Spring 2015

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Congrats to the Class of 2015!!!

Summer

What I’m looking forward to most about summer break is not worrying about school starting again and just relaxing and focusing more on myself and my future plans.  Graduating says “I made it” for those who thought I wouldn’t succeed because they judged my book by its cover.  They were, and are, extremely wrong and all I can say is I’m extremely proud to know I’m going to do this like I said I would. No obstacle could stop me or stand in my way, and even though I don’t plan on walking with my class, I do plan on receiving my diploma.

After graduation, that’s the day when life truly begins. You have to start thinking for your future, the possible little ones in your future, your current little ones, and the ones who you consider to be your motivation.  Just enjoying my spare time this summer is going to be most important.  Becoming an adult and having to endure surviving in the real world is the mission to take on for the rest of the time.    -Andra K.

I’m excited for summer simply because I won’t have to worry about school, just like everyone else. I am hoping that my boyfriend and I will be able to go to lots of shows at Red Rocks!

I will probably spend most of my summer hiking and camping, I just got myself a new dirt bike so I’m super excited to get to ride. My boyfriend and I love to go hiking at Castle Wood Canyon so I will most likely be spending most of my summer there. My new puppy Tyson loves hiking with us and he can be off the leash so it’s fun to just have him follow us everywhere and not run away. My dad really loves to go camping in Buena Vista, Colorado and he just bought a new RV that we can walk around in while were driving so I’m excited to go camping in it.

I also want to travel to Chicago to visit my family. I have traveled to Chicago every summer to go see my mom’s side of the family, and my Yaya (mom’s mom) is in the hospital as of yesterday so I will definitely be going out there to see her and take care of her.  I am really looking forward to summer break because summer is my favorite season, and my birthday is four days after school gets out. So I will probably be doing something really fun for my 16th birthday since its right when school gets out. My birthday is on a Sunday this year so it will be nice to be able to not worry about school since it will be out of session!            -Erin T.

This summer is going to be really fun and exciting this year, I can feel it.  I am going to miss school a little bit because I got into learning about numerous things that I never knew about and I can carry my knowledge to the future.

This year, I am going to enjoy myself no matter what happens.  I am going to play music endlessly and have nothing else to worry about because that is all I really want to do with my life is just studying music and making it with my own hands.  Then my brothers and I are going to go camping a lot and that one of my favorite parts of summer.  I don’t know the reason why it is, there is just something about it that makes me feel free of all the stress of normal life.  It’s even better because I get to spend with my little brother Dylan.  Hopefully it will turn into a good summer full of happiness.  I think this is going to be the best summer yet.  -Donovan A.

Education

Growing up and mostly throughout school, we hate it. We hate the classes we’re given, dislike the people we go to school with, and dread waking up so early in the morning.  We’ve all been there and it’s very understandable.

However, the importance of education is frequently underestimated.  See, we live in a generation where technology is booming, and to obtain a good paying job, it is necessary that you have at least 4 years of a college education.

Now, if we break it down, it is extremely difficult to get into college without a high school diploma.  High school is difficult!  I, out of many students, understand the struggle of making it through high school with good grades, carrying a full time job, full time college, and trying to balance everything going on at home. I really do get it.  However, your diploma is necessary.  But as teenagers, we’re too cool for school and tend to mess around thinking it is just a free education when in reality, this is opening our doors for a future education that will help us live comfortably in life.

Once you get to college, it’s no longer free. Someone is going to be paying for it.  To get a good job, other than fast food or something paying minimum wage, it is necessary.  This is why education is important. It is the foundation of any life into your adulthood.  It will open a brighter future for you and your career.  It will allow you to walk through doors that would not be available to you if you did not have an education.  -Ashley K.

If I Had $10 Million

10 million dollars is a lot of money, and I think it’s safe to say that most people (including me) would help their families first. I would put my family out of debt and buy them nice houses up to 300,000 because I have way too much family to be giving them million dollar houses.

In terms of college, I would pay my husband’s, mine, and my 2 son’s first 4 years. After 4 years, if they want to continue then they can pay it themselves because even though I can afford it, they need to know that nothing comes free in this world (even if mom/wife is a millionaire).

