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Academic achievement celebrated at TWHS

posted Feb 10, 2016, 6:17 PM by Jennifer Miller

By Alanna Walker  

Topeka West High School held an assembly to celebrate first semester academic achievement and recognize those students who earned at least a 3.0 grade point average for the first semester Jan. 27. TWHS celebrates academic achievement for many reasons.

    ‘’We’re about education; it’s a significant part of what we do here. We want to congratulate those who have made it and encourage others to join them. Academic achievement is symbolic of future success,” assistant principal Dr. Joy Grimes said.

    TWHS recognizes student academic achievement with three distinct Honor Rolls. For students to earn a place on the Champion Honor Roll, they must earn a GPA of 4.0 or above. Students who earn GPAs of 3.5-3.99 earn a place on the Challenger Honor Roll. Those who earn a place on the Charger Honor Roll must have GPAs of 3.0-3.45.

    For students, earning a place on any of the three Honor Rolls says something about them.

    “Being on the Honor Roll, shows I’m hardworking,” senior Ellen Wenger said.

    Achieving Honor Roll status is not an easy accomplishment when students have to manage everything that comes with being a high school student.

    “In order to maintain good grades, I have to manage my time wisely and prioritize what I do,” senior Camille Parman said.

    Parman and Wenger have earned top honors with spots on the Champion Honor Roll every semester for the duration of their entire high school careers. Only five other seniors also have bragging rights for the same accomplishment: Jensen Fair, Sara Hanley, Miranda Neuner, Rylan Prieb and Catherine LaRue. These seven students have earned straight As all four years of high school.

    Earning straight As was not the initial goal when some students started high school. Rather, it became a goal once they earned their first set of grades as freshmen.

    “Getting straight As was not my goal until after my freshman year when I received my first transcript. I saw what I had accomplished and decided I wanted to continue. I admit there were a few classes that challenged me along the way, but I tried my best and was able to maintain my straight As throughout my high school career,” Hanley said.

    For other students who want to accomplish the same goal, LaRue has some advice.

    “Do all of your homework and stay focused. Your grades are important,” LaRue said.

    Neuner believes academic achievement begins at an early age.

    “Start by getting good grades when you’re young and care about your education, because that will carry with you,” Neuner said.

Students with four years of straight As

Jensen Fair

Sara Hanley

Catherine LaRue

Miranda Neuner

Camille Parman

Rylan Prieb

Ellen Wenger

Men's basketball team works on chemistry

posted Feb 10, 2016, 5:53 AM by Jennifer Miller

By Alanna Walker


Dribble! Pass! Shoot! Score!

    The Topeka West Men’s Basketball Team is halfway done with its season but still make progress every game.

    “We’re finally starting to play as a team, and we’re getting comfortable with each other,” sophomore Koriyon Carr said.

    The team spends nearly every day practicing together making memories.

    “My favorite memory is our first win when I had 23 points. It was exciting to know that I could score a lot, and we could win a game,” Carr said.

    Currently, the varsity boys have won two games are focusing on playing as a team.

    “We want to work on chemistry. We know we can win games, but we seem to  always fall within 3 points,” Carr said. “I want the team to improve on scoring. We always play good defense but never win games on the offensive end, so improving our scoring ability will help that.”

TWHS implements one-to-one technology

posted Sep 5, 2015, 4:42 PM by Jennifer Miller

By Sammy Cabrera

    Topeka Public Schools made the switch from paper-based curriculum to technologically enhanced curriculum by providing each of their middle and high school students with a Google Chromebook for the school year. With this new technology, using pencils and paper is almost unnecessary in most classrooms. Many teachers have started using Chromebooks to their advantage by not handing out textbooks or making as many copies as they did before.

    English teacher Emily Jackson loves the new Chromebooks, especially since she doesn’t have to worry about students losing textbooks or returning the wrong ones anymore.

    “It is much easier for students to go online and access their textbooks using the codes their teachers give them instead of working out of textbooks that students complain about having to carry around,” Jackson said.

    Topeka West High School bought a total of 1,080 Chromebooks with the library staff overseeing distribution. In order to distribute the Chromebooks to all of the students, library media specialist Cherylene Lovett planned to distribute them by English class for two reasons: most students, if not all, have an English class, and the English teachers received training last year on how to use Chromebooks in the classroom. Lovett believes that focusing curriculum on technology has many benefits for students.

    “Chromebooks are not just an electronic device; they provide a secure digital platform. The Google Apps offer students access to free applications for word processing, email, spreadsheet, slideshow and cloud storage. The web-based applications and cloud storage make it easier for students and teachers to interact and work together on class assignments. This paperless format provides 24/7 online access to textbooks, homework and online research databases,” Lovette said.

    Many students are echoing Lovett’s and Jackson’s opinions on the Chromebooks.

    “I don’t have to carry around as many materials for classes, and the homework is posted on the Internet, so everywhere I go, as long as that place has WiFi, I can access it anytime. Plus, it’s very light,” sophomore Charmaine Kiamco said.

    “I like Chromebooks; they are really convenient. A couple of the classes I use it in are Mrs. Jacobson’s government class to take notes and Mr. McCoy’s to write papers,” senior Trey Austin said.

    Many students love them, but there are some students who are still adjusting the the change.

    “I’m just not used to using them, so it’s hard to get used to. Having to type while listening makes it hard to focus, but I do feel [Chromebooks] are a lot handier with everything being all in one place,” senior Cameron Werner said.

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