland is mainly directed by Mr. O’Connell and Mr. Anderson. The Math team meets every Monday and Wednesday at 3:15-4:15 in Mr. O’Connell’s room on the second floor, room: 2305. The season typically goes from early October to early March. 

In Math team there are four different “events.” “Events” are the different sections of math that you can try and compete in. There is Event A, Event B, Event C, and Event D. The content in these events change after every meet. 

During practice, on Mondays and Wednesdays, you get your events and snacks as well. You must choose two events that you would like to compete in. There is also always at least one teaching. The teachings are on what you will most likely need to know when it comes to the questions that will show up in the events. 

Practice on these events is done by completing the different events that were given in the past years. There is one given each year of each event section. 

You get 12 minutes to complete each event. This time limit is used during both practice and the actual meets. During a meet, you get 12 minutes to complete each event. You also get scratch paper that you may use to solve the problems. There are typically 4 problems on each event.

Each meet is typically around 2 hours. The meets take place in other SPPS schools, and you get meal tickets that get you food. For food there is usually pizza and pop. There is a bus that takes you to the other school and a bus that takes you back to Highland. 

In order to join the math team there is a fee of $35. Math team gives you a chance to enhance your knowledge on math, meet new people, go to other schools, and it looks great on college resumes, so why not give it a try! 

Debate at HPSH

Debate is a club that is open to all students at Highland. Debate meets on Mondays and Thursdays at 3:15-5:00 in Ms. Becker’s room (room 2214). The type of debate at Highland Park is Policy Debate. 

If you’re new to debate then you can start off as a Rookie and then move on to be a Novice, JV, and finally, a Varsity debater. 

In debate you get to work with a partner. You and your partner debate against another person and their partner. The main idea is to convince the judge that your side/ideas (Affirmative or Negative) are better than the other side. 

Once you join debate you get a topic that you will have to debate about. This year’s topic is the selling of arms to foreign countries. The proposition is: “The United States federal government should substantially decrease Foreign Military Sales and Direct Commercial Sales of arms to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.” 

The Affirmative side in a debate agrees with the proposition. Their job is to convince the judge that their plan is better and if it doesn’t go through then bad things will happen. In this case, the affirmative’s job is to convince the judge that the United States should stop selling weapons to Saudi Arabia, and if the United States doesn’t stop selling them then bad things will happen.

The Negative side in a debate disagrees with the proposition. Their job is to convince the judge that the affirmative’s proposition won’t work and we should leave everything as it is or else bad things will happen. In this case, the negative’s job is to convince the judge that the United States should keep selling weapons to Saudi Arabia because if they don’t then bad things will come from it. 

Debate tournaments usually go on for two days. Usually, Fridays and Saturdays. A debate tournament is around as long as a school day and you get to debate around 2-4 rounds depending on the tournament. 

If you want to work on/and or like to:

  • Speak in front of others
  • Analyze text
  • Come up with questions
  • Prove others wrong
  • Argue
  • Meet new people
  • Learn about politics 

then I suggest you join the Highland Park Debate Team!

Tailgating

By: Vivian S.

Beginning the morning on Saturday, October 5th, I had no idea what tailgating was. Little did I know what I was in for as I got dressed and was driven over to the school. I was bombarded by a host a booths and clubs, and people were milling about everywhere. 

There was a photo booth there where you could dress up and take photos. 

Girl Unity was there selling beef jerky and promoting their awesome club. 

Leo Brock, Charlotte Lane

The Lacrosse team was there selling donuts and encouraging people to join the team.

The Good Club was there, hosting a giveaway of Highland merchandise and selling some amazing buttons.

Na’Riyah Johnson

GSA was there selling some awesome shirts and handing out buttons, which I would encourage you to get at your next opportunity.

Carrol Williams

The African Student Association was there selling some great food. I especially enjoyed the beef sambusa.

Dance Team was there selling some amazing hot cocoa and doing face painting.

Lorenzo Reyes

HP Environmental was there selling green lemonade. 

Piper Gallivan, Ruwayda Egal

The Senior Class of 2020 was there selling school spirit tattoos and encouraging seniors to take the pledge to graduate this year, offering bracelets to those who signed.

