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So far Matthew Shattuck has created 21 blog entries.

Opportunity for thanks

Four years ago, I, along with about 20 classmates, took Greg Stobbe?s freshman English honors class. At that time, I had absolutely no intention of joining his publication staff.

I had heard interesting things about Stobbe and I thought him to be “crazy”. All I wanted to do was to get my grade and get out. That?s when he said, ?Join journalism.?

When he said that, I was immediately reminded of the ?We want you for the US Army? poster with Uncle Sam. I was unmoved, still with no intention of entering publications.

Stobbe badgered me for months. He wanted me to run the layout and design of the hardcopy. I remained adamant; I would not yield. He finally left me alone after about a year.

Well, about two years ago, after being part of the band for six years, I decided I needed a change. Just about that time, Stobbe approached me with a new proposition. Instead of wanting me to run the hardcopy, he charged me with the redesign of the Web site. I was much more interested in Web site design than print productions, so I took the job.

These past two years with Stobbe have been most enjoyable. He gave me the opportunity of a lifetime. Not only did I learn new computer languages that I will use in my career, but I also helped our class to win the NSPA Online Pacemaker last year.

I still think Stobbe is a little crazy, but I wish to thank him for giving me my position on staff and allowing me to take part in building an award winning Web site.

By |2007-05-15T00:00:00-08:00May 15th, 2007|Opinions, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Tico’s Place plates authenticity

Ethnic food seems daunting to those without experience. Trying new types of food requires a daring attitude, however, that chance can pay off.

Tico?s Place, located at Perrin and Sommerville, offers both Mexican and Columbian-style dishes to North Fresno. I recently ventured there and discovered how authentic Columbian food tastes.

If owner Caesar Espinosa intended to provide a laid-back atmosphere, I believe he accomplished his goal. The restaurant replaces two of their walls with windows and features a variety of authentic decor. A gaucho, a South American cowboy, welcomes guests into the casual, seat-yourself eatery.

I ordered the Columbian Mountain Platter, which came highly recommended by the chef. It came with charbroiled sirloin steak, white rice, Columbian-style beans, sausage, corn pancakes, fried egg, sweet plantains, avocado and a chicharr

By |2007-03-26T00:00:00-08:00March 26th, 2007|Arts & Entertainment, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Feather wins gold

The Feather print edition recently received a recognition that has eluded the staff for 10 years. Columbia Scholastic Press Association (CSPA) of New York City awarded The Feather a gold medal on Nov. 28 for the 2005-06 issues. Judges gave the paper 984 points out of a possible 1000.

?I enjoyed reading your paper,? the CSPA judge said. “I was impressed by its clean, engaging layout. Every page looks fresh. You package your information well.?

According to the CSPA website, “From its beginnings in 1925, the CSPA sponsored annual contests to seek out and publicize the best practices in student writing, editing and publishing.

“The critique is a teaching tool to provide detailed guidance on how well a student print or online media is currently progressing, and how it could improve during the following year.”

After eight years of silver medals, adviser Greg Stobbe was pleased with the score.

?I couldn?t be happier for last year?s staff,? Stobbe said. ?Many reporters and editors logged long hours over two or three years and this recognition is a testament to their commitment to excellence.?

Retired editors comment

Publishing a quality newspaper requires determination and hard work and retired print edition Editor-in chief, Gary Darakjian, ?06, believes he gained more than just an award during his three years in journalism.

?Even if I didn?t win, I would still be just as satisfied because of the skills I learned and the relationships I developed,? Darakjian said. ?While not all hard work was recognized, I?m very pleased to see that mine was and is recognized. It?s rewarding to sit back for a moment and know that for a brief time, I was among the best in the country at what I did.?

Darakjian says he did not know anything about awards when he began publications class three years ago. He claims he was just trying to please adviser Stobbe.

?Even during my senior year, I didn?t give much thought to winning awards,? Darakjian said. ?I was just doing my job as editor. A newspaper had to be published and if I didn?t do it, no one would.?

Under Darakjian?s leadership, the 2005-06 print editions were also recognized by other national critique agencies. The National Scholastic Press Association (NSPA) awarded The Feather its top award: First Class with marks of distinction. Additionally, Quill and Scroll International named the newspaper an International First Place winner.

“While the hard copy was largely my project, it could not have been nearly as good as it was without the help of the staff,” Darakjian added. “They deserve much recognition. Their words were the spirit of the paper; all I did was make it look good.”

Retired online Editor-in-chief, Brianna Stobbe, ?06, agreed with Darakjian and said team participation was the key for a successful newspaper.

?Winning the gold medal from Columbia took dedication from all sides of the staff,? Brianna said. ?Through a joint commitment to excellence from staff writers and editors alike, we were able to reach beyond various expectations and even our own dreams.?

Current staff set new goals

While all but five Feather staff remain from last year’s team, current Editor-in-chief, Mary Kneefel, remains commited to writing and teaching new reporters and setting a goal for the 2006-07 year.

“Instead of focusing on the past critique, I will continue to look ahead, and strive for another medal,” Kneefel said who is serving in her third year on staff.

?I?m very proud that our efforts for last year were recognized,? Kneefel said, ?but this year we know what to expect. Despite a young staff, I think we have potential to win another gold.?

The Feather annually receives critiques from CSPA, Quill and Scroll, and NSPA. Judges at both CSPA and Quill and Scroll claim The Feather projects a lively, enterprising personality and shows clean, easy-to-read layouts, while NSPA named The Feather Online one of their top three Pacemakers awards, as the best Internet high school newspapers in the United States. A Pacemaker is the high school equivalent of a Pulitzer Prize.