In all honesty, I would just want to live the same way I do now, but just a little bit better.  I wouldn’t buy fancy cars and a mansion because that money will run out and I don’t want to be in a position where I can’t afford to pay my bills.  Money is important to me and I can’t say if I would be happier with it, but it would be nice to be a millionaire.  -Geneva A.


If I had 10 million  dollars, first I would donate to my church. The reason why I would donate to my church is because I would be paying off my ties and giving back to God. The second thing that I would do with my money is provide and build a house for the homeless.  This has been my dream all my life.  If I provided a house, food, and clothes until someone got back on their feet to start working, I would be somebody’s hero for once.

The third thing I would do with my money is give back to my parents and grandma because they’re the ones that provided for me all my life.  The only way that I would be able to pay them back is with money so they can enjoy it and buy what ever they want to buy.

The very last thing I would do with my money after figuring how much I have left is to put money in my bank account to save for college or a car because I think that would give me a head start on my goals.  Having 10 million would be a good thing because it would save my life and someone else’s life that needed it.  -Rhomel B.

10 Years From Now

In ten years from now, I don’t even know where I will be.  I can’t imagine how my life will be; It’s just something I never put too much thought into.

I am not a typical person who has their whole life set and planned out in front of them; I honestly am just going with the flow.  I hope that I will not be homeless or unsuccessful, and I hope I’m happy with where I will be.  In ten years I will be 28.  I don’t see myself married or having any kids.  I don’t think at 28 I will be ready for all of that responsibility. I know in ten years I will not be the complete same person as I am now; for goodness sake, I am not even the same person I was a year ago.  I realized I don’t laugh as much; I just have been beyond stressed. 

I don’t know my place in the world as of now.  My main goal is to get my diploma then see where I can get from there!  I know life isn’t easy and things that are good don’t come easy; I know I will work my butt off to be successful in ten years!  I honestly just hope I appreciate everything in life to the fullest, and take things step by step with no rushing.  I know if I am patient and caring, that even if I’m not as successful as I’d like  be, in ten years I will be content with where I am. T en years ago, at the age of eight I never thought that I would be doing online school and that I would have moved so many times within my last two years of high school.  I never saw myself to be the person I am today.  Things change, and they change for a reason.  So wherever I am in ten yes, no matter where it is, I will be there for a reason!  -Samantha G.

Ten years from now seems something so unfathomable, but it’s crazy how life flashes by before your eyes.

I envision myself living my life exactly the way I want to: a successful and well-known tattoo artist.  I know it’s not going to happen from one day to the next, but I know I’m going to get there: I’m already taking the necessary steps.

This fall I’ll be getting into phlebotomy. I know phlebotomy and tattooing aren’t relatable, but phlebotomy is going to be my base foundation.  It’s a stable, fast, well paying career that would help me raise money for an apprenticeship.  Apprenticeships are not easy or cheap, so it’d be smart to have a career that I can always go back to.

Relationship-wise, I honestly don’t see myself with anyone at the moment but in ten years a lot can happen.  Who knows, maybe I’ll be married!  Maybe kids? I doubt it, but like I said, a lot can happen.

I’ve always imagined myself living somewhere in the northwest, like Washington.  The best music scene came from Washington.  Many great tattoo artists are from Washington, and I would love to learn from the best.  The weather in Washington is just perfect: there’s the rocky coast and the rainy weather, but theres also beautiful mountains and scenery that Colorado could never have because its always so sunny.

The most important thing to me is my happiness.  It may seem selfish, but in the end this is my life and I have to live it the way that makes me happy.  I wasn’t put here for the acceptance of others.  I have done a lot on my own, and I know I’m far from done doing a lot on my own, but I have learned to never expect anything from anyone and to work twice as hard for my own self satisfaction.  At the end of the day, ten years from now I hope to be content with where life has taken me.  I don’t strive to be rich; I just strive to be happy with my own self.  -Evelyn L.

10 years from now I see myself owning my own gym.  In order to reach this goal successfully, I’ll have to go to school and receive certification, and then proceed to either save enough money to get myself started, or take out a loan.  Hopefully I will be married with 2-4 kids at minimum.  I hope to have a two story house with a basement, with enough rooms to create comfort for my family and any friends or family members visiting.  My home will probably either still be somewhere within Colorado or any state that’s fairly warm and doesn’t have frantic weather. 

