Congratulations to the performance-based problem team members Mathew Whetsell, Bo Miller, Matthew Cline, Erin Quick, Alston Stevenson, Holly Rumble, and Jackson Hodge on their third-place finish at the Odyssey of the Mind World Finals. Their solution to “Superhero Cliffhanger” involved a sculptured “Monster of Rock” descending from their scenery to do battle with the “Jukebox Hero.” The team put in over 1000 hours of work each to create a technically complicated series of lights and moving parts. This same team wowed the judges at the OM State Finals in April where they received the prestigious Ranatra Fusca Award, which is an automatic ‘ticket’ to World Finals.
Latin Club members of Thomasville High School/Scholars Academy immersed themselves into the classics at the annual State Latin Convention at Rock Eagle from April 21-23. They had the opportunity to asses their Latin knowledge in testing and certamen, to experience the life of the Romans through various workshops, to test their strength and endurance in the Ludi and Olympika competitions, to show off their talents in the talent show and art competition, and to dance the night away TOGAther. As a group, they marched in the streets along with around 1200 other Georgia Junior Classical League students, wearing their togas and chanting proudly to show their school spirit. After it was all over, they brought home two awards, one for First place in Ludi, won by Eli Humphries, and another for Photo of the Month, taken by Malyce Collins.
Thomasville Scholars Academy 7th Grade Honors Social Studies students had the opportunity for a special trip as they studied Southern and Eastern Asia with special events including a trip to Hong Yip Restaurant to experience Asian cuisine. Mike Dong, Manger/Owner welcomed 64 hungry 7th graders during lunch time. Students even tested out their chopstick skills while enjoying the lunch buffet. Other events included special guest speaker, Retired Navy Commander Moses Everett, Jr. addressed 7th grade Honors Social Studies students about his tour of duty in Southern and Eastern Asia by sharing various military experiences in Korea, Japan, China, Taiwan and other parts of the world. Commander Everett discussed many historical events that took place in China and Japan as well as North and South Korea. Specific topics such as how this part of the world affects the global economy were addressed. The political climate of North Korea in recent news involving the testing of missiles was discussed as well.Commander Everett shared his scrapbook and naval memorabilia from his Asia tour which included pictures of Buddhist temples, the DMZ (Korean Demilitarized Zone) and the like. Students were able to hear and visualize first hand experience and history from Commander Everett.
The 2016-17 Scholars Showcase magazine is complete and will be available for purchase for $10 in the computer lab or from Mrs. Celaya. The stories that are featured vary from year to year and are truly just a taste of all that we do. We are proud of the publication visually and even more proud of the content that was made possible by all of the teachers' and students' efforts and accomplishments.
We are proud to announce that the 2016-2017 Scholars Academy Teacher of the Year is Christie Ariail. Ariail teaches seventh grade Honors Life Science, Human Anatomy and Physiology, and Science Connections. She sponsors the middle and high school Science Olympiad teams, assists in the C.I.T.Y. Virtual School lab and is a vital part of the PBIS (Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports) program at Scholars Academy. Ariail is shown dissecting a cat with her Human Anatomy and Physiology students. Congratulations to Mrs. Ariail!
Thomasville City Scholars Academy senior Ryan Owens has been recognized as a Georgia Scholar through the Georgia Scholar program. The Georgia Department of Education identifies and honors high school seniors who have achieved excellence in school and community life. The program is coordinated by the Department’s Excellence Recognition Office and through local coordinators in each public school system and in private schools throughout the state. Each Georgia Scholar receives a seal for his or her diploma.
Students eligible for Georgia Scholar recognition are high school seniors who exhibit excellence in all phases of school life, in community activities, and in the home. Georgia Scholars have carried exemplary course loads during the four years of high school; who performed excellently in all courses; who successfully participated in interscholastic events at their schools and in their communities; and who have assumed active roles in extracurricular activities sponsored by their schools.
Specific requirements are as follows:
Thomasville City Scholars Academy sent nine students to the Georgia Science and Engineering Fair on the Friday, March 31 at University of Georgia in Athens: (front row) Andrew Cannon, Clarke Finger, Jocelyn Watson, Sam Carter, and Winston Cornish; (back row) Mallory Fletcher, Addie Rinehart, Clara Clifton, and Julianna Watson. Rinehart won the special award from the Association for Women Geoscientists and was alternate for the Tellus Science Museum Award. Julianna Watson won the Tellus Science Museum Award, which includes an invitation to display her project at the Tellus Science Museum for four weeks later in the spring. Rinehart and Clifton won 4th place ribbons, and Jocelyn Watson won a 3rd place ribbon.
Two Scholars Academy Odyssey of the Mind teams advanced to state competition at the final regional tournament of the year in Lilburn. They will join the other five Scholars Academy teams in the internationally recognized creative problem-solving competition at Columbus State University on April 1.
The advancement of these teams to State Finals marks a milestone for Scholars Academy-- for the first time in Scholars history, all Odyssey of the Mind teams (seven this year) are advancing to State Finals.
“These two veteran high school teams took us on a roller coaster of emotion,” said Coach Kimsey Hodge. “From a top-notch performance to a near-disaster, both teams had us on the edge of our seats. But, in the end, they both pulled it out.”
Jack Atkinson, Jala Walker, Sarah Myhre, Jeremy Cooper, Logan St. Ives, Lilith Edwards, and Abi Mims took home a second place overall in the Classics problem. They also scored first in the quick-thinking Spontaneous problem for their problem and division.