For more information on The Feather Online winning a Pacemaker, read Julianne Erkenbrecher’s April 27, 2006, article, “NSPA names Feather a Pacemaker”.

The Feather continues to produce online and print editions of the newspaper, and past editions of both are available online at The Feather Online Archives.

By |2006-12-13T00:00:00-08:00December 13th, 2006|News, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Guest shares foreign experience

Spanish III students traded in the monotony of workbook exercises and dialogues for a different kind of learning experience. After a week of studying Mexico, students entered the classroom on Nov. 6 to find a fiesta complete with brightly colored decorations and food from a local Mexican restaurant.

As a part of the celebration, teacher Beatriz Foth invited Diann Widaman, a bilingual children?s pastor at First Baptist Church of Reedley, spoke to the students about Hispanic culture and history.

?It?s important to share cultures with others so people do not become narrow minded,? Widaman said. ?If we learn about and understand how other people live and where they come from, we can live together with them and keep people from feeling culturally superior to one another.?

Widaman was born in the United States, however, she shares a long heritage of Mexican culture with her family.

?Family is very important in the Mexican culture,? Widaman said. ?It is not unusual to have a 40 year old brother living with your parents.?

Along with the family aspect of Mexican society, Widaman also introduced the class to authentic foods of the area.

?Its all about the flavor in Mexico,? Widaman said, ?In Spain, they aren?t accustomed to using the peppers and spices we do in Mexico. Our ancestors may have been Spanish, but we have evolved in a very different direction.?

Through time spent studying abroad in Spain, Widaman discovered first hand the major cultural differences between Spain and Mexico. One key contrast comes in the traditional dishes of the two countries.

The cuisine of Spain holds true to a more European custom, which has more of a bland and simple design. Any dish that reflects Mexican heritage is sure to encompass rich, spicy flavors that are not found in Spain.

Among the traditions celebrated in Mexico that Widaman discussed, she revealed that the famous Cinco de Mayo is more of an American holiday than a Mexican one. In fact, the day is hardly thought of in Mexico.

A more important celebration in Mexico is El D

By |2006-11-09T00:00:00-08:00November 9th, 2006|Features, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Steak house simulates mountain atmosphere

Fresno’s newest steakhouse already rivals its northeast competition with their quality of food and service.

Yosemite Ranch Steak, Seafood, and Roast House, located at Shepherd and Champlain, just opened this summer with great expectations; the restaurant boasts their excellence with the experience of the founder of rival roast house, Tahoe Joe’s.

I journeyed to the new eatery with my family one evening wanting to see how Yosemite compared to the opposition.

The first thing I noticed was the d

By |2006-09-01T00:00:00-08:00September 1st, 2006|Arts & Entertainment, Uncategorized|1 Comment

Summer school relieves stress

For many students, the ideal summer is spent with friends, going to movies or family vacations. Most do not view summer school as a relaxation method.

Administration offers two types of summer school for students: review and original credit. While review can improve an existing grade, original credit lets you relieve an over crowded regular school schedule.

?Review is what you have already taken and want to get a better grade,? Gary Schultz, principal, said. “Original credit lets you take extra classes.?

A large percentage of students take the original credit due to schedule complications.

?Students should take summer school because it help de-clutter their schedule for next year,? Sammie Krikorian, ?08, said. ?It brings their stress level down as well.?

Most students want to take classes over the summer to have more extra curricular activities during the year. Having a hard class over the summer also allows them concentrate on that one subject, rather than juggling seven at once.

?Having summer school allows students to take hard classes,? Schultz said. ?It makes it easier to focus and concentrate.?

The campus differs from the traditional form of summer school as students do not attend classes with teachers and or have a particular time frame. Students are given packets that must be completed individually.

?I think it is easier because there is less to do than during a school year with many classes,? Daniel Edwards, ?09, said. ?You can just find the answers in the book instead of listening to a long teacher lecture.?

The packets consist of five or ten units of which is equivalent to one semester or a full year.

?Students’ have to do the required curriculum,? Schultz said. ?This is completing the twelve books on the subject being taken.?

For more information regarding summer school contact Principal Schultz at 299-1695 ex. 5.

By |2006-05-23T00:00:00-08:00May 23rd, 2006|Features, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Alumni coaches return, lead sports programs

Every student looks forward to their graduation day, which brings happiness and grief. While many students look forward to leaving high school, some decided that they did not get enough out of it and have returned to teach.

After college, alumni Paul McEntee knew he wanted to return as the campus band adviser.

?I graduated in 1993,? McEntee said. ?I went to Fresno State and Western Baptist for college and I majored in music education. When I was in high school I had a string desire to coming back to teach here.?

Unlike McEntee, alumni football coach and American history teacher Jon Hall had no original plans of returning to his high school.

?I majored in kinesiology in college,” Hall said. “I spent two years at Fresno City then I went to Whitworth in Spokane, WA. Coming back to teach here was not a predominate thought, but I did think about it. I came back because I liked it here and it felt like home.?

To Hall’s surprise, he was not the only alumni returning to campus.

?I graduated in the class of 1989,” Hall said. “When I came back to teach, there were a lot of teachers and students that I knew when I was in school and there still here, like Paul McEntee, Michael Fuller, Dr. Arnold, George Freeman, Chris Schultz, Gary Schultz, Ericlee Gilmore and Tim Wilkins.?

Others came back to make a difference in teaching because they could related to the students.

?I came back to teach at Fresno Christian because I wanted to make a difference in the math department,? Ericlee Gilmore, alegbra I teacher, said. “I already went through the same math I could really connect to the students and help them out and raise their performance level.?

Initially Gilmore planned on a future in architecture, not teaching.

