Winter Edition 2018

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2 Truths and a Lie: Music Teachers

By Lily O' Daly and Eliza Levitt


Directions: Each teacher below gave us 2 truths and 1 lie . . . can you figure out the lie? See answers at the end of this issue.

Behind the Scenes

A look behind the scenes at our writers and editors hard at work. Great job!

The Little Mermaid

by Lily O'Daly and Katerina Pramataris


“Airspeed, check. Altitude, check. Landing gear, check. Awk! Hello there!”

This year’s fall musical is The Little Mermaid! This amazing production features Sophia Diaz as Ariel, Cooper Arbisi as Prince Eric, Luke Raymond as Flounder, Nolan Tucker as Sebastian, TJ Rodgers as King Triton, Arianna Surrow as Ursula, and Emmet Blaney as Scuttle. The sixth, seventh, and eighth-grade students worked together to execute a “what’s that word again?” What an amazing performance. Everyone involved in this accomplishment worked very hard to show the best talent Berner has to offer.


It all starts with auditions. Students who are eager to be a part of the musical have two auditions. The first one is a dance audition. Everyone learns a dance and practices it in the hall. When it's your group's turn, you go onto the stage in the auditorium and do the dance twice. The next audition is solo. At the interest meeting, you will get a song. At the second audition, you sing the song you picked. Later, a call-back list is posted, and the few people chosen for it will sing their song again in front of other students who were also chosen for the call-back. A few days after, the list is posted and the process of making the show begins! Rehearsals take place after school until 5:30. There is a lot of laughter and fun. Finally, the week of the show arrives. The cast works extra hard this week to perfect the show. For most of the time, practice is until 8:00! The show is almost here! We hope you enjoyed the Little Mermaid! We encourage you to try out next year!


Now, we wanted to see what our fellow Berner students thought, so we asked some new-to-Berner 6th graders to share their opinions on this school's spectacular skill!


Mariella Vaca: “I loved the musical! It was so creative, and the choreography was perfect. I loved all the characters. The lead actresses, Ariel and Ursula, had amazing voices and I think they were perfect for the job. The music was great! The pit orchestra/band was in tune and on time. Great job to everyone!”


Naomi Tesoriere: “The musical was amazing! All the students brought their best performance to the stage! I felt like I was at a Broadway play. The students acted so well, I thought they were the real characters. The music was great and everyone had magnificent voices. The cast put so much time into practicing and it really paid off!”


Katherine Rodriguez: “I thought it was brilliant, everyone worked their best to make it awesome. It was so hard to not look away. The music was perfect, same with the movements. I really hope everyone enjoyed the show as I did. Great job to everyone!”


Lily Smith: “The Little Mermaid was spectacular beyond belief! I really enjoyed watching this wonderful play, and I never got bored at any second. The stage crew was on point, and everyone who was in The Little Mermaid did a phenomenal job! Overall, this play was beyond incredible, and everything about it was incredible as well!”

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The Little Mermaid; interviews with the cast and stage crew!

by Olivia Kenney


“Somewhere she is singing and her voice is waiting there for me.” Did you LOVE the Little Mermaid production? Was it totally amazing to watch? Would you like to see what some people in the cast and stage crew said about their experiences? Then this is the article for you!


How was your experience with rehearsals?

Cooper Arbisi (Prince Eric): “My experience with rehearsals was great! Ms. Tauches was always super supportive of all of us, and I cherished every single rehearsal because of how amazingly talented and kind the cast was!”


Aby Colfer (Mersister): “My experience with rehearsals was great! Everyone was super nice and worked extremely hard to get to where we were on show night!”


Katerina Pramataris (Featured Dancer): “With this being my first middle school production, things were a little new for me. I learned lots of new things as well as caught up with old friends from elementary school. I think we put a lot of hard work into rehearsals, but in the end, it paid off!”


What was the most memorable moment for you?

Julia Duffy (Princess Solois and Maid): “The most memorable thing that happened is that I made so many close friends through 'The Little Mermaid.'”


Sabrina Swirsky (Featured Dancer): “It’s hard to pick just one amazing moment, but some of the best moments were when all of the cast were together and we were just all talking and singing and having such a good time.”


Who would you like to thank most?

Emily Reynolds (Mersister): “I think that I would like to thank my family the most. All of the support and love that they have shown all my life makes me so grateful and loving of them.”


Julianna Holmes (Mersister): “I would like to thank many people in the show, but the people I would thank the most are Mrs. Tauches and Danielle. They both put the show together. Without Danielle's dances the play would be boring and without all the work, and everything Mrs. Tauches has done for us. Without them there would be no play. It was one of the best experiences of my life. I was able to work with all of you and I will definitely continue to work with my new play family that has made my life so much better.”


Do you plan to stay in musical theatre throughout your years in Massapequa schools?

Antonia Buscemi (Mersister): “I do plan to stay in theatre throughout all of my school years! I'm so glad I got to be a part of this play!”


Lily O’Daly (Water Chorus): “I definitely plan to stay in theatre throughout my years at Massapequa schools! I love putting a show together and performing it! I can’t wait to see what production we do next year!”


Diana Pramataris (Stage Crew): “Yes, I do plan to stay in theatre.”


And there you have it, folks. Interviews from different parts of the cast and stage crew. Hopefully, this helped show anyone that was scared to audition for the play that it is a great opportunity. Now you know how fun it is! Hope this “mermade your day!

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Sixth Grade Halloween Dance

by Gianna DiLucci and Jamie Stoll


The week of Halloween, sixth graders got ready for the dance. Their costumes were set and plans were made. People were ready to have fun! On Friday the 26th of October, the sixth grade Halloween dance took place. As a sixth grader, I had an inside look into all of the fun parts of the dance!


Decorations

When I got to the dance at 7:15 PM, I was satisfied. It looked great! By the DJ booth, they had an archway of balloons hung by one string--this amazed me! There were tables set up with games, snacks, and even a temporary tattoo station! There was a table where raffle tickets were being sold, and balloons surrounded every table. The DJ booth was at the front playing music. I think this was a great setup!


Snacks

The food at the dance was a choice of warm pretzels, candy, and water. The prices were great and the food was so good-- I wish there was more!


Raffles and Costume Contest

The raffle offered great prizes! The prizes included: Dunkin Donuts gift cards, Amazon gift cards, and a Dave and Buster’s basket! The raffles were held at the end of the party. Before they announced the raffle winners, there were small games like guessing how much candy in a jar and guessing the weight of a pumpkin. The winners got great prizes, and I hope to win next year! There was also a costume contest. Winners were chosen for different categories such as: best boys costume, best girls costume, best duo or group costumes, and most creative overall costume.


Activities

There were also skill-based games. My favorite one was the ring toss! This game was a bit difficult, but the prizes made it worth it!


In conclusion, the Halloween Dance was great! I had a lot of fun with my friends, taking part in the raffles, having snacks, and playing games. I think it was a great time for all of the sixth graders who went! Be sure to attend next year!


The 6th Grade Halloween Dance- Recap by: Jamie Stoll


Did you go to the 6th grade Halloween dance? This year for Halloween I was a fat panda. So if you saw a fat panda at the dance, say hello, there’s a fat chance it was me. See what I did there? Anyway, in the Halloween dance, they had a costume contest, photo booth, temporary tattoo station, snacks, candy and games. Overall, it was really fun. The best part was when the DJ played the “Cotton Eye Joe” because everyone was dancing!

Winter Recipes

by Carly Elfenbein and Eliza Levitt


Snowball Cookies

Ingredients:

1 c. all-purpose flour

1 1/2 c. walnuts, finely chopped

1/4 c. sugar

pinch of salt

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1/2 c. softened butter, chopped

2 c. powdered sugar


Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line a large cookie sheet with parchment. In a large bowl, mix flour, walnuts, sugar, salt, and vanilla. Add butter and, using your hands, combine everything until mixture resembles a coarse meal.

2. Form dough into small balls and place on prepared cookie sheet.

3. Bake 15 minutes.

4. When they’re still warm but cool enough to touch, roll cookies in powdered sugar.

5. Set aside on a rack to cool completely. When cool, dust again in powdered sugar.


Eggnog No- Bake Cheesecake

Ingredients:

1 ½ c. heavy cream

12 oz. cream cheese, softened

½ c. sugar

⅓ c. eggnog

2 tsp. ground nutmeg

1 graham cracker pie crust, homemade or store-bought


Directions:

1. Using an electric mixer, beat heavy cream until stiff peaks form. Add cream cheese and beat until completely smooth.

2. Fold in sugar, eggnog, and nutmeg.

3. Pour mixture into prepared pie crust, smoothing over top with a rubber spatula. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 4 hours.


