Category Archives: Features

Manchester Breeze by Anna Walsh

I descend
knee deep
into chilly refreshing water.

Feet sink
into wet rocky sand.

Water splashes
droplets fall lightly on my face.

I walk deeper.
A tide so low
you could walk for miles still keeping your head above.

I wave my cousin on
urging her to descend deeper into the salty waters.
Water rises up my legs
reaching up
to touch my shorts.

Boats chug past.
The engines play a soft melody in my ear.
New adventures await
the content sailors.

Eyes stay focused ahead,
hands stay fastened to the wheel,
waiting for whatever the ocean brings.
Navigating the cold
wavy waters
breezy ocean winds.

I look back down
to water’s sandy surface,
to creatures below.

It’s not there.

I continue on until I see
small sand dollars.

My hand plunges into the crisp water.

Found one!

My sister and cousin come splashing over
to admire the small treasure
I have found.
They lightly hold the precious creature,
as if their lives depended on it.

I smile and hand them the sand dollar,
to add to the collection
and continue looking
in cool, salty water,
on this breezy day,
in Manchester.

Top Ten Tropical Fruits By Jenna Brandaleone, Anna Walsh, and Jennie Rosen

For a little taste of warmer weather:

1. Dragon Fruit or otherwise known as pitaya is a fruit indigenous from the Americas tasting almost like a kiwi.

2. Coconuts are from the family of arecaceae! It is the only species of genus Cocos. Coconuts contain a very sweet interesting taste.

3. The Arkansas black apple was founded in the year 1870. The black apple is known for its juicy taste. It also grows very quickly and it is very tasty when you bake it in a pie.

4. Grapefruit is a tangy fruit with a hint of sweetness. The grapefruit is native to India, China, Thailand and Malaya. The grapefruit is also 90% water. It taste good and it refreshes you

5. Oranges are the fruit of the citrus species called the Rutaceae. One single bite of this tasty fruit sends a explosion of citrus on your taste buds.

6. Papaya is one of twenty-two in the species of genus Carica in the family Caricaceae. Papayas carry a sweet, melon like flavor. However the seeds are a bit more spicy.

7. Yellow passion fruit aka Passiflora edulis is a vine species of passion flower that is native to southern Brazil through Paraguay to northern Argentina. Its common names include passion fruit or passion fruit (English), maracuya (Spanish), grenadille (French), maracujá (Portuguese) and lilikoʻi (Hawaiian). Yellow passion fruits have a tart, fruity taste.

8. Mango is one of the most popular fruits in the world. Mango’s were first grown in India over 5,000 years ago. Mangos are very sweet . Just like mangoes are sweet they are also considered as a gesture of friendship.

9. Purple Mangosteen – The purple mangosteen, otherwise known as simply as the mangosteen, is a tropical evergreen tree believed to have originated in the Sunda islands and the Moluccas of Indonesia. It’s a sweet, nutritious, purple and white, odd looking fruit.

10. Black sapote is a fruit with many names. Such as, chocolate pudding fruit for its similar taste to the chocolate dessert we all love. chocolate. It is native to eastern Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America, and into Colombia.

Bibliography:
Wikipedia

In The Dot by Daniejah Franklyn

The windows are down
and the wind breezes by my face.
The street is crowded by houses
that lie on top of one another.

I see rippling lights,
flickering to a rhythm
that is not heard.
The sky is pitch black
with small sparkles hardly seen.

I walk on the lumpy sidewalks
with gum stains chalk stains,
and my brain replays
scraped knees and our old swing set,
as I open the door to my childhood.

Memories are triggered by the smell of home
and they flourish in my mind.

Comfort waves over me
and I sigh a refreshing breath.
at home in the Dot.