?When I was in high school I didn?t think I was coming back here, because I was planning on being an architect,? Gilmore said. ?I wanted to also be a coach, but to be a coach you needed to have a teaching credential so I became a teacher and a coach at Fresno Christian.?

Many current teachers have taught their younger counterparts as students and have continued their legacy on campus.

?I graduated in the class of 1992,? Gilmore said. ?When I was in high school Scott Callish was my P.E. teacher. When I came back to teach I thought Callish would of moved on, but I soon found on he was still here.?

Even though Chris Schultz really wanted to be a coach, he also wanted to be a teacher.

?When I came on staff I really wanted to coach,? Chris Schultz, Alumni faculty said. ?I also wanted to improve in my teaching.?

Some even came back because their friends from high school taught here.

?I graduated in the class of 1991. I came back to coach for Fresno Christian for many reasons,? Schultz said. ?But one of them was that two of my best friends were here. Joe Baroussa was head of Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA). Jay Falkans was my other friend he graduated from FC to. Baroussa was coaching for FC and he asked me if I wanted to help and I did. ?

Some even came back because it was the best job they had had.

?I graduated in the class of 1987,? Michael Fuller, football coach said. ?I came back to teach here because it is the best Christian teaching job I have had.?

When Hall was in high school he liked the school and the teachers.

?Going to Fresno Christian in high school was cool,? Hall said. ?Because of the small school atmosphere. You would know almost every one and were able to participate in a lot of activities. Plus the faculty was down to earth and related to the student body.?

Over the years the school has pretty much stayed the same, but it has had some improvements.

?The dynamics and feel is pretty much the same here as it was when I was in high school,? Hall said. ?However, the culture has changed and there are some definite general differences. The academic and extracurricular activities have also expanded and improved.?

Michael Fuller, English teacher, graduated in 1987 and remembers his first football game.

?It was our first football game of the season and it was against Central Valley Christian (CVC),? Fuller said. ?I went to tackle one of the other players but I tackled a tree by mistake.?
Katie Mendenhall, cheer coach, favorite memory is cheering at our campus.

?When I was in high school I had many memories,? Mendenhall said. ?But my favorite memory is when our team placed second at USA nationals in cheerleading.?

Mendenhall loved her experience here so much she came back to coach.

?I decided to come back to this campus because I loved my experience cheering here,? Mendenhall said. ?I wanted to provide these girls with the same fun memories that cheer gave me when I was here. I also knew that this is where the lord wanted me to be. He blessed me with some awesome girls and families that truly love and support FC cheer.?

By |2006-05-23T00:00:00-08:00May 23rd, 2006|Features, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Attitudes create positive baseball experience

In tennis, athletes compete individually often without concern of team unity. Other sports, such as golf, players compete often against their own teammates. But in baseball, each member are all key components in America’s game.

A pitcher cannot function without a catcher or shortstop. Likewise the boys? baseball team cannot function without senior Jordan Hogue and other rising leaders on a team struggling for success.

While the baseball team does not have a winning record in the West Sierra League, the win-loss column has not dampened their spirit. This record appears low because the team faces many challenges not withstanding the experience of the team. The only player with previous varsity experience is Hogue.

?Jordan is a veteran on a young team,? coach Jon Hall said. ?He is a leader and always has a good attitude.?

Hogue started playing on varsity as a sophomore. In his first years of varsity, Hogue was just a number on the team, but now Hall considers him a key leader because of his extensive varsity experience.

?I have been playing baseball since I was five,? Hogue said. ?I played t-ball and have liked the game ever since.?

Hall considers Hogue as the glue of the team. He lives up to his experience by maintaining leadership skills that help his teammates to develop.

?Jordan is an important player,? Hall said, ?and is like the piece to the puzzle.?

Hogue plays three positions: pitcher, third base and shortstop. His mother provided the inspiration for his involvement in baseball.

?My mom got me started and it became important to me,? Hogue said. ?She thought it would be better for me to play another sport other than soccer.?

Although Hogue is the starting pitcher, junior Jeremy Ramos also is stepping in to a very important position and hopes to help lead next year?s team.

?Jeremy is doing really well,? assistant coach Scott Falk said. ?He is a natural leader, has a good attitude and has great ability to play baseball.?

Similar to Hogue, Ramos began playing due to encouragement from a parent. Ramos?s father created an interest in the sport as a chance to spend quality time together.

?I have been playing since I was four,? Ramos said. ? My dad got me started because he was the one to buy my glove and play catch with me.?

Falk believes Ramos has the ability to be a strong athlete, due to his skill, attitude and potential to learn.

?Being able to improve and get better makes an athlete,? Falk said. ?Jeremy is an athlete and is very skilled and one of the best hitters on the team.?

Some of the players had expectations for this year that may not be reached, but to resolve this issue the team seems to practice more and is believed to have improved.

?Our team is not doing that well,? Ramos said. ?But the team has great potential to be very good.?

Despite weather setbacks and a lack of experience, the unity among the boys keeps the baseball team strong and confident for improvement.

The next home game is against Caruthers on May 2 and is scheduled to start at 4 P.M. For more information email Hall at jhall@fresnochristian.com.

By |2006-04-27T00:00:00-08:00April 27th, 2006|Athletics, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Dating warrants caution

Beyond the pressure of homework and extra curricular activities is the natural attraction among male and female students. Though these romances can be innocent, adults question the appropriateness of dating in high school.

?I generally don?t think that high school dating is a good idea,? Molly Sargent, girls? counselor, said. ?However, dating is one way to improve socialization skills and help to determine what qualities you admire in the opposite sex.?

With the option of group dating or “one-on-one dating,” students have a plethora of options awaiting them.

