Monthly Archives: December 2011
ROOM 204 – CHS’ Broadcast Club met Thursday during the first half of lunch to discuss upcoming contests, as well as the club’s role in the future.
The club is beginning to work on a 10-minute film to submit for the UGotBrains Champion Schools Program. UGotBrains was started to encourage teen driving safety, as well as helping to prevent brain injury, which is the leading cause of death in teens today.
The club, as well as history teacher Bill Clark, the club adviser, will be presented with a $1,000 stipend for the project. A representative from UGotBrains will visit CHS to present the club with the stipend on Jan. 5.
Along with this contest, Broadcast Club is looking into the future as a way to expand the club’s focus, past the upcoming STN trip this spring.
In the new year, the club is looking to add challenges to their agenda, like music videos and sports reporting, as well as seniors looking to host after-school workshops.
The next Broadcast Club meeting is next Thursday at 10:30 in Room 204.
By SARAH GLEASON
This year a new rivalry started when students of the live broadcast studio elective walked into class on their first day. Unlike previous years, the class was split into two groups: one that would be mentored by TV teacher Jennifer Cornine, the other by radio teacher Bill Bengle.
“Nobody was expecting that,” said junior Austin Smith, currently a student participating in the radio element of the curriculum.
Bengle told the students that every day there would be one TV broadcast and one radio show.
“Both shows are news based, but we have independent scripts,” Smith said, referring to “Wake Up CHS” and “Words with Friends,” the television and radio broadcasts, respectively.
Bengle explained that the semester long class had been split into two marking periods, one dedicated to radio and the other to TV.
“We did a little radio last year as our first test run,” he said. “Now we have competing shows.
“Hopefully as the junior curriculum develops, with the approval of Mr. Gleason, we can create an advanced radio production course,” he said.
“I would say our equipment is as good or even better than 90 percent of the stations out there. Radio stations won’t invest in new equipment unless something breaks,” Bengle said.
“I’m really glad we’re starting radio to get it over with,” said junior radio class student Casey Cleffi. “The class itself is a lot of fun, but when it comes to grading, we all get horrible grades.”
Smith illustrated Cleffi’s point in stating that Bengle’s radio class is currently his lowest average and his only ‘B.’
“I think Mr. Bengle has high expectations,” he said.
According to Bengle, the class has “exceeded my expectations so far.”
“I’ve heard good feedback from students and teachers, including a pat on the back from Mrs. Mulshine, so that was a good indicator,” he said.
Mulshine teaches sophomore journalism class.
Cornine attributed the new radio portion of the class to an interest by the students to learn the equipment.
“We joke around when the announcement for the morning news is made,” she said, citing examples of the competitive spirit between the classes.
“Wake Up CHS has been a live broadcast every day, whereas Words with Friends just started going live recently,” Cornine said. “For good or for bad, we’re live every day.”
Junior Matt Baker, currently a member of the TV broadcast team, said he believes the TV class produces a better show.
“People seem to watch it [TV] more because they like having a visual. But I like the switch halfway through the class,” Baker continued to explain. “One you’re into something, you go with the flow.”
Senior Mary Badger, a student in Peg Wilson’s statistics class, is there each day when her class chooses between Channel 63 and Channel 64.
“We watch TV almost every morning, but we have listened to radio a few times. Most of my class prefers TV so that’s what we watch, but I like radio better,” Badger said.
“I’d have to say radio is my favorite because they do a good job of sounding professional and making interesting packages, even though they only have audio to work with.”
Junior Christian Kelly said his chemistry class praises the new radio show.
“They’re both doing pretty decent so far, but we normally listen to radio and the stories are usually entertaining,” he explained.
Badger explained that the radio show is incomparable to anything the school has done before.
“I might be more critical with the radio broadcast if I had seen it more than I’ve seen the TV broadcast,” she said.
Sophomore Jules Algava compliments the radio, but prefers TV for its visuals.
“I think the radio is very well planned and put together, and I really like the music, but I just like having a visual to go along with it, so I like TV better,” she said.
Competition between TV and radio broadcast is expected to continue until the end of the semester.
By VICTORIA CATTELONA, MEAGAN PASSERO, & JULIA VLADY
Some students have done this by applying to Big Brothers Big Sisters, a program where high school students, called the “Bigs,” are responsible for mentoring a “Little” of the Hope Academy Charter School in Asbury Park.