How Languages Tranform Individuals into Communities By Jennie Rosen

Hello, salve (latin), guten tag (german) , こんにちは (japanese) , שלום (hebrew), hola (spanish) . Languages are such a big part of this world – they can transform you. Languages can help if you want a job: you can get more job offers if you fluent a second language. Some languages can also help your English. Latin is very good to learn, especially if you want to do well on the SAT. You can also learn more about other people’s culture. Lately, people look at the news and they believe everthing it says. They blame a whole culture based on a small group of people. If you learn another language it would help you understand that culture better. You can also study abroad if you want. and you would be able to communicate with others. Languages bring people together. People can be afraid of what is different, but why can’t you be friends with what’s different then you? If you take off your blinders and look at the world in a different way you can learn so much. You should not just rely on TV to tell you something. You should go out into the world and figure it out yourself. Learning different languages is a start, and it can help you on your journey to discovering the world.

Top Ten Facts about Groundhogs! by Jenna Brandaleone and Anna Walsh

1.. Did you know that groundhogs are rodents? I didn’t! Groundhogs are rodents because of their continually growing teeth. Thats right! Groundhogs have buckteeth!

2..Groundhogs=Woodchucks! Did you know that!? Many people have this misconception that groundhogs and woodchucks are two different animals entirely!

3. Groundhogs have a special diet! Groundhogs gorge themselves with food all summer to build up plentiful reserves of fat! Sound fun!

4.Are your flowers being eaten? Well, there’s a good chance that a groundhog is actually eating them! Groundhogs eat generally flowers, dandelions, garden vegetables, bark, clover, carrot tops, beans and peas, and apples!

5. Many groundhog babies! Groundhogs welcome a litter of about a half a dozen newborns in the spring every year! Thats a lot of Kids… and a lot of work.

6. Cousin Squirrel! Groundhogs when visiting their family actually visit squirrels! Why? Well because groundhogs are the largest species of the squirrel family.

7. Chirp, Chirp, Whistle! Nope, i’m not talking about a bird! Groundhogs make their own special chirping and whistling noises to communicate!

8. Bathroom best. Did you know that every groundhog burrow has it’s own bathroom chamber!

9. February 2, 2017! Be sure to celebrate groundhog day this year!

10. Groundhogs are not social! Can you believe it! Groundhogs are pretty quiet and only go out to find a mate! Groundhogs live near each other to protect each other, but they like their alone time a lot!

Bibliographies:
http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/mammals/groundhog/
http://www.havahart.com/groundhog-facts#facts
animals.nationalgeographic.com/annimals/mammals/groundhog/

The Gem by Madeline Maurer

This is so cool! I thought. I examined it like a doctor does an x-ray. Michael is so lucky he found this. My then five-year-old brother had found a rhinestone on the floor of the dusty garage, right near the parked mini-van. It was shiny like a real diamond, and there it was in my hands. All mine. Well, at least mine until my older brother would have reclaimed his property. Let’s just say that my logic was impaired, so naturally, I marched my three year old self over to Michael and started to have my fun. “Does it go in here?” I asked, shoving the gem near my nose and giggling.

“No,” he told me. “Don’t do that!”

“Does it go here?” I said, putting the gem near my ear.

And that’s when it all went horribly wrong.

As I flung my tiny hand up to my ear, I let go of the rhinestone. I felt the small object land in my right ear before it disappeared into the void. (The void being my ear.)

At first, I was too shocked to cry. I mean, something was in my ear and I didn’t know how to get it out, and that something was incredibly precious. Thankfully, I was able to piece together an explanation for my dad, who promptly sat me down on his lap as he began to prod at my ear. Then, the panic (at the disco! I’m sorry, I had to.) set in. What if he couldn’t get it out? What if I have a gem in my ear forever? I thought as I began to sob, tears rolling down my cheeks. I stared at an ant crawling up the wall as tears filled my eyes.

“We have to go to the doctor,” said my dad.

Uh oh.

Fast forward to the doctor’s office, and I’ve been placed on crinkly examination paper to have doctors poke at my ear some more. I was being prodded with tweezers. These people meant business. This part’s kinda dull, so long story short, they couldn’t get it out either. It was worse than I could have imagined.

I HAD TO GO TO THE HOSPITAL.

My dad took me into the car and we drove quietly to the children’s hospital. The stoplights looked like smudged paint from my tears blurring my vision. Why did I have to put the gem in my ear? Why?

