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Not “Retarded” Please

By Kathryn Malnight

retarded |riˈtärdid|adjective
less advanced in mental, physical, or social development than is usual for one’s age.

This is the dictionaries definition of the word retarded. But this, is what people now use the word as:

An “unofficial” (not recognized by dictionaries) slang descriptor for a person/thing/action/object, etc., or a combination of, which is one or more of the following:


a waste of time, abandoned, abject, abominable, absurd, afraid, aimless, anxious, apprehensive, arid, arrested, assailable, atomic, awful, baby, babyish, backward, bad, banal, barmy, barren, base, baseless, beastly, beggarly, behind, beside the question, blah, bland, bogus, bomb, bootless, boyish, brainless, bromidic, bummer, careless, catchpenny, characterless, cheap, checked, cheesy, childish, childlike, clichéd, crap, crappy, crud, dejected, delayed, delusive, dense, deplorable, depraved, despicable, destitute, detestable, devoid, diffident, dim, diminutive, dippy, directionless, dirty, disgraceful, dishonest, dishonorable, dismayed, disposable, disreputable, dizzy, dodo, doltish, dopy, dotterel, down, downtrodden, drab, drifting, drudging, dull, dumb, empty, empty-headed, erratic, evanescent, everyday, evildoer, excessive, exhausted, expendable, expressionless, facetious, failed, failing, faint-hearted, fallacious, false, fanciful, fatuous, fawning, featherbrained, feeble, feebleminded, fickle, flaky, flashy, flat, flighty, flimsy, flip, flippant, fool, fool around, foolish, for grins, forlorn, fortuitous, foul, freaked out, freaky, frightened, frivolous, frothy, fruitless, futile, gagged up, garbage, garish, gay, giddy, girlish, glitzy, goalless, good-for-nothing, goofy, green, gross, groundless, groveling, grungy, gullible, gutless, hackneyed, half-baked, half-witted, hang dog, harebrained, heedless, ho hum, hokey, hokum, hollow, hopeless, humble, humbling, humdrum, humiliating, idiotic, idle, ignoble, ignominious, ignorant, ill-advised, ill-considered, illogical, imbecile, immaterial, immature, immobile, immoral, impassive, implausible, impracticable, impractical, improbable, inadequate, inane, inapplicable, inappreciable, incidental, inconceivable, incongruous, inconsequential, inconsiderable, incredible, indelicate, indiscreet, indiscriminate, ineffective, ineffectual, inept, inessential, inexpressive, infamous, infantile, inferior, inglorious, inscrutable, insensate, insignificant, insincere, insipid, insufficient, interminable, inutile, irksome, irrational nonsensical, irrelevant, irresolute, irresponsible, jejune, jittery, joking, joshing, junky, juvenile, kid stuff, kooky, lacking courage, lame, late, laughable, lemon, lifeless, light, light-minded, lily-livered, little, loathsome, loony, loser, lousy, low, low-born, lowly, lowly, low-ranking, ludicrous, mangy, meager, mean, meaningless, measly, mediocre, menial, mentally incompetent, meretricious, microscopic, mindless, minor, minute, indecisive, miscarried, miscreant, miserable, modest, momentary, monkey, monotonous, moronic, moth-eaten, naive, needless, negligible, nervous, niggling, no bargain, no dice, no good, no guts, no place, no-account, nonessential, nonsensical, not at issue, not serious, not to the purpose, nothing, nowhere, hopeless, nuts, nutty, offensive, pitiable, pitiful, platitudinous, playful, pointless, poker-faced, poor, pre-kindergarten, preposterous, primitive, profitless, proletarian, prosaic, puerile, puny, purposeless, pusillanimous, random, rash, ratty, raunchy, recreant, removable, repetitious, result less, retiring, rinky-dink, rotten, rough, routine, sappy, scandalous, scanty, scared, scatterbrained, screwy, scrubby, scurvy, second-rate, seemly, senseless, sentimental, servile, severe, shabby, shallow, shameful, shiftless, shoddy, shopworn, shrinking, shy, silly, simple, simple-minded, slow, sluggish, small, small time, soft, superficial, superfluous

And these are just a few! I deleted a few pages worth. The truth is, the R-word is used as a cruel heartless insult. Although it is only five letters, you are saying thousands of words, such as the ones from above, in that one syllable word!