The things that will be important to me at that time are the same as they are now.  I’m going to continue to improve my placement in the world in order to make my family’s living better, and to keep all the people around me happy however I can.  The only thing that I can say would be different about me compared to now is I would actually be happy.  I hope to have all that I wish for, which is pretty much not being lonely and having a family.   -Monte W.

Im standing over my 5 by 10 patio deck upstairs in my 5 bedroom 5 bathroom mansion estate.  I gaze down upon my 8 foot pool settled down below in my courtyard stamped with my EX.D decal, nestled right in the middle of a row of 10 lawn chairs, a basketball court to the far left, and my personal cabana and spa room lined to the right of my pool. I take in a deep breath of the California air and I began to take in the scenery around me: the palm trees snaking up to the heavens above, the sun-kissed glow going along my freshly trimmed grass stretched along my 158 acres of land, and not a cloud in the sky. The sun is shining bright, clear across the sky for miles. I can see it for as far as I’m looking.  Down below I can see a few of my house guests enjoying the activities lined up along my yard, and I can see my maid Theresa scrambling to pick up the mess of cups and plates from one of my many events I have recently had in the passing weekend before my Fiancé, August gets a glimpse of it.  He should be back home from his world tour to Europe soon.  I’m expecting him and my best friend Ayana’s boyfriend, Chris, sometime this evening.  I sure have missed him while he was gone.  I know duty calls, and being that that he has had 65 million singles sold, is a platinum recording artist and a 5 time nominee, and award winner of a few Grammys, I expect that he is always busy and on the run.  However, I am no stay at home Betty Crocker myself.  I am an actress, video vixen, model, and entrepreneur.  I can hear my teacup Yorkee, Beijing, barking in the near distance.  I turn around right in time to see her and my butler Marcus on their way to me.  He is holding a dish with the lid over it but steaming, and she is right at his heels barking.  Yeah, this is the life for me!  – Diamond M.

March 2015

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MLK Day

MLK day is upon us again, but what is the actual meaning behind the day itself? Many people seem to overlook it as a day off of work and school and nothing is actually appreciated for everything that Martin lived for. He sacrificed so much for the world we live in today, and his whole dream is often overlooked. Let’s take a minute to relive everything that he’s accomplished over the years of his life and late.

Martin was a huge Civil Rights icon throughout history and still to this day. Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, Martin began taking a stand for the diverse community. We were living in a black and white world that was segregated into just that, blacks and whites. The diversity was looked down upon and treated unfairly. They did not have a fair approach to half of the things that the white people did. Many court dates were settled with nothing new coming out of them. Many blacks were arrested with no new changes being made to the community. Martin believed wholeheartedly in non-violence. So he began to protest by walk-outs, sit-ins, and boycotts.

When you first think about it, you think, “Are walk-outs and sit-ins really effective?” Yes. Eventually. It took a lot of work and fighting for anyone to be noticed. When Rosa Parks in 1955 got arrested in Montgomery, they had begun a protest by boycotting the city bus which lasted well over 100 days until something was finally done about it and the city stood up to what was going on. But, they were indeed effective. It’s important to note this because people believe unless you’re causing a scene or violence, everything goes unnoticed. But MLK had a lot of heart behind his dream for the diverse communities.

In 1963, somewhere around August 28th, Martin began a march to Washington where he would then speak about the importance to solving the racial problems we were having within the United States. In front of 250,000 people, he spoke about his dream to one day see his children lined up and not judged on their skin color, but the content of their character.

So this is to Martin.  Today, your dream is alive. We are living together, attending school together, and working together. Your children are grown and now holding hands with each other, getting married and loving each other. We have progressed so much since your speech and I thank you. I thank you for giving me the chance to interact with opposites and understand them like they were myself. I will not lie: there is still racism. But as I know, and I am sure you do too, there will always be racism from whites AND blacks; some will never live in peace with another. They will fight and hurt and hold grudges, but I am better than that and I will enjoy my presence with who I have in my life now.

I am attending a very diverse school right now and to see a big melting pot within my classroom is wonderful. To have such a deep understanding of life outside of one community and have a bigger understanding of different cultures other than your own. I would like to thank you for allowing me to experience that. It’s truly wonderful.