We arrived at the hospital, and a bunch of kids around my age were watching Dora the Explorer on the TV mounted on the wall. At least I could watch my favorite show now. I sat with them while my dad talked to the people at the desk. Soon enough, I was dragged away from the TV and brought into one of the hospital’s rooms.

The room was small and had pastel pink walls. They must have intended to make this a calm experience, but it felt like doomsday to me. I lied down on the examination table, disrupted ear to the ceiling. The nurse wet a cotton swab. Thankfully, there was a TV and VCR system in this room, too. “What do you want to watch?” asked my dad.
Of course, I responded with “Dora!”

Unfortunately, my dad denied me the opportunity to watch the show of my choice. “No, you’ve been watching a lot of Dora, let’s watch Blue’s Clues.”

UGH.

The nurse stuck the cotton swab in my ear. Here come the waterworks. Now, I don’t remember it hurting, just feeling a bit weird. But, as you can tell from the story so far, I was an incredibly dramatic toddler. Plus, my dad made me watch Blue’s Clues instead of Dora the Explorer. I was having a rough day.

The nurse was able to remove the gem with ease. The whole ordeal probably took about two minutes, but it felt like an eternity. I rolled off of my side and stood up onto weak, shaky legs. My dad and the nurse walked me out of the examination room. The nurse proceeded to ask me what is surprisingly not the strangest question I have heard in my life:

She held up the rhinestone and asked me, “Can I keep this? We like to keep things we pull out of ears and noses.”

And guess what I said…

“Yeah!”

Hey, I was three!

Top 20 facts About Abraham Lincoln by Jennie Rosen and Jenna Brandaleone

1. Lincoln was the sixteenth president of the United States
2. Abraham Lincoln had a son named Robert
3. Lincoln was assassinated on April 15, 1865
4. Mary Todd Lincoln married Abraham Lincoln
5. Lincoln was a lawyer
6. Abe Lincoln was a licensed bartender
7. Lincoln’s assassin was a famous actor
8. Abraham Lincoln was the first leader that thought women should be allowed to vote.
9. The brother of Lincoln’s assassin saved his son, Robert, from a train accident
10. Abe Lincoln is in the wrestling hall of fame
11. Fido, Lincoln’s dog was assassinated
12. Abraham Lincoln did not have a college degree
13. Lincoln dreamed of his own assassination before the actual event occurred
14. A girl convinced Abe Lincoln to grow his beard
15. Lincoln was a part of the republican party
16. Abe Lincoln’s mother died when he was nine
17. Lincoln is one of the most regarded presidents in the U.S
18. Important documents of Lincoln’s could Be found inside of his hat
19. Abraham Lincoln went into office on March 4, 1865
20. Abe Lincoln lost two campaigns
Bibliographies:
http://www.factslides.com/s-Lincoln
losseshttp://us-presidents.insidegov.com/stories/11648/25-facts-abraham-lincoln#Intro
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abraham_Lincoln

Top 10 Ways Not to get Sick this Winter! By Jenna Brandaleone and Jennie Rosen

 

Sleep

Going to bed works! You may hate going to bed early, but you should know that a good night’s rest is all you need to help your body fight (and win against) germs!
Wash your hands…

We have all heard it. “Remember to always wash your hands!”, but we should really listen to it more often. Washing your hands with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds can send the germs down the drain.
Stay warm…

Ever thought about going outside in your pajamas when it was below freezing? Maybe you have, but staying warm is a key factor to staying healthy. So just remember that next time you wear your pajamas outside, you are really just waving a sign that says, “GERMS! I AM OVER HERE!”.

