Thomasville City Schools advanced 43 first place students from their system-level science fair to the Regional Science Fair at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College where students captured two overall winner awards and secured 7 slots in the upcoming state-level Georgia Science and Engineering Fair in March.
by Haley Palmer
Thomasville City Schools students and faculty “stuck their necks out” by donating old gently worn jeans for families in need.
The idea to do “Jeans for Teens” was brought up by guidance counselors, Tiffany Oldham, Scholars Academy and Marcie West, MacIntyre Park Middle School during a work session during the summer. Jeans for Teens is a world-wide competition sponsored by Abercrombie that awards the school collecting the most jeans with a cash prize.
All students have “Teacher as Advisor” (TAA) in their 2nd period class every Friday. It is when the teachers work with the students to prepare them for college and other things for later on in life. Sometimes the topic is SAT preparation, and other times it has been about bullying or the dangers of exchanging information on social media.
During December, TAA classes had a “giving back” theme, so the students looked at different people who “stuck their necks out” for their community on the website www.giraffe.org. The school wanted to do something like the people on that website, so they decided to do “Jeans for Teens” to get the students to start giving back to the community. The students’ TAA classes informed the students about the jeans collection project and encouraged the students to bring in jeans.
The organizers of the effort, Oldham and West placed drop-boxes all around the Scholars Academy, Thomasville High School, and MacIntyre Park Middle School. They also extended the cause to the elementary schools and throughout the community at both YMCA’s, Thomasville Center for the Arts, and Thomasville City Schools Board Office.
People were encouraged to clean out old clothes over the Winter Break and were allowed to bring in jeans up until Friday, January 8. There were close to seven hundred pairs of jeans donated, some with tags still left on them. There were many different colors and different styles of jeans donated. Then on Saturday, January 9 the jeans were all laid out in the MPMS Cafeteria, and families could come pick out pairs of jeans for everybody in their family.
Leftover jeans were sent to different places. About thirty pairs of jeans were given to the Odyssey of Mind teams for creative purposes. Then about one hundred and fifty pairs were given to the Thomasville Rescue Mission.
Ninth grader Kaitlyn Leach recognizes the benefit to the donors as well as the recipients in the “Jeans for Teens” project.
“The people getting the jeans benefit because of course they are getting jeans to supply for their families, and the families giving the jeans are getting the satisfaction of doing a good deed,” said Leach.
The project was a great way to extend the lessons taught in Teacher As Advisor sessions and to get students involved in helping out and understanding what a difference small things can make. Community service is an important element that colleges look for in candidates. Scholars Academy students are required to perform and document 20 hours of community service each year of enrollment as a part of the “Scholars Designation” on their diploma upon graduation.
Thomasville City Schools faculty, students, and parents are teaming up for a day of physical fitness, ancient activities, and delicious foods on Saturday, March 5 on the MacIntyre Park Middle School campus.
The morning will kick off with the 2nd Annual Bulldog Dash 5K Race at 8:30 a.m. and 1 Mile Fun Run at 9:30 a.m. which benefit MacIntyre Park Middle School. Runners should register online at www.bulldogdash5k.com and pay $15.00 by February 19 to be assured of a t-shirt on race day. Race day registration starts at 7:30 a.m. and is $20.00 per runner. While the 5k race is open to all ages, the fun-run is open only to kids ages 15 and under.
Director of the Academic Recovery Center and race organizer, Angie Ellis is excited about the event and the involvement of the students, “It’s so fun to see our football players come out to run with the little ones in the 1 mile event.”
Next, Thomasville High School Health Occupations Student Association (HOSA), sponsored by Barbara Peralta, will present food for purchase on the MPMS campus, so families can eat lunch and then head to another event on the lawn of Scholars Academy.
Starting at 11:30 and lasting until 1:30, children (or the young at heart) can enjoy the Scholars Classical Fair, sponsored by Latin teacher Charles Gammel and the Latin Club. Children will journey through ancient civilizations in a carnival-like atmosphere for $5 per arm band.
While visiting Egypt, children can imagine what it was like to build massive pyramids without the use of modern tools as they test their strength and ingenuity against opponents in a block race. They can see how mummification was performed in the time of the pharaohs, write their names in hieroglyphics, or make their own headdresses.
In Greece, kids can be Olympic champions in discus, shot put, and javelin throws. They can make their own Greek crowns and write their names in Greek letters.