Hot Cocoa Ice Cream

Ingredients:

3 c. heavy cream

1 14-oz. can of sweetened condensed milk

3 hot cocoa packets

1 c. mini marshmallows, plus more for garnish


Directions:

1. Using an electric blender, beat heavy cream until stiff peaks form.

2. Fold in sweetened condensed milk, hot cocoa packets, and mini marshmallows.

3. Transfer mixture to a 9"-x-5" loaf pan and smooth the top with a spatula. Top with additional marshmallows and freeze until firm, 5 hours.

4. When ready to serve, remove from freezer to let soften, 10 minutes.


Peppermint Bark

Ingredients:

30 crushed peppermint hard candies, divided

1 ½ pound milk chocolate candy, coarsely chopped

1 ½ pound white chocolate, coarsely chopped

1 teaspoon oil- based peppermint flavoring, or to taste

Directions:

1. Spread 1/3 of the peppermint candy over a 9x13-inch baking pan lined with wax paper.

2. Melt the milk chocolate in the top of a double boiler over just-barely simmering water, stirring frequently and scraping down the sides with a rubber spatula to avoid scorching, just until melted. Pour the melted chocolate over peppermint candy in the prepared pan. Sprinkle another 1/3 of the candy on top of the milk chocolate. Refrigerate until the chocolate hardens, about 30 minutes.

3. Melt the white chocolate in the top of a double boiler over just-barely simmering water, stirring frequently and scraping down the sides with a rubber spatula to avoid scorching. Stir in the oil-based peppermint flavoring. Pour the white chocolate over the milk chocolate, then spread the remaining 1/3 peppermint candy on top.

4. Refrigerate until the white chocolate hardens, about 30 minutes. Cut or break into pieces to serve.


Crustless Slow Cooker Apple Pie

Ingredients:

2 ¼ pounds (about 6) apples peeled, cored, and cut into ¼ - inch- thick slices

⅓ cup packed light brown sugar

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

Directions:

1. Place the apples, brown sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a slow cooker. Stir to combine.

2. Cover and cook on high for 2 hours or on low for 4 hours, until the apples are bubbling and tender. When served, recommended with cool whip or vanilla ice cream.

Enjoy!!!


Chocolate Cream Pie in a Jar

Yield: 4 Prep Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 Cups of Crushed Graham Crackers

  • 8 Tablespoons of Butter, Melted

  • 1 Packet of Chocolate Pudding Mix

  • 1 Cup of Milk

  • 2 Cups of Heavy Cream

  • 2 Tablespoons of Sugar

  • Chocolate Shavings for Garnish

  • 4 Mason Jars

Directions:

Make Crust:

  1. In a large bowl, mix graham cracker crumbs with the butter until completely coated

Make Pudding:

2. Mix the chocolate pudding mix with milk and let it set for 5 minutes.*

Make Cream:

3. In a stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment (or with a hand mixer) beat heavy cream until stiff peaks form. Stir in the sugar.*

Put it all Together:

4. In 4 mason jars, layer graham cracker crust on the bottom and then add the chocolate pudding and whipped cream. Alternate adding the pudding and cream until you reach the top.

5. Garnish with the chocolate shavings and enjoy!

* For best results, transfer into piping bags

Interview with 7th Grade Soccer Coach Scanio

by Christian Marmo


Fun Fact: Did you know that he started playing soccer in 1972 until 1996? He said that he only played for Massapequa schools. Mr. Scanio also liked football, lacrosse, and basketball.


Did you ever wonder if our school soccer coaches really love soccer? Well, today I had the same question, so I interviewed the 7th grade soccer coach, Mr. Scanio.


My first question was: “Do you really enjoy soccer?”


He answered, “Yes.”


The next thing I asked was, “How did this year's soccer tryouts run?”

Mr. Scanio told me the basics of soccer. Mr. Scanio looks for the better players with a positive attitude because that is who goes first. Everyone gets the same amount of playing time and tries to get everyone the chance to be the captain. He told me that this year he and his team did better than last year. Last year, they won 3 games and lost 6 games but this year the 7th grade team finished the season with 4 wins and 5 losses. Soccer coaches use different kinds of formations. The formation that Mr.Scanio chooses is a 4,2,2. A 4,2,2 formation means that there are 4 people in the back 2 in the middle and 2 up top.


How does Mr. Scanio run a smooth season? Here are some tips he gives the players: Be on time for practice, work hard, keep a positive attitude, try your best, and most of all get on the bus at 3:30 for the away games. Home games start at 4:30 which gives you time to study, yet be on time for the game.


Thank you to Mr. Scanio for allowing me to interview you and great job to the 7th grade soccer players!

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Interview with an 8th Grade Soccer Player

by Nick Muscara


I interviewed a proud member of the 8th grade boys soccer team. He had a lot of interesting things to say about the team and the season.


Interviewer: “What is it like to be on a school sports team?”


Player’s response: “It's good to be part of a team. It's fun to compete.”


Interviewer: “What were the tryouts like?”


Player’s response: “The tryouts were hard, but I was willing to push myself to the limits to make the team.”


Interviewer: “What type of commitment do you have to make to the team?”


Player’s response: “You have to be there every day. When you miss a practice, you may not play in the next game.”


Interviewer: “Would you recommend joining a school sports team to 7th graders?”


Player’s response: “Yes, It is a good way to have fun and hang out with your friends at the same time.”


The eighth grade boys soccer team ended their season with six wins, 2 losses, and 1 tie. Great job!

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Riddles

compiled by Carly Elfenbein


Answers can be found at the end of this issue.


1. What goes up but never comes down?

2. What can you catch but not throw?

3. What belongs to you but other people use it more?

4. What stays in the corner, but can travel around the world?

5. What tastes better than it smells?

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All About the First Thanksgiving

by Lily O'Daly


When someone thinks about Thanksgiving, they might think about food and family. Although those things are great, where did Thanksgiving really start?


How Did it Start?

In September 1620, a small ship called The Mayflower left England. It was carrying 102 passengers, all looking for religious freedom. The trip lasted sixty-six days until finally, they dropped anchor near the tip of Cape Cod. This destination was farther north than they desired, so they crossed Massachusetts Bay and ended up in Plymouth. The first brutal winter came. Most settlers stayed on board of the ship. Only half them lived to see spring.


Friendly Native Americans helped them learn to do simple tasks that they would need to know in order to survive. The Native Americans names were Squanto and Samoset. They made peace with the Pilgrims. The First Thanksgiving is a celebration of this peace.


What Was on the Menu?

In the present day, we eat turkey and other delicious foods on Thanksgiving. What did the Pilgrims and Native Americans eat during the first Thanksgiving? Did you know, that turkey wasn’t even on the menu! The menu:

  • Lobster

  • Waterfowl (duck)

  • Venison

  • Ham

  • Clams

  • Berries

  • Fruit

  • Pumpkin

  • Squash

  • Pumpkin Pie


Fun Facts


  • No forks were used at the first Thanksgiving! The first Thanksgiving was eaten with spoons and knives — but no forks! That's right, forks weren't even introduced to the Pilgrims until 10 years later and weren't a popular utensil until the 18th century.
  • Thanksgiving was almost a fast — not a feast! The early settlers gave thanks by praying and abstaining from food, which is what they planned on doing to celebrate their first harvest, that is until the Wampanoag Indians joined them and (lucky for us!) turned their fast into a three-day feast!

  • Presidential pardon of a turkey: Each year, the president of the U.S pardons a turkey and spares it from being eaten for Thanksgiving dinner. The first turkey pardon ceremony started with President Truman in 1947. President Obama pardoned a 45-pound turkey named Courage, who has flown to Disneyland and served as Grand Marshal of the park's Thanksgiving Day parade!

  • Americans eat 46 million turkeys each Thanksgiving.

  • Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin's first meal in space after walking on the moon was foil packets with roasted turkey.

  • Benjamin Franklin wanted the turkey to be the national bird, not the eagle.

Sources: http://allparenting.com/my-life/articles/969379/20-thanksgiving-fun-facts-to-teach-kids
https://www.history.com/topics/thanksgiving/history-of-thanksgiving

Is Free Content at Stake?

by Gabriel Gomez


It seems like, with every passing hour, the internet is slowly getting less and less free for content creators. Nothing exemplifies this more than the passing of Article 13 by the European Union. This article will explain how this, and other important factors, may affect the internet; for better or for worse.