As a community and a nation, we are still working towards equality. Whether it be between a black and a white male/female, or a male and a female, or gay and straight couples, we are fighting still. There is always going to be people who never want to see that succeed. But, we continue to fight. Personally, I think we still have a long ways to go. We’ve come so far but we still have a long way to go. It’d be great to see everyone get along and love one another, but the sad reality is that won’t ever happen. I know from personal experience, some people are always going to hate you for your skin color or the way your hair is, your eyes, your weight, there will never be a soul to soul interaction between people unless caught by the eye.

However, thank you Martin. Thank you for allowing me to experience the harsh reality of racism and the wonderful bliss I have shared with my diverse friends. I’ve learned so much from everyone I am surrounded by and I hope to keep living your dream with the rest of the people who’d like to see it come alive more. My life wouldn’t be the way it is now without your strong will to see a change within the communities.   –Ashley K.

Martin Luther King day was just an average regular day for me, but I did not forget to recall on his speech to see what impact it has done for this nation today. I don’t feel that MLK day changes anything, but it just reminds people what happened in his time, which was just a few years ago. 

I feel that the more we learn from his speech and set aside differences we can learn to become more and more efficient in handling and ignoring inequality in certain places with people. MLK helped me overcome the image of people being just a race; we are all brothers and sisters in God’s family. Regardless if you believe in anything or not, do what’s right and learn to leave the world better than how you found it.

Most people still don’t know of the meaning why MLK took a stand against violence with peace. He was an African American man who fought against injustice, inequality, and racism towards all people. There is a crisis we are going through as a nation and as of humans on this earth.

When we learn to be one and equally the same all over the world than we shall learn to overcome hate with love and darkness with light. As Gandhi would say, “be the change you want to see in this world.”  Learn to forgive your neighbor as much as you can and everything will be fine. No one can tell you can’t be what you want if you believe your dreams can come true, just like MLK did. I honestly believe that this world will only be at peace when we learn to be at peace with one another, but I fear it may be to late before mankind realizes it.  –James F.

Valentine’s Day

It’s That Time Of Year Again!!!! Love is in the air. It’s almost Valentines Day, the day of love and passion. The time for roses and daisies, chocolates and gifts, chosen personally from the heart. I do enjoy this day. I have not yet had the luxury of ever having a Valentine of the opposite sex, but I do love the idea of what the day is truly about, and I do celebrate it with my mother and sister every year. I will take them out to eat and we each buy one another gifts. We usually spend this day together and celebrate our love for each other. This year, I plan to buy my mother, sister, and my grandmother gift bags and cards as usual, and then treat us to the movies. Earlier in the day though, I will treat myself to a massage and a pedicure, and take myself to breakfast. I may even treat myself to a new tattoo. I think Valentine’s Day is a very beautiful celebration. People often hate the holiday or have mixed feelings about it because of the stereotype that you have to have a significant other, or if there is a significant other involved, there is the stereotype that the day is about surprising each other with gifts. That’s not the case, and I don’t look at the day in that same light necessarily. I love Valentine’s Day.  -Diamond M

Many people are worried about V-day because they don’t have a partner to share the love with. It’s important to know that you do not only have to share love with a partner; it can be to your mother, sister, brother, friend or even a pet. Sharing appreciation is enough; you don’t need a box of chocolates or a dozen of roses to know that someone cares for you. Personally, I didn’t really mind spending V-day alone, but of course I’m only 17. I go around and see many teens my age or younger sad or depressed because they don’t have a date and they wont be receiving any stuffed animals and chocolates. Calm down and celebrate girl’s night out instead! You don’t need Valentine’s Day to feel loved by anyone: it only lasts one day, but appreciation and love last forever!

For lovely couples, every moment counts; don’t base it on just one day, although celebrating once or twice a year isn’t bad. Valentine’s Day is a world-wide special day for single people and couples, it doesn’t matter whether or not you’re interested in celebrating: its not mandatory. I feel Valentine’s Day is for people with good feelings and not just because you need someone to love, the right person will come along if that’s what you’re worried about. Spend every minute with happiness and love towards your friends and family and appreciate what life has given you. –Alondra O

Student Choice

This week’s topic is….. my choice!  I’m not sure if my instructor hit his head really hard or what, but this week will be interesting.  I’m here to talk about my life.  It has not been easy if you ask me.  I’ve witnessed friends change over girls, drugs, or even other friends.  One of my very close friends since 8th grade had recently started using drugs.  I have never used nor do I plan on using this drug, but it definitely changed him as a person and now we are no longer as close as we were at one time.  I believe that outside influences had a lot to do with that but once a man has made up his mind, it is almost impossible to sway that choice.  This was not easy for me to do but I had to accept a lost friend.  I used to go over to his house everyday and even considered his family as my “second family”.  I had never done this before and I was very comfortable when I was around him.  

