Thursday, December 14, 2017

Budget Challenge in Personal Finance

     The Personal Finance class of Chadron High School has been participating in the H&R Block Budget Challenge to better prepare the students for budgeting outside of high school.

     On the first of December, the budget challenge ended for the class of personal finance. For the past three years Chadron High School has participated in the H&R Block Budget Challenge under the guidance of personal finance teacher Mrs. Budler. The purpose of the budget challenge, Mrs. Budler said is "to give as close of a hands on experience as possible." The budget challenge is meant to challenge students to take on the real life issue of creating a budget around expenses they will most likely have while also saving money for emergencies and eventual retirement. The senior students, Pamela Fisher and Clayton Vahrenkamp, of personal finance agree, with Mrs. Budler that the challenge is an effective teaching tool that high school students will eventually use in their real life. 

     The most difficult part of the challenge Pamela said was "keeping the credit card balanced." According to Pamela the simulations' biggest lesson was that "using a credit card is not good" and can cause many issues. The personal finance class had previously been taught about the dangers of credit card use, but the budget challenge really brought the dangers to light. Even in the simple simulation, students were stressed out and wishing they could just get rid of the credit card. The most stressful portion of the challenge for Clayton was managing the reckless spending of the owner of the credit card as well. What Clayton learned from the challenge was similar to Pamela with keeping credit cards away from his life. According to Pamela the challenge has helped her "to get a real life experience of budgeting."

     According to Mrs. Budler, this year's personal finance class has been one of the highest ranked classes since the school has begun participating in the H&R Block Budget Challenge. This year, overall, the majority of students have had positive participation. 

     Mrs. Budler plans to continue teaching with the H&R Block Budget Challenge in the future. The challenge teaches students that life can't always be so easily planned out. Even if you set aside money for emergencies it might not be enough. It teaches just how easy it is to go crazy and overspend with a credit card without realizing it. This challenge is an important learning tool that teaches high school students a few of the difficulties they will face outside of high school. 

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Finals Underway at CHS

     At Chadron High, levels of stress are high, especially when finals roll around. Maddie Sandstrom, Cooper Wild, and Zayne Jones all use different ways to prepare for finals.
      Unlike the boys, Maddie will study every night for at least 15 minutes the week of finals. The boys, will look over their notes briefly, and Cooper believes a "one night cram session" helps pass finals.
     Cooper and Zayne both do not feel intimidated when it comes to taking finals. They feel as if it is just another day, and don't stress. Maddie on the other hand says finals make her feel like she will fail them and that they are very much so intimidating. All three of the students are nervous about different subjects; Maddie, Spanish, Cooper, English, and Zayne, Government. Maddie and Cooper both have English and Geometry finals, but Maddie also has Spanish to worry about, and Cooper also has art. Government is the only final Zayne has to take.
    Without teachers, there would be no finals. Mrs. Noble, the Spanish teacher, looks at what she has taught for the semester, pulls questions off of tests and/or quizzes, and will take questions asked from students and use them for finals. Mr. Hencey who teaches art, makes his finals based on his reflection on the semester, and thinks about what he wants to check the students understanding on. He will also hit weak spots the students have harder and review them more. When it comes to finals for Mrs. Drinkwalter, who teaches multiple levels of math, she feels spending three days of reviewing, each day with three chapters, is the best way to pass finals.
All three of the teachers agree that finals are a good way to see everything the students have learned throughout the semester. They all feel it is a good way to show them what the teachers themselves need to improve on. Ms. Noble says taking finals shows what students retained, and what she needs to work on. Mr. Hencey believes that taking finals is an excellent way to see what was accomplished throughout the semester. "If students failed the test, I failed at teaching," Hencey explains. The teachers all grade the finals differently. Mr. Hencey has no multiple choice questions, and each question is worth two points. Noble grades her finals like any other regular 100 point test, and Drinkwalter's finals are worth a two times more than a normal exam.
The three teachers seem to deal with stressed kids, other than Ms. Noble. When asked how she dealt with stressed students, she exclaimed "Not very well," but she hands out tootsie rolls, and gives out pretests to relieve stress a little bit. Hencey talks to the students, or attempts to, to figure out why they are stressed while trying to stay calm at the same time. Drinkwalter believes in doing the review with them and giving them the tools to feel confident in their skills. “More confidence leads to less stress,” she stated.
Although when finals come around, students stress levels shoot through the roof, having the right tactics will help relieve tensions and help you pass