In this problem, “It’s Time, Omer,” the team had to time-travel to the past to inspire classical artists and recreate their artworks. The team’s recreation of Dasoja of Balligrama’s Standing Vishnu as Keshava, made from cardboard and other packaging materials, was a creative highlight of their solution.
“For seven years, I’ve loved the entire OM process. Every competition I’ve gone to has something new to teach me and my team,” said senior Jack Atkinson.
In the performance-based problem, team members Mathew Whetsell, Bo Miller, Matthew Cline, Erin Quick, Alston Stevenson, Holly Rumble, and Jackson Hodge acted through a rocky start to squeeze into state competition with a third-place finish.
Their solution to “Superhero Cliffhanger” involved a sculptured “Monster of Rock” descending from their scenery to do battle with the “Jukebox Hero.” The team put in over 1000 hours of work each to create a technically complicated series of lights and moving parts. After a perfect score for their long-term solution at State in 2016, the team hoped for another flawless performance.
“But our scenery was all higgledy piggledy, and we ended up caddy whompus on the stage,” said sophomore Bo Miller. “It was not the performance we had practiced.”
“I think everyone on our team wants to win at state finals, which is great because it’s what drives us to work so hard on our creation. As our coaches say, ‘If we want to win, we have to have a fire in our belly.’”
The team is reworking their solution to simplify the mechanics of their scenery and rewriting parts of their scripts in hopes for redemption at state competition.
“It’s a sign of true creativity when a team can perform through all the mishaps this team experienced and still come out near the top. We’ve always known this team to be technically and theatrically talented, along with incredibly hard-working, but they showed they also have teamwork and perseverance,” said OM coach and Scholars Academy teacher Katie Chastain.
by Quinton Jones
Scholars Academy students are known to shoot for the stars academically. Asa Harbin has been awarded and will be honored as the Class of 2017 STAR Student with the highest College Board Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) score in the Thomasville City School System.
To obtain the STAR nomination, high school seniors must have the highest score on any single test date of the SAT taken through the November test date of their senior year and be in the top 10 percent or top 10 students of their class based on grade point average. Nominees’ SAT scores must be equal to or higher than the latest available national average on the critical reading, math, and writing sections.
Kiwanis, a major sponsor for STAR (Student Teacher Achievement Recognition) at the local level in Thomasville, recognizes the school’s highest achieving high school seniors and influential teachers in their academic efforts. Annually, a STAR student is recognized and gets the chance to choose a teacher that has had the most instrumental role in their academic development.
Harbin faced the tough responsibility of choosing a specific STAR teacher that has impacted and played a significant role in his academic achievement. Noteworthy, he actually chose as his STAR teacher Dr. Dale Graham, who is his AP Calculus BC teacher and serves as the Director of Scholars Academy.
¨Dr. Graham has always been incredibly encouraging in everything I’ve pursued. There is a lot that I wouldn’t have been able to do without her support,” commented Harbin on choosing his STAR teacher.
Dr. Graham got the chance to comment on Harbin’s unique academic abilities and how he represents his self-sufficient classmates.
“Asa is a fabulous independent learner,” praised Dr. Graham on Harbin’s ability to work independently as well as learning more than the required material for a high school student.
The Scholars Academy is popular for its free, self-driven environment in the classroom and customized approach to course scheduling. Several courses allow students, including underclassmen, to learn independently at a comfortable rate. Courses taught in a “flipped classroom” style paired with other traditional lecture-delivery classes give students varied teaching style experiences. Significantly, the free classroom environment enhances students’ test scores and ability to succeed on the college level.
¨I have had the freedom to choose my own academic path here at the Scholars Academy. It is a very supportive environment for people who want to achieve academically and do it on their own terms,” stated Harbin on the self-driven environment of the Scholars Academy.
In fact, Harbin has been a member of Odyssey of the Mind, a workshop class on campus that allows students to program, build, and brainstorm to create and solve problems in order to develop technical skills. Last year, Harbin’s OM team headed to state competition after winning 1st place and the prestigious Ranatra Fusca award at regional competition. His OM team went on to win in their third appearance at World Finals. Harbin added his opinion on his role on the OM team.
“It helped release my mind from typical straitlaced academia,” said Harbin.
Harbin told Dr. Graham that he had a list of teachers that impacted him during his time at Scholars Academy. He feels that credit is due to many of his teachers.
“It was an utmost honor to be among the group of teachers and faculty that Asa has listed. I speak for the entire staff when I say that we really appreciate it when we see any student succeed,” commended Dr. Graham.
by Peyton Wright
Qualifying Thomasville High School and Scholars Academy students and their families attended the National Honor Society induction and pinning ceremony on Sunday, February 12 at MacIntyre Park Auditorium.
Newly qualifying students enjoyed a fine afternoon that was planned by NHS sponsors, Rebecca Ramsey and Amanda Wood. Seniors that are NHS members attended the event to participate in the pinning ceremony reserved as a particular privilege for seniors. Junior NHS members actively participate in the organization and execution of the reception held at the conclusion of the ceremony in the Multipurpose Room by serving refreshments, desserts, and fruits and vegetables for the guests and students.
The National Honor Society is a nationwide organization made to recognize outstanding high school students. NHS serves to recognize those students who have demonstrated excellence in the areas of scholarship, leadership, service, and character.
To become a member of NHS, students have to have a 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Also, students need some type of service to be eligible. Some characteristics of a NHS student are leadership and character. Student leaders are those who are resourceful, good problem solvers, and idea contributors. A student with good character shows respect for others, cooperation, and honesty and reliability.