?We enjoy one on one dating,? Brandon Cain, ?06, said about girl friend Brianne Raymer, ?06. ?You get to know that person for who they are.?

Joining in on group activities can relieve the pressure of individual dating. Group dating may be even more beneficial due to the opportunity to see them interact with their peers.

?I think it is the one-on-one dating that should be avoided,? Sargent said. ?Group dating provides both benefits and provides emotional protection for each individual. You have to be smart; you?re a human and when emotions come into play, you can?t trust your decision making skills.?

For some teachers, their opinions on dating were derived from their own experiences as a high school student.

?My own experiences of dating in high school were positive,? Chris Schultz, boys? counselor, said. ?I was good friends with the girls I went out with and we enjoyed each others company.?

The responsibility that comes with dating requires self-control and an understanding of boundaries. The strength to say ?no? is found in the strength of numbers, and the personal convictions that each person holds.

?We do not do anything that wouldn?t be honorable to God and our families,? Cain said. ?We respect our guidelines by prayer and reading the Bible as well as keeping each other accountable.?

Though students try their best to prevent lowering their guidelines, some find themselves in predicaments that could have otherwise been avoided.

?I think the real problem arises when the couple has isolated themselves from others,? Schultz said. ?This allows the opportunity for something to happen that they wouldn?t otherwise do. The best thing for a couple is to have the ability to hang out with a group of friends and to be honest about their relationship.?

With books like I Kissed Dating Goodbye by Joshua Harris and I Gave Dating a Chance by Jeramy Clark, the Christian opinion about dating seems to be split. But the real question seems to be, who is right?

?I think it is okay to date in high school,? Corinne Pogue, ?06, said. ?Just as long as the relationship does not get too serious.?

With graduation approaching and more students beginning their high school experience, each person is on a journey of their own regarding the appropriateness of a romantic relationship.

?In Paul?s writings he stresses a lot about personal responsibility,? Sargent said. ?Dating is one of those ?gray? areas in the Bible. The best thing to do is to find out what the Holy Spirit is telling you and listen to the people closest to you. If your friends tell you a guy is a jerk, then be careful because they only want what is best for you.?

Whether dating in a group or one on one, the ability to set boundaries and confidently follow standards encourages growth and strong relationships.

By |2006-04-21T00:00:00-08:00April 21st, 2006|Features, Uncategorized|2 Comments

Math Field Day celebrates vintage academics

Many events take place on the weekends besides hanging out with friends, sleeping in, and going out to eat, but events such as Vintage Days and Math Field Day are taking place at Fresno State on April 22. Fresno State will be thriving with many students and adults attending one of the two events.

Math Field Day is a chance for kids to academically compete against other schools and even classmates to challenge the junior and high school math scholars. It also gives students the ability to explore their brain in a different way.

Math teacher Fenton and calculus teacher Dr. Bob Arnold have encouraged students to attend the April 22 event. Fenton is not only inviting his student, but requiring his honors students to attend.

?Not only am I going because it is a requirement, but also because I want to have fun,? Jaclyn Blackwell, ?07, said. ?I am looking forward to playing Leap Frog with my friend Bonnie, and then I am going to check out the Vintage Days.?

For the annual event, students may compete in one of three different contests: Leap Frog, a ?tag team? game where one student answers questions and the other corrects mistakes; Mad Hatter, an individual game where speed is the ultimate winning factor; and a variation on the popular math game Nim, where students compete one-on-one.

?I want students to challenge themselves, not just by learning but also having fun,? Fenton said. ?I also want the students to get involved because it gives them exposure to mathematics contests.?

Not only Math Field Day is taking place on Saturday, but also Fresno State?s annual Vintage Days. This spring festival attracts more than 50,000 people to Fresno State University.

Last year the campus math team won second place in the small schools division, and hope to achieve first place this year.

By |2006-04-21T00:00:00-08:00April 21st, 2006|News, Uncategorized|2 Comments

Homecoming loss tempered with late TD

The score stood at 40-0 as 11 exhausted men looked toward the 60 yards of grass ahead of them. While much of the homecoming crowd had left, many committed parents and students still looked on to support the Eagles on Oct. 14.

With quarterback J.D. Perry, ?07, moving the ball, FC began one last drive to break the shutout. After moving the ball from their side of midfield to inside the 30-yard line, there was less than three minutes left in the game.

Two plays later, Perry handed the ball off to runningback, Chris Erickson, ?07, at the 25-yard line and Erickson seemed to will his way through the Firebaugh line.

For the first time in the game, the FC offensive line seemed determined to open a lane for the junior back as he headed for the end zone. Erickson had the crowd on their feet as he hit the five-yard line and seemed to carry three Aztec defenders across the end zone for the lone touchdown.

?Since only three minutes were left in the fourth quarter and we still hadn?t scored,” Erickson said, “we decided to put it all on the line to keep from being shutout during our own homecoming game.”

The Eagles have never been shutout on homecoming night.

?I just wanted to score,? Erickson said. ?We had never been shut out on homecoming and it was our last drive for a touchdown, so I gave everything towards that run.?

Though Firebaugh won, 40-6, the touchdown raised FC?s morale and gave an element of fun to what seemed an unfavorable outcome. The TD was a moral victory in a season with few offensive highlights.

?Erickson?s touchdown gave us hope that we could still score against our competitors and exemplified a no-quit attitude for the season,? defensive end Jeremy Ramos, ?07, said.

With an overall record of 1-6 and a NWSL record of 0-1, the Eagles have managed to make the best of their situation, enjoying the comradely and adrenaline rushes that Friday nights offer.