The most important thing to establish is the ideas of fair use and safe harbor. Fair use is the most influential law passed to affect content creators right next to the idea of copyrighted content itself. Fair use is exactly what it sounds like; it allows content creators to use copyrighted or trademarked material for fair reasons. These include education, constructive criticism, reviewing, news reporting, parody, quotation, research, and the list goes on. What this means is that if you’re a filmmaker with a small team of friends and you create a documentary on, say, global warming but used copyrighted footage from National Geographic®, which is one of the listed actions that fall under fair use. As long as proper credit was given for the footage, they would be in the green. Fair use is divided into four values that cover what qualifies as fair use and what doesn’t. The first value is “purpose and character of use”. This, in a nutshell, states that to have something fall under fair use, it must show a clear message of trying to enhance knowledge or progress the arts. The second value is “nature of the copyright work”. What this means is that the aspects are considered relevant in whether the content is qualified for fair use. For instance, if I created a work of fiction based upon somebody else’s copyrighted work and claimed it for an educational reason, it would be relevant that my work was not a work of nonfiction. This is one of the more weak links in the chain of fair use since the Supreme Court ruled that “the availability of copyright protection should not depend on the artistic quality or merit of a work”. The third value is “amount and substantiality.” This one doesn’t need a whole lot of explaining. The general rule of thumb here is that the less available a work is to the public, the more it is considered fair use. The fourth and final value of fair use is “effect upon work value.” The name sounds fancy, but it actually sums up this value pretty well. What it means is that if you claim somebody’s work under fair use, and use it to significantly harm their own business or reputation, your work may fall under infringement or plagiarism.


Now that you know how fair use works and its parts, we can get onto the next most influential law over the content on the internet; safe harbor. Luckily, we don’t need a history lesson to understand this. Safe harbor states that if a content creator has his copyrighted content stolen and illegally reproduced on any online website, such as YouTube®, then the owner of said content can send out a request for the site (YouTube®) to take down the content. This ensures that work is not taken for reasons that do not fall under fair use.


So what’s the big whoop? Do we have a bunch of copyright laws that all make sense, right? Well, that’s in the United States. Over in the European Union, they do things pretty differently. What we call fair use is their permitted use. At first, this seems like a simple word swap that doesn’t affect anything at all, but it actually changes a lot. Permitted means that you have somebody’s consent to carry out something. So what this means is that permitted use, in a nutshell, is that if you want to use somebody’s work for something other than a nonprofit, education purpose, you need them to directly approve of it. You can still use copyrighted work for parody, quotation, private use or classroom use, but that is it, compared the U.S. list that goes on for quite a while. So, let’s say I upload a video that uses an episode from The Big Bang Theory® on YouTube® as a review. Not at all an issue in the USA, since that qualifies as fair use. However, a permitted use in the EU doesn’t cover this. This means I’d have to get the written consent of CBS® saying that they’re alright with me doing this. If they don’t, then guess what; my content is copyright infringement and they can send a notice to YouTube® telling them to take down my video. This means that a lot of free content creators in the U.S. attempt to get their content uploaded in Europe, only to realize that it’s blocked since they used a clip copyrighted by somebody else. This is a big issue for content creators, considering that a large portion of their audience lives in the EU, and their content, at any moment, may be taken down for copyright infringement.


All of this seems like quite the hassle, but now we’re getting to Article 13. This thing is fuel to the fire of fair copyright use in the EU. This is the hot topic for the end of the year, and I’ve definitely heard more than one of my friends say the EU is trying to “ban memes”. Fundamentally, yes. A meme does not fall under the strict category of parody in the dwindling list of things approved for a permitted use in the EU. Therefore, any person who uses copyrighted footage or images from a content creator can easily be struck down with copyright. Now, let’s go over how Article 13 is going to change the internet. The first major development in Article 13 is stated in paragraph 1a. “information society service providers and right holders shall cooperate with each other”. What this means is that the content providers are now responsible for making sure that content that doesn’t fall under permitted use and has copyrighted items in it is taken off the website. The EU was already harsh on free content using copyrighted items, but now the websites themselves must enforce these rules, making it even more difficult to upload free content under permitted use. This also ensures that websites must get filters such as YouTube’s® to ensure they can stay competitive in the European market. This is the most major paragraph, and the others mostly enforce already standard services on most websites. There is some hope, as Paragraph 3 states “The Member States shall facilitate, where appropriate, the cooperation between the information society service providers referred to in paragraph 1, user representatives and right holders through stakeholder dialogues to define best practices for the implementation of paragraph 1”. Pay attention to the underlined phrase, it’s the most important aspect of this. What this is saying in context is that members of the online community are allowed to discuss with the EU rules about how paragraph 1 should influence the community. It isn’t likely they’ll be able to have much more say that members of the Council of the Congress of Europe, but it is a step in the right direction.


When all is said and done, is the title of this article really correct? Yes, but there is still hope for the internet and its free content creators. In the end, it’s up to the EU, and possibly up to us, to ensure that the internet remains a free platform.

Sources: Ideas taken from Matthew Patrick’s “Film Theory” episode “All your Memes are Dead!” at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GbXHrj8k7dg

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fair_use

http://www.europarl.europa.eu/cmsdata/149477/19062018%20Copyright%20directive_CA%20%20alternative%20CA_final.pdf
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Percy Jackson Review

by Cooper Arbisi


Do you love suspense? Do you like major twists that will spin your world around? Do you like dragons, unicorns, and all different mythical creatures? If your answer to all of these questions is yes, then you should definitely read the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series. There are other series related to Percy Jackson, such as The Kane Chronicles, and The Heroes of Olympus (there are many more too!) Without giving too much away, the books are about a teenage boy named Percy Jackson who finds out a huge secret, about his family, and has to live his life in a very different way. He struggles to survive as the days fly by. There are many reasons why the Percy Jackson series is an excellent read! First of all, it’s a great way to travel to another world in seconds. It will bring everything you love to life, which makes you hooked to the series.


Some people might hold this off for a while because they might think that Percy Jackson is boring, but it is not something to hold off on! Just read a couple of chapters, and you will be guaranteed to fall in love with the series. In addition, Percy Jackson isn’t the only loveable character in the series. Throughout the books, there are many different characters that people can relate and connect to. Some of these characters include: Annabeth and Grover. Everyone can make a connection to them because of their actions and decisions during their adventures throughout the novels. As quoted by Fantasy Book Review, they say, “I often fear reading young adult books because the main characters can be immature, which can get on the nerves of any adult. Amazingly, Percy seems to be mostly free of self-pity and angst while still staying young and believable.” As you can see, this series is suitable for all audiences, even adults! Right away, it gets you so intrigued to the story that you can’t stop reading! Every single page in every book is filled with such detail that it brings an image to your head, and multiplies the excitement by one-thousand. This is why I recommend the Percy Jackson series to everyone! Be sure to get a copy of the novel and read it today!

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Should You Read Harry Potter?

by Charlotte Focarazzo


Who is Harry Potter? You may have heard the name before. You may also know it is the name of a famous book series about a famous young wizard, written by J.K. Rowling. J.K. Rowling first had the idea of writing Harry Potter in 1990 while on a train to London’s King Cross. Harry Potter is a seven book series. There are also eight movies since the last book was split into two movies. In the books, Harry and his best friends, Ron and Hermione, learn magic and spells at their school — Hogwarts School Of Witchcraft and Wizardry.


The series has adventures and cliffhangers that will make you want to keep reading! Here are a few things to consider before asking your parent for a ride to the library.


Are you an avid reader?

They are long books that will require stamina to explore all of the books in the series.


Do you like fantasy?

There are magical characters, places, and objects in these books. The whole series takes place in the magical Wizarding World. If you don’t like fantasy, this probably isn’t the story for you.


Do you enjoy reading about mystery?

In the first book, Harry learns he is a wizard at the age of 12. He and his best friends, Hermione and Ron, must solve the mystery of the Sorcerer’s Stone in their first year at Hogwarts School. Throughout the books, there are many more mysteries for the trio to solve, as they battle Lord Voldemort, the most evil wizard in their world.


Still, want to read Harry Potter? Go for it! You’ll be cast under a spell and brought into a magical new world!

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Super Mario Party Review

by Aidan Moody


Nintendo has dominated video game charts ever since the success of the Atari and continues to do so today with the Nintendo Switch. One of its most recent games, Super Mario Party, is the next game of a series that continues to ruin friendships. It is a spin off franchise of the Mario games in which you compete in mini-games with friends, and try to get stars along the way. The person with the most stars at the end, wins that game-- this is no different in Super Mario Party.


Story

Let’s start with the story. One day, Mario, Luigi, Peach, and a bunch of others are arguing in a forest about who should be the superstar. They all decide that the best way to solve that problem is by playing Mario Party (really just what happens in the real world). Throughout the game, you stumble upon gems. You can get them for very challenging acts or being a completionist. The game characters say that whoever gets the 5 gems first will be crowned superstar. Now that you know the basics, let’s go into the actual game.