Sunday, December 10, 2017

Cardinal Basketball Begins Season at Western Conference Tournament

     Chadron Cardinals Boys' and Girls' Basketball started their season on Friday Dec. 1 at Western Conference.
     The boys' team started its season against Sterling, Colorado. Sterling was state champions last year, and returned a plethora of players with starting experience. The Chadron Cardinals ended up losing to Sterling 36-68.
     The girls played against Mitchell, who is expected to win their district this year. Their speed and quickness put up a lot of points on the Cards. The final score ended up being a staggering 60-19. The leading scorer that game was Carstyn Hageman with eight points.
     As Friday rolled around, the Chadron boys played in a barn burner with the Gering Bulldogs. After missing three shots that could have put the Cards ahead with 10 second to go, the Cards fell to Bulldogs with a score of 44-45.
     In the second round for the girls, they took on the Greeley West Spartans. After being close the whole game, senior Dana Dunbar scored 10 points to put the Cardinals up 50-34 to win the game. This win put the Lady Cardinals in the 5th/6th game.
     On the last day of the Western Conference tournament, the Cardinal men took on the Mitchell Tigers in the 7th/8th place game. After balanced scoring among the Cardinal players, the Cardinals were victorious, winning the game 55-44. Sophomore Cooper Heusman ended the weekend scoring 55 points, which led the boys in scoring for the weekend. Senior, Coy Bila, stated, "We showed everyone we can play as a team, and showed we can be competitive. My favorite game was Gering, because of how close and intense it was; our team showed a lot of resilience."
     The girls took on a talented Scottsbluff team, and showed a lot of promise by keeping up with Bearcats throughout the game. As the Bearcats pulled away in the fourth, the final score was 56-43, giving the Lady Cardinals a 1-2 record for the weekend.
     Senior Dana Dunbar said, "We showed strength and had some bad times, but we overcame our loss on Thursday. I really felt like our team had a good starting point to the season."

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Christmas Break Plans at CHS

          Christmas Break is a very fun and exciting time of the year that kids and adults wait to celebrate all year long. The traditions, out of town traveling, delicious foods, and other Christmas plans all contribute to the fun times during Christmas Break. Plans for Christmas Break vary person to person.
          Some families travel shorter distances, while others travel farther distances. Mrs. Sommerville said she is traveling to Valentine to see family. Mrs. Noble said she is making a small trip to Fort Collins or Denver. Mr. Uhing said, "I will not be leaving town unless Santa needs me to."
          The other ones, who are staying in town, are mainly hanging with family and relaxing. Mande Wolessen said, "I plan on relaxing with family and being free from trig." Ms. Moore said she plans on being together with friends and family.
          The food is a very important factor during the Christmas holidays. Ms. Moore said she usually has prime rib and a variety of different pies. Claire Margetts said she has ham, cheesy potatoes, and pie. Mrs. Noble has prime rib every year for Christmas with mashed potatoes, salad, chocolate chip pie, and vegetables. Mr. Uhing said, "For breakfast we have cinnamon rolls and butter braids. For lunch we have cabbage burgers, calzones, or chicken and noodles." He says, "It has to be something very wintery."
          Different families have different traditions that are very important to them. Mr. Uhing drives around and eats pizza while looking at Chrimas Lights. He also sleeps beneath the Christmas tree the first night it is put up and has his very own song that is important to him during Christmas break, but the song has a very important disclaimer. "If the song is sung any moment BEFORE the actual start of holiday break OR any moment after break has ended, you will be cursed for a whole year... and the curse is harrowing. The lyrics are, "It's Chrimas breaaaaaak, and the future looks brighhhhhhhhht. It's Chrimas breaaaaaak, we're gonna party tonighhhhhhht." The copyright of the song is William Lawrence Uhing. 
         Claire said the traditions in her family consist of each sibling picking a new ornament to hang on the tree and putting the year on it with their names. "We watch the movie It's a Wonderful Life every year as well." Mande said, "We don't have many traditions, but we do get pajamas on Christmas Eve that we wear that night when we sleep and in the morning when we open presents."

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Speech Season Starting Up

     The 2017-2018 speech season has officially begun with a new coach, new assistant coach, and a handful of new speechies. Brenda Lanphear, alongside Cheryl Welch, will be coaching and assistant coaching the speech team.
     Mrs. Lanphear competed in speech her 6th grade year all through her senior year. She was asked to join the speech team in college, but declined due to the priority of school and her studies. Mrs. Lanphear explained her want to coach because speechies are able to be silly and develop a strong sense of self. Strong communication skills are also grown through being in the extra curricular club. Mrs. Lanphear said, "I'm excited to be in charge of another extra curricular. It will be a new position of leadership, and I am thrilled to get to know my kids better, even if it is at 4:30 in the morning."
     Mrs. Lanphear said she is excited to grow a team that is 'positive and competitive.' "We have very dedicated and motivated upperclassmen. They will be great examples for the new people. I think we have a very good team with very strong members. I will support each and every one of these kids, but those that take the extra step will be the competitors. Overall, I am so excited to start the year!" Mrs. Lanphear finished.
     The speech season has finally begun with seven regular season meets to conquer. With two new coaches and a fairly new team, Chadron High School will come to compete with both new faces and  familiar skills.