Springfield Township High School
2018-19/ Volume 2
CERAIAH G. SOPHIA L. LAUREN L.
MAYA J. GRETCHEN D. TJ S.
The fad fervor for environmental preservation and the more well-known scare tactic campaigns have largely quelled, or faded into social media. This is where we can curate our experience (or perhaps not so directly) and exist in a bubble of information which comforts and affirms us. While it has largely been agreed that our most powerful tools to combat climate change and other planetary woes are education and youth, it has been my feeling that Gen Z has exhibited little motivation to address what will inevitably address us. More than ever, ‘organic’, ‘sustainable’, and similar branding are splashed across all markets, enabling a false sense of gratification and activist status associated with selective purchases, or even purview (not even considering whether those labels tell the whole story). Many hold elementary views of the summits to be conquered in sustainability, exposed to simple lifestyle changes like turning off the lights or sorting recycling (although these are very important beginnings), not understanding the full impacts of the lives they live.
There is a concept that has recently emerged, known as sea level commitment, which I think exemplifies our own responsibilities in regards to the environment, and that of the school’s. In the past, when climate scientists have calculated sea level rise, it has been determined by the quantity to which it will have risen by a certain year. However, ice must melt, and heat must disperse. The concept of sea level commitment references how much sea level rise we have committed to, based on our behaviors today. It has been determined that there is no situation in which the sea does not rise one meter.
By Maya J,
Our Impact and Responsibility-Maya J.
Recycling, Sea Level, and the Future
The Giving Season Continues!
Local Volunteer Openings
Spartan on the Corner
A Study In Student Art-Gretchen D. & Lauren L.
De-stress for Exams-Ceraiah G.
Molasses Cookies: South African Cuisine
Bobotie: South African Stew
Save the Date
This rise before 2100 would cost $14 trillion per year. For scale, the world’s nations spend ~$1.7 trillion, cumulatively, on military. Should this rise come by 2100, we will have committed to 6 meters of sea level rise. Considering life expectancy trends, excluding the past two years, as well as the socio-economic themes in the district, it is conceivable that a reasonable amount of us will still be alive by then.
No one person or corporation has contributed to the behaviors which have put us on this course. It is only as a whole that humanity can impact the environment to such a degree, following the grain of wheat paradox. So in this way, it has been the direct lifestyles or passiveness of us all that have precipitated this terrifying scenario.
Yet, collectively, we also have the power to positively influence the planet. Humans are consistently poor problem solvers when it comes to intangible and global subjects, but just as sea level rises exponentially, so evolves human innovation and enlightenment. There is a margin of possibility to reverse potentially apocalyptic trends, but only with a change of mind. We can start within our own district, not in regards to sea level, but the very, very basics. I have attended discussions with Dr. Rittenhouse and Dr. Zgraggen, anticipating the expansion of the recycling program at the high school.
Personally, I hope for a rinsing station for yogurt cups, biodegradable utensils and napkins, the abandonment of Styrofoam and plastic bottles, and recyclable paper towels in addition to a functioning recycling system (and in the far future, energy efficient toilets/light fixtures). It’s undeniable that we’re behind the curve on this one. Expediency must be a concern. It is exactly because of our deprioritization of green concerns that we find ourselves, globally, in this predicament. In final comment, this subject reminds me of Yoko Ono’s and John Lennon’s campaign: “War is Over! (If You Want It)”. With that, Springfield, I leave you with: waste is over (if you want it). Here's to a winter of low carbon footprints.
Table of Contents
Our Impact and Responsibility
On Recycling, Sea Level, and the Future
The Giving Season Continues! Local Community Service Openings
"I enjoy being with family around the holidays. We like to have a wrestling tournament in my family during the holidays. My New Year's resolution is to learn a standing double back."
" When my whole family goes to my grandparents for Thanksgiving. My resolution is to stay on top of my work and not procrastinate. I give back by helping out my little neighbors with their schoolwork."
" Our annual soup party, which is where we get together and eat soup. My resolution is to do more with my art, as in coloring or watercolor, just being more creative. Well, recently my family has been trying to cut down our plastic consumption and plastic use, to help out the environment."
"I enjoy eating all the holiday food, going to Thanksgiving Dinner at my Great Aunts, and I want to learn quantum mechanics this year."
"Every year we make a turkey out of fruit for Thanksgiving. My resolution this year is keeping up with schoolwork. I give back by trying to help people when I can."
"I enjoy being with friends and family. We always make gingerbread houses every year together. I want to care less about what people think. I sometimes volunteer at my local synagogue doing the Mitzvah Circle."
"I like spending my holiday in my bed warm and cozy. My favorite tradition is making my moms famous mac 'n' cheese. My resolution is to bring up my grades and be less of a workaholic. I usually make cards and try to be a nice person no matter what."
"Holidays are for being with family and having dinner on holidays. My resolution is to pass all my classes. I try to be nice and help others in the halls."