Game Mechanics

Players will roll dice to see who goes first, second, and so on. In that order, players will then take turns rolling another dice to see how many spaces they will move across the board. After everybody has had a turn rolling the dice, you will play a mini game. Mini games will give you coins, as well as many spaces on the board, but what you are really after are stars. One space on the board will be a star space, in which you are able to buy a star. Stars cost 10 coins, but stars are worth more than coins. Even 100 coins do not equal 1 star, so you have to play smart if you want to win. Personally, I feel that a certain amount of coins should equal a star-- It would add a little more strategy to the game. At the end of the game, there are 2 bonus stars that are given to the players who have excelled in certain areas, such as whoever bought the most items, or whoever moved the most spaces. It is a different combination every time. It definitely adds a new way of playing the game as you can aim for the bonuses by being the best in certain categories of the game. In the end, whoever has the most stars wins the game.


Options

When you first enter the game, there is regular Mario Party, River Survival and Partner Party. After a few games of Mario Party, you will unlock Sound Stage. Once you play through all of the mini games, a new mode will unlock and you have access to the mini games. There are 4 boards in regular Mario Party, 3 of which are unlocked from the start. This is the same for Partner Party. River Survival and Sound Stage have custom boards. You have 12 playable characters to start off, and you can unlock 4 more, by experimenting with new modes and walking around the map. Each character has their own special dice that can be used while playing as that character. So all in all, there are many ways to play the game.


Cons

Even though the game is pretty good, there are still some problems with the game. I feel that the four courses can get old, and repetitive after a while. Some previous games had more courses, so I don’t know why they could just put 1 or 2 more courses. There is also hardly any fun in playing solo. I know that the game is meant to be played with friends, but while playing, I found that there is hardly any solo content for the game. Maybe if they added a new game mode that was aimed at solo players, it would be a better experience overall. I understand that I gave some suggestions that I also praised, but it is important to know the cons as well.


Final review

All in all, the game is very good, though they could have spent a little more time adding new features and tweaking certain things. I personally think that it is not worth the 60 dollars that it is on the EShop, but that doesn’t matter. Overall, the game is great, and maybe even one of the best Mario parties out there. If you are thinking about getting the game, I would wait until the price goes down a little.

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Super Smash Bros Ultimate

by Chris Schimkus


On January 21, 1999, Super Smash Bros 64 was released. Not so long after that, Super Smash Bros Melee was released, adding in so many new fighters. 7 years later Super Smash Bros Brawl was released adding a story mode, then Smash Bros for Wii U/3DS. Now a brand new game, Super Smash Bros Ultimate is being released.

What is Smash Bros?

The Smash Bros series is a game where multiple Nintendo franchises (and third party characters) come together for an epic crossover to battle it out until one person, your team, stands. The games are created by Masahiro Sakurai, who was only 29 when he created the first game. In the beginning, it wasn’t too popular, but overtime, the community started to grow over the game. A sequel is what the fans wanted, so at a Nintendo Direct, a new game was going to be released unofficially (which meant that the game was not planned to be made).


With the little time for the game to be released, Sakuari and his team worked hard to get it finished it time. This game was so much more amazing than the last that a third game was in order. Sakuari, on the other hand, wanted to this to be the last game in the series, so he added a story mode which caught the fan’s attention. The game release had cut some characters for new ones to take their place. Smash Bros Brawl was also incredible-- the Smash Bros community waited for the new game to arrive.


The fourth game had many delays due to the character roster being thought about many times and Sakurai feeling too much pressure if the game would do poorly; In the end, the game did do poorly. The main reason for this is that the character roster was expanded again, but so many old fighters were cut. Another reason why people disliked it is that there was no story mode and something called Smash Tour took its place. That’s why Sakurai had an idea to create an Ultimate Game where every character was back, and new fighters were also added. This new game is called Super Smash Bros Ultimate.


What’s in Smash Ultimate?

Smash Ultimate includes all previous and new stages, characters, assist trophies, Pokemon, other items, and songs. The thing that interested everyone most though was the characters. Here’s a short preview of some of the characters:


1.Mario

2.Donkey Kong

3.Link

4.Samus

4E.Dark Samus

5.Yoshi

6.Kirby

7.Fox

8.Pikachu

9.Luigi

10.Ness


And that’s a preview of just a few of characters that Smash Bros Ultimate has presented. Although the list was short, there’s actually 65+ characters! This may seem like a lot, but… wait nevermind it is a lot. His game has included every single character from Smash Bros history, also the ones who were originally DLC. Also featured in the game are echo characters. This means that they are echo characters that have the same attacks as a character but they are a little different. The echo fighters include Dark Samus, Daisy, Lucina, Chrom, Dark Pit, Ken, and Richter. Smash Bros Ultimate has also featured 103 stages and around 900 songs. For the stages there can be stage hazards turned off, omega modes, and battlefield mode. There are now also 4 different battle modes: time, stock, coins, and the new one which involves the players having to take down the other players life energy. Of course the game has brought back all the different types and new Pokemon, assist trophies, and items. If you did not already know, there is a special item called the Smash Ball which allows the fighter to gain a Final Smash. Here’s an example of one, Mario used a rush of fire to blast off the other opponent(s). These attacks can be either deadly, or very weak. Speaking of attacks, there are many combos that players can possess that will surely help out with winning. On the other hand, you can use shields to block attacks and there is a chance where you will get a perfect shield where your eyes will glow to show this has occurred. There is another new function also added which will let the player alternate from one stage at anytime they want. This function removed some stages because then the game would most likely get messed up from them.


Kirby and the other characters

Each character, since the last Smash Bros, has gotten a touch from their game franchise. With just four years apart from Smash 4 to Smash Ultimate, there have been so many changes. So what is new in the roster? There’s been many updates to each character, but since the list is so long, here are just a few, and there’s no better place to start than with the first one, Mario. Mario has now gotten two new outfits, which is the builder costume, from Super Mario Maker, and the Wedding outfit, from Super Mario Odyssey. There is an extra surprise, as well from Mario doing his up special which will sometimes show Cappy from Mario Odyssey.


Donkey Kong has a new slow mo effect for him, like many other fighters, which are usually strong ones. His final smash is now a flurry of punches which will help with getting right back into the battle.


Link now wears his champions tunic from Breath of the Wild and his bombs are now remotely explosive, also from Breath of the Wild. He still has his original tunic from his previous games as well.


Samus can now charge her blaster midair, but is still open to attacks.


Yoshi’s Final Smash is now a stampede of Yoshis running the fighter over, which is very similar to the intro for him in Super Smash Bros Melee.


Kirby now has a new stone ability which allows him to transform into a chest from Breath of the Wild (not from the same game as Kirby).


Fox now wears his suit from Star Fox Zero and his Final Smash is now a ship formation, so the landmaster is now retired for good.


Pikachu now has a female version, and his final smash now is not controlled by you, but is slightly faster and collects the other fighters from the stage.


Ness now calls his friends, Paula and Poo, to send a PK Starstorm upon the fighters.


World of Light

During the last direct for Smash Ultimate, Sakurai showed a new mode called Spirits. This mode replaces the previous collectible trophies and instead are now friends that are from the main character’s series. They will have an effect if you apply them to a fighter which will help in battles. You get them by defeating enemies who have these spirits activated, and once defeated, you can now use it within battles (not online though). You can also upgrade them to make them stronger which will give you an advantage, but there are less rewards afterwards. That is mostly all we got from that, but then at the end, Sakurai had told us that there will be a story mode and how these Spirits came to be.



When everyone first saw the trailer on March 8th, all we got was that the Inklings, Mario, and Link were going to be in Smash Ultimate. But now that we’ve seen that everyone is here for the first time ever, I really think that this game deserves to be called Super Smash Bros Ultimate, because it is the most Ultimate game that I’ve ever seen.

The Chocolate Festival

by Anna Goldberg


The Old Bethpage Restoration Village held their 2nd annual I Love Chocolate Festival on Saturday, November 3rd and Sunday, November 4th. The chocolate festival has everything from crafts, to different types of food. Of course, the main draw is all different types of chocolate. When you go to the festival, they have two different areas to walk around. They have a beautiful barn which they decorate with fairy lights and an outside area. They also have three stables. The festival also has live music, too. There are bands such as 3D, Reviver, the Laia Kay Band, Bear the Bell and many other singers. A chocolate donut eating contest was also held both days. Old time baseball and self-guided museum tours were also there for your entertainment.


Over 70 chocolate sellers are there with treats from chocolate covered waffles, chocolate drizzled popcorn, chocolate truffles to hazelnut spread crepes. Everything is so incredibly delicious and it would be amazing to try it all.


My family and I went to the festival over the weekend. It’s best to arrive early, so you can get to everything before the big crowd comes. Inside the barn, you will find the majority of the chocolates, delicious treats, and FREE SAMPLES! Many chocolate vendors are waiting eagerly to see what you think of their treats. Everything is delicious in its own way. The festival, has super sweet chocolate, to chocolate with some spice! We even tried chocolates infused with cayenne pepper.