Evan Yang, Duncan Ong, Chenyi Vue, Say Moo, Alysa Monteagudo

Asian Culture Club was there, selling its always amazing egg rolls, and boba tea.

Kara Savage, Bryant Chacon, Sarah Grady, Rayna Axelson, & Lydia Malen

Youth in Government was there selling donuts and coffee.

Carol Gross, Annika Wetzel, Ella Reubish

Woodworking class was there selling keychains, amazing magnets, and earrings. 

Aedon Oberdorfer, Cathrine Carlson

The National Honor Society was there selling t-shirts for it and the Scots Stroll. 

Also present, but not pictured, were:

Lauren Ross, Senam Akyea, Latrese Johnson, Enyonam Donkor, Tarea Taylor, &  Momo Gebreyesus were there with Black Student Union, selling hot and honey wings, chips, and soda. 

Selena Vivaldo Perez, Giancarla Maceda, Jose Mendoza Martinez, Lessa Hernandez, Gerardo Rodriguez, Olga Morales, Daniela Salas, Maetzin Gutierrez, Carlos Gutierrez,  & Belen Lopez were there with Union Latina, and a giant host of its members, selling tamales, donuts, and more.

Tailgating was an amazingly fun event with delicious food and showing off many different clubs and activities. I will surely be going again.

The Good Club

By: Vivian S

Everything is fine. You’re in the Good Club. Or, at least, you could be.

But why should you be in the Good Club? What do they even do? To satisfy my curiosity and hopefully your own, I went to one of their meetings.

Upon arriving, everyone signed in, and for the first five minutes of the meeting, more and more students streamed in until Ms. Ostendorf’s room was almost full. Then, they began the meeting with a short presentation, discussing the activities of the club and their aim, which is to help the community.

The Good Club will be participating in the event Trunk or Treat hosted by HopeKids. This will include decorating their cars until they are the coolest things rolling down the streets. They then participate in giving out candy to kids at a set location.

HopeKids is the organization that the Good Club will be working with this quarter. They provide events and support to children with life-threatening diseases and their families. Each month, they have a different activity for the whole family, such as sporting events or concerts. If you want to learn more about them, go to https://www.hopekids.org.

While I was there, I interviewed Cailin and Delaney, two of the people running the club.

They say that how they would describe what they do in the club is that they work with nonprofit organizations to create a better community. They formed it because they believed that there needed to be more service opportunities at Highland, especially for underclassmen.

They say others should participate as it is a great opportunity to meet new people and get involved. Even if you are unable to go to meetings, they say you can still volunteer on your own time and sign up for some of the events the club does.

Their goal for the club is to make connections with other organizations and continue to work with them in the future. Also, to build relationships in between students.

Even with their room almost filled to capacity, they still urge more people to join.

They meet at 7:45AM on Thursday mornings, in room 2208, though I wouldn’t be surprised if they have to move to the auditorium. Be sure to check it out!

FFA’s annual Ag Day

You know spring is here when FFA hosts their annual Ag Day. Ag day is a day for all students to go outside, see animals and learn about different aspects of agriculture. This year Ag Day was held in front of the school.

This year wasn’t too different from the previous years. When you walked out to the area in front of the School House, there were tables lining the walls with different organizations and students ready to inform and entertain. The animals were in one corner and the John Deer was in the other. The classic vanilla ice cream booth was very popular; the line didn’t die down until the last 10 minutes of the period.

This year though, they did have some different animals. Besides the adorable dogs roaming around, this year they brought in a calf and snakes, along with the sheep, the goats, chickens, and roosters. The snakes were in a different area than the other animals. Everyone took turns showing off their bravery by holding them.

Some people said they would like to see demonstrations or skits at next year’s Ag Day event. They felt that the event is more like a fair, and there wasn’t much to do after they made 2 laps around to see the booths. Others were happy that they could use this time to see what they want, and have time to relax and socialize after.

The event lasted 2nd through 6th period. Some students went almost every hour, while others didn’t even get a chance to participate. But anyone who wants seemed to have a good time, even the teachers. It was nice to see that the teachers got to use that time as a break from their stress and relax. Hopefully, next year everyone will get a chance to go.