There are many reasons why students have signed up for the program, but the most common motive is the aspiration to assist others toward a better life.
“I really like helping out,” said freshman Alana Barofsky. “I’ve done community service with young kids before.”
According to guidance counselor Sandra Gidos, The Big Brothers Big Sisters program is about older kids pairing with younger kids to teach them “lessons and ways of the world.”
“The older kids are role models,” said Gidos. “The younger students gain insight and the older gives back to the community. It’s give-and-take.”
Operating in approximately 370 communities across the United States, according to the official website, the mission of Big Brothers Big Sisters is “to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring professionally supported one-to-one relationships that change their lives for the better, forever.”
Junior Erin Dillon offered a detailed explanation of the application process as a hopeful Big.
“The organization requires each high school student seeking to become a mentor to be carefully evaluated,” she said. “The process includes an application, three references, a criminal background check, a Social Security check, and an interview.”
Interviews were conducted here in the guidance offices, and those who were approved attended an information session on Oct. 17.
Students will meet with their Little every Tuesday after school for the duration of the year.
According to the Big Brothers Big Sisters webpage, “83 percent of former Littles surveyed agree that their Big instilled values and principles that have guided them through life.”
“It’s a really great program, and it’s a lot of fun,” said Caitlyn Winkler, who works with the Big Brothers Big Sisters program. “You get a chance to make a difference in someone’s life.”
Barofsky added, “I want them to learn that they can follow their dreams and overcome problems.”
Gidos explained that she is expecting positive results from CHS involvement in the program.
“The children get to see another side of life and aspire to be like the older students,” said Gidos. “It used to be with another school, but they weren’t able to do it this year, so they decided to look for a school with commitment,” said Gidos. “CHS fits the mold.”
By FRANCESCA COCCHI
The new courses available to full-time juniors are Print Production with Bill Allen and New Media with Laura Gesin.
“I think we are having a good time,” said Allen in reference to his Print Production course, which was previously only offered to share-time students. “The kids seem to be enjoying it.”
The course introduces students to equipment involved in mass-production and teaches the six basic types of printing, including letterpress and screen-printing. Students also learn how to cut and shrink-wrap prints as well as how to reproduce images after creating them. If students continue the course in their senior year, they will receive a national certificate that the industry recognizes.
“I think it will well-round students in their appreciation of communications,” said Allen.
Junior Kristiane Olson of Manasquan said she has been enjoying the class, which also includes two seniors from the Design Academy.
“Mr. Allen is such a great teacher because he’s so experienced in the field,” said Olson. “It’s fun because you’re learning new things you never thought you would have the opportunity to learn.”
Olson will also be taking the new media course in the spring.
“I’m really excited for it,” said Olson. “I love social networking, and I will use it for business and other convenient skills.”
In addition to new courses, several faculty switches are also occurring for juniors this year. Bryan Mann will have a junior English class in the spring, a course previously taught only by Robert Sherman.
Media writing, a class for all juniors that involves business, resume, and screen-writing, also has some teacher additions. The media writing classes this year are split between David Salowe, Bryan Mann, Kelly Harmon, and Jaime Vander Velde.
“I doubt the courses will be different,” said Salowe, who taught the class three years ago when it was called Enterprise Publishing. “Everyone’s different, but the material is the same. It’s a fun class because of the script-writing.”
Junior Julie Prascsak of Ocean Township said she is pleased with the teacher she received for media writing.
“It’s a useful class and I look forward to it every day,” said Prascsak. Kevin Erskine of Eatontown also said he is content with his Media Writing teacher, Mrs. Harmon.
“She’s very experienced, and it’s a hands-on class,” said Erskine. The changes for the juniors are mostly attributed to the addition of the Design Academy.
It is a beautiful August day; the sun is shining, your feet sink into the sand, and the ocean’s waves gently break in front of you. You reach for a water bottle from your bag, but your hand grabs something else- a book?
Don’t get me wrong: I love to read. Especially on the beach; I can relax and let the book take me into another world. However, almost all of the required summer reading I have been forced to read has not exactly sparked my interest.
Let’s be honest- who actually reads all their summer reading? The most reading we do is scrambling on SparkNotes’ website the day before the test when school comes around.
CHS has worked on this problem over the past few years. Now, there is a required book, and the choice of one book from a list of pre-approved selections. I think that a choice is a great start; it gives students an option to pick a book from the genre they most enjoy.