NHS has a set of articles from the bylaws to which members must adhere. The name of the chapter at Thomasville High School is the Helen M. Fortney Chapter of the National Honor Society of Secondary schools. The chapter advisor shall be responsible for the direct, day-to-day supervision of the chapter and act as a liaison between faculty, administration, students, and community. They shall maintain files on membership, activities, and financial transactions. They will be responsible for reviewing each member for compliance to Society standards. Membership in this chapter will be based upon scholarship, service, leadership, and character. Members are required to participate in at least two service projects per year.
Advisors generate a list of potential candidates. These candidates are reviewed and have standards they have to meet by the next semester. If they fail to meet these standards by the next semester, they will be notified in writing of their dismissal from the honor society. The officers of this chapter are a president, vice-president, secretary, treasurer, parliamentarian, and historian. A majority of votes is necessary to elect any officer of this chapter. Each one of these officers has duties that they have to follow. The executive committee consists of the officers and the advisor of this chapter. The executive committee has general charge of the meetings and business of the chapter. All members are responsible for contacting the advisors before missing any scheduled meetings, and they are responsible for obtaining any information missed from these meeting. Meetings can be called by the president.
The officers of NHS are as follows: President- Ryan Owens, Vice-President- John West, Secretary- Grace Fletcher, Treasurer- Virginia Jackson, Parliamentarian- Robert Gloster, and Historian- Carlyn Autry.
All meetings are mandatory for NHS members. The annual chapter duesfor each member is $20.00. This fee must be paid within 8 weeks after a member is newly inducted. Current members must pay their annual dues no later than the end of the first nine weeks grading period.
NHS also has criteria for membership:
1. The student must have a cumulative average of 85 in academic subjects only; academic courses consist of math, science, English, social studies, and foreign language
2. No F’s will be allowed in any subject for the semester average/grade.
3. Students should be enrolled in advanced, honors, and/or college-level courses.
4. Incompletes must be cleared before evaluation for membership can be completed.
5. Students must maintain a 90% attendance rate in all scheduled classes.
6. Participation in fundraising and service activities is required
7. Any type of academic dishonesty cannot be overlooked. Any case of academic dishonesty will be presented to the Faculty Council for review to determine whether dismissal from the society or placement on a probationary period is appropriate.
8. Any type of inappropriate behavior that does not constitute character becoming an NHS member that occurs on or off of school property or results in an arrest charge or other legal ramifications will be grounds for a review for dismissal by the Faculty Council.
Ramsey and Wood are very proud of the students being inducted this year: Caroline Anthony, Zackary Artz, Braxton Beckham, Mahala Bennett, Levereanna Brooks, Destini Butler, John Carpenter, Louis Carter, Cassidy Clark, Isabel Claudio-Mirabel, Jamiya Coleman, Jasmine Cone, Emily Dixon, Dalton Dollar, Benjamin Dozier, Frederick Drayton, Emily Dukes, Dane Dyksterhouse, LaTatyana Hadley, Brayton Hanna, Spencer Harbin, John Michael Horne, Abbie Jackson, Ionica Jackson, Tiffany Joseph, Tyla Joseph, Christina Kato, R’Mani Kemp, Javonte McGriff, Sydney McKay, Bowen Miller, Veruanikka Newsome, Hannah Ouzts, Haley Palmer, Keisha Patel, Christian Pyle, Erin Quick, Margaret Rainey, Miranda Roberson, Heaven Robinson, Kianna Ross, Jemari Sapp, Amber Sarabia, Morgan Savatgy, Olivia Sawyer, Maura Shiner, Mallory Singletary, Alston Stevenson, Je’boris Stockton, Keona Tillman, Raneshia Walden, London Weier, Mason West, Claudia-Michele White, Seth Wier, Mason Wilson, Ana Grace Wortham, Titus Wright, Eve Phelps, Sophi Sampson, Brittani Sumler, Lauren Sutphin, Tessa Novak, Mac Rosenbury, Shaquinna Wadley.
“Ms. Wood and I are both extremely pleased by the great attendance of family and friends that came to the Sunday afternoon ceremony, and we thought the reception following was well received by guests and members alike,” said Ramsey.
“I was you. I sat right where you are sitting today, and I’m here to tell you that if you can dream it, you can do it,” said retired 4-Star General Lloyd Austin as he spoke to the Thomasville High School Air Force Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (AFJROTC).
Austin graduated from Thomasville High School in 1971, received an appointment to West Point Military Academy, and went on to lead troops at the 1, 2, 3, and 4 star levels during his 41 years of service in the United States Army. After serving as the last Commanding General of U.S. Forces- Iraq and as the Vice Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army, Austin’s most prestigious assignment was his appointment and confirmation as commander of U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) in 2013 where he designed the operational plans while overseeing the U.S. efforts in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere in a vast region that covers the Middle East, from Egypt to Kazakhstan.
During his recent visit to speak at the graveside of military leader Henry O. Flipper, he took the time to visit THS AFJROTC teachers, Lt. Col. Stann McLeod and MSgt. Chad Smith, and answer questions from an audience of high schoolers who listened with rapt attention to the humble and admirable hometown hero.
Cadet Kieran Jones asked, “What has it been like traveling around the world?”
Austin told the students that while he completed four combat tours, he loved learning about new cultures and emphasized the service aspect of his job.