The first Fiesta Latina

Union Latina’s Fiesta Latina was held on Wednesday, May 1st, this year. With Ms. Nelson’s three classes, and the addition of Ms. Boe’s Spanish ⅚ class, there were a lot more student performers than ever. This year they tried to include more diverse dances, that represented more Hispanic cultures. This year’s dances included: Cumbia, Bachata, Folklorico, Flamenco, Salsa, Baile de Los Chinelos, and Merengue.

The name change of the performance, from Cinco de Mayo to Fiesta Latina, wasn’t the only change to the show this year. The decorations around the auditorium and stage were changed to be more inclusive to other cultures. The red, white and green theme used in past years no longer fits the purpose of the show. This year, the stage was decorated with the annual murals made in past years, with the newest addition sitting front and center on stage. The paintings were surrounded by colorful balloons and paper crafts such as flowers and papel picado. The hope was to show how the Hispanic culture encompasses more than just dancing and singing; art is also an important and valued aspect.

The performance started off with the Jazz Band playing. The music filled the auditorium as all the students and teachers took their seats. After everyone was seated the show began. Cesar Degollado, the Vice President of ULA, sang an amazing rendition of “Probablamente” by Cristian Nodal. Dance after dance, the students continued to surprise everyone with their well rehearsed choreography.

At 6:00PM, the performers and their guests were invited back to enjoy a meal, donated by El Pariente, a Mexican restaurant. Even though the food was thirty minutes late, everyone seemed to enjoy the food and company. Around seven thirty, the second show began. Parents, teachers and even students returned to watch the show. The night show had 3 extra performances then the one during 7th hour; a group of Aztec dancers, a traditional Peruvian dance, and more Chinelo performers joined the students.

At the end of the night, all the student performers seemed happy to participate. Some of the club members had participated all four years of their time in high school and were sad that it would be their last. Overall, it was a great show to kick off new name.

Students’ feelings towards snow tubing

The rescheduled snow tubing trip for March 14th was cancelled again. Due to the severe weather conditions and ice, Buck Hill was closed until the end of the week. Since we’re nearing the spring season, the organizers felt there wouldn’t be time to reschedule the field trip. When students asked about refunds, the counselors told them that refunds wouldn’t be given, but that the money paid for the trip would be credited to the Valleyfair trip, coming up.

Seeing as students were so upset about the previous cancellations, I decided I would be more interested to read about what people’s opinions were, instead of just mine.

I interviewed three different Highland Park seniors, and asked them a few questions about their feelings on the situation. And these were there responses:

What was your first thought after hearing the trip was going to be cancelled for the second time?

Student 1 (S1): “I was so mad. But I also kind of expected it.”

Student 2 (S2): “I didn’t really care to be honest. I was only going because my friends wanted me to go.”

Student 3 (S3): “I felt like the people organizing it didn’t care at all. Like they didn’t care that we were upset.”

Do you feel like the senior class council is to blame? If so, Why?

S1: “No, they can’t control the weather.”

S2: “No, because they wanted to go on the trip too.”

S3: “Sort of, they are supposed to fight for the seniors, and I just felt like they didn’t.”

What are you feelings towards the Valleyfair field trip coming up?

S1: “I think it will be a fun way to end the year.”

S2: “I’m excited, but I feel like it was weird how they assumed everyone wanted to go, so they just credited the money. I know people who were really mad about it.”

S3: “No, I’m not going. It’s going to get cancelled anyway.”

What are some field trips you guys think students would enjoy?

S1: “Snow tubing…”

S2: “I think we should all go bowling. Or swimming would be fun.”

S3: “We should all go to a group movie. That would be awesome.”

Everyone who wanted to go was a little upset by the cancellation, but graduation is coming up and seniors are most excited for that.

Benstock

Every year, Highland Park Senior High has an event called Benstock. The NHS organization oversees this event, and had auditions on February 11th, 13th, and 14th. Those who auditioned for this event, and passed to perform, must attend rehearsals on March 6th and 7th at 2:00 to 5:00.

March 8th is the day of performance, starting at 6:30, at Highland Park Senior High, in the auditorium.

Benstock is an event for people to come and watch people perform their talents. It is very similar to a talent show. If you have attended a Benstock during the past years, you know how fun and exciting it can be.