Perry finished the game with his best night as an Eagle QB going 5-12 for 84 yards and two interceptions while Erickson finished with 55 yards rushing on 10 carries and caught a 15-yard pass.

?By the fourth quarter we were able to bring both offense and defense together for a touchdown driven purely by determination,? Greg Kilgore, ?07, injured quarterback, said. ?It just doesn?t happen much.?

Among the Aztec?s aerial domination, senior quarterback Stephen Hurt connected with fellow senior Michael Barragan for two gains of 44 and 39 yards. Together the duo completed 111 total yards and made two touchdowns by the first half.

In the end, Hurt completed 13-21 passes for 267 yards and four touchdowns while senior safety Pedro Garcia completed 68 yards rushing on 10 carries with two interceptions.

?Their quarterback baffled our defense and limited our ability to execute a counterattack against their passes,? John Hall, varsity coach, said. ?We did manage a good run defense which kept their rushing to a minimum.?

The team travels next to play the Hawks of Liberty-Madera Ranchos on Oct. 21.

?Though their star runningback rushes about 100 yards per game, we actually feel confident about our Liberty rivals and hope for an early lead in the first half,? Hall said.

For more information or directions to Liberty or other games, contact the high school office at 293-1695, ext. 5, or scroll to the right Links toolbar of this online newspaper and click on Maps and Directions.

By |2005-10-21T00:00:00-08:00October 21st, 2005|Athletics, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Reviews improve band performance

To many a marching band is half-time entertainment. However, to campus band students, this is an important time of the year to showcase their talents.

?Band reviews help us improve,? Paul McEntee, band director, said. ?We?re critiqued by other music professionals, so we get opinions.?

McEntee encourages students to participate in band.

?I think everyone benefits from learning how to play a musical instrument,? McEntee said.

While the review may benefit some, the idea of giving up a Saturday afternoon does not sit well with others.

?I don?t really like band reviews,? Wolfgang Dunn, ?08, said. ?They take time out of my valuable weekends.?

McEntee, however, has a bit of a different view.

?They?re giving up part of their weekend,? McEntee said, ?but the work is done quickly, and a lot of the students still have fun.?

For many students, getting together for band on the weekends helps them bond with their friends.

?I enjoy the band reviews,? Chris Tharpe, ?08, said. ?It gives me something fun to do with my friends on the weekends.?

Andrew King, ?06, has participated in band since the sixth grade.

?I?m not sure why I did band through middle school,? King said, ?but in high school, it?s a lot of fun.?

King says that band can help students not only academically, but socially as well.

?Band gives you a great opportunity to make a lot of friends with similar interests,? King said. ?I know I?ve made a lot of friends through band.?

?The trips are definitely a great way to bond with your friends, as well as have fun,? King said. ?Some of the most fun memories I have were when we all went to Canada for my sophomore year trip.?

Band class exposes its participants to music and encourages students’ musical appreciation in addition to out of town trips.

?When I was younger, I started playing trumpet pretty much because I was simply interested in music,? King said. ?I think my skills have improved over my years in band and I?m glad I?ve participated in it all this time.?

While the band only has 24 members and competes against schools with over 4,000 students, the Eagle band has fared well in past reviews.

The band placed first in the small school’s division at the 27th annual Visalia Lions Band Review and Field Show on Oct. 15 and 3rd overall with 474 points. The Visalia review had 17 schools participating.

Kingsburg won the review with 481 points and Tulare Union placed 2nd with 478 points. Some of the schools the band beat included Farmersville, Orosi, Sierra, Exeter, Edison, Mt Whitney, Central, El Diamante, Monache, Golden West, Redwood and Madera.

The campus marching band?s next review will be held Oct. 29, in Selma. The Selma Band Review is the biggest band review campus band participates in. Band members should be ready to the board bus at 7:15 A.M. The parade starts at 9 A.M. with the awards presentation beginning at 6 P.M. Students will be back on campus by 7:45 P.M.

Interested students and parents can watch the band perform at the upcoming reviews: Pismo Beach band Review on Nov. 12, Friends of the Band concert/dinner on Nov. 17, and the Christmas concert at Community Bible Church on Dec. 12.

For more information on marching band, contact McEntee at pmcentee@fresnochristian.com.

By |2005-10-21T00:00:00-08:00October 21st, 2005|Features, Uncategorized|0 Comments

A look back

This year is unprecedented. Throughout high school I looked forward to my senior year with anticipation. I expected it to be the apex of my teenage experience. And in many ways it was, yet it also turned out very different than I had expected.

Initially I thought that with fewer and easier classes my friends and I would have grown much closer and spent all kinds of time together. While we did grow closer it seems much of that growth took place at school. As it turns out, most of my friends have girlfriends and jobs this year so instead of having ridiculous amounts of time for each other, we are all busy.

Another interesting twist to my senior social life is that I am still single. I fully expected that by this time I would have a girlfriend myself, yet that amenity has been denied me. Unexpectedly I am at peace with this circumstance; as a result I have developed good friendships with many different girls while having time to hold down a job and graduate with a 4.0.

Academically, senior year was a break. Although AP classes added a significant amount of weight to my workload, the senior classes provided a more relaxed atmosphere and were not a source of major stress.

The most significant source of stress this year was the college and scholarship application processes. Spanning the whole year, it takes a lot of time, individual initiative and responsibility. Remembering due dates and finishing essays on time in addition to doing schoolwork can be challenging. I took several memorable trips to the post office early in the morning after a full night of writing to drop off applications on the day they were due.

In all my years of high school, the single biggest commitment and endeavor I undertook was to be the Editor-in-chief of The Feather. When Greg Stobbe, adviser, approached me freshman year and presented the opportunity to me with grand visions of past success stories and potential benefits and helpful skills I would gain from the experience, I thought I had no choice but to accept.