“While I had the privilege of serving in the greatest profession there is, I knew that it was about service while I still got to meet new people and do new and different things,” said Austin.
Cadet Jones also asked, “What’s your take on service before self?”
Austin said that it means everything, that you put your personal interests aside for the benefit of your team.
“I’ve seen people give their lives for their team. It is what the military is all about,” said Austin.
Cadet Spear Celaya asked, “What was PT (physical training) like at West Point?
Austin recalled that when he finished high school, he was in pretty good shape and was a jumper on the track team.
“PT was hard, and part of going to college is meeting really talented people. Meeting those others helped raise the bar for me. It challenged me mentally and physically,” said Austin.
Cadet Thomas Butler asked, “What has been your greatest experience?”
Austin relayed that his greatest experience has been the ability to lead troops.
“It’s extraordinary how much people will do for each other, how much they will do for their team,” said Austin.
Corps Commander Peyton Miller asked, “Since ROTC is a leadership laboratory, what quality do you esteem the most in a leader?”
“Selflessness,” said Austin matter-of-factly. “If it’s someone I’m working for or if someone is working for me, the leader should think about the people he is leading above himself and they will follow their leader anywhere.”
Cadet Jarrett Daniel asked, “When you’ve experienced fear or doubt, how did you overcome it?”
Austin assured the audience that everyone has fears, and those who claim that they don’t are misleading.
“Hearing the voice of your leader and the training that you can fall back on in times of stress and fear can give you the confidence to get through the anxiety,” added Austin.
Cadet Kareem Daniels asked, “At what age did you decide to pursue the military and what kept you motivated through the hard work?”
Austin reiterated his earlier comments about the importance of service to others and urged the students to find a way to serve their country even if it’s not in the military.
“I’ve wanted to do this since I was a kid. I wanted to be a guy who served my country,” said Austin.
One of Austin’s closing remarks commended his classmates from THS.
“The message I bring is that you ought to be willing to do things for each other,” said Austin. “My friends from the THS Class of 1971 have met up with me all over the country to support me throughout my career.”
by Parker Zolt
There’s nothing better than a mother’s love; luckily for the Thomasville High School baseball team, they get the opportunity to receive that love twice. Thanks to the Peer Leadership class, the idea of “Baseball Moms,” came to the plate. Teachers from around the school were given the option to “adopt a player” and become their “mom” for the entire season.
The whole idea stemmed from a way for a teacher to be the baseball player’s personal mentor. For example, if a baseball player is acting up in class then the teachers have been told to report any problems to their ‘mom’ before going to the coach. From there the teacher is supposed to give the player advice and offer him support, but if the problem is continuous then the teachers are allowed to go directly to the coach. This way, if a problem reaches the coach then the coach knows that the problem has been happening frequently and has become a major problem.
Hopefully no player will have the go through this, but if it does somehow seem to occur then this process allows the teachers and students to create healthy relationships between each other, and will create a more responsible student-athlete. The moms are like a second line of defense for the boys, but apart from all that negativity, Baseball Moms also get to become their player’s number one fan!!
When signing up to be a Baseball Mom, the volunteer has also committed to providing the boys with goody bags (with a $7 cap) before every away game. The boys were given a sheet to fill out with options on them such as “favorite flavor Gatorade” or “favorite snacks” in which the player would list out a few options for the moms to choose from, so that the boys can have a pregame snack on the bus ride over.
Each teacher has been given a jersey to wear on game day with their player's number on it. Not many women can pull off a high school baseball jersey, but luckily the THS Baseball Moms can do it with ease. Plus it means a lot to the players when they see them wearing the jerseys and supporting the team. The teachers have committed to attend three of the eleven home games, but can attend as many as they like.
“I kinda like the whole idea of having a baseball mom; it's something we’ve never had before and it's nice seeing someone wearing my jersey number on game day,” said junior baseball player Jared Smith.
The spotlight game that the moms must attend is on April 11, when the Bulldogs take on the Brooks County Trojans. This game is the 2017’s version of senior night, since the team has no seniors to honor. they have decided to take some time to honor their “moms” on that night. On that night the Baseball Moms will walk out onto the field with their player and be recognized in front of the fans, pictures will be taken, and awards will be given. Players compete for awards such a “best hair” and other fun awards, so may the best player win!
Eight Thomasville High Scholars Academy students competed in 4 GHSA State Literary Meet categories at Houston County High School in Warner Robins, Georgia this past Saturday morning. Aubrey Brumblow was named State Runner up for Personal Narrative Essay and Robert Gloster received 4th Place in Boys Solo. State Literary Team is pictured L to R: Aubrey Brumblow- Personal Narrative Essay; Christina Kato, Tyla Joseph, and Renderea Perkins (not pictured) - Girls Trio; Zack Artz, Sebastian James, Robert Gloster, Carl Blackmore - Boys Quartet; and Robert Gloster- Boys Solo.
by Hallie Turner
Thomasville High School advanced 12 swimmers to the GHSA State Swim Meet at Georgia Tech on Friday, February 3 to compete in 4 relays and 3 individual events.
The swimmers qualifying for state were: Hannah Fromkin, Claudia White, Kathleen Geyer, Kaitlyn Kasper, Maggie Davis, Aubrey Baker, John West, Jason Stockstill, Braxton Beckham, Preston Page and 2 alternates, Oliver Yant and Max White.