Invite your friends and come with $5-$10 to attend this event. Come to have a fun time, cheer on your friends and watch amazing performances from your upperclassmen, peers and friends.

If you didn’t know about auditions, or missed the dates, don’t worry, Benstock is held every year and will hold auditions around the same time each year. Pay attention to the posters on the walls in the hallways. These posters will inform you of where and when auditions are held.

Even if you or friends aren’t performing, you can still go and enjoy your time. In previous years they had people sing, dance, tell jokes, play their instruments, and even teachers performed as a band. Some of these performances you just can’t miss.

Setting up and creating this event is not very easy. If this type of work interests you, you can join the NHS. NHS stands for National Honors Society which is a national organization that recognizes academic excellence in students. The purpose for NHS is to promote leadership, help in volunteering, and create an amazing character out of everyone. Those who want to join NHS should strive to show reliability, honesty, sincerity, and are expected to be leaders.

The the first requirement to join NHS is to have a GPA of 3.75 after the first semester of your sophomore or junior year. You also must include an essay on how you have previously served for a project, or how there is a service project you want to do in the future. Other than these requirements you will also need three letters of recommendation.

Any other questions you have can be sent to either of the NHS faculty advisors: Stacy Hanson or Jody Rohweller-Kocur. To get their information, go onto the Highland website and go the the NHS page.

If you have no interest in joining the NHS but would like to be caught up with what they do, you can follow their Twitter or Facebook page.  

Union Latina: Fiesta Latina

Union Latina is a Latino culture club here at Highland. The group’s goal is to create a community at Highland where people can feel comfortable learning about the Latino culture and can celebrate it. Two of their main presentations are: “Dia De Los Muertos” (Late October- Early November) and “The Cinco de Mayo Performance.” Practice for the performance, at the beginning of May, started the second week of January.

This year, Union Latina made a change to their annual performance. The performance was previously referred to as “The Cinco de Mayo Performance,” but the club decided to change the name. The decision was made after the club had received feedback that the name didn’t fully capture what it was trying to portray. “Cinco de Mayo” refers to the Mexican holiday, but not all the dances and acts originated in Mexico, so it was decided that the name no longer fit the occasion. The club had a vote and the new name for the performance is “Fiesta Latina.” It will still take place in the beginning of May. The performance is used as a day to celebrate Latino culture and heritage while involving the whole school.

Another change made to the performance is that one of Ms. Boe’s classes will be performing a dance, along with Ms. Nelson’s classes. This gave students, outside of the immersion program, an opportunity to be able to participate in the cultural event. When I went in to visit Ms. Boe’s class on Friday, a few of the students didn’t seem too excited to be there, but others were very enthusiastic and excited about the whole situation.

All of the classes that are participating in the performance have practice every Friday in their classrooms. The other groups have practice for 1 hour on Wednesday’s during the ULA meetings. With only three and a half months left before may, we should wish them good luck!

Prizm Literary Magazine

By: Vivian S

Did you know that Highland has its own literary magazine? The Prizm Literary Magazine is coming back! There was a small meeting on December 18th, 2018, with a few people expressing their interest in the Prizm and setting a time for the first meeting, which was tentatively set for January 8th.

According to Ms. Nancy, the Prizm is a literary and arts magazine created for and by the students. The Prizm editors are student volunteers. They will be seeking out submissions from fellow students. When it is put together and printed, the editors will make it available for sale.

Anyone can submit a piece for the magazine. Right now, there is no word or page count. The group is planning to decide on these details at the first meeting. After the first meeting, submissions will begin to be accepted. You can put your submissions in the boxes that are in every English teacher’s room, or you can submit them to highlandparkprizm2020@gmail.com

The Prizm will accept stories, poems, personal essays, paintings, drawings, photos, and photos of artwork such as sculptures.

Ms. Nancy, the advisor, chose to be in charge of this club after Dr. Tucker asked her to consider it. She thought that it would be a fun experience. She hopes that there will be many submissions, that the magazine will look good on college applications, and that it will help people get to know one another better.

Remember to watch out for prompts and themes the club is planning to send out to get your creative juices flowing!