Although you may be, “just kidding,” you never know who could be near you, hearing you use that word. For instance, I hear the word ALL THE TIME at WMS. When people use the word, they don’t know that many people are hearing them use a word that is EXTREMELY offensive.

So, before you go say, “That’s so retarded,” again, why not ask yourself a few questions:

  1. Would you be proud if your parents heard you say the r-word?
  2. Are you OK with saying ALL of the synonyms of the word retarded?
  3. What would your friends say if they heard you say the word?
  4. Why do you want to say the word? Are there substitutes for it?
  5. What impression do you want to have on people?

So think about this, and PLEASE DON’T SAY “RETARDED!!!!!!!”

Bonus: Check out the following link:

Right Brain Left Brain

Are you left brained or right brained?
by Nandita Subbiah

Did you know that the left side of your brain and the right side of your brain control different parts of your thinking? For most people, one side of your brain is more dominant than the other side. A person who is ‘’left-brained’’ is supposed to be logical, analytical and objective and more organized and cautious. A person who is ‘’right-brained’’ is supposed to be intuitive, thoughtful and subjective and more likely to follow their feelings.

The right brain is used for:
•Recognizing faces
•Expressing emotions
•Reading emotions

The left brain is used for:
•Critical thinking

Some people actually use both sides of their brain equally. They will have qualities from both sides of the brain. The right brain-left brain theory came from the work of Roger W. Sperry who was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1981. When he was studying the effects of epilepsy Sperry found out that cutting the corpus collosum (the structure that connects the two sides of the brain) could reduce or eliminate seizures.  Unfortunately, patients experienced other symptoms after the corpus collosum was cut. Some patients were unable to name objects processed by the right side of the brain, but were able to name objects that were processed by the left side of the brain. Sperry thought this meant that language was controlled by the left side of the brain. This doesn’t mean you only use one side of your brain at a time, though. Research has shown that abilities in subjects (for example math) are stronger when both the left side and right side of the brain are working together.

MCAS? Positive or Negative?

“The MCAS tests hurt kids.  Thanks to the Ledger for focusing on those kids who may have skills but cannot pass a written test.  But please don’t forget our third graders trying to read a sixth grade level item, and becoming sick over the test.  Don’t forget our 10th grader contemplating dropping out, and closing the door of opportunity forever.  And don’t forget the private and parochial school kids who escape this whole disaster.  Money, it seems, walks to non-MCAS schools, the way Board of Education Chair Jim Peyser’s kids do. Public school is about opportunity, and opening doors.  MCAS testing closes doors for thousands.  We should end it immediately.”
-Paul J. Phillips

Mr. Phillips has a very strong opinion about the MCAS testing- and so do kids all over Massachusetts. It may be reassuring- as students- to know that adults feel the same way, because Mr. Phillips is an adult. Go back to the section of the quote, that talks about third graders getting sick, tenth graders dropping out, and the worst part: the fact that private school students don’t even HAVE to take the test.
In this article, you’ll hear both sides of the argument, and from all ages.

People Who Think MCAS is Good

“Standardized testing gives teachers guidance to help them determine what to teach students and when to teach it. The net result is less wasted instructional time and a simplified way of timeline management.”

“Since all students in a school are taking the same test (with respect to grade level) standardized tests provide an accurate comparison across groups. (For example, this makes it easy to see how boys are performing as compared to girls in a particular school or district.) Over the years great improvements have been made with regards to test bias, which has led to more accurate assessments and comparisons.”

“MCAS is not the be all and end all, and as long as I am superintendent it will not be the be all and end all,” Gobron said. “When it counts, when it is a question of graduation, we perform extremely well.”

“People make it a big deal, calling it the ‘Massachusetts-Child-Abuse-System!’ Just do it, it isn’t that bad!”

People Who Think MCAS is Bad

“I think that MCAS is just not necessary! And if you have to do it, two open responses is enough! Don’t give kids five! If you’re testing on reading and writing skills, two responses should be enough!”