But what’s the point of assigning summer reading if kids aren’t actually taking away anything from it, besides learning how to cram for an exam? Summer reading should be about refreshing your brain over a long break with something that will stimulate it- whether for you, that’s a James Patterson thriller or a vampire-themed science fiction novel (though I hope not the latter).
Instead, I challenge CHS to break the traditional summer reading barrier. Instead of a required, lackluster novel, students can choose their own summer reading- maybe by using guidelines such as a page number requirement or recognition (for example, a New York Times Bestseller). And while nothing says “welcome back” like a summer reading test, an alternate assignment could be instated, such as a book report or review.
While summer reading may need to be a constant in the education world, it doesn’t have to be hackneyed. Allowing students to choose their own books gives them the freedom that we have come to know and love here at Communications- and maybe, it will give teachers some new book ideas for themselves.
By ALYSSA MATLOSZ and MATTHEW STROMBERG
“Thank you for being you.”
“You look great today.”
“Look on the bright side.”
The greetings were written on the little red banners waving atop dozens of cupcakes on Oct. 7, part of a “Respect Week” celebration by health instructor David Moran and his class.
Moran joined the teaching staff in September as a temporary substitute for biology teacher Jeanine Gomez, who is out on maternity leave.
In conjunction with “Respect Week,” Oct. 3 to Oct. 7, Moran’s freshman health class supplied cupcakes with a “positive message” for the entire school.
“We want to hand you a cupcake and say something important,” Moran said, as students distributed the chocolate, vanilla, red velvet and M&M cupcakes.
“We have a positive message on each one to make people feel better about themselves,” said Caroline Stanzon of Moran’s health class.
“It’s the cutest thing ever, and it made me feel happy because I love music and cupcakes,” junior Lillie Karch said referring to Lady Gaga’s “Born this Way” and “The Macarana” blasting from a black CD player in the corner.
According to the students in the health class, the music was “self-esteem raising,” and led to a small group of dancing students.
Freshman Megan Kelleher of Moran’s Tuesday/Thursday health class was one of the students dancing.
“I think it was a mix of the people who were there, and we heard a good song come on and we just started dancing. There were a lot of people getting cupcakes and people just kind of joined in,” she said.
“Music makes people feel good,” Moran told the students standing around him.
“Honestly I do think it was a success, they said they passed out every single cupcake they brought in. I like him, he keeps things interesting,” Kelleher said.
Moran made an announcement over the megaphone for the entire cafeteria:
“We want to give you an important message about how important you are,” he said, his voice booming over the lunch tables.
It comes as no surprise to many that Moran has a bumper sticker reading “just be nice” on the back of his car.
“It’s all about having your mind, body, and spirit in a positive place. It can be a challenge to get all three things going in the right direction,” Moran said. “This project is for healthy mind, body, and spirit, so you can be healthy,” he said.
Principal James Gleason approved of the cupcake celebration, and said it was a nice way to end the Week of Respect.
“I think this was a great idea for the class and a wonderful thing for the school to be doing,” he said.
By BLAKE STIMPSON
Admittedly, college football isn’t the most popular sport in New Jersey. Besides the occasional glimmer of hope Rutgers affords the Garden State, sports loyalties clearly lie with beloved New York teams; the Giants, Jets, Yankees and Mets are the big ones.
However, NCAA athletics are still a huge business with a gigantic following around the country. This empire, though, may be on the brink of a drastic overhaul. The trending word: superconference.
With college football reaching a new height of popularity, universities are looking to capitalize.
Being part of a successful conference helps. TV deals, bowl bids, and better recruits are just some perks.
Aaron Patel, a former CHS student, has an inside viewpoint on the subject. He currently attends Rutgers, a school situated in the tenuous Big East.
“I think with the revenue generated from TV dollars and conference games it will force the creation of superconferences with the additional conference games that come with it,” Patel said. This will bring more viewership to the networks, more money to the conferences, and more money to the schools.”
Despite the apparent positives of this situation, there remain many skeptics.
Their argument hinges on points such as awkward geographic relationships and diminished rivalries due to these proposed conferences.
Michael Lopes, a sophomore from Freehold, is one of these doubters.
“It seems like all of these conference changes are negatively impacting college football because either the conference teams have more competition or less depending on which teams left, and all of this just seems confusing.”