After you’ve got your look at the barn, you can go outside and find many savory food trucks. They have many foods such as: empanadas, tacos, and chili with cocoa powder! While I was there, I tried the crepes and the chocolate covered waffle-- both were insanely amazing! I highly suggest it, if you decide to go next year.


Overall, the I Love Chocolate Festival was an amazing experience. Everything about it was perfect. The weather was also exceptionally nice. I highly suggest you go next year, but only if you like free tastes of yummy chocolate.

Review of Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald

by James Terjesen



5/5 stars


Summary:The movie Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, is about an evil wizard named Grindelwald who tries to save a mysterious wizard, Credence. Credence is on the run from his old parents and wants to find a safe place to stay. Credence gets trapped at the circus and met a lady who can turn into a snake. In the movie, which is taken place in London, Newt Scamander is still trying to catch magical animals or “fantastic beasts” as he calls them. Newt gets called to the Ministry of Magic where the board asked Newt to find and hurt Credence. Newt said “No.” Then, Albus Dumbledore came and told Newt what to do from there. Newt meets his old friends and asked them to help him find Credence before someone hurts him.


About the Rating: This movie is rated PG-13. It is rated PG-13 because there is violence like at the end of the big battle scene. This movie is hard to understand for younger children.


Final thoughts: I liked the movie Fantastic Beasts for many reasons. I like how buildings and characters from the Harry Potter series are either mentioned or shown. This movie added to the story. Grindelwald's actions were different than what people would have thought, which made it more interesting. Another reason I liked the movie is because the characters from the first movie were in it, so it brought back some old faces and memories. The last reason why I like the movie is because it contained both laughter and action.

If you haven’t seen this movie, I would definitely recommend it!

Which Disney Party is Better? Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party vs. Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

by Madison Gangi


Every year Disney has two parties at the Magic Kingdom, one to celebrate Halloween and one to celebrate Christmas. They are both awesome, but which one is better for you and your family?

Both parties have many things to do, see, and eat including: free food, characters, parades, shows, fireworks, and of course, festive Disney decorations. Also, you need to take the time period into consideration. For example, the Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party runs from late August to early November while the Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is held from early November to late December. Your schedule might help determine which party you go to. Also, weather can impact your decision, too. The weather at the Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party is a lot more hot and humid than the cooler Christmas Party. Once you learn what each party has to offer, you will know exactly when you want to book your trip


Free Food

Well, you have to pay for the party tickets, so it's not actually free; however, these foods are offered at no additional cost. First, at the Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party there are stations all over the Magic Kingdom to go trick or treating. If you love candy, this might be the right party for you; however, some might prefer Christmas cookies. The Christmas party have stations throughout the Magic Kingdom that have different Christmas cookies and beverages. Beverages include: hot chocolate, milk, and eggnog. Also, last year they handed out snow cones at some locations.


Characters

During both parties you can see unique characters that you cannot usually meet in the parks. You can meet characters like: the Seven Dwarfs, Jack Skellington, Moana, Tarzan, Jane, Brer Rabbit, and more. The only differences are that the characters will either be in Christmas or Halloween attire. An added bonus to the Christmas party is that you can meet Santa. Both parties are great to meet new characters, especially if you are an autograph collector.


Parades

Both parties have one parade each. Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween party features the “Boo to You Parade” and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas party features the “Once Upon a Christmas Parade”. Almost everyone recommends going to the parades while at the parties. They are both high-quality and very entertaining. Two unique, can’t-miss aspects of the parades are the toy soldiers at the Christmas parade, and the grave diggers at the Halloween parade. The parade you will most likely enjoy more is the parade for the holiday you enjoy most however, whatever parade you see you will be impressed.


Shows

At Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party there is the very popular “Hocus Pocus Villain Spelltacular.” A truly evil and entertaining show. Everyone I heard that went to the Halloween party went and loved the show. The other show you can attend is the Screamaween Dance Party. At the dance party you will dance with characters and Halloween music. Everyone will enjoy this spooky dance party.


At Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas party there is the “Frozen Holiday Wish”, “A Totally Tomorrowland Christmas” and “Mickey’s Most Merriest Christmas”. All of the shows are great; however, “A Totally Tomorrowland Christmas” is not as popular as the other shows. Even though it is not as popular it is still an enjoyable show. You will get to see Stitch, Buzz Lightyear, and Mike Wazowski sing and dance to classic holiday songs. During the “Frozen Holiday Wish” you get to see Elsa light the magnificent castle. Also note, that you can see Elsa light the castle without a party pass. The “Mickey’s Most Merriest Christmas” stage show is where you can see Mickey and his pals. This is a kid- favorite.


Fireworks

Both firework shows are amazing. The Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party has the “Holiday Wishes” fireworks and the Not So Scary Halloween party has the “Hallow Wishes” fireworks.The fireworks are very similar at the parties. They are both 360 degree shows with lots and lots of fireworks. The differences between the two are the music and colors. The real question is do you want to hear Christmas or Halloween music accompanying your firework show? Do you prefer the oranges of Halloween, or the reds and greens of Christmas?


Decorations

Obviously, the decorations are amazing at both parties. Also, you can see the decorations without party tickets! All you need is a park ticket and you can see all of the decorations. So if all you want see are the Christmas decorations, you don't need to spend the extra money on the party ticket. During Halloween, there are fall and Halloween decorations filling the park; however, Christmas in Disney takes decorating to a whole new level ; The park is illuminated with lights and snow that fills Main Street at the Christmas party. The castle has 200,000 lights on it for Christmas, so be prepared to be in awe of this spectacular sight. The time and attention to detail is noticeable in both parties. Both the Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and the Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party are incredible, can’t miss events. Which would you attend if you could only go to one?


After reading you can answer the survey down below:

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/9XF67LR


Sources

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9RHjSFsZUko

https://travelwiththemagic.com/mickey%E2%80%99s-not-scary-halloween-party-vs-mickey%E2%80%99s-merry-christmas-party/

https://touringplans.com/magic-kingdom/attractions/totally-tomorrowland-christmas-show

Miss Know It All

Submitted by Elizabeth Terranova


Miss Know It All is an advice column for middle school students. Students write in with their problems and Anonymous Adriana gives them solutions.


Q: Dear Anonymous Adriana,

I am so unorganized every morning at my locker when I'm getting my stuff together. My locker is a mess and sometimes I'm late to homeroom because I need to clean up. What can I do to make sure there is less of a mess in the morning? Thanks!

From,

Less Mess


A: Dear Less Mess,

Well, you can start off by getting locker shelf. You know, those wired stools they sell at Target and Staples? If you get one of those, you can stack more books and binders in your locker, without having to jam everything onto the top shelf. Well, I hope that works. Good Luck!

From,

Anonymous Adriana


Q: Dear Anonymous Adriana,

On Friday I saw my best friends at Swirls and Twirls and I asked them why they didn't include me, too. They replied, ‘’We totally asked you, but you never replied in the group chat.’’ Then I realized I’m not in a group chat with them and that I catch them doing things like this a lot, and then they play dumb about it. I don’t want to be friends with them anymore, but I can’t figure out how to tell them in a polite way.

From,

Flushed Away friend


A: Dear Flushed Away Friend,

That's a mature decision for you to make up your mind and find other people. If that was happening to me, I would feel the same way and want to do the same thing. How I would do it is, find a time where you could walk up to them and follow these three steps:

  1. Tell them how you feel hurt when they don’t include you.

  2. Get the message across to them how you're too smart to fall for their ‘’playing dumb’’ act.

  3. Then, tell them that you can’t be friends with them anymore.

I hope you can figure this out!

From,

Anonymous Adriana

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The Power of Asking Questions

by Autumn Romer


Everyone in this world, in this life, in this school, was born with a superpower far stronger than they ever knew. This superpower is the power of asking questions! Most of us use it to our advantage, but, unfortunately some of us don't use it at all.


When many people think it's a good time to use their magical power, it's too late! For example, you're in social studies and start a new unit on Christopher Columbus. You're not quite sure what's going on...there's no other way to describe your event other then confusion. You are simply confused. If you ever get an uneasy and confused feeling, that's your superpower screaming “Use me! Please, use me!” So, it's not too hard, just use your super power!


Let's just say you don't use it because you're still confused. Next Thursday, here comes your quarterly test and you're flying through it; You're doing amazing! Until you get to the Christopher Columbus questions and then, you stop. You think. You try to remember what your teacher had said, but you just can't remember. You can’t ask a question during the quarterly, that's not allowed. What a bummer, you realize how you missed the opportunity to use your superpower.


If you don't get great grades, the only acceptable answer for why, is that you're confused! If you're born with a superpower that eliminates confusion, why not use it? Here’s a couple tricks on how to really tackle your superpower.


Tip #1- Don't wait until review day to ask questions, ask when you're first learning the concept.