However he ‘conveniently’ forgot to mention all the hours of arduous toil associated with producing a newspaper, the missed lunch breaks and time after school spent fine-tuning until you hate the sight of your creation before each deadline.

In the end, all the labor had some rewards. Personally I have gained many skills from improved writing to graphic arts and layout. My confidence in my abilities and skills has grown as they have been stretched and used. Through the hard work and commitment of Stobbe, all the editors and reporters, The Feather has reached unprecedented heights this year.

For the first time in The Feather’s history the paper was completely controlled by the editors, Stobbe only advised. During this transition of authority the staff wrote 460 articles, a record number, and at least one new article was posted online everyday.

In addition, the adviser was gone longer than ever before between eye surgery and a trip to New York. During both of these absences, the paper was entirely in the hands of the editors and staff without daily supervision and they continued to produce without a hitch.

Though different, this last year of high school has been a good one. I am looking forward to college and the future beyond, but the memories I have made will stay with me the whole way.

By |2005-05-26T00:00:00-08:00May 26th, 2005|Opinions, Uncategorized|2 Comments

Summer offers alternative education

Although students eagerly anticipate the lazy summer days, for some, a sense of responsibility embeds itself in these hot afternoons.

Summer school is an option for students who wish to clear up their schedules or an obligation for some students to make up a poor grade.

To the relief of many, the campus summer classes are conducted through independent study. Several packets regarding an academic subject of the student?s choice are issued and expected to be completed in a timely manner.

?I was kind of annoyed with the fact that we still have to come to school every few weeks and take a test on our packets,? Sarah Jimenez, ?08, said. ?But, it?s better than having to come to a real class every day.?

A few weeks ago, students were handed papers with a list of possible classes for the upcoming year and asked to make their schedules. At that time, they were also given the chance to sign up for summer classes which cost $200 per semester.

Students are given the opportunity to finish either one or two semseters of the class of their choice, and can take more than one class if they desire.

?I decided to take summer school through a public school system because they offer more classes,? Nick Frazier, ?07, said. ?It?ll be a good way to meet new people and keep busy over the summer.?

Some campus students who seek to get a class out the way have only a few options to choose from.

?I was only able to take U.S. history or Bible this summer,? Jimenez said. ?It made me mad because I really wanted to get chemistry out the way but teachers say it?s important to learn that in class.?

For some, summer school helps prevent the complete drainage of education that occurs over the summer vacation. While packets may not stimulate students like in the classroom, they still require fundamental knowledge of the subject matter.

“While students are expected to complete each packet,” Principal Gary Schultz said, “about 90% of the grade is dependent upon the test scores after the completion of each section.”

?I wish regular school was like summer school,? Frazier said. ?Everything would be more laid back and students we wouldn?t get as stressed out as we normally do. I think it would actually contribute to the developing of our minds?well it could.?

Summer school packets are available in most all academic subjects but administration must approve all requests. Often original credit is not offered unless a scheduling conflict results for a student. Most summer school packets must be completed by July 21.

For more information on summer school, contact the high school office at 299-1695, ext. 5.

By |2005-05-24T00:00:00-08:00May 24th, 2005|News, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Diabetes linked to lifestyle choices

An approximant sixteen million Americans have diabetes, one third of those people are not aware of their condition.

Diabetes can be caused by lifestyle choices. Eating habits, lack of physical activity, high blood sugar, no control of use of medication and being short of regular check-ups are sometimes found as the cause of the disease.

?Diabetes which is caused by lifestyle choices is Type 2 diabetes,? Naomi Bugnosen, M.D., said. ?Signs of diabetes are discoloration of neck, drinking a lot of water, there is often a tingling sensation of fingers and toes and high blood sugar levels. Most do not know if they have diabetes, but it is revealed in a blood test.?

Although diabetes can be caused by lifestyle choices, diabetes is also genetic and possible to be passed on through generations by birth.

Inheritance of diabetes refers to whether the condition is inherited from your parents or ?run? in families. The level of inheritance of a condition depends on how important genetics are to the disease [www.wrongdiagnosis.com].

There are several students on campus who live with diabetes. One student offers an insight as to how living with diabetes affects her life.

?Living with diabetes is difficult,? Suzie Falk, ?06, said. ?It is something you have to learn to live with, and it is uncontrollable.?

Another form of diabetes is Type 1. This type occurs when the pancreas produces inadequate amounts insulin or none at all.

?At first having diabetes is like a chore,? Sean O?Neal, ?08, said. ?It feels like another thing you have to do in your schedule, but after awhile you get use to it and it is not as bad.?

Despite the difficulties of living with diabetes, Falk has been able to find the positive side to this hardship.

?Having diabetes has helped with coping and I have become a lot more independent,? Falk said. ?Luckily, I have good doctors and parents who help me. Because of my insulin pumps I do not have to give injections to myself.?

The possibility of diabetes concerns some students enough that they want to change lifestyle choices, regardless of current behavior.

?I am not over overweight and eat fairly healthy foods,? Joshua Palmer, ?08, said. ?I know that that I am avoiding my path to diabetes but I am still concerned. Because in the past I have always associated diabetes with genetics, but to know I can cause it leaves my with several lifestyle question.?

For more information regarding diabetes to go www.diabetes.diabetesjournals.org/ or contact your doctor.

By |2005-05-12T00:00:00-08:00May 12th, 2005|Features, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Journalism, yearbook efforts awarded

What do awards really mean? Are they just given to people who are better than others, or as a sign of recognition?