“When in Rome,” visitors can fight like gladiators against their friends, make Roman helmets, and take a ride in the Scholars Academy chariot.
by Hallie Turner
Thomasville City Scholars Academy students experimented with research and the skills of argument as they prepared and competed in Mock Trial competition at the Valdosta Courthouse last weekend.
Sharon Autry, Malley Celaya, Matthew Cline, Jacob Cone, Jeremy Cooper, Grace Fletcher, Durant Fullington, Asa Harbin, Mason Hodge, Ryan Owens, Jacob Rieber, and Ansley Renfroe under the direction of Advanced Placement Psychology, U.S. History, and World History teacher Erin White advanced to the second round and come home with four individual awards. Rieber and Cline were awarded “Outstanding Witness” and Cone and Rebecca Jane White were awarded “Outstanding Attorney.”
“The case this year was over a homicide, and who was involved in committing it. My role as a detective was to testify as to what I saw in my investigation after the crime itself was committed,” said Owens.
Rieber played Talbot Berrien, the convicted murderer who was pleading not guilty.
Owens, a newcomer to Mock Trial explained his understanding of the competition by saying that there are lawyers and witnesses that participate in a case provided by the state. In competitions, the prosecution competes against another school’s defense and our defense competes against another school’s prosecution.
“My favorite part of Mock Trial is the competitive, yet fun atmosphere,” said Owens. “We aren’t all working together, but we’re all working towards the same goal.”
The benefits of being on the Mock Trial team are that you can get a real look into what actually goes down in a court,” said Owens.
Ansley Renfroe was a newbie to Mock Trial who joined because it not only looks great on a college application but it also helps her to see if a law would be a good career path for her. She played the role of a prosecuting attorney.
“When I am crossing a witness, it is perfectly acceptable to be sassy and that's what I do best,” said Renfroe.
“I enjoy seeing what the students come up with and watching them accomplish a goal as a team, said White.
Many of the students that are in Mock Trial are involved in Thomasville City Schools Drama Program participating in One Act and the spring musical, which gives them an edge when portraying the roles of businessmen or attorneys.
“We have awesome actors so it’s fun to see how they interpret their roles,” said White.
White stated that the biggest challenge was finding time to practice because the kids are involved in so many other things.
“Just like every other year, it all came together because they are very smart and talented human beings,” said White.
Rieber recognizes that the competition improves his analytical and speaking skills and helps him to think on his feet.
“I love the almost "chess game" mindset associated with the competition. As a witness, I'm required to try and make my team and me appear as innocent as possible, so it is my job to think ahead of what I'm being ask in order to avoid any potentially damning questions,” said Rieber.
Autry served as an attorney for the defense team.
“I like the challenge of reading the various statements and piecing them together into a cohesive story. It is fun to find various angles that can be taken in regard to the witnesses,” said Autry.
According to gabar.org, Georgia Mock Trial Competition is a project of the Young Lawyers Division of the State Bar of Georgia and hosts a high school competition each year for students ages 14-19. Each team is made up of 14 competing students. The team is then divided up into two squads: Prosecution/Plaintiff and Defense. Each squad has 7 members: 3 attorneys, 3 witnesses and 1 time keeper. Both will compete at the same time on competition day and will work together for an overall team record. The competition is open to public and private high schools, as well as several homeschool associations. The competition is strictly an after school activity. All team activities and preparation for the competition must happen during after school hours.
Thomasville City Scholars Academy Academic Team, sponsored by Erin White, found great success at the annual Andrew College Academic Competition in each category: Science, Mathematics, and Social Studies, as well as overall 1st place wins in Monologue and Quiz Bowl competitions. Pictured: Ben Dozier (1st place, Social Studies), Alexa Hernandez (2nd place Social Studies), Emily Dixon (1st place Science), Mason Wilson, Virginia Jackson, Tori Cordista, Ryan Owens (2nd place Social Studies), Asa Harbin (1st place Math), Jackson Singletary (1st Social Studies), Grace Fletcher, Claudia White (2nd place Social Studies), Hannah Ouzts (1st place Overall in Monologue), Jeremy Cooper, Sharon Autry (1st place Quiz Bowl), Jacob Cone (1st place Social Studies), Grayson Durham (1st place Science), Mason Hodge (1st place Math & Quiz Bowl). Aaron Bellamy (1st place Social Studies & Quiz Bowl), Walt Tucker (2nd place Math & 1st place Quiz Bowl), Rebecca Jane White (1st place Quiz Bowl), Allison Wheeler, and Jacob Rieber (1st place Quiz Bowl).