"My favorite way to celebrate the holidays is going to family parties, and my favorite tradition is going to church on Christmas Eve. My resolution is to get better grades this year. I try to make sure I am nice to everyone that I meet."
"Our game night after Christmas dinner. To continue to improve as a person and be there for people. I try to give back through volunteering. I am a volunteer baseball coach through an organization and I love to do it & give back."
"I love to hang out with my parents and go see an old movie way past when I should probably go to bed. To stop procrastinating & get the things done that I've always been meaning to. If there's anything I do to give back I like to try and be nice to everyone."
"Going to NYC during winter break to see a Broadway show and all the holiday window decorations! To go to the gym, enjoy my last year of high school, and spend more time with my family and friends. I give back through supporting those around me and being there for them no matter what."
Pegasus Therapeutic Riding Academy -Editor’s Pick (Minimum Age-14)
Spells Writing Lab -Editor’s Pick (Min. Age-14)
Free Library of Philadelphia-Parkway Central Branch (Min. Age-14)
Magee Rehabilitation Center-Library Asst. (Min. Age-14)
Philadelphia Film Festival (Min. Age-15)
The Resource Exchange-Editor’s Pick
Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia: Mitzvah Food Program (Min. Age-12)
Face to Face Germantown (Min. Age-12)
SHARE Food Program (Min. Age-16)
Jewish Relief Agency (Min. Age-12)
Broad Street Ministry (Min. Ages-12 to volunteer, 16 to serve meals)
St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children (Min. Age-15)
Crossroads Hospice-Sew Fidget Blankets for Dementia/Alzheimer's Patients
Friends of the Wissahickon (Min. Age-13)
Clean Water Action (Min. Age-13)
Urban Tree Connection (Min. Age-12)
National Constitution Center (Min. Age-15)
Philadelphia Apraxia Walk-Social Media Manager-Taking Applications Now
Associated Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired-Drop In Assistant (Min. Age-16)
We interviewed a few students and asked...
1) What is your favorite way to celebrate the holidays?
2) What is your favorite family tradition? 3) Any New Year's resolutions?
4) What's a way you give back/someone gives back to you?
Above: Interact at the Alzheimer's Walk
Above: STHS Student Teagan volunteers at the 2018 Philadelphia Walk for Apraxia, her second year.
SPARTAN ON THE CORNER
9 | Outdoor Magazine Oct 2016
Expression is a necessity in today’s society, especially when everyone and everything is changing in their own ways. In a small community like Springfield, it’s important for our citizens to feel comfortable expressing themselves and what they are going through. We sat down with young artists Jair, Laurence, and Hannah and discussed the way art can help people do this comfortably. We asked each artist the same three questions, “What does art mean to you?”, “How do you express yourself through art?”, and “Why does art matter in our school and community?” All three students gave personal and specific answers that gave us a perfect look into how powerful art really is.
Jair started out by answering the first question, and touching on the other artists' ideas while doing it. He explained that, “Art is a means of expressing your innermost thoughts that words can’t easily describe. It’s a unique way of expressing yourself.” Laurence and Hannah also put a lot of focus on the word expression, branching off of each others' ideas to describe the personal effect it has on them. Hannah goes on to say that, “Sometimes it's expressing something you didn't know was there self consciously.” The two answers were a perfect way to speak for all artists in saying that expression is the biggest thing to come out of their artwork.
All three artists agreed that art is a way to express your feelings. Laurence expresses feelings through art by sketches and comics, Hannah expresses more painful things through her artwork, and Jair uses art as an emotional outlet. He stated, “if I'm having issues I resort to sketching out my thoughts and feelings.” We only spoke to three students in the high school, so we can only imagine how other artists us these tools in reference to self healing and expression.
A Study in Student Art
Above Left: Students working with clay.
Above Right: Students having fun in the art studio.
To the Right: Students using the weaving loom.
By Gretchen D. and Lauren L.
After we grasped an understanding about art in their personal lives, the conversation broadened when we asked the third question. Hannah says that, “Art matters in the school because it can inspire people and bring people together at the same time, it can be a way of communicating with people and see if they feel the same way.” Staying within the same lines, Laurence and Jair went on to say that although art is a personal outlet, it is something all students and artists can appreciate and bond over as a whole community or school.
By the end of the interview, we were surprised about how much art really means to people in our school. It is something different for every person, and with that comes a way of uniquely showing things about themselves or how they cope with problems going on in their lives. You don’t have to be an amazing artist to express yourself, you just need the passion to do so.
By Ceraiah G.
Finals are coming, and we all know what that means. Stress, stress, and more stress. Here are some ways to chase that stress away rather than give into it.
Tip #1: PUT AWAY THE PHONE!! If you find yourself struggling to part with your phone, set aside at least ten minutes every day as a break from your device. Go on to fifteen minutes. Twenty. Thirty. You'll get to that hour before you even know it!
Tip #2: Break things down. Don't torture yourself with long blocks of text. Highlight key notes. Use different colors to make things pop. Write in bullet points. It helps retain information better and reduces anxiety while studying.