I am a drug sensitive kid since so much of my life has been shaped around them. My mother is a patient of MS (multiple-sclerosis) and she is prescribed very strong pain killers.  This took her life over at one point and she changed as a person as well.  The thing these “doctors” don’t tell us is that these drugs that we “need” are essentially traps in a bottle.  These pills made my mom a zombie.  She felt no emotion, no needs; she only needed more of her medication. She got a hold of her life after nights of endless fights.  This was a hard time in my life, so of course i learned from it.  I try to take lessons away from every situation in my life.  This taught me to never become dependent: not on women, not on drugs, and not on alcohol.  This drove me to do better in my life so I can show my mom she didn’t struggle for nothing.  I’d love to be able to give my mom everything in the world, but life is not set up like that.  If I want to show her what she taught me, I’ll have to wait until I get my opportunity.  –Taylor E

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“What I like about photographs is that they capture a moment that’s gone forever, impossible to reproduce” -Karl Lagerfeld

Since I was thirteen years old, photography has been the best part of my life. When I felt like everything was falling apart and I had nobody there, I could go off into my own world and see the world as I wanted to see it. I love being able to capture moments that could never be recreated, like Karl Lagerfeld says in the quote above, photographs capture a moment that is gone forever, and I absolutely love that. I love being able to show how I am feeling through my photographs. Photography to me is not just taking pictures, it is my escape, it is who I am, it is how I express myself. Photography is what I am passionate about. Without photography, I probably would not see the world as I see it today. When you are passionate about something you start to see things in a totally different way and for me, photography has opened my eyes. It has allowed me to realize that you have to make the most out of every moment, because you can never get that moment back; whether it’s with your friends, family, or when you are out on a hike, you will never be able to get back those moments. So open your eyes, do what makes you happy, and cherish everyone and everything in your life. -Katelynn C

The ocean is one thing I’m passionate about. The ocean actually changed my outlook on life. I was once depressed and I felt that nothing was really that cool to me.

I went out to California, and boy I didn’t really wanna go. My mom is doing her best to cheer me up so she got a room right on the beach. I didn’t really care I was to wrapped up in my own world. We checked in and I see all the people out on the beach laughing and having a good time. I had never been in the ocean or even around it so, I had no idea why everyone was so happy. I stayed in my room, watching everyone have fun. I then decided I should try and go out and have fun. I was sulking and still on my phone when was approached on the beach. He asked me, “Why so sad, when your looking an amazing thing?” I said, “what thing?” He said, “the ocean” and walked away. I saw them with surfboards, so I jumped in the water and it changed my life. Watching these people surf and having these small but powerful waves sweep me off my feet, I never realized someone could love something so powerful, and so blue. It’s a scary but beautiful place. You never know what’s beneath your feet. –Cassie M

Living with dogs, is one subject I can actually speak with some confidence about. I have never in my life NOT lived with a dog. I have been lucky to live with the mammal known as man’s best friend for my whole life, and I plan on keeping it that way till the day I die. Dogs truly are the best friend you could ever ask for; they will stand by your side through life’s most difficult times. Their affection and care is so pure, and so genuine that it cannot help but brighten your day when you come home to it. They do not judge you based on your looks, wealth, popularity or what have you. They instead are your ultimate number 2, with you as the leader of the pack your furry companion (or companions if it applies) will always be willing to accompany you wherever, for however long. Dogs throughout history have shown a remarkable loyalty towards humans, and have proven time and time again the lengths they will go to in order to please, protect, or just be with their humans. If you have a void in your life, and you want to fill it, a puppy is for you! Why not embark on the next chapter of your life, with an unwavering companion for the next 9-15 years? A dog can help you get in shape, since they NEED to be walked everyday. A dog can help you develop social skills, since people are more likely to stop and pet your furry companion, this can lead to the love of your life, or a friendship forever, perhaps even a business opportunity. A dog will be the best friend you ever have, and can be an exciting new adventure for anyone, after the first week you won’t be able to remember what life was like without your new companion.  -Trevor S

Spring 2014

Argo (63 of 65)

Our school field trip to the Argo Gold Mine.