The yearbook staff and journalism team on campus received awards for their superior performances.

An All Valley Newspaper award was presented to the newspaper staff for their first three issues during the current school year. The Feather competes in the small school division with 300-1300 students.

?The team as a whole has consistently been rewarded over the years for their ability to interview, write, and edit,? Greg Stobbe, journalism adviser, said, “and this year is no exception. I appreciate their consistent work ethic and trust that they will continue to utilize these skills academic pursuits.?

Seniors Anne Hierholzer and Elise Aydelotte were given an honorable mention for previously written mailed in articles.

?The journalism team sent in an article I wrote to the competition,? Hierholzer said. ?I was honored for getting this award. I was surprised because I did not realized one of my articles was sent in. But I am happy with outcome.?

Anne has written for the newspaper staff for four years and Stobbe was not surprised she received an honorable mention.

“Anne has consistently written indepth articles and has taken her role as a reporter and most recently, editor-in-chief, very seriously,” Stobbe said. “It is no wonder a student of that quality is going on to university with a highly regarded reputation.”

The yearbook team was also awarded a superior for the 2003-04 yearbook. Molly Sargent, yearbook adviser, believes the reward alone does not prove the abilities of her staff.

?Our yearbook team is really good,? Sargent said. ?I do not need someone to tell me that they are good because I know they are.?

Although the yearbook received a superior rating, senior Danae Cook, yearbook editor, still believes they are able to reach higher standards.

?The yearbook staff did a great job last year, but it is always getting better,? Cook said. ?Our expectations for writers, captions and photos are high, but the staff surpasses them. Also, our yearbook this year will be an all color one.?

For more information contact Stobbe at 299-1695, ext. 151 or at gstobbe@fresnochristian.com.

By |2005-05-02T00:00:00-08:00May 2nd, 2005|News, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Teachers challenge varsity to basketball game

Breaking with tradition, the varsity verses the faculty basketball game returns to campus as an opportunity for students to see their teachers sweat and face a very real physical foe.

Volunteers from both boys? and girls? varsity teams take on the undefeated teachers in a battle of the baskets. The teachers have never lost a game despite some close calls, the age gap and fitness level.

In past years the game was played in order to raise money for the senior scholarship fund. However, in the last couple of years the game did not raise enough money to fund the scholarship. Teacher donations exceeded gate revenue so the game is now a free event.

?It started out as a fundraiser for a scholarship for the seniors,? Principal Gary Schultz said, ?but a couple years ago the game only raised $200. However, the teachers donated about $1500 of their own money. Since the teachers were so willing to donate the money for the scholarships and the game was making so little, we decided to stop charging for the game.?

The Booster Club organized the game as fun event 21 years ago and it was played at West Coast Christian College, before it was moved to the campus gym.

?The game has been played ever since I?ve been around,? Scott Callisch, sports director, said. ?I think it was started the year before I came.?

Before game donations fizzled, Principal Schultz was a tour de force with every shot. Often his presence changed the total amount the game raised.

?I remember one game people would donate money for every shot I made,? Schultz said. ?This game I think each shot I made was worth $200. I probably won?t play this game? maybe stand at one end of the court and have them pass me the ball to make a shot.?

This year?s game will take place in the old gym [Peoples Church] on May 2 at 11:15 A.M. as the first event of Spirit Week.

For more information on Spirit Week, read the announcements online at www.thefeather.com.

By |2005-04-29T00:00:00-08:00April 29th, 2005|News, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Yearbook capsulates memories

Dear editor:

As I am apart of the yearbook staff, I believe our whole school suffers if our responsibilities are not taken seriously. In reply to the article ?Yearbook class encourages responsibility,? written by Drake Olson on Feb. 2, 2005, I agree with his statement, ?The yearbook class encourages responsibility.?

When we are working on our pages and need quotes and pictures, we need those who promised to get us things to return them to us in a timely matter. Each yearbook staff person has a deadline when all the needed information must be on the page.

If we do not get all of our information in time, or finish putting it all on the page, the yearbook has incomplete pages or it just looks bad. High school days are supposed to be the days everyone remembers and cherishes forever, and yearbook helps everyone remember those times.

If the school yearbook is terrible, then you will not be able to remember things in the best way possible. A lot of responsibility is given to us all to make sure your yearbook is great and full of memories.

By |2005-03-04T00:00:00-08:00March 4th, 2005|Opinions, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Feather back online after Highwired.com’s demise

Students pound their mouses into their mouse pads as they hopelessly search for the location of the school’s newspaper website. Little do they know that behind the scenes, the journalism staff, along with technology director, Dave Martens, have worked tirelessly to produce a better website. The Feather back online is the staff’goal and its at www.thefeather.com.

“I like the new website because we have an easy URL,” David Pohl, ’03, staff writer, said. “I hated typing all those stupid backslashes and meaningless letters.”

Highwired.com, The Feather’s old Internet provider folded due to lack of funds and journalism was forced to produce a website from scratch.

“When Highwired went down in August, I at first was depressed thinking that a new website would be almost impossible,” journalism adviser Greg Stobbe said. “However, despite this great loss, we had the opportunity to create something better. Mr. (David) Martens and I sat down with superintendent (Tim) Wilkins and we hammered out the general concept that turned into what you see today.”

Highwired gave space to high schools to show their newspaper, classrooms, and sports. It also housed The Feather for three years and still holds its archives under the name www.highschooljournalism.org. This site also displays 350 newspapers including a link to The Feather. With Highwired’s demise, the American Society of Newspaper Editors has also taken over the rights of Higwired to follow suit and display high school newspapers at www.asne.com.