Tip #3: Remember to take a break. For every fifteen minutes of studying, take a five minute break in between. Forcing yourself to study for an hour is not only nearly impossible, but gruesome for you! Just avoid distractions during the break.
Tip #4: CHOCOLATE HELPS!! It's been scientifically proven that chocolate helps your brain retain 25% more information. So eat up!
Tip #5: SLEEP IS KEY!! You can't take a test when you're dead tired. Make sure to get at least eight hours of sleep before the test (and just in general) in order to feel well rested, and knock off any extra distractions.
Tip #6: Ditch the rap music while studying. Instead, try calming songs without words. Not only do they help retain information, but you also avoid getting trapped in a rap battle.
Tip #7: Take deep breaths. Deep breathing is very effective in calming a racing heart. Hold your breath and count to four, then blow out for another four seconds.
Tip #8: Take time to reflect. If you are religious, sometimes taking a moment to pray helps. If you aren't a very religious person, taking time to sit back and think about something other than finals is always helpful!
Tip #9: Draw when you get stuck. Whether you're a world renowned artist or can barely draw stick figures, drawing is a great way to reduce test anxiety. As long as you don't get lost!
Tip #10: HAVE CONFIDENCE!! Tell yourself that you can pass. Speak life, not death! And if you do fail, it's okay. Don't let yourself be knocked down. Get back up and give it your all!
De-stress for Exams
Student Art Work
Top Left: One of Laurence's favorite pieces from this year.
Bottom Left: A piece by Hannah that she feels is her best piece so far this year.
Right: A still life created by Jair this year.
Set oven to 325 degrees. Butter a lg casserole dish. Heat butter & oil in a saucepan and fry onion & garlic until translucent. Stir in curry powder and turmeric; cook briefly until fragrant. Remove pot from heat. Mix in minced meat. Mix together crumbs, milk, lemon rind & juice, egg, salt, pepper, apricots, apple, raisins, almonds and mix in. Pile into the dish and level the top.
Great Grandma Bensinger's Molasses Cookies
Submitted by Maya J.
1 1/2 cups flour
3/1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup shortening
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup molasses
1/2 cup moist coconut
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
Sift dry ingredients.
Cream shortening and sugar.
Add egg and molasses, and beat well.
Blend in dry ingredients, gradually.
Add coconut and nuts.
Drop by teaspoonful onto greased baking sheet.
Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes.
Cool slightly before removing from baking sheet.
Makes 3 dozen.
A South African Stew-Like Dish
Courtesy of Epicurious and, originally Rainbow Cuisine: A Culinary Journey Through South Africa by Lannice Snyman ©1998 S&S Publishers
Minced lamb, beef, or mix of both
Butter, veg. Oil
2 chopped onions
½ tsp crushed garlic
1 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp ground turmeric
2 slices bread, crumbled
1/4 cup milk
Rind & juice of sm lemon
1 tsp salt, milled blk pepper
3 ounces dried apricots, chopped
1 Granny Smith apple
-peeled, cored, chopped
1/4 cup golden raisins
1 1/2 ounces slivered almonds
-roasted in dry frying pan
6 lemon, orange, or bay leaves
1 cup milk
½ tsp salt
6 | Outdoor Magazine Oct 2016
Above: Marion Schlappich Bensinger and her husband, Guy.
Roll up the leaves & bury at regular intervals. Seal w/ foil and bake for 1 1/4 hrs. Increase the oven temp. To 400. Mix together the topping (may need extra if you used a lg dish), pour over and bake uncovered for another 15 mins until cooked and lightly browned. Serve with yellow rice and Blatjang (see accompanying Epicurious recipe).
Left: Image of Bobotie. Flickr, 22 Aug. 2011,
Accessed 24 Nov. 2018.
Top Right: The winner of the ugly sweater contest poses with Dr. Zgraggen and Mr. LaRocco.
Save The Date
Top Left: The school band plays music in the halls before school the day before winter break
Jan 21: MArtin Luther King Jr. Day (School closed)
Jan 24: MP2 Ends
jan 25: no school for students
Jan 31: MP2 Report Cards Issued
feb 15: all schools closed
feb 18: President's holiday-all schools closed
feb 21: 2nd back to school night
mar 7-10: Bye Bye BirdIE Performances
Buy tickets! Support your classmates.
Holiday Spirit Week 2018
Bottom Left: All the students who participated in our pajama day for Holiday Spirit Week the Friday before winter break.
7 | Outdoor Magazine Oct 2016
Middle Right: The winners of the pajama day contest pose with Dr. Rittenhouse and Mr. Ferraro.
Middle Left: The students who participated in Ugly Sweater Day for Holiday Spirit Week this year.
Thank you for reading this Season's issue of The Chronicle Newspaper at Springfield Township High School!
If YOU would like to join The Chronicle and contribute your own pieces, see Miss Zeldes in Room 214 for details.
We meet Mondays at 2:45 PM in Room 214