Most adults have their morning workout routine like going to the gym or running 5 miles before going to work while their children are sound asleep before their school alarm goes off, but that’s not the case for Maggie Davis. Each morning around 5:00 a.m., Davis wakes up to drive to Tallahassee for morning practice with the Area Tallahassee Aquatic Club.
“Swimming not only for school but also with ATAC has improved my skills tremendously. Some think swimming is so easy but that’s definitely not the case. You don’t just get to hop in the water and automatically become a great swimmer; it is just like every other sport, practice makes perfect,” said Davis.
Davis's goal for this year for school swim was just to really focus on having fun with her teammates and to enjoy her last year of high school swimming, but there's still the qualifying times for each event that must be met in order to sompete at the state level. Davis was the only varsity girl to get her individual state cut. She is constantly pushing herself to beat out her time.
“I’ve been swimming for 10 years now and the feeling I get when I look at the clock to see that I just swam as fast as I ever have before is so indescribable. That’s when I know all of the hours I put in each day and week have finally paid off,” said Davis.
Davis made her individual state cut with 5:40.00 in the 500 free and 1:05.00 for 100 fly. “Fly” is short for butterfly which is a swimming stroke with both arms moving symmetrically, accompanied by the butterfly kick (also known as the "dolphin kick"). While other styles like the breaststroke, front crawl, or backstroke can be executed adequately by beginners, the butterfly is a more difficult stroke that requires good technique as well as strong muscles.
Not only does swimming burn calories, it improves flexibility, strengthens the heart and lungs, and strengthens all major muscles. It also aids in mental well-being.
“A huge thank you goes out to my teammates for giving me a very memorable senior year in swimming. We made such big improvements this year and we really came together as a team which made it such a great way to end my high school swimming career,” said Davis.
While Davis has now ended that chapter of her life she has recently started a brand new one. She will continue to further her education and swimming career at Brenau University in Gainesville, Georgia.
“When I signed with Brenau I knew I was ready to further maturity in this sport as I continue my education. My goal for college swimming is to continue to improve my times in the pool while developing relationships with my teammates that will last a lifetime. There is still a lot that I can learn about swimming and I’m excited to see where this journey will take me,” said Davis.
John West, a junior at the Scholars Academy and captain of the varsity boys swim team, was the other student to achieve his individual state cut.
“After trying almost every sport, my mother convinced me to try swim and it finally just clicked with me. I am one that strives for excellence in everything that I do and the competitive side of me enhances the reason why I love this sport,” said West.
"Being captain of the boys team this year taught me leadership skills and how to encourage others to strive for excellence,” said West. West is looking forward to his senior year of swim and hoping that he and his teammates can make it all the way to state again.
“Maggie and John are two very different types of swimmers, but they are very self motivated. I try to motivate them by giving them any support they need unconditionally. I have found that I took on the role as team cheerleader a lot this season, many times to cheer them on during their races. I almost never had a voice after meets, but I have loved and enjoyed every second of them,” said Head Coach Bree Pullara.
The swim team had holes to fill from the 2015-16 season as they lost three graduating seniors including state title holder Sam Tabacchi and their head swim team coach. While Jill Tabacchi serves as the team’s highly qualified community coach, the team was in for a great surprise as Pullara was announced to be the new head coach.
Pullara discussed the importances of what being on a team allows and her goals for the season.
“My goal is to make sure that every athlete ends the year being more successful than their previous year and a better person than when the season started,” said Pullara.
Not only was this her first year as the swim head coach, but it was also her first position as a varsity head coach, and Pullara acknowledged the responsibility of her new position.
“The whole process of being a swim coach was completely new to me. Thankfully I have an amazing community coach who prepares the swimmer’s practices and knows exactly what the athletes need to be successful,” said Pullara.
THS swim has a promising future with a lot of young talent in the pipeline. At their annual end of the year banquet, freshman Preston Page was awarded highest points for the varsity boys for the entire season, and freshman Kathleen Geyer won highest points for the varsity girls.
“The goal for next year is to always improve upon the previous year, but things do change and with graduation, teams lose great team assets. We are in a great place though, with a lot of young swimmers that can rise up to help us to be continue to be successful in the water. I cannot wait to see what next year holds for our swimmers,” said Pullara.
Twelve Thomasville City Schools Literary Team high school students traveled to Irwin County High School on March 4 to complete in 9 of the 12 literary competition categories. Ten students with 1st place medals will compete in the GHSA State Literary Meet at Veterans High School in Houston County on Saturday, March 18, 2017. Pictured: Renderea Perkins, Tyla Joseph, and Christina Kato - 1st place Girls Trio; Aubrey Brumblow - 1st place Personal Essay; Grace Fletcher - 1st place Domestic Extemporaneous Speaking; Robert Gloster, Carl Blackmore, Zack Artz, Sebastian James - 1st place Boys Quartet; Jeremy Cooper - 1st place Rhetorical Essay; and Literary Team Sponsor, Rebecca Ramsey. Robert Gloster also won 2nd place in Boys Solo. Three 4th Place recognitions were earned by: Isaac Welch - Argumentative Essay, Claudia White - International Extemporaneous Speaking, and Renderea Perkins - Girls Solo. Overall, Thomasville earned more 1st place awards than any other school in their region and placed 3rd at the Region 1-AA Literary Meet.
by Meta Ughetto
Thomasville Scholars Academy art teacher Ashley Ivey-Jackson’s 7th period art class and Julie Spence’s pre-k at Scott Elementary are back and better as they team up for Art Because We Care (ABC) Art Club for a third year.