Movies

As kids anything around us influenced they way we think or act.  We tried to be just like the people we saw on the big screen.  Every little girl wanted to be princess who got saved by the prince and every boy wanted to be some superhero.  As a kid, I was hopeful and no idea or dream was out of reach. That’s what I loved most about movies: each one taught us how to be kind, how to be understanding, and how to follow our dreams.  Movies like Aladdin, Dumbo, Toy Story, Pinocchio, Peter Pan, The Little Mermaid, and Ratatouille showed characters struggles and how they over came them.  I think its great to show kids that everyone makes mistakes and has a hard time when following there dreams. How could you not fall in love with these movies?
Most adults don’t see the effect a movie and a proper story line could have on a kid’s thinking. Just look at Dr. Seuss: he got all kinds of kids to want to eat green eggs and ham.  The Lorax got kids thinking about saving our planet’s trees and wildlife.  That’s why I love these movies: they inspire young minds.  -Codi K.

Out of all the movies I have seen, the one that touched me the most was a movie called “Radio.” It makes you open your eyes and think about the way you treat other people. Radio was a young African-American man who carried a mental disability. In the beginning of the movie, Radio was bullied by the football players for something he himself had no control over. As I watched that take place I felt the feeling of sympathy and I really wanted to help. However, the movie does take a turn for the better when he becomes the school mascot. Radio becomes known throughout the town and loved by many.
Every day when I see someone with like disabilities, I show sympathy and I’m a lot more considerate of my actions and words. I realize that disabled people are equal to those who aren’t disabled. I feel like they shouldn’t have to ashamed of who they are; the people who are bullies should be ashamed of themselves. Whenever I see something taking place that is a similar situation to Radio’s, I automatically feel that I should jump in and help that person.
With this being said, make sure you are cautious of your actions to other people because they didn’t ask to be born that way.  Remember that people with disabilities have a lot more challenges than us so why make their life harder?  -Jasmine F.

Summer

Summer is the time of year that everyone looks forward to the most because of summer break.  Two and a half months without school is amazing!  For seniors, summer is the end of our high school career.  When graduation comes we are on our own with college, work, and just the responsibilities of being an adult.  Not only do we have summer break, but we now have our whole life.  Some seniors don’t look forward to it because as it gets closer some of us realize that we aren’t as ready as we thought we were.  We start to get nervous because now everything is up to us.
For me I have looked forward to graduation for years.  Now that I am hopefully only a couple days away, I think about it and part of me doesn’t want to graduate.  Not because I’ll be on my own; that isn’t a problem for me.  A lot of it actually has to do with the fact that no one is going to see it, so I’m not as excited as I used to be for it to happen.  My father died my junior year, and my biological father won’t come because my mom is with someone else. My grandmother, aunt, and uncle, the people that watched me grow up won’t be able to see it because I am across the country. The only people that are going to see it are my mom and my boyfriend.  That’s all you need right?  But it’s not: my mom wasn’t there; she hasn’t been in my life for 10 years, so the fact that she gets to see me graduate and not the people that raised me makes me not want to graduate. The people who raised me can’t see it, but I should do it for me. It is something that should make me proud because I completed high school.  I made it through the four years and it shows that I can actually do something with my life. Walking to graduation and getting that certificate shows that you actually did something for yourself, and that is all you need. No one could come to your graduation, but as long as you are proud of yourself that is all that should matter.  Nothing else should take this away from you.  -Taylor M.

There are a lot of fears that come along with graduation.  Yes it is a very big step in your life.  I have worked very hard to get to this point and now I am scared.. I now have to grow up.  I am more scared about everything that comes with leaving.  These have been some of the hardest years of my life and now I don’t know what is going to happen.  The overall fear is the fear of the unknown.  I don’t really like changes and now is the time that a lot of changes take place.  I don’t know what to expect from the next chapter in my life.  I know that every one says you will love it you will be happy! I don’t really feel that way.  I am at a point now that I am just in awe.  I don’t know how to feel.  Don’t get me wrong; I am very happy that I have made it through high school and that I can say I did it, but it is going to be hard to be done.  It is starting to sink in and I don’t know if I like it . I go from being happy to being sad because something reminded me about something that happened. I am glad and thankful for all of the people that have stood next to me and helped me get to the point I am at now! -Alea M.