In the end, there will always be supporters and naysayers. Either way, it seems a drastic change is coming to one of America’s most beloved sports.
By ALEX CROS & ALANA BAROFSKY
sophomores, juniors and seniors found a big change in the system.
Digital imaging teacher and longtime school picture photographer Maryanne Rodriguez was no longer
behind the camera; instead, it was a company hired by the school.
Rodriguez’ personal touch was greatly missed, students said.
“This year I felt like I was on a conveyer belt in a factory, just being sent through the line as quickly as
possible,” said junior Sarah Soltes.
Lifetouch photography was selected this year to capture the students’ school portraits.
The photographers planned to start at 7 a.m. but were late, which set the schedule behind, to the
complaints of waiting students.
Some students questioned the speed of the process in Room 107 as a photographer led them to a seat
and snapped their picture.
Senior Gabby Maurer said the process this year was rushed when compared to prior years.
“I understand that they were late, but that was their fault,” she said. “It wasn’t a huge deal because I had
already taken my senior pictures, but I as soon as I sat down they were already done with me.”
Sophomore Kristin Dolan agreed.
“The pictures this year were way too fast. All they said was ‘sit up straight’ and then took it,” Dolan
Some students said they preferred Rodriguez’ service to that of Lifetouch.
“I liked Mrs. Rodriguez better because she let us retake our pictures if we didn’t like it on the first take,”
said sophomore Julianne Feaver.
Maurer said she appreciated the benefit of seeing her picture before it was printed, and the possibility of
retaking it several times without charge.
“Last year was much more relaxed, which makes sense because it was in-house,” she said.
Rodriguez said the change will save her a lot of time. “It’s a lot less work for me. It’s not a big deal for
me either way,” she said.
But the school used its in-house service as a fundraiser, something the school will probably miss, she
“When I took the pictures, CHS raised about $3,000, which bought equipment, supplies and the buses
for field trips,” she said.
“This year, it became much pricier, and you had to order a package. This isn’t convenient or cost
effective,” said Maurer.
Principal James Gleason said students were able to get their ID cards earlier in the year and they
included better features, including the bar code and a thicker paper.
“One of the big things was the student IDs. The organization did it for free and can handle it better,”
Students received their latest school portraits from Lifetouch in mid-October, with retakes taken shortly
after. They still miss the old way, some students said.
“When Mrs. Rodriguez took our pictures, I always got to have a nice little conversation with her and she’d
compliment my smile so that was lovely,” said Soltes.
By SEAN CAVANAGH & MARY SAYDAH
As the leaves started changing and the nights grew darker day by day, people around the country
began to prepare for the chilling festival of Halloween.
For high school students who participate in the holiday by dressing up as Lady Gaga, or going door-to-
door for a Snickers, the same question gets renewed each year: Am I too old to trick-or-treat?
“I think college is a good time to stop,” said freshman Emily Winter of Middletown.
Freshman Emily Woods of Middletown agrees. “I like getting all of the candy and it’s an excuse to hang
out with friends and dress up,” she said.
However, some students like junior Julie Prascsak from Ocean will not be celebrating the old-fashioned
way of ringing doorbells, something she attributes to Halloween falling on a Monday.
“Last year I went in Spring Lake with a group of friends. Having it on Sunday wasn’t bad, but this
year it’s different having it on a school day. By the time you get home you’re really not going to want to do
anything,” she said.
“I’ll dress up for school, but that’s probably about it,” Prascsak added.
Other students agree that they are too old to ask for M&Ms and Jolly Ranchers from their neighbors.
“I did last year, but this year I probably won’t,” said Katie Reulbach, a junior from Fair Haven.
For some students as they have gotten older, the meaning of Halloween has changed. It still includes
dressing up, but instead of the usual trick-or-treating, they celebrate in a different way.
“My friends always have these Halloween parties, and sometimes we go out to get candy. But it’s not
like traditional trick-or-treating, and our costumes are usually just putting on a cowboy hat or something,”
said sophomore Catherine McLean of Matawan.
Even though some teenagers are gradually putting an end to a favorite pastime, others have never liked it at
History teacher Bill Clark said that his son was never fond of Halloween. Clark said his son, now 23, has
rough memories of the holiday, including a Humpty Dumpty costume that allegedly scarred him.
Clark shared his deciding factor for putting an end to his own trick-or-treating career.
“I eventually got a job and realized that with the money I earned I could just buy my own candy,” he