“It’s just a waste of time, and some of the questions are confusing.”

“I get really stressed, and know that I don’t do as well as I would, if it were just a normal quick test.”


“It really stresses me out.”

Now that you’ve heard both sides of the story, say in the comments what you think, your honest opinion. I personally feel all of the negative things: It stresses me out, I know I don’t do as well, and it is a waste of time.

What do you think?

Mirror – A Poem


By Athya Uthayakumar

I gaze at it,

It stares back

With a deeply carved frame,

And a gleaming, cool surface


I see myself,

In the shiny surface

Pretty or ugly,

It always tells me the reality


But what if it were to shatter?

I know it matters not,

Because it shows the beauty,

Of what’s on the outside,

But not in.

Sixth Grade Anxiety

By Helen, Aimee, Zoe, and Sydney

Research shows that people are very anxious in sixth and ninth grade because they have been put back to the bottom of the school, there the younger ones again.

“Sixth graders,” Sixth grade English teacher Ms. Barker says “are anxious because they have to move to a new school, meet new people, and teachers, and although it might be exciting it can also be scary.”

Sixth grade science teacher Mr. Lafond says, “Sixth graders are anxious because they are new to the school, they must meet new teachers, more teachers.”

Sixth grade math and science teacher, Ms. Broderick, says, “It is a bigger school, more teachers to meet, more people, and a lot more homework to do.”

Sixth grade study teacher Mr. Meiselman says, “Students are still getting used to the different school and all the classes, they also have much more homework and they have new information to process which is not easy to do”.

Wellness teacher, Ms. Riddle says,” They went from head of the school to the bottom of the school or the totem pole”

Sixth grade student Kathryn says, “People are stressed and anxious because of the switch, the tests, and all the grades”.

Brooke, a sixth grader, says, “ Parents are harsh and are putting pressure on their kids to get good grades which may cause them to stress out and be anxious.”

Savannah, another sixth grade student says, “ The first year at a new school worries people because they don’t know what to expect”

You Are Your Own Worst Enemy!

By Alexis George

Every day has a new worry around the corner, something that we need to get done or do. Stress is sadly a word we hear way to often.  Why are middle school kids already stressed out at this age you ask? Well it was my duty to find out.

By asking some middle schoolers what stresses them out I gained a better understanding about what stresses us out. You may find the answers are so different yet all mean the same thing we are our own enemies. Here are some of their responses.

-Tests and quizzes stress me out because they have a big impact on my grades.

-Tests and quizzes usually stress me out because I’m always worried I won’t remember something.

-Tests and quizzes stress me out because I don’t usually have time to study.

-My grades usually stress me out because I have an older sibling and I want to be just as good in school as she was.

-Homework stresses me out because I always have to figure out how to get it all done in time.

-My grades stress me out because they are really important to my parents and I want to live up to their expectations.

-I always want to prove to myself that I can do something, so my classes always stress me out.


So my conclusion to these comments? Everyone wants to please someone. We all want to be better than an older sibling, or show a parent that we CAN be that son or daughter they can brag about.

It’s in our nature, we are all competitive in our own ways.  For some it’s sports that drive them to do well, others its grades. But they all come down to one thing… living up to expectations we set for ourselves. This shows that we are our own stress, we stress ourselves out.

Can You Manage Your Time?


by Lily Toto

Many people have had one of those days, where you realize that you have to cram six hours worth of homework into a single afternoon. Here is some advice so that that won’t happen.

