Story by J.D. Wrightsman, Photos by Blake Ball and Clark Stanton
Toward the beginning of the school year the sixth graders participated in the outdoor Lab.
They lined up on the sidewalk, while the teachers gave them directions. One by one they filed into the pond area, notebooks in one hand and pencils in the other. They were ready to start the activity and observe the environment around them.
“The outdoor lab is a chance for the students to get a good first-hand experience making observations in the real world around them,” Mr. Steven Sturgis, sixth grade science teacher, said.
“The students were taking qualitative and quantitative observations in the outdoor lab,” Sturgis said. The students prepared by setting up their notebooks for the notes they were going to take during the lab.
“I really enjoyed it because we got to go outside and do hands on science observations,” Kaopuiki added. They stayed out there for about a half-hour, wrote down notes, and used their five senses to observe the environment around them.
“I think they all enjoyed it,” Sturgis said. “To get out of the classroom and to move around, learning by doing is more fun.”
Kaopuiki said he had fun going to the outdoor lab because it got them out of the building, and he said it was fun.
“Some observations I had were we saw a lot of bugs and bees and insects living in their environment. We also found bones of some kind of animal,” Kyron explained.
At the end of the lab, the students and the teachers went back inside and the kids recalled the notes they took to finish up the outdoor lab activity.
Story by William Kok
Many Clay students play after school sports, and some students take it above and beyond. Clay student Nishesh Basavareddy, sixth grade, is one of these students that participates in sports after school, and he is a nationally ranked star in the sport he plays.
Nishesh is one of the best tennis players in the country for his age group. He practically lives with the sport. He often times faces competition from all over the country, from Florida to Arkansas.
Although he is one of the best players, it is not easy. It takes dedication, Nishesh said that for six days a week he has one to two and a half hour practices.
“Becoming nationally ranked has proven that my hard work has payed off,” he said.
Nishesh started tennis seven years ago after trying out soccer and tennis. He discovered that he liked tennis more. Ever since, he has been working his way up to the top.
Another Clay tennis player, seventh grader Broc Fletcher practices with Nishesh, and he said, “We are really good friends, and we cheer for each other at some of our matches.”
Broc plays in the same age division as Nishesh which includes 12 and under, and 14 and under.
Both of the players say that tennis helps them with more than just physical challenges.
“It helps with emotional skills, too, being able to take a tough loss and get back up to keep playing,” Fletcher said.
Although tennis is a year-round sport, during the summer there are large tournaments. During this time many of the tennis players travel to matches around the country.
Although Nishesh is playing now, he’s gearing up for this summer when most of his major tournaments will be.
Story by Sami Magee
As the second quarter of this school year began, sixth graders prepared for one of the most exciting science projects of the year: The Invasive Species group project and presentation.
This month-long project began with the groups -- finding group members and choosing species
“My group is so much fun to work with,” Daniel Tanner, sixth grade, said.
Tanner was excited to start this project, and has loved every step so far.
He studied the Feral Pig, which is also referred to as a wild hog, which are from Spain originally. “The Feral Pig is really cool. It has a large population, making it very hard to destroy,” he said.
The project must include a form of presentation. The most common, a PowerPoint, is what Tanner and his group has chosen to work on. Another necessity for a good presentation is a brochure, or something to give away to their audience.
“The Powerpoint must include important information like its habitat, food source and how to stop them [from overpopulating more than before],” Tanner said.
Once Tanner’s group was finished with their work, they were excited to present.
Kathleen Lemme, sixth grade, is also excited to present her final project.
“Right now we are doing research on our species, but I’m really excited to present,” she said. Lemme studied The Brown Headed Cowbird. They have been working on this for roughly two weeks.
Mr. Ellington, sixth grade science teacher, is excited for his students to participate in this group project.
“This is the second year doing this,” he said. “The students really seem to enjoy working together and choosing the presentation [they want to work on with their group].”
Ellington believes it’s easy to get a good grade on this project, if you do it right. “Knowing your information and being able to present well will get you the grade you want,” he said.
“I’m very excited for this project, it has been a really fun experience so far, and I’m excited to see how it turns out,” Tanner said.
All stories, photos and video footage by the seventh and eighth grade newspaper students.