“This new website has jubilated me beyond perceivable limits, and I find myself to be the quintessence of excitement,” Brad Hart, ’03, editor-in-chief, said. “Every time I type a letter, my finger tips tingle knowing it will appear on our new website. I feel as if rays of sunshine burst from my soul positively affecting students around me. I have poured my blood and sweat into this paper and finally it is going somewhere.”

For more information on The Feather, please go to www.theFeather.com and e-mail the staff or use www.FresnoChristian.com. Students may also call the high school office at 297-9464 and leave a message on adviser Stobbe’s answering service at 297-9464, ext. 151.

Online grades available for new school year

Student tension on the last day of each quarter has been largely eliminated thanks to the innovative grade update system, newly developed Internet sites utilizing Mac School and K-12 Planet programs. The campus web site, www.fresnochristian.com, was developed last year, and has helped parents and students stay informed on schoolwork, says Principal Gary Schultz.

“It saves everyone a bunch of time and effort,” Schultz said. “Parents have easier access to their students grades, attendance and discipline reports. Also, each teachers’ e-mail address is listed on the site and the parents then can contact the teacher regarding their children.”

The person responsible for getting the site up and running was David Martens, campus computer technician. Although Martens created the site, the idea started in the mind of Superintendent Tim Wilkins, who suggested the idea to the board.

“The overall goal of the site is to bring all the resources of the school together into one window of information for anyone to see,” Wilkins said. “People who call us home have easy access to everything the school offers. We can see by the number of hits we get, about 350-500 a week, that the response is very positive so far.”

According to Wilkins, about 15 students arrived on campus last year as a result of the website that online grades available push has been successful.

For the parents and students to gain access to grades, they must go to the high school office and ask for their user name and password from any office authority. The parents must sign a form to get the number and password from the office. However, the password is needed only for grades, as homework assignments can be seen by anyone.

“It allows for absent students to check homework from home,” Martens said. “It also keeps parents informed on what and how their kids are doing in school.”

According to recent polls taken in the past year, 87% of the students on campus have Internet access at home, so getting on the Internet should not a problem for families. The site is updated every day by Schultz, according to the grades given to him by the teachers. Teachers must have new grades available within two days and turn them in to Schultz to put on the Internet.

“The system helps students by allowing them to get on the web and see if they have homework,” Rod Atchley, science teacher, said. “It benefits parents as well, as it helps them know if their students are lying when they say they have no homework.”

For students who are planning to be absent for a large amount of time, the homework is posted on the site a week in advance.

“It’s not 10 teachers doing their own individual thing,” Wilkins said, “instead, it’s a one- stop place that is convenient for everyone. The site will continue to grow in size and in quality.”

While this is an archived article, please stay online and follow The Feather via Twitter @thefeather, Instagram @thefeatheronline and Facebook @thefeatheronline.

By |2001-10-11T00:00:00-08:00October 11th, 2001|Academics, News, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Campus prepares for standardized exams

As students study for core classes this fall, many are also preparing to take Scholarship Aptitude Test (SAT) and/or the Preliminary Scholarship Aptitude Test (PSAT). Most colleges and universities use the nationalized tests to determine acceptance and placement.

However, as campus prepares for standardized exams, teachers have already been preparing students.

“As an English teacher for many years, I’d say the best way to prepare is to do a lot of reading and vocabulary,” vice principal Ginger Niemeyer said. “We already do this in our English classes; I believe that it is the same for math. We have a very strong honors math program here at Fresno Christian.”

Teachers often use SAT scores to evaluate students’ abilities, as well as understand what other teacher’s taught and what may need to be taught in the future.

“I don’t see the need to take the SATs,” Katie Snow, ’03, said. “I know I’m retarded already but I guess they are important.”

Carl Brigham developed the Scholarship Aptitude Test in 1926, when it was administered experimentally to a few thousand college applicants. Since then, the SAT has evolved dramatically and is now used by many colleges as a requirement for applicants.

“A lot of colleges are making it optional to take the SAT or the ACT,” Niemeyer said. “Of course, ACT will tell you it is a better test to take, but that is your choice.”

The ACT assesses the high school students’ ability to complete college-level work.

“It’s important to do the SATs and do as best you can,” Amanda Pjerrou, ’02, said. “It is an important part of your future. It helps you get into a good school, and good schools are important.”

Niemeyer added that SATs are another indicator of a students’ ability despite what their GPA may show.

“I believe the SATs are important because it shows the colleges your scores and abilities differently than grades do,” Niemeyer said. “Sometimes grades show how hard a student works but grades don’t always show the ability or the intelligence of the student.”

Sophomores also understand the importance of the SAT.

“I want to get into a good college,” Rajani Elek, ’04, said, “so I think the PSATs and SATs are a helpful way to prepare for the work.

“I believe the SATs are important because it shows the colleges your scores, and sometimes grades show how hard a student works,” Elek continued. “Grades don’t always show the ability or the intelligence of the student.”

For those want more information, sample test questions are available, as well as individualized help for test preparation at sites such as www.collegeboard.com. Students can also contact Niemeyer for more information.

SAT registration for the Nov. 3 test date at Fresno State needs to be completed by Sept. 28 but can be turned in late with an additional fee. The next PSAT is scheduled on campus for Oct. 16 and costs $10.

A little bit of history: As of 1997, the Scholarship Aptitude Test or Scholastic Assessment Test actually is just known as the SAT and now doesn’t officially mean its formal names.

While this is an archived article, please stay online and follow The Feather via Twitter @thefeather, Instagram @thefeatheronline and Facebook @thefeatheronline.

By |2001-10-11T00:00:00-08:00October 11th, 2001|Academics, News, Uncategorized|0 Comments