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Steele Life

Skills USA

On Thursday, March 31, our Skills USA participants headed off to the state competition. At the last meet, the contestants earned 3 first place rankings,

5 second

place rankings, and 2 third place rankings in a variety of skill-intensive competitions such as prepared speeches and nail care. Also, two district officers were elected during the week; both Alyssa and Kaylyn are now been selected to lead our official Skills USA district.



As our peers are currently

at

the competition, Mrs. Kreger’s twitter account has been posting the incoming results from the award ceremony held on Sunday, April 3, 2016. Steele students at home, through the social media app, now have access to the information regarding the awards that our classmates will soon return to school with.



While watching the feed periodically throughout the weekend, I have gathered that we have:


1st Place in Related Technical Math: Richard

1st Place in Nailcare: Campbell

2nd Place in Nailcare: Crystal

2nd

Placein

Job Open: Bailey


3rd Place in Job Open: Campbell

2nd Place in Job Interview: Carmen

2nd Place in Esthetics: Maria

3rd Place in Customer Service:

llse


2nd Place in Prepared Speech: Alyssa Trevino

1st Place in Salon Project: Carmen



(Information from the Steele Accelerated High School Website)


In all, congratulations to our Skills USA competitors and winners; you have all performed incredibly and brought great pride to our campus and respective academies. This is truly a win for our school.

When You Wish Upon a STAAR

By Ryan Karr

ryan.karr@nisdtx.org


The STAAR test is dreaded by students from elementary to high school every year. With it comes one and a half to five hours of boring, grueling testing. So, we decided to ask some of this year’s testers about their testing experience and their feedback for the writers of the STAAR test.


The English I and II tests were long and taxing on all of the freshman and sophomores. They involve a lot of writing and reading of long arduous texts. While these things are true, some actually find parts of the big day fun. One student comments that he liked not having to worry about anything else in life for five hours, and also getting to have a delicious breakfast. It is important to note that many of the students found different parts of these similar test easier or harder. Some thought reading was easy while the time crunch was their enemy, while others struggled with reading and excelled at writing short answer responses. This begs the question of is the test prepared well? Why do some people find it easier than others do?


Students also gave their opinions on this topic. Most people though the STAAR deserved a 7 or 8 out of 10. They decided that the time limit was the problem. Some suggested doing away with it completely while others thought that breaking the time up over several days would be better. Time seems to be a large problem for students as most finished with 15 to 5 minutes on the clock. Perhaps this would make the STAAR less of a pain for students and increase scores as well.


Despite the problems people discussed the STAAR test, they all felt that they did their best on it. This was mainly attributed to the extensive preparations beforehand. Many of the students also thought that they would get commended because of their previous experiences and, again, the preparations that were made.


The English tests are definitely among the suite of things we high school students do not want to hear about, let alone take. We will have to wait until the summer to find out of the pain was worth it.


Continued below.

When You Wish Upon a STAAR contd.

Only a few students had to take the algebra I STAAR this year, but there are definitely plenty of opinions on that test too.

The algebra STAAR, like all other math STAAR tests, included gridable questions that make it much more difficult to check your work. This obviously frustrates students slightly because they cannot prove their answers as easily or quickly. These open-ended questions leave students a bit off balance because backing up answers with proof is difficult unless you know the exact way to solve the questions. Perhaps these types of questions show knowledge and comprehension better.

There were a lot of positive comments surrounding the algebra STAAR as well. The few complaints stemmed from the test format or the drag of the testing period. Students largely attribute their success to the help of Mrs. Libby Haines who taught and prepared them for the test. Her help made students more confident and sure of their abilities which helped them be positive and diligent throughout the test.

Some ideas students presented to improve the STAAR test were printing it on more eye friendly paper which would increase focus, and creating better environments for testing. No complaints about the test itself arose from any of the students.

Many freshman were dreading the biology STAAR because of the sheer amount of knowledge they had to retain for the subject. Despite the qualms about it, many students rose to the challenge and were very happy with their work.

The students felt that they got plenty of overall review and feel that they needed help with only a few smaller points. They are quite pleased with the extensive help and devotion that they gave and received along the way. The teachers effort this year has really made a difference in every STAAR exam that students have taken and completed.

Students commented on how older topics were troublesome to remember on the test, but that newer ones were much easier to keep track of. Longer questions really put students off as well. The longer the question, the harder it got to focus on the key points. Despite these complaints, students felt that the test flew by and were grateful for such a well-structured test to speed up the process. Students decided that no matter how easy the test was, it did not fairly and accurately measure the knowledge of each student due to how different each person is. Some Improvements students want include more basic questions to balance out the test and fairly gauge knowledge.

The biology STAAR seemed to be a huge success with students feeling very good about their performance even after a few road bumps. Students feel very good about their scores and are excited to see how they did.

All in all the STAAR test turned out extremely well for Steele students this year. Now we can look forward to another year of learning together, and hope that maybe we will see some welcome changes to the STAAR tests that will come with it.


Sorry to all of the world geography students. I was unable to finish your part for this article. You guys did great as well.