  1. Know when your Studies or Flexes are. If it’s late and you still have math homework to do, then you can do it in a Study or Flex if you have one before Math tomorrow! (Remember, studies and flexes aren’t that long, so do most of your homework at home)
  1. Don’t do too many sports. Yes, it’s good to do a sport. Or two, or three, even. But only if you have the time. If you try balancing to many sports, you’re going to be tired, not be able to do your homework, and have no time for seeing your friends!
  1. Don’t feel like you have to always say yes. If a teacher asks you to stay after school to help them with something and you know you have a lot of homework or are going to be really busy, say no. Same for if a friend invites you somewhere and you’re overbooked.
  1. Be truthful. Say your in Advanced Math, but you’re getting Cs. You should first stay with it for a while, go to extra help and study a lot. But, if you truthfully think that you would be better off in a different math level, tell your teacher about how you feel. That way you will be in what ever class level is right for you and the homework will be at the right level, too.
  1. Don’t waste time. Just don’t spend hours in front of the TV or on Facebook or your phone! You’ve heard this before, but don’t waste your time! Finish your homework or practice your instrument or do whatever you need to do first.
  1. Remember to get help from your friends. It helps to do your homework with your friend. Sharing and editing papers for each other using Google Docs is a good idea too!
  1. Multitask! Bring homework along for car rides, or really anywhere, so that you can finish it.
  1. Start projects early. Don’t leave your entire Spanish project to the night before! get a head start so that while everyone else is scrambling to finish, you’re already done.

My Kids are Eating Healthy. Right?!

by Kara Whitesell, Julia Frangioni, and Naomi Lathan

     You might think that the food at Wayland Middle school is healthy, but what you don’t know is that there is a snack bar in the school that serves unhealthy snacks while the hot lunch line serves foods that are good for kids. When I walked into the lunch room today I saw 41 kids in that snack line and not one person in the hot lunch line.

The school offers healthy hot lunch side dishes like these:

  • corn
  • beans
  • cooked zucchini
  • rice
  • mashed potatoesi

And other great stuff.

Students at the Wayland middle school don’t take advantage of those healthy choices! Out of the kids that buy lunch, this is what the sixth grade looks like:

You might think that the kids at Wayland middle school are eating healthy. But are they really?

Hunger Games

By Lilly Lin and Naomi Lathan.

May the odds be ever in your favor!

Many people  have already seen the number one movie in the world “Hunger Games.” Hunger Games was a book that was made into a movie.

A survey was done to see how many people in Wayland Middle school were planning on seeing the movie. It turns out that more than ¾ of the people were planning on seeing it and a lot of them had bought their tickets in advance. The movie broke the record for most online purchases before the opening weekend, surpassing the previous record holder  Twilight.

Many people found that the movie was very hard to understand, and follow if you had not read the book. They would say, “I did not understand that her dad had died until someone told me, they did not make that clear enough.”

Many people have heard about what I am about to talk about, The Hunger Games. This thrilling series by Suzanne Collins is a read that many teens are reading.

If you haven’t heard of this book, here is a short summary; Katniss Everdeen lives in the U.S.A after the capitol has taken over and, what we know today as the northeast, has been made into 12 different districts. District 12, where the Everdeen’s live, is known for coal mining.

Katniss’ dad died in the mines and ever since, her mom hasn’t been present in Katniss’ life. Katniss, to keep her family alive, goes hunting every Sunday with her best friend Gale, out of district limits where trespassing is not allowed. Every year, as a reminder for what would happen if the districts stepped out of line again, a boy and a girl, tributes, from each district are sent, at random, to an arena to fight to the death until only one remains.

 The picking of the tributes is called the reaping. The ages of tributes ranges between 12 and 18. On the day of the reaping Effie Trinket, the woman from the capitol sent to call the names of the tributes, announces Primrose Everdeen, Katniss’ 12 year old sister. Katniss volunteers to take her sister’s place in the games. The boy tribute is a boy Katniss’ age, Peeta Mellark. Peeta is a baker and Katniss often has memories of him throwing her the burnt bread when she didn’t have enough food to feed her family.

The rest of the book is full of excitement and action as Katniss and Peeta make their way through training and onto the games. Throughout the book, not only does action take place but romance too when Peeta announces his undying love for Katniss and everyone, especially Katniss, is shaken up.


Who Are the Top Dogs?

Bt Megha Patel

Want to Know the Top Ten Dog Breed for 2010?

Well you’ve come to the right place! Well… I think. Anyways, let’s find out!

1. Labrador Retriever

2. German Shepherds

3. Yorkshire Terriers

4. Beagles

5. Golden Retrievers

6. Bulldogs

7. Boxers

8. Dachshunds

9. Poodles

10. Shih Tzu

Now you know! (Pssst! Next time you get a dog, get number one!)
Your Welcome!