ABC Art Club started with an idea from alumni Annalee Jackson during her senior year in 2014. Her plan was to expose the children who don’t regularly receive an art curriculum at school. It was important to her because art was such a huge part of her life. She began the club to share her love of art with the young students. Creating the club and interacting with pre-k was also important because while it was light-hearted, it really taught the students something and started them young so they would grow and hopefully mature with an affection and knowledge of art.
Ivey-Jackson’s class goes to Scott almost every week to teach the children the basics of art like line, shape, and color. Not only do the kids receive an education through creativity, but they also form a bond and friendship with the high school students. Many of the students claim that they also learn from the pre-kindergarteners.
“The kids in the club have really taught me to look at things from a different perspective and that creativity and art are so important,” said Caroline Anthony.
“I think ABC Art Club does create a bond between the children, as does Julie. They all look forward to the class and spending time with each other,” said Ivey-Jackson.
Even though the project may be a challenge with traveling to Scott and fitting their schedules with Spence’s, it is important that time is given to the children so they can get the art in and are given exposure to something that affects every aspect of life.
This year’s ABC Art Club president, Katie Wise is very involved with the club, and it is one of her greatest passions.
“I love to work with the kids and it is so exciting to me that our school offers something that involved kids!” said Wise.
Wise went on to explain the nature of the lesson planning and the activities.
“We start off with teaching the students new art vocabulary. Once we explain what we are learning, we come up with fun ways to remember it before we do the hands-on part of the lesson like coloring, cutting, or painting,” said Wise.
Having such a great program that not only teaches the Scott students but also Scholars kids is remarkable and life changing. Other Scholars art students hold ABC Art Club very highly, and it makes their week to get to spend time with these children.
“Ever since we first started going over there these kids have been the highlight of my day. Just seeing their faces light up after their picture is finished is the best,” said Spear Celaya.
by Meta Ughetto
Thomasville High School Symphonic and Marching Bands play hard as the stakes get higher and competitions arise.
Symphonic Band, directed by Joe Regina, consists of nearly 80 students that compete at the Georgia Music Educators Association (GMEA) Festival in Cairo each year.
From when they return from winter break until the judged performance on March 9th, much practice and commitment is put into perfecting the performance. After school practice is held two times a week and during class. So much practice is needed due to how advanced the music selection is. This is especially true for children at such a young age because they are playing music that colleges like FSU would play at a concert.
Regina talks about the preparation leading up to competition.
“They seem to be excited about it; it's a challenge and is going to be a lot of hard work but we are making progress,” said Regina.
The music selection is one of the largest parts of pulling the performance together. The musical aspect of concert band involves the THS Symphonic Band improving over the years. They earned a Superior, or “one,” rating in 2016 on a 5-6 level rating which are the highest levels.
“In my first year here, we played a level 4 program and received two’s. So to go from that to a 5-6 program and get straight ones is a pretty significant improvement,” said Regina.
Festival can bring out many nerves in the students because of their “Superior” title to uphold.
“Having more experience and having been through it a few times, knowing what to expect and how to prepare for festival can make the experience less nerve-wracking for them,” said Regina.
Participation in band has doubled in the past five years, reaching back to having 40 students in 2012 when Regina started with Thomasville City Schools. The Thomasville High School concert band first began in 1963 with only 6 students and Thomasville’s is one of the oldest bands in the state of Georgia.
Marching Band consists of the same group of students but is a whole other world compared to the concert band. Marching band is very physical and focuses more on hyping up crowds at football games and pep rallies, and competing against other marching bands. THS has about one hundred students in their marching band including the majorettes and danceline. They began the year with their Stevie Wonder show.
“I think was one of the best sounding and best looking shows we have done,” said Regina.
2016 was one of the most successful years for Thomasville High School's marching band in a long time, which was exemplified by their accomplishments at the Battle on the Border competition held in Valdosta in October. There they received many awards including, best in class and also best in division which was over eight other bands from three different states, they earned superior ratings and best in class for percussion, majorettes, and dance line as well.
“We had a very good year and we plan on going back next year and defending our title,” said Regina.
by Johanna Wegner
Thomasville City Scholars Academy Academic Team, sponsored by teacher Erin White competed successfully at the annual Andrew College Academic Competition on January 25th.
White chose 25 students to compete by looking at student interests and areas of academic talent.
“I try to make it so that we have a variety of kids from different grades and different subjects so that we can win more,” said White.
In the Math category, Anne Clifton won 1st place for 11th grade and Isaac Welch won 2nd place for 12th grade.
In the Science category, Braxton Sizemore won 1st place for 9th grade; Emily Dixon won 1st place and John Carpenter won 2nd place for 10th grade; Grayson Durham won 1st place and Lilith Edwards won 2nd place for 11th grade; and Jeremy Cooper won 2nd place for 12th grade.
In the Social Studies category, Max White won 1st place for 9th grade; Claudia-Michele White won 1st place and Ben Dozier won 2nd place for 10th grade; Jackson Singletary won 1st place and Alexa Hernandez won 2nd place for 11th grade; and Jacob Cone won 2nd place for 12th grade.
Some areas awarded overall winners rather than separating students by grade level.
Aubrey Brumblow won overall 1st place for the Personal Essay category, Hannah Ouzts won overall 2nd place for the Theatre category, and Allison Wheeler won overall 1st place in the Music category.
Scholars Academy was in Division B and had to compete against 8 other schools whereas other divisions consisted of only three competing schools.
“The hardest competition was in our division,” said White.