When you're learning new information, your brain is all in. It wants this new information really bad! It's the best time to ask a question. Your brain wants to remember every ounce of new information it can, so ask a question now, and remember the answer later.


Tip #2- Don’t worry if you can’t phrase a question, just get your thoughts out.

If you're ever learning something that makes absolutely no sense and you're so confused to the point where you can't even phrase a question to ask, simply raise your hand and say, “I’m sorry. I’ve been paying attention, but I’m getting a bit confused. Can you please go over what you just said?” Also, never feel ashamed and never think that you are interrupting anyone else. If your teacher really doesn't have time to go over everything with you, I can guarantee they will talk to you during an extra help session, or any other available time.


Tip #3- NEVER be embarrassed.

Don't go begging me for statistics or anything, but I’m going to say more than half of students don't ask questions because they're embarrassed. Seriously, to this day, I have no idea what they're embarrassed about! You've probably heard this already, but the chances are that someone else is confused about the same thing so, no one will judge you based on your question. A teacher is always happy to hear questions, because that shows you're really thinking! So, you have no reason not to ask questions. If you are embarrassed, first off, don't be, but remember, your embarrassment will go away once you see your excellent grades on your assessments!


Be sure to ask questions whenever you're confused. It's a similar situation to if someone refuses to walk. They just wanted to slide across the floor. A little odd, right? If you have legs, why not use them? If you can ask questions, why not ask them? Anyway, I hope you learned something new. Use your superpower today!

Join the Shows at Berner!

by Teresa Greene



“Life is the bubbles under the sea!”-The Little Mermaid cast. Do you want to sound like that? Do you need to do more extra curricular activities? Do you need to get more exercise? Do you like to sing, dance, or act? Maybe you don’t know if you need any of these things, but if you join the musical and/or the musical revue, you may find a passion for them. You should join them if you want to have fun!


Why should you join?

It’s fun! Also, you will make so many new friends who are interested in theater just like you! You will also get to spend a lot of time with your friends.


How do you try out?

Unfortunately, not everyone can be in the play due to the amount of space on the stage and the amount of parts in the show. You will hear on the announcements when the interest meeting for the musical (in the fall) and the spring musical revue (in the spring). After that, you can sign up for a singing audition which you do by yourself and they give you the song to sing. Then you will find out what day the dance audition is. You will learn a dance that day and then get in a group to practice and finally perform! After that, the call back list will go up. If you get a call back, you will have to sing again. If you do not get a call back, it doesn’t mean you are not in the play; You will see the cast list a few days later.


When do you rehearse?

Just like a sport, you stay after school until 5:30. You only have to stay on the days that a song you are in is being taught. If you have a lead, you will be at rehearsal a lot more than someone in the ensemble; however, as you get closer to the show you will have to stay everyday, sometimes on Saturdays, and even some days you have to stay until 8:00. It is a lot of work, but it is definitely worth it!


What is the Spring Musical Revue?

The Spring Musical Revue is a collection of songs that have to do with a certain theme. Last year the theme was Broadway through the Ages. So, we did many different Broadway songs. It is not a full show like the musical in the fall.


If you do decide to try out, good luck! I hope you have as much fun as I did in the plays!

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Massapequa Football

by Brian Kopp


The Massapequa football team has a final record of 5-3 in the regular season and I will be recapping both the regular season and the playoffs.


The Chiefs opened up the season at an away game against Long Beach. Massapequa won, 39-0, even after taking their foot off the gas in the second half, in which the Chiefs led at the half by 32.


In week two, Massapequa took care of their opponent, Hempstead, by a score of 52-14. The following week was against Massapequa’s biggest rivals, Farmingdale. Farmingdale came out firing as they led by two scores at the half but in rivalry fashion, Massapequa came back and cut the lead to 7 with 5 minutes left. Farmingdale had the ball around the 35 yard line and had a tough 3 plays and that made it 4th down and 7 points. Instead of punting, they kept the offensive line on the field. Farmingdale ran an isolation play to the outside. The Chiefs defender approached the receiver. The ball went up, it was a fifty-fifty ball, but the Chiefs corner back had the position. The Farmingdale player showed he wanted the ball by grabbing it right out of the Chief's hand and making the catch of a lifetime. This catch ended the game and pushed the Chiefs to 2-1. Massapequa dominated East Meadow by a score of 47-6. Next week Massapequa was simply no match for Freeport and lost two things: one of their players who was injured and the game by a blowout of 39-12.


The next game was the first game on Berner Middle School’s new turf field. This game was a defensive battle against Uniondale. The game came down to the wire. Uniondale put it all on the line after scoring a touchdown to put them within one. The Knights went for two and got the ball. The Knights star player was on the left side and in a questionable decision, the ball was thrown right at the star of Uniondale who already had an interception. The ball went up and was picked off. The game was over.


During the Chiefs’ homecoming game they trailed at half they blew the Bruins out in the second half. In the second half, the Chiefs outscored the Bruins by 28. The Chiefs then upset the Oceanside Sailors by a score of 35-23.


The Chiefs headed into the playoffs with a 5-3 record. The highly anticipated rematch was against the 5 seeded, Uniondale Knights. This game was the complete opposite of the first game. It was a high scoring affair and at half-time the score was 31-20, in favor of Uniondale. At the end of the third quarter, the score was 38-27. The Chiefs made the score 45-40 and had a chance to get the ball back with only two minutes and thirty seconds left, it was 3rd down. The Uniondale running back ran right and was stuffed, but he redirected. He showed off his incredible athleticism and took out multiple Chiefs’ defenders. They ended up getting the first down to end the Chiefs season. It was an exciting year for Berner Middle School’s football team.

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NY Yankees

by Steven Horn


As one of the biggest Yankees fans you’ll probably ever meet, I’ll admit it, after Game 4 of the ALDS between the Yankees and the Red Sox I went up to my room and cried. The Yankees were one of the first teams ever to have a disappointing 100 win season. This loss left everyone with a question: what went wrong?


The first thing, I believe, was the hype around the offense. The Yankees offense was being compared to “Murderer’s Row” which some consider to be the greatest baseball team of all-time. I even saw a shirt that said “Murderer’s Row, 2018” and then listed the numbers of Sanchez, Judge, Stanton, Didi and others. The offense was so hyped up that all they wanted to do was hit the ball 500 feet every at bat. In Game 4, the Yankees were down 3 going into the 9th. Judge and Didi got on first and second and Craig Kimbrel was extremely wild. Then, the great free agent signing Giancarlo Stanton steps up, and swings at 2 out of the zone pitches and goes down swinging immediately. The next bad at-bat came from Gary Sanchez, all the Yankees needed was a base-hit, the Yankees only, down 2 now, and Sanchez swings for the fences, and comes up short by about 10 feet. It scored a run but did nothing else. Gleyber Torres then grounded out, and that was the season.


It wasn’t just the hitting though. I know they were against the best offense in the league, but the pitching should have been there better. With Tommy Kahnle off track, and Chapman throwing a little wild, the bullpen was just not 100% there. Then Severino showed up 8 minutes before the game. Although they claim that’s not why he didn’t pitch good that night, I disagree. Also, although he wasn’t on the ALDS roster, Sonny Gray, seriously, that man suddenly decided to not know how to pitch a baseball. Also, Aaron Boone left in the starters a little to long. Being a first year manager, I can understand, but Alex Cora was too, and he made all the right moves.


Don’t get me wrong, I love the Yankees, but they need a bit more urgency in their game and they need to clean up some of these areas. The Yankees have such a high potential, if they played with more urgency and sacrificed their at-bats for the greater good. So, the Yankees just need to clean up their act, and they can win.

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Red Sox

by John Tarpey


The Boston Red Sox, widely known as one of Professional Sports longest droughts to win a World Series (which happened in 2004) are finally back and better than ever! With two MVP candidates, Right Fielder Mookie Betts and Designated Hitter/Right Fielder J.D. Martinez, both having themselves breakout years, this team is quite unstoppable.


After having a memorable season with a record of 108 wins and 54 losses, they used that momentum to continue into the 2018 MLB playoffs and beat the Yankees, who had the 3rd best record in Baseball. Three games to one, led by a powerhouse lineup who mashed 16 runs in game 3, they beat The Yankees 16-1. Wow!


Next, they had to see the reigning World Series Champions, who had knocked them off last year in the 1st round of the playoffs. Right off the bat, they lost game 1 due to some bad calls by the umpires. Then, they won the next four games. The Red Sox hopped right into The 2018 World Series and waited to see who they would be matching up against in The World Series.


A few days later, they found out they would be facing off against the Los Angeles Dodgers, who would be making their 2nd consecutive World Series appearance, after knocking off the Milwaukee Brewers in The NLCS (National League Championship Series).


