(Editor’s Note: The students were asked to write a story about some aspect of high school life. These papers have gone through multiple revisions with instructor Scott Bertelsen and student teacher Carlie Fritz.)
"Mentoring In the Elementary"
When mentoring the fifth grade class, I learn many life lessons. Since I personally want to be an elementary teacher, it helps me have an early start on learning better teacher strategies. I assist the teacher by helping kids with homework and correcting papers.
I go to the elementary school third period every day. I spend about forty minutes in Mrs. Pins room helping her in any way she needs. My duties range from correcting papers, putting them in their mailboxes, or helping kids do their work. During the time I am in the room, they are working on math, and then they transition to social studies.
On a normal day, I sit in the back of the room with one or two kids. I help them stay focused. I also assist them if they don’t understand how to do a problem. If the kids are testing, Mrs. Pins gives me papers to correct.
Furthermore, working with young kids helps me learn how to become a good helper. I plan to become an elementary teacher, so working with kids and having this experience now is an advantage for me.
Again, mentoring in the elementary, I learn how the classroom works and how to become a great teacher.
"Friday Night Life"
It’s a Friday night. The lights around the field are as bright as the sun, and the fall weather is perfect for a football game. The music is blaring from the speakers, the football players are warming up, and the cheerleaders are preparing for a cold night. We are all dressed in our warmups, scarves, gloves, and knitted headbands. Cheerleaders are an integral part of this evening's festivities.
No one truly knows what the cheerleaders do behind the scenes. It isn’t pillow fights and dressing up. We work hard in order to perform in front of our school on Homecoming day and for competition. Cheerleading practice consist of getting a foot to the chest, bruises up and down our arms, and running over the same thing over and over until we get it right. We push our bodies to limits we didn’t know we were capable of reaching.
Our squad does a lot for the students and the coaches in the school. For example, we do all the colorful pin-ups on lockers, the run through at football games, senior posters, and we occasionally go to other sporting events. We make pin-ups for each and every student, whether they are in band, cross country, or volleyball, or just being a student in general.
Each year, we have gone to the last home meet for cross country and cheered each runner on even in the brutal cold. The cheerleaders run across the golf course to cheer on each person. We also went to the regional volleyball game. This was our first year and won’t be our last.
Each and every year, we will continue to grow as a team and keep on cheering on all teams possible. Cheerleaders are a big part of the schools spirit, and, without them, who would lead our school with smiles?
The average person needs about seven to nine hours of sleep each night. This is usually not achieved by high school students.
There are many different ways that a student may not get enough sleep on school nights. If a teenager is in a sport, then one may not get out of practice until five thirty or later. Before one can even eat supper, it is already six thirty, and homework has not even been started. Assuming that any student would get to bed late on that night, their tiredness the next day would be imminent.
The hardest part about school is not school itself, but the time a person has to put into getting the work done at home. This may be the biggest factor as to why students don’t get enough sleep. Even though a student gets study hall to work on homework, that is still not enough time to get all of their homework done from each class. School is all about commitment, but how are we supposed to get every single assessment or project done when we’re are struggling to get five hours of sleep a night?
Why teens only get five or six hours is due to some students having various activities in the morning. Now, lifting is Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. Unfortunately, sports and lifting are not the only events that make it difficult to stay on track for sleep. Musicals, speech and plays are another major commitment that take a lot of time out of students’ schedule. Though these events and activities are what many think make high school such a great experience, it also leads to some of the most stressful nights in our four years of high school.
Therefore, for students to be successful as well as mentally and physically prepared, students must get more sleep.
As a junior, my high school days are halfway over; college is soon approaching. Choosing the right institution is really important; the student wants to make sure it is a good fit. Therefore, the road to a successful college career begins in high school.
Knowing that I wanted to go to college, I knew I had to take the ACT. To prepare myself for that test, I knew I would benefit from taking an ACT prep-course, specifically John Baylor, which was offered through my school. The course teaches student strategies and techniques for the ACT, such as eating a granola bar or taking a walk between math and reading to revitalize one’s energy. The information I personally received from this course definitely benefited me when taking the ACT and preparing for applications.
Even though the ACT prep courses and ACT helped me immensely, they were not the only steps I took to better myself for college. I recently went on two college visits. Both experiences gave me a personal look at the campuses and academics. At one school, I had a private meeting with the head of the mathematics department; this meeting really helped me to understand what classes I should be signing up for. While visiting these colleges, I also met with administrators the financial aid offices to learn more about the expenses I could potentially be faced with. Now, it came as no surprise that college would be quite expensive, but to lower the overall cost of college one could apply for numerous scholarships and financial aid.
Success begins in high school. The things I’ve done to help me to be successful for college are taking the ACT and prep courses, visiting colleges, and figuring out costs and expenses.
"Day in the life of a junior"
The day in the life of a high school junior normally consists of experiencing the same routine, waking up, going to class and then leaving is the daily occurrence. My day stays consistent, but, when throwing in Mr. Bertelsen, school lunch and Mr. Jenkins, the day can suddenly burst with needed excitement.
From the beginning, I go to first hour Advanced Composition with Mr. Bertelsen. The random outbreaks of energy, handfuls of nuts being devoured and the millions of comments that he will leave on a student’s paper makes his classroom fascinating. When a person survives the comments he leaves on the papers, his class is enjoyable. Mr. Bertelsen’s class is a good start to my day.
What felt like an eternity after the start of the day, I go to lunch. One day, we could have delicious tasting cheese sticks; the next we could have Mac & Cheese with the infamous name of “Mac & Glue.” Eating it makes a person feel as if they were dog who just got a scoop of peanut butter.
After lunch, I make my way into Mr. Jenkin’s classroom. Throughout high school, he has been my favorite teacher. When it comes to him jamming out to music in shop class, there is nothing that will brighten a person’s day any better. Building a shed with him in construction tech has been the highlight and most fun of high school so far.
Though some juniors may not like school, I can say that I can stand it. Our teachers and occasional school lunch make it enjoyable. School lunch can be the best lunch on one day but also the worst the next. This is just another thing that makes my day even more interesting.
"Why YOU Should Join Speech"
Forest City High School is equipped with an absolutely marvelous fine arts program. For three years, I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to participate in Fine arts in many different forms, one of which being the Speech program. There are many reasons as to why I would recommend students to join speech; some of which being an improvement in extracurriculars, a better development in communication skills, and an overall lively experience.
Extracurriculars are an beneficial in many different aspects. In particular, involvement in the extracurricular of speech helps students develop time management skills as they begin memorizing and learning their speech pieces, and contribution within school activities. Along with these, involvement in speech also is a great help with college applications when listing involvement in school activities. Most college admissions look at not only grades, but extracurricular involvement as well.
In addition to extracurriculars, communication skills are essential to day to day conversation and elocution. These skills are greatly developed throughout speech, and I’ve had a major improvement throughout my last three years within the program. Continuously going through a literary piece, whether it be orally or consciously, you learn aspects of articulation, grammar, as well as expressive language.
Furthermore, speech grants those that participate in it an overall lively experience. Students in speech make friends that they may have never encountered otherwise. They make memories that will not part from them for years on end. Although times may be stressful, the seeing friends on different speech events gives a great incentive.
Overall involvement in the speech program is a great idea in many aspects. Whether this is commit to an extracurricular, develop communication skills, or to venture an enjoyable experience, speech offers many different benefits that prove difficult to decline.