According to Andrew College, students should participate to encourage academic excellence, to prepare for future competitions and for scholarship opportunities to Andrew College.
White thinks that the competition is a good opportunity for students because it is fun and students get to measure themselves up against other students.
“It is a way to demonstrate interest outside the classroom,” said White.
Alexa Hernandez has participated since her freshmen year in the Social Study category.
“I learned that there are a lot of people that have the same goals as me and I learned, of course, more about social studies,” said Hernandez.
Freshman Kaitlyn Kasper participated in her first year at the Academic Competition in the math category and she had a good time.
“I learned that I still have a lot more I can learn,” said Kasper.
Scholars Academy Odyssey of the Mind teams made a clean sweep at the first regional competition of the season in Hawkinsville, Georgia. All five teams that competed will move on to state competition in Columbus, Georgia.
At the creative problem-solving competition, teams present solution to a long-term problem in one of five categories-- Vehicle, Technical, Classics, Balsa Wood (structural), and Performance-based. They are also given a “Spontaneous” problem at competition that they solve on the spot, which tests the students’ quick thinking in problem solving.
“These are incredibly difficult problems for most adults, but these middle and high school teams have worked collaboratively since September to solve these long term problems. We are so proud of their persistence and their dignity in solving the problem without any outside assistance,” said Co-Coach Kimsey Hodge. “Our teams showed a real strength in the Spontaneous section-- taking first place in Spontaneous in all but one problem.”
In the Classics problem, Scholars Academy (division II) took first place, defeating Stratford Academy by 87.31 points (out of a possible 350 points). Team members Anna Myhre, Rosalie Millere, Ella Millere, Jackson Hodge, Reid Harbin, and Clara Clifton said each member worked more than 400 hours each over the past five months to solve their problem.
“I’m proud of how we worked together. We had a lot of conflicts but tried to push through them and achieve greatness,” said 7th grader Anna Myhre. “After I work as hard as I can and push myself to my absolute limit, once I step back and see what I have done, I am not just happy, but proud.”
In the Technical problem, teams had to create an “Odd-A-Bot” that performed four different movements, and each movement had to perform two different activities. For instance, the middle school team created a mechanical dog (made from a mop bucket) that could wag its tail and with the same movement, sweep the floor.
The high school technical team (Jordan Bonar, RJ Elzy, Frederick Drayton, Max White, Jack Edge, and Winston Cornish) took first place overall. The middle school technical team (Kendall Cullison, Emily Sumner, Sam Carter, Layne Oldham, Brooks Butler, Fred Diggs, and Aubrey Kinard) will advance to state final with their second place finish.
“OM is in no way an easy thing to do,” said junior RJ Elzy. “One of the hardest things for our team to figure out was how to engineer the robot, and even though we still have some problems with it, the feeling we get when it works and everyone gasps is amazing.”
The Vehicle team, made up of members Semira Davis, Yasmine Lane, Wyndham Drayton, Seth Welch, Tian Green, and Julianna Watson, took second place overall in their division. They defeated their competition in the Spontaneous section.
In this problem, teams had to create three vehicles with different propulsion methods that approach a target area from three different directions.
“We still have to achieve many things, such as the creativity of how our vehicles worked and turning the vehicles,” said 8th grader Wyndham Drayton. “We did find satisfaction, though, in completing what was complicated. We brought out everything we had to offer: outstanding improv and our ability to think on our feet.”
Ellie Griffin, Ashley McKay, Caroline Hiers, Sydney Deutsch, Drew Parker, Natalie Herrin, and Oliver Aguilera placed 2nd out of six teams in the Division II Performance-based problem, “Superhero Cliffhanger.”
“I am incredibly proud of our students,” said Scholars Academy Design Thinking teacher and Co-Coach, Katie Chastain. “They are very competitive and even more creative than they are competitive. To top it off, our students are even more kind than they are competitive. We have a great group of kids.”
Scholars Academy also came away with top honors winning First Place in both the Creative Cake and Banner Competitions. These events allow parents, adults, and other students not solving long term problems to participate. Scholars Academy Junior, Sophie Barnes, designed and created the award winning banner with the assistance of sophomores Erin Quick and Alston Stevenson and eighth graders Aidan Little, Ayden Harrison and Garrison Ledford. Mandy Grage, wife of Thomasville Bulldogs football coach, Zach Grage, made the awe-inspiring cake to match Sophie’s banner design of hot air balloons floating up into the sky.
Two more Scholars Academy teams will compete in a separate regional tournament in Lilburn, Georgia, before the State Finals on April 1st. All teams are coached by Kimsey Hodge and Katie Chastain.
by Anna Kate Pomeroy
Scholars Academy students got the opportunity to prospect future careers at Mock Trial as lawyers, witnesses, timekeepers, and court artists on Saturday, January 28 at the Lowndes County Courthouse where they won third place overall.
Junior John West won outstanding attorney. Sophomore Claudia White and junior Matthew Cline won outstanding witness awards.
Each student has a different role in the event such as Jacob Cone, Alexa Hernandez, and John West as Defense Attorneys. They each give different statements throughout the event in order to show their abilities as lawyers.
“I am the lead Defense Attorney for Mock Trial, which means that I will give the closing statement for my side and also lead the other two witnesses,” said Cone.