In game one of The World Series, they defeated the Dodgers 8-4. They had tons of confidence going into game 2. Game 2 was a really back and forth game. The Dodgers were winning for the most of the game until The Red Sox offense broke out and won 4-2. Game 3 headed back to Los Angeles and the Dodgers were ready to mash. The game turned out to be the longest and one of the most exciting games in postseason history. It took 18 innings until Max Muncy hit a game-winning home run in.


In game 4, the series was 2-1 in Boston’s favor. The Dodgers even had a 4-0 lead heading into the 7th inning. But Dodger manager Dave Roberts decided to pull out starting pitcher Rich Hill from the game to hand it over to the bullpen. Things did not go too well because The Red Sox came all the way back to win, 9-6.


And lastly, in game 5, the match up was David Price, who had been, in my opinion, terrible in the playoffs, against Clayton Kershaw, the Dodgers ace. The Boston Red Sox were able to start off strong and leap out to a 2-1 lead heading into the 6th; however, after striking out, shortstop Manny Machado and Mookie Betts crushing a solo home run, The deal was basically sealed for the Red Sox, won 5-1, to end a memorable, surprising, fantastic regular season for the Red Sox.


After the game and series were over, first baseman Steve Pearce was named World Series MVP. He was a key part of Boston’s run to the title. So, I’m pretty sure that that answers your question. The Red Sox are as good as they can possibly be!

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World Series 2018

by Matthew Jungen



About one month ago, the World Series started. It was between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Boston Red Sox. It was five games long. At the end, the Boston Red Sox won the Series four games to one.


Game one opened up in Boston and featured both clubs ace starting pitchers. Clayton Kershaw for the Dodgers and Chris Sale for the Red Sox. Even though the game was an anticipated pitchers duel, both pitchers were unable to complete five innings. Kershaw gave up five runs and Sale gave up three. In the end, the Sox were able to hold off the Dodgers 8-4 and take game one of the series.


Game two of the series featured David Price starting pitcher for the Red Sox. Price was looking for redemption for prior struggles in the postseason against his counterpart Hyun-Jin Ryu of the Dodgers. At the end, Craig Kimbrel closed out the game to earn the save and put the sox up two games to zero.


In game three, the series headed out west to Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. The Dodgers sent out rookie starting pitcher Walker Buehler in hopes their luck would change. Walker showed no signs of being a rookie and dominated the game, pitching seven shutout innings while only giving up two hits. Even with Buehler’s excellence the Dodgers needed to go into extra innings to pull out the win as fellow rookie Max Muncy hit a walk off home run in the 18th inning to win the game 3-2.


Game four showcased starting pitchers Rich Hill for the Dodgers and Eduardo Rodriguez for the Red Sox. The game was scoreless until the sixth inning when Rodriguez faltered giving up four runs including a three run home run to Yasiel Puig. The Dodger bullpen, however, was unable to hold the four run lead. Steve Pearce was the offensive hero for the Sox, tying the game at four in the eighth inning on a home run and clearing the bases on a three run double in the ninth to put the game out of reach. Now the Sox had a commanding series lead of three games to one.


Game five of the series featured Clayton Kershaw from the Dodgers and David Price.

Clayton Kershaw and the rest of his team wanted to win this game and head back to Boston. With a win, the Sox would capture their ninth World Series title. David Price held up to the seventh inning only giving up one run on three hits. Clayton Kershaw also held up to the seventh inning, but gave up four runs on seven hits. The Sox bullpen once again was able to prevent any more runs. Steve Pearce provided most of of the offence again for the Sox while knocking in three runs on two home runs throughout the game.


At the end, Boston won the World Series. The games score was five to one and Steve Pearce won the MVP award of the World Series.

Comic

By Teresa Greene
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Comic

By Kailey Burns
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Dragon Kingdom: Part 1

by Kailey Burns



Alessiya gazed over the edge of her bedroom balcony, her orchid color scales glistening in the sunset. The clouds formed a blanket far below her, blocking the view of her mother and father’s kingdom. Just another couple of hours and I’ll be able to sneak around this place, she thought. A few nights ago was September’s Full Moon Festival, with so many bright colored desserts, her eyes hurt just by looking at them! There was so much leftover, but so little time for Alessiya to get to it before her annoying sisters did first. Alessiya had just finished going over her plan to ransack the dessert pantry when a knock sounded at her bedroom door. Stretching her large wings she called, “I’m coming!” and dashed to answer the door. Her maid, Lilac, greeted her.


“Hello, Alessiya. Just here to deliver your cocoa. Is there anything else you need before going to sleep?” Lilac’s voice was pleasant and soothing as usual.


“No, I’m good, thanks for the cocoa,” Alessiya replied. Lilac turned to leave, and Alessiya hastily shut the door. Night fell, and as soon as the chatter of her loud, gossiping (And really annoying) sisters died away, she carefully reached for the door.


Quiet as a rabbit, she slipped down the third-floor hallway, the long, violet carpet muffling her steps. She stopped to catch her breath, then turned a corner to meet the grand marble staircase. If I walk down the staircase, my steps will echo and someone will hear me… she thought. So….. I’ll glide down the rail! Gracefully, Alessiya leaped onto the thick railing and slid down, slowly gaining energy. Oh no! Faster and faster she slid until she was about to crash and wake up the whole palace. She thrust her wings out like a parachute, slowing her down. She leaped off the rail at the bottom, heart still jumping out of her chest after that close call. She wandered around the main floor until she got to the kitchen. Stepping in, she was suddenly surrounded by pastries. She couldn’t help it- a mischievous grin crept on her face.


After stuffing her face with cake and cookies, she headed back upstairs. A rustle made her stop. She froze. Everything was silent. A shiver went down her spine, but after glancing around, she continued upstairs. She silently climbed into her bed and drifted off to sleep. She dreamed of desserts until early in the morning, when the sun had barely appeared over the horizon. She slowly opened her eyes, hearing a shrill bird call its morning call. Wait a second... She thought. That’s no bird. She shook off her sleepiness and craned her neck to hear-not a bird-a panicked screech. The voice yelled, “FIRE! IN THE CASTLE! FIRE!”


Across from the large kingdom of dragons, in a cave guarded by lava, 12 dragons in long, flowing cloaks silently waited in a circle. Another dragon burst in, panting with excitement. The largest dragon stood up, and his hood fell onto his back. He was cherry-colored, with a scar on one eye. One of his horns was chipped, and there were many small holes and tears in his wings.


“Firespeed, what news do you bring?” The large dragon said.


“Storm breaker….. I did it. The castle is burning at this very moment,” Firespeed said, hardly able to breathe. There were murmurs of excitement from each of the dragons in the circle.


“Silence!” Stormbreaker snapped. Not a sound. “We leave now,” he growled.


The 13 dragons swiftly walked out of the cave, with ambition flooding their minds and one aim: take over the kingdom of dragons. Then took flight, headed right for the Sky Realm, home to the Grand Palace of the king and queen.

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Winter

By: Jillian Matone

Everything is white like a winter dream.

People are drinking hot cocoa, I see the steam.

Kids are playing outside in the snow.

Their parents are joyfully watching through a window.

The children are playing with their friends.

The bears are hibernating in their dens.

Snowflakes are amazing to discover.

I love winter, it is a wonder!


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Hot Chocolate Magic

by Annalise Taylor



Snowflakes swirled through the air, drifting to the ground. The air held that type of cold that cuts through all your layers of winter wear and chills you to the bone. But, Isabelle was grinning, her cheeks pink from the cold. The Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony was her favorite part of the holiday season. Every Christmas Eve, people gathered to watch the tree light up with hundreds of glimmering lights.


“Here you go, Isabelle.” said her father as he handed her a steaming cup of hot chocolate. “Be careful, it’s hot.”


Isabelle smiled. “I will dad.” As she held the cup, she watched people flow into the square, and the snow that guaranteed a white Christmas fall to the ground. There was a raspy cough, the type that people get when too much of the cold finds its way in. Isabelle turned to see a scraggly man wearing a thin coat, and shoes that were worn through. He coughed on for a bit until he stopped to clear his throat. “Are you okay?” asked Isabelle. The man looked up at her.


“Yes, just a little cough from the chill.”


Isabelle looked him over again. “Where’s your winter coat?”

“I don't have one,” He smiled sadly. Isabelle thought this over. “Here,” she told the man as she gave him the mug of hot cocoa.

“No, no. It’s yours, I wouldn’t want to take it from you.”

“Please,” insisted Isabelle as she handed the man the cup. The man smiled a smile that could only rival to Isabelle’s.

“Thank you.”

“Isabelle!” called Isabelle's father. “It’s starting soon!”

Isabelle turned and ran to her father. In a few moments, the tree was lit, and it seemed as if the entire world was sparkling.