Lifestyle

Look for the Bare Necessities...

By: Katelynn (Katie) Steinhauser


I saw the newest installment of Disney’s classic, “The Jungle Book” by Rudyard Kipling with some fellow classmates and I enjoyed the experience so much that I felt an honest review was in order.


From the opening sequence of young Mowgli (Neel Sethi) racing through the jungle in the company of his adoptive wolf family and his guardian, the black panther Bagheera (Ben Kingsley), through its comedic scenes with the whimsical Baloo the Bear (Bill Murray) and its sinister run-ins with the anaconda Kaa (Scarlett Johansson), the orangutan King Louie (Christopher Walken), and the Bengal tiger Shere Khan (Idris Elba), the movie carries you along a current of enchantment. There is a constant climax in action sequences that neatly tie off every plot point and gathers up all of the bits of folklore.


Even though it may not be entirely accurate to call this “Jungle Book” a live-action adaptation, since nearly all of it has been generated on a computer, screenwriter Justin Marks, director Jon Favreau, and their hundreds of collaborators deserve much recognition for their splendid work on this film. Combining spectacular widescreen images of rain forests, watering holes, and crumbling temples, a couple of human actors, and realistic animals are how the movie creators invent such an incredibly illustrated dream-space for the audience.


The film even has its own more politically evolved version of Kipling’s literary ecosystem. It includes ancient animal beliefs and practices, such as predators and prey declaring a “water truce” during a drought so that they can all safely drink from a watering hole. One of the primary ideas presented in this movie is that humans and animals can live in harmony with one another if we behave with kindness and show reverence for the other species, like the elephants that Bagheera credits with creating the rain forest.


For me personally, I truly fell in love with this adaption of “The Jungle Book” because of the performances of the voice actors. Favreau leans on distinctive-sounding stars to earn knowing chuckles from the audience. For example, Murray in particular is a shambling pleasure-seeker in life as well as in many of his movie roles. Also, Walken is legendarily good at playing funny-scary villains who enjoy messing with heroes’ minds.


It was made with the latest in movie-making technology, but has the ethical values and wide-net storytelling sensibility of an Old Hollywood classic. At its best it feels as though it always existed and we are only now discovering it.


Image Source: http://screenrant.com/jungle-book-2-jon-favreau-director/

Science & Technology

Government & Politics

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By Jacob Hootman

We have come a long way since the last edition of the Steele Post. Instead of a crowded Republican field, Donald Drumpf has become the presumptive nominee. Bernie Sanders has continued to drain Hillary Clinton of as many delegates as possible until the convention. One thing is clear: this is just the beginning. The Primaries have almost ended. On the Republican side, only 405 more delegates are available, while 939 are free on the Democratic side. Drumpf and Clinton are both 100 delegates shy of the nomination. But as usual, there is more to the story.
Since the last edition was posted, a huge rift erupted and closed in the Republican party. The establishment GOP, led by Paul Ryan and Mitt Romney, have for some time attempted to thwart a Drumpf nomination. Drumpf’s policies and views are not entirely in line with the rest of the Party, and several sources show him losing to Clinton. Ryan and Romney were even in the process of creating a third party run, which would almost guarantee a Democratic victory. Drumpf, on the other hand, has a core of die-hard supporters who would have him run even if he lost the primaries, which would also guarantee a Democratic victory. However, in the past few weeks, Ryan and Drumpf have made a truce, realizing that they have to unite the Party if they want to defeat Clinton or Sanders.
Hillary Clinton is only 100 delegates away from becoming the nominee, but she is still not yet considered presumptive. Bernie Sanders’s campaign has begun a tactic that drains Clinton of the necessary delegates for her victory. Though Sanders would have to win almost all the remaining delegates to win, he can slow down the Clinton campaign and buy time to make some kind of compromise. Rumors have erupted throughout the Democratic Party of a Clinton/Sanders ticket, which would bring the Party together and create a powerful political campaign which could very well bring down the Right for another 8 years.
The primaries have ended, but the campaign has just begun. We can conjecture and predict all day, but what happens is up to fate. Perhaps fate will ordain something we do not yet foresee.

Source: http://pixel.nymag.com/imgs/daily/intelligencer/2016/03/10/10-bernie-sanders-hillary-clinton.w529.h352.jpg

Funnies

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Steele Accelerated Newspaper Club

We hope you enjoyed our Summer Edition! If you have any questions, comments, or concerns... Feel free to contact us!


Sponsor: Catherine Ryan

cryan@nisdtx.org

President & Lifestyle Editor: Katelynn Steinhauser

katelynn.steinhauser@nisdtx.org

Steele Life Editor: Emily Armstrong

emily.armstrong@nisdtx.org

Government & Politics Editor: Jacob Hootman

jacob.hootman@nisdtx.org

Science & Technology Editor: Bergan Conner

bergan.conner@nisdtx.org

Funnies Editor: Ryan Karr

ryan.karr@nisdtx.org

The Primaries and Beyond: An Opinion Piece