Students began practicing for the event back in December. Students prepare by having multiple practice sessions on Sundays, Wednesdays, and Fridays where they all gather together to read the case, make notes, and ask questions that they believe are relevant to their roles. It takes different people different amounts of time to become fully prepared for the event. Each person has a different process that they go through in order to become prepared for the competition
“I do my part in preparing for Mock Trial by reviewing the case we were given and practicing the questions I have for the Plaintiff,” said Hernandez.
Cone said, “It takes me around three weeks to prepare. I first began reading the case, then going over the witness statements, then examining the evidence. I then repeat the process and write down questions for my side, so that I am fully prepared to present the case for my side.”
All of the participating students seem to have had a wonderful experience learning about the law process and putting their knowledge to the test during the competition. The students use the event to demonstrate and practice their public speaking as well as people skills.
“So far my teammates have all worked together to understand the case and make points for one another so I’ve really enjoyed the level of teamwork we participate in. It’s a really great experience,” said West.
For some students, this is their first year participating in the event but other members of the Mock Trial team are veterans to the event, such as senior, Cone, who has taken part in the event since 9th grade.
“This is my first year of Mock Trial, but so far my experience has been great. I hope to one day use the experience and apply it because I want to study to become a lawyer someday,” said West.
Participating in Mock Trial has shown many students, such as Cone and West, that they belong inside the courtroom and that studying law is in their future.
by Pilar Jones
Thomasville City Schools Drama Program will take the stage with their spring musical, “Thoroughly Modern Millie,” on March 3rd and 4th at 7:00 p.m., in the Macintyre Park Auditorium. Under the direction of Scholars Academy drama teacher Casey Dyksterhouse, students will show off their dancing, acting, and singing abilities.
The musical, which had its Broadway opening in 2002, is based off the 1967 movie of the same name and also based on the play "Chrysanthemum" which opened in London in 1956. The play captures the story of how Millie Dillmount, played by Scholars Academy senior Meredith Pearce, is a small town girl that goes out to New York City in 1922 so that she can “marry money” instead of trying to fall in love.
As Millie attempts to have an interview with Trevor Graydon, a successful businessman played by senior Matthew Whetsell, she ends up applying for a job as his stenographer. Because Millie knows his wealth, she tries really hard to throw around hints that she is willing to marry him, although he has not the slightest interest in her.
With this being his last year as a high schooler, Whetsell expresses his feelings towards his last performance and what he’s most excited for following the musical.
“I think that this will be the best performance that I will have ever done. I mean, it’s my last hurrah, so I’m just giving it the best I’ve got. Just like OM (Odyssey of the Mind), I’m trying to enjoy it before it all ends,” Whetsell proclaimed..
Whetsell isn’t the only male that Millie comes across. She ends up falling in love with Jimmy Smith, which is played by junior Matthew Cline. Cline discussed how he has prepared for the leading male role and his feelings towards being a part of such an entertaining musical alongside his cast members.
“It’s exciting. It's kind of scary because I’ve played lead roles a ton, but it’s been a while since I’ve played the leading male role instead of just a leading role. It’s kind of nerve-racking but it’s exciting nonetheless. I’m pretty pumped,” said Cline.
Cline for sure isn’t the only person that has been stressing about the musical. Senior Allison Wheeler plays Muzzy Van Hossmere, a rich singer that arrived back to New York from her world tour. Muzzy guides Millie through the flapper lifestyle and eventually into the arms of her true love.
Tickets are available at the Scholars Academy front office daily and each night this week from 5:00 to 6:00 in the auditorium lobby. Tickets are $10 per student and $15 per adult and will be sold at the door, but get there early to avoid a line and to get a seat!
Thomasville City Schools Rose City Strings Program middle school students traveled to Florida State University campus in the College of Music on Saturday, February 4, 2017 under the direction of Dr. Sally Hernandez and Colleen Manseau to compete in the American String Teacher Association North Florida String Festival. Twenty-five students attended, forming 8 groups and all were awarded Gold, the highest rating. Students performed duets, trios, and quartets in chamber groups for Bronze, Silver, and Gold awards. The adjudicators were complimentary of each group and spent several minutes with each group as a coach to help them improve. Rose City Strings Program “gold-winning” entries were as follows: “Mairie’s Wedding/Romanza” - Armani Miller (violin), Amber Booker (violin), Logan Delarber (viola), and Aubrey Sawyer (cello); “The Skye Boat Song” - Azariah Hooks (violin), Clara Clifton, (viola), Alivia Corker (cello), and Carly House (violin); “America the Beautiful” - Sarah Harper (violin) and Sydney Jackson (violin); “Sagebrush Overture” - Hannah Robinson (violin), Jaron King (cello), and Ja’Lycia Ware (viola); “Swallowtail Jig” - Allie Bellamy (violin) and Patricia Robinson (violin); “La Russe” - Anne Martin Lutes (violin), Leah Brady (violin), Zachary Meeks (cello), and Nyriannah Forbes (viola); “Simple Gifts” - Karis Lane (violin) and Katey Harwood (violin); “William Tell Overture” - Will Cone (cello), Kameron Wallace (violin), and Macy Taylor (violin).
Jarrett Daniel, Peyton Miller, Thomas Butler, and the THS AFJROTC cadets dedicated a new flag at Thomasville City Scholars Academy at an early morning ceremony. Miller read the poem, "Old Glory," and THS trumpet player, Samuel Watts played "To the Colors" while members of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes looked on. Also in attendance were Lt. Col. Stann McLeod, M. Sgt. Chad Smith, and Scholars Academy Director Dr. Dale Graham. The flag was provided by Woodmen of the World representative Judy Lane.
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