After all the people filed out of the town square and started towards their homes, the man saw something in the snow. He slowly got up and picked the object up. It was a small, purple hat that belonged to Isabelle. He took the hat and quickly started walking after the large group of people had left the square. The crowd was a great distance away and he hastened his pace, hoping to do something good for the girl who was kind to him. But it was too late, and he started to wander the neighborhood he stopped in. With all the lights and the snow making the trees and houses sparkle and shine, he felt as if he had never seen anything as amazing in his life. Then he heard it. The sound of Isabelle’s voice coming from an open window. He went up to the porch and softly knocked on the door. Isabelle and her father opened it.

“I..I think your daughter lost something,” he handed the hat to Isabelle.

“Thank you so much!” said Isabelle with a large grin. “I didn’t think we would be able to find it.”

Isabelle heard the sound of fast footsteps drawing nearer-her mom. Isabelle’s mother came to the door frame. “Michael?” she asked. Her eyes widened as she pushed through to give the man a big hug. “I thought we would never find you.”

“Mom?” asked Isabelle. “Who is this?”

“This is your uncle, Isabelle. My brother,” she smiled and brought the man inside.


That year, Isabelle and her now complete family enjoyed a wonderful holiday season catching up with her uncle and making new memories. She also got to enjoy watching the ball drop with her uncle, but this time they both were holding hot chocolate.❆

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What Truly Matters: Part 1

by Maya Zaidman and Teresa Greene


Autumn

I was gazing at the starry night sky out my window. I sighed. I would never find love. Jimin and Carly are already thinking about getting married? I haven’t even had my first kiss! It was late at night on Sunday and I was having trouble sleeping. On Sunday nights, I wonder what will happen this week. You never know maybe something. How could someone ever look at me and think She’s cute or What a nice girl.


I always try to think about something else like school or tests, but my mind drifts away. “AUTUMN!!! Are you studying?” booms my mom almost every day. I wonder if she ever gets tired of saying that. But it’s not that I daydream about art or sports. I daydream about love. It’s all I care about. If I had love, I wouldn’t need to have anything else.


Sebastian

Sebastian loves soccer. He isn’t the best on the team, but, he puts a lot of effort in. Although, when you think of soccer, you wouldn’t exactly think of him. You may think of John Merez or Cole O’Neil, but not Sebastian. Sebastian is as silent as the P in the receipt, but as full of knowledge as a dictionary.


Sebastian is sixteen years old and in his grade, you are popular if you are in a relationship. It’s what everyone talks about! It would be great if he was in a relationship because he would be considered popular, or cool; however, would it be a serious relationship? Probably not.

Sebastian's midterms start tomorrow. He was studying a lot, but, he knows he has to get a lot of sleep in order to do well. He flipped down his light switch and pulled up his covers. He didn’t even feel tired. He felt like he could play a soccer game right there in his pajamas!


Autumn

I hate when girls crowd around lockers. It just bothers me so much for some reason. They all stand there and giggle like squealing pigs. Yes, I’m a girl, but I’m not that girl. At this point I don’t really know who I am, yet, I know I’ll figure it out soon.


Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I am a tomboy or anything. I am just not the girly kind of girl. For example, when I try to act cute, it never works. It always ends up horribly. I don’t look good in skirts. I don’t cake my face-- it’s not that I don’t know how to, it’s just that I just don’t like it. I am always the shy girl at school. I try my best to not make eye contact in the hallway. I always sit in the back of the classroom when I can. Anyway, what I am trying to say is that I am not normal. Well, by normal I mean, not like the other girls.


‘It’s getting late’ I thought to myself. I try to go to sleep, and finally, my mind becomes quiet.


Sebastian

When Sebastian woke up, he felt nervous about his science midterm. He told himself he will be fine and ate his breakfast. He got ready as if it was a regular day. Although you never really know!


It’s true, Sebastian is just longing for love. He tries to make himself feel love, but he fails.

At school, Sebastian looks around and he sees all these couples. He feels really sad. He wants a girl that would love him.


The day goes by fast and slow at the same time. It was a normal day at school. Finally, Sebastian is home. He is not really tired, but he knows he needs sleep in order to get up at 5:45. After a while of pushing himself to sleep, he was finally able to sleep. He had a peculiar dream. In his dream, a girl appeared. She had pale skin and a natural blush on her cheeks, and small freckles on her nose. She had straight hair that was naturally curled on the bottoms, and the tips of her hair dyed light brown. The top part of her hair was black and would shine brown when the light was reflecting on it.


Autumn

Suddenly, a boy appeared in my dream. He had light brown hair and green eyes. His skin a little bit tan, but not much. In my dream, we both stared at each other right in the eyes.


Sebastian

Then, the girl took a step forward, not taking her eyes off his bright green orbs that shined in the light, letting them sink into her dark brown ones.


“... Autumn. Call me Autumn.” her soft feminine voice rung in the boy’s ears like bells, her words flowing smoothly like a river.


Autumn

“I’m Sebastian” he whispered back. His manly low voice startled me a little bit, but I was able to cover it instantly by softening my eyes, painting a small smile on my face.


Sebastian

“I will see you next time. Stay safe, and please wait,” Autumn said softly. Right before Sebastian could ask her anything, she faded. Slowly and slowly, their eyes still locked together. “Wait for what?” Sebastian thought.


He suddenly shot up from his bed, sweating. Confusion suddenly arises him, as he remembered the beautiful girl telling him to wait. Wait for what?? Suddenly more memories from his dream flooded over his brain, piecing things together. And he thinks he knows what she meant.


Wait for her…

TO BE CONTINUED

Tales from the trenches vol. 3: D-Day

by Cormac Hale


June 5th, 1944

5:30 PM

Sgt. Bill Taylor

1

“Are you kidding me? I lost again!” Allen yells. We’ve been playing poker for 3 hours and he hasn’t won once. He lost 250 bucks already, but he can pay for it. His uncle is a Rockefeller. I myself won $100 already, so I don’t really want to play anymore. I go to my sleeping bunk and try to get some rest. Later, I hear someone walking around. I hop down from my bunk and go over to check it out, I find out it’s Joshua Wall. He sees me and gestures for me to come over. We talk about what is happening tomorrow and that we’ll have each other’s back. I walk back to my bunk and my eyes slowly drift to sleep.


2

I am writing this in the LCM right now. Men are scared out of their wits. Allen just threw up his breakfast and I am not far behind. The driver yells out “30 yards! 25 seconds!” I start saying my prayers, and I know that I will be able to make it through. I hear the wheel turn and the door open slowly, but the machines guns are just the opposite. As men rush out they fall to the ground. Sgt. Burns is next to me and falls to the metal floor, I push on him and he doesn’t move. As Captain Turner yells, “Jump over the side!” I feel a stinging pain in my leg, I touch it with my hand and it is warm and wet. As I fall to the floor, the world around me falls to black. I wake up behind a “Czech hedgehog” or a tank blocker that Jerry put up to block our tanks from getting onto the beach. A medic is patching up my wound and another man is shooting a German bunker, but he knows as well as I do that he won’t hit anything but the cement that its made of. As I slowly get up and shake the pain away, I realize that my gun is missing. But then, the man shooting yells, “Grenade!” and jumps on the German potato masher that is 5 feet away from me. I grab the M1 Garand from the soldier and rush over to Captain Turner who is using a radio on a man back. As I rush over, I see Allen and Wall over by a broken down tank, and as Wall peaks his head over, Crack! I hear this one more than the other, as Wall’s helmet falls, so does his body. As I rush over I see how bad the damage is. Blood seeps from his wound and his eyes lay open wide. As me and Allen both wonder how life is so cruel, and when Capt. Turner calls us over, we are glad to get out of that area. As we crouch behind a small sand trench, we call for Bangalores, a metal pipe packed with explosives. As we yell, “Fire in the hole!” the charge sets off early, sending two men flying. One calls for help and as we get closer. My battalion rushes into the bunker and I here 7 cracks in there. Captain Turner orders me and Allen to go below the bunker and search for important documents. As I rush over to Allen, I here frantic German voices. I throw a grenade down the hall and hear screams. As I walk upstairs, Captain Turner points to my chest and says something. I cannot hear him but I see his mouth move. I look down. I am bleeding. As I look up, the world turns fuzzy. I fall to the ground and I close my eyes.

Riddle Answers

1. Your age

2. A cold

3. Your name

4. A stamp

5. Your tongue

2 Truths and 1 Lie answer key


  1. Mrs.Dyckman’s lie: I have a cat.
  2. Mrs.Groph’s lie: Loves singing in front of people.
  3. Mr. Basirico’s lie: I was a DJ on weekends in the '90s.
  4. Mrs.Jones’ lie: I have never been on a roller coaster
  5. Ms.Tauches’ lie:I own a dog.