September 7-11

This Week

Tues, Sept 8

Warriors 8th Gr. Football vs. Central Jr. @ Watauga Field - "A" Team 4:30 "B" Team 5:30

Meet the Band Director night - 7:00-8:00 pm

Wed, Sept 9

Lady Warrior 7th Gr. Volleyball vs. Central Jr. @ Central - "B" Team 4:30 "A" Team 5:30

Lady Warrior 8th Gr. Volleyball vs. Central Jr. @ WMS - "B" Team 4:30 "A" Team 5:30

AVID Site Team Meeting - 4:00 pm

Thurs, Sept 10

Meet the teacher - 6:00-7:30 pm

Fri, Sept 11

School Pictures (through Social Studies Classes)

Sat, Sept 12

All-Region Choir Camp 8:00 am -12:00pm

9/11 Tribute

Never Forget

Duty Roster

Café AM -Hall

200 AM - Heath

300 AM - Herndon

Auditorium AM - Huff

Warrior Way - Kelton

Parking PM - Kissel


Big thanks to Officer Horne. He was only asked to supervise my PE boys while they change in the locker room, but for the last two weeks he has helped write names on the back of shirts, helped me demonstrate dodgeball and kickball, and stayed with me in PE the whole period. Way to go above and beyond your call of duty. I appreciate you. Coach Seale

Kid President's Pep Talk to Teachers and Students!
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Thursday, Sep. 10th, 6-7:30pm

6300 Maurie Drive

Watauga, TX

Open House will be come and go. You will be in your room by your door from 6:00-7:00.

At 7:00, a general meeting will be held in the Auditorium in order to disseminate Title 1 information. (Any teachers or EAs willing to stay for this portion of the evening will receive a jeans pass and a Sonic drink…)

We NEED You...

If you have cool stuff to share, send it to Houston or Huff! We'd love to spotlight you in the "Weekly". Of course, we'll still do our own surprise postings. So shy or boisterous: we have you covered!

Instructional Minute

(Taken from the Marshall Memo)

“[A]dolescents suffer from the cerebral equivalent of defective spark plugs.”

Elizabeth Kolbert

Are Adolescents Hard-Wired to Be Crazy?

In this article in The New Yorker, Elizabeth Kolbert asks why adolescents take so many risks – for example, her three teens told her about a supposedly fun pastime known as a “case race” in which pairs of kids compete to see who can drink their way through a case of beer fastest (the preferred case size is a “thirty rack”). “And what goes for drinking games also goes for hooking up with strangers, jumping from high places into shallow pools, and steering a car with your knees,” says Kolbert. “At moments of extreme exasperation, parents may think that there’s something wrong with their teenagers’ brains. Which, according to recent books on adolescence, there is… [A]dolescents suffer from the cerebral equivalent of defective spark plugs.”

According to author/neurologist Frances Jensen, teens’ frontal lobes aren’t fully developed; that’s the part of the brain that controls executive function – planning, self-awareness, and judgment – which acts as a check on impulses from other parts of the brain. The frontal lobes aren’t fully myelinated until people are in their twenties, sometimes thirties, which leads Jensen to advise parents, “You need to be your teens’ frontal lobes until their brains are fully wired.” Of course teens’ reaction to parental hectoring is predictable. When Kolbert told her teenage sons that she was thinking about calling the parents of their friends about safe-party protocols, one of them said, “Why even have kids if you’re going to do that?”

Temple University psychologist Laurence Steinberg has a different explanation for adolescent behavior: the brain’s nucleus accumbens – the pleasure center – reaches its maximum size and sensitivity during the teen years. In addition, as puberty arrives, kids’ brains sprout more dopamine receptors, making them more sensitive to enjoyment. According to Steinberg, “Nothing – whether it’s being with your friends, having sex, licking an ice-cream cone, zipping along in a convertible on a warm summer evening, hearing your favorite music – will ever feel as good as it did when you were a teenager.” This, he believes, is why adolescents do so many crazy things and why the mortality rate of 15-19-year-olds (mostly from accidents) is nearly twice that of children 1-4 and three times that of kids 5-14. “The notion that adolescents take risks because they don’t know any better is ludicrous,” says Steinberg. Rather, it’s that the potential psychic and physical rewards are much, much greater. Adolescent risk-taking is also more prevalent when there are other teens around. A teen driving a car with peers is four times more likely to get in an accident as when driving alone. And, Steinberg adds, “the recklessness-enhancing effect of being around peers is strongest when adolescents actually know there is a high probability of something bad happening.” This is also why the age-crime graph looks like the Matterhorn, rising steeply during the teens, peaking at eighteen, and falling after that. Some psychologists have used this as an argument against imposing life sentences on teens who commit violent crimes – they probably will outgrow their criminal tendencies.

Why are teens’ brains wired this way? Scientists believe that as humans emerged from primate ancestors millions of years ago, there was an evolutionary payoff for adolescents to venture outside their natal group for mates. “The reward for taking chances in dangerous terrain was sex followed by reproduction,” explains Kolbert, “while the cost of sensibly staying at home was genetic oblivion.” Teen brains are still wired the same way, but “Many recent innovations – cars, Ecstasy, iPhones, S.U.V.s, thirty racks, semi-automatic weapons – exacerbate the mismatch between teen-agers’ brains and their environment. Adolescents today face temptations that teens of earlier eras… couldn’t have dreamed of. In a sense, they live in a world in which all the water bottles are spiked. And so, as Jensen and Steinberg observe, they run into trouble time and time again.”

Kolbert’s twin 16-year-olds spent part of their summer taking 30 hours of required driver’s ed classes. This “completely misses the point,” she says. “Sixteen-year-olds are dangerous drivers. Their rate of fatal crashes per mile is three times as high as the rate for drivers age twenty and over, and nearly twice as high as the rate for drivers eighteen and nineteen. Sixteen-year-olds will still be a hazard after listening (or, more likely, not listening) to thirty hours’ worth of cautionary tales. They actually do understand that driving is dangerous; the problem is that they’re having too much fun to care. The only way to bring down their accident rate is to prevent them from getting behind the wheel.” She and Steinberg agree that the age for getting a license should be eighteen. The same logic applies to educational programs to prevent smoking, doing drugs, and problem drinking. The billions of dollars spent on these efforts make very little difference, says Kolbert. It would be better to spend the money on sports and arts programs to keep kids busy and under adult supervision.

Thinking about her boys, Kolbert concludes, “Yes, adolescents in the twenty-first century pose a great risk to others and, statistically speaking, an even greater risk to themselves. But this is largely because other terrifying risks – scarlet fever, diphtheria, starvation, smallpox, plague – have receded. Adolescence evolved over a vast expanse of time when survival at any age was a crapshoot. If the hazards are new, so, too, is the safety. Which is why I will keep telling my kids scary stories and why they will continue to ignore them.”

“The Terrible Teens” by Elizabeth Kolbert in The New Yorker, August 31, 2015, http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2015/08/31/the-terrible-teens


Wednesday, Sept. 16 - FAC Meeting @ 7:30 am

Site Based Committee Meeting 4:15 pm

Friday, Sept 25 - Choir Cluster Event @HHS Football game 3:30 - 7:45 pm

Monday, Sept 28 - Vision & Hearing Screen in Library

Wednesday, Sept 30 - LOL Meeting 7:30 am