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Political Cartoon

June 6, 2017

By Luke S.-T.

Political cartoon by Luke S-T

Summer Word Search

June 2, 2017

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Welcome to our April issue!

April 3, 2017

This month we have spring on our minds after a long, wet winter. Read about how to adjust to the time change and things people like to do in spring, plus the Hamilton phenomenon, a new club promoting kindness, and more.

Fifth Graders Get Back to Nature

April 3, 2017

By Zoe K.

On March 13, most fifth graders were at school so early it was still dark outside. It was time for the traditional fifth grade educational overnight camping trip. Everybody was excited as they got into the charter buses that took us to the Sierra Outdoor School near Columbia, California.

After about three hours, we finally arrived, and the views around the school were awesome. There was a lot of greenery and tall trees everywhere. The camp staff split us into four groups for the different activities we would be doing. After this, the boys and girls took their things to their cabins. This was fun because we got to choose our bunk buddies and whether we wanted to sleep on the top or bottom bunk.

Every day was busy, starting off early and ending late, but always fun. Our day started at 7:00 a.m. and ended at 9:30 p.m.

There was a big dining hall and we had to take turns setting up for people to eat or cleaning up.

There were many classes out in nature We talked about trees, practiced wilderness skills, and learned about Earth and our galaxy. One of my favorite things was the Silent Mile, because we got to go into nature by ourselves and enjoy the many sights and sounds on the trail by a stream.

There was also a class on owl pellets. I won’t spoil it for you; I’ll just say it was gross and fun. We also had campfires and Mountain Madness. I wish there would have been more days. I hope the current fourth graders get to experience it next year because it was educational and so much fun.

How to Spring Forward Successfully

April 3, 2017

By Miriam R.
Illustration by Leo H.

You may have noticed it’s staying lighter out longer. You’re seeing “spring forward” in action.

On March 12, Daylight Savings Time happened. For Daylight Savings Time, we turn our clocks forward one hour. For example, 5:00 p.m. before the change is 6:00 p.m. now. “Springing forward” is a good way to remember this change because it happens in Spring.

We can change our clocks easily, but our bodies and minds have a hard time adjusting to time changes. We actually lost an hour of sleep. How? At 2:00 a.m. on the day of the change, we “lost” an hour and it instantly became 3:00 a.m.

Here are a few tips to help you “spring forward” successfully:

  1. Don’t change your schedule much.
  2. Make sure you have snacks on hand because your eating schedule won’t be the same.
  3. Avoid electronics at night, because the light causes your brain to be active and interferes with the time change.
  4. Next year, you can prepare by gradually shifting your bedtime earlier. If you usually go to bed at 8:00 p.m., about three days before the change go to bed at 7:45 p.m., then 7:30 p.m. the next day, and so on.

However hard it is to follow my tips and survive the time change, just remember “spring forward” happens every year. You will get a lot of chances to practice!

Swimming Top Spring Activity

April 3, 2017

By Lily G.

Spring is finally here! What do Montclair students like to do when the new season comes? We interviewed third, fourth and fifth graders to find out.

Spring activities pie chart

Our poll shows many people are looking forward to swimming as the weather warms up, with reading in second place.

What do you like to do in Spring?

The Hamilton Phenomenon

April 3, 2017

By Zoe K.

“I am not throwing away my shot!”
“There’s a million things I haven’t done, but just you wait.”

These are not just catchy quotes, they are also famous lyrics from the popular Broadway play, “Hamilton: An American Musical.” It’s based on the life of one of America’s founding fathers, Alexander Hamilton. Hamilton was important in the fight for independence and became our first Secretary of the Treasury.

Hamilton’s story is about being able to achieve greatness no matter who you are or where you’re from. It’s great that the play has become very popular because kids like me can become interested in historical figures and learn more about them. Many people have made “Hamilton” a phenomenon because of its radical tunes. It also helps that it has a diverse, talented, and charismatic cast.

Lin-Manuel Miranda is the creator and star of “Hamilton.” He got me hooked on this musical because he was able to make this story into a hip-hop performance with catchy lyrics to sing along to.

This musical is now playing in San Francisco, but for many people the tickets are too expensive to go. That doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the music; you can see clips of the play on Youtube, or listen to the songs. But be careful, you might become addicted because “Hamilton” rocks!