Don’t Share drinks or foods…

Other people might have yummy food and awesome drinks, but don’t give into to those temptations! A lot of sicknesses and illnesses are caused by sharing saliva of another person. Even if the person says that they are not sick, they might still have germs! Just because symptoms don’t show up for two days, doesn’t mean they aren’t sick!
Be Clean…

Not only can a clean house or living space make awesome first impressions, but it can also keep you from getting sick! Germs can hide anywhere but more often than not, most of those times start outside of your home and then come into it. Germs can live in the dust under your couch or even just plain and dirty messes. It might be a pain to clean up, but make sure you and your homes are CLEAN!!
Stay away from people who are sick…

Ever have that repulsed feeling from that kid who snots all over your desk in class? I know I have. Besides the natural urge of moving away from them, it is important to know that having any physical touch with a person that is sick is putting you at a very high risk of being the snot-blowing-on-the-desk-kid.
Keep your hands away from your face…

Imagine all the bacteria that is invisible on your hands. This is bacteria that is prepared to fight a war with your body. It wants to win and makes you sick in the process. Well, you are actually helping this bad bacteria take control of your body when you are giving them a tour of all the ways to get inside of your body. Don’t put your hands on your face! These places are the grand doors for the bacteria to get inside your body.
Drink lots of liquids…

From drinking tea, hot chocolate, hot apple cider, or water all of these choices are good ones to keep you germ-free!
Meditate… It might be a little awkward at first, but once you get the hang of meditation it can be relaxing. It can keep you nice and healthy too. It is scientifically proven that meditation can make you happier and a healthier person.
Exercise…


Keep your body strong! If your body is strong, your immune system is too. Your immune system is all the parts of your body that fight back bad germs. REMEMBER: EVERY PUSH-UP MATTERS!

So go ahead! Try anyone of these tricks and tips and see if they work for you! BE happy AND healthy during this winter!

Pay to Play: The Problem of Youth Sports Fees by Abby Gavron

I don’t know about you, but when I first learned not all kids have a chance to play youth sports I was furious. I know I’m lucky, my family has always been able to afford the registration fees for sports. Knowing that there are kids like me that don’t have the resources to play sports makes me feel bad. My time on the field and court with my friends make up some of my best memories. I believe all families should be able to send thir children to sport even if they are on a tight budget.

Charging families for youth sports is blocking kids from learning important things including sportsmanship and teamwork, preventing kids from building friendships, and the fees create barriers between kids.

The score was 2-1. We were losing as the whistle blew my teammates all wore frustrated faces. Having arrived at the soccer field at 8:00 that morning, tired but ready to play, this loss was very disappointing. We lined up to shake hands. Even though we were all angry, there was a silent agreement between the team to be good sports, like coach always says. So, we shook everyone’s hands and thanked the referees, because that’s what we were taught. Sports are an opportunity for children to learn important skills including sportsmanship and teamwork. All kids should have the opportunity to learn these skills because later in life you will need to be able to work well with other and show sportsmanship in your everyday life. Don’t you want all children to have the chance to learn these skills?

While some people could argue that kids can make friendships at school and that, sports aren’t required to make friends, I disagree. I have had many friends throughout my life and a majority of them I made through the many sports I play. Playing sports with people for hours builds a certain type of friendship. You understand each other better. You win and lose together and that makes your friendship stronger. I can remember times I would not want to play sport. Then I’d remembered that I would get to see all my friends, it wouldn’t matter the time or day, the thought of seeing them would make me excited for practices. The bonds you make of the through sports extend far off the field or court. The current system that is not allowing all kids to play sports and develop these friendships can cause kids to be more shy, less friendly and less outgoing, the system of fees should be abolished. I believe that every child should have the opportunity to build strong friendships. No matter if the family is struggling financially.

Lastly, I feel that the cost of youth sports has created a barrier between kids. One day I was talking to my mom about sports, and that was when  I learned about the expensive fees in youth sports. I had asked my mom more about the sports fees,  she told me that we were lucky, not everyone can afford to play sports. Anger boiled up inside of me, I couldn’t believe that some kids are not allowed to play sports because they are not doing well financially. The fees represent a barrier of who can and cannot afford to play sports. I feel like this barrier will cause children who cannot afford to play sports to not interact with children who do play sports. It is sending a message of financial inequality. Is that really the message and values you want to be sending to kids?

21% of parents spend more than $1,000 on child sports. Some people can afford that easily but for others with many children the price of sports add up quickly. I believe that the fees on youth sports act as a barrier that are separating kids, preventing children from learning important lessons, and restricting kids from forming friendships. Do you honestly think it’s fair that not all children can play sports?