I’m sure a lot of people are excited to begin their summer break; everyone is planning to have a party or even a graduation party.  I, on the other hand, am not excited at all to begin summer break. I know I have no chance of graduating on time with my classes. I know I will be in summer school again and beginning the school year once again.
I am disappointed in myself, but I can’t let it take over my life. I am not going to graduate in 2014 with all of my friends.  I don’t even want summer to come because I realize how much of my time I have let slip over and over again.  I keep replaying in my mind how I will not be going to my friend’s parties to keep myself away from everyone.  I have already been asked if I would just go ahead and get my GED so I don’t have to keep going to high school.  I feel like I won’t do that only because of how far I already am in school.  It’s strange that I’m not worried about the sun burning me, my swim suit being too small, or the fights I will probably get into.
To be honest, the only thing I’m excited about for summer is getting to see my aunt. Besides that, can only see summer screwing with me and making me hot and uncomfortable.
I guess we can assume that summer and I this year will just be Tom and Jerry.  -Ashley S.

10 Years From Now…

10 years from now I’m hoping that I will have graduated college with a master’s in computer science and working for a company that produces films or video games.  I’ll probably be married to Katy Perry and we’ll have like three kids. Me and Kate (she prefers me to call her that) will be living in Seattle since I love Microsoft and she loves the weather.  By the time I’m 27 I will have invented the first virtual reality game in which you can live out your greatest fantasies in any universe imaginable.  I’ll still pretty much be the same person except I’ll be 6’5″ with washboard abs.  To get to that point will take a lot of work, but nothing is impossible.  I hope every day I can someday make this a reality.  I have already started emailing Kate our wedding info so it won’t be long now till she gets back to me.  I do like twenty crunches a day so I’m already pretty swollen.  But in all seriousness, a good life isn’t just handed to you and no matter how ridiculous your goals in life may be, nothing is impossible.  So work hard and strive to achieve your goals no matter how silly or crazy they are because your life is what you make of it.  -Alex V.

In 10 years, I envision myself as happy and hopefully successful. I hope that ten years from now I’ll have my own home, a successful business, and a nice small family. I don’t plan on getting married or having kids, but I do plan on having a pet as well as a person to spend my life and share my love with. I would like to create a successful business in either health care, handmade fashion, cleaning and restoration services, or all three.
I can see myself living somewhere in Denver or the mountains, in a nice little cottage-type house with a big yard. I’m obviously not going get there by doing nothing; I am going to have to work really hard for my ideal future. I plan on getting a business degree, starting my own business or businesses and stay completely motivated for the next ten years. But it’s like I always say: hard work and dedication will pay off in the end.
I can also see myself accomplishing my dreams of travel, adventure, new friendships, and a healthier mindset. In ten years, I will be far from the person that I am today.  I will have grown, made mistakes, learned from them, and have completely different views and tastes on everything.  I’m hoping to improve myself rather than lose myself, and I plan on doing this with faith and personal growth.  I can see myself living a nice, leisurely lifestyle, with family, happiness, and music close to my heart. What will be important to me in 10 years, you ask? to simply be HAPPY.  -Emma R.

10 years from now, I will be in my 20′s.  I see myself being a lawyer, and to get to that point I would have to go to law school and a few years in college. I will have to work hard to get up to that point, and I will not give up.  I do see myself being married and maybe having two kids.  I don’t think that I will rush into a marriage or kids; I would take my time and make sure that the one I am with is the one that I want to have kids with and marry.  When I choose to have kids, I don’t want to be too young or too old when I have them.  I want a boy and a girl, and I want to be around 25-30 when I have them.  I plan on living in Orlando, Florida because when I went there for vacation I fell in love with it.  I love the weather and the environment. I don’t really know what all of it is like because I was in a small area of Orlando, but it is just so beautiful.
I see myself having a good job, and having an amazing family. I will have hopefully accomplished a lot of my goals. I think that the the most important thing in my life would be my family. I say this because growing up I didn’t really have my mom, so being there for my future children would be something that I would love to do.  Just being a good wife and mother is something that is going to be important to me. I do not at all think that I will be the same person that I am today for many reasons.  One of them being that I have made some mistakes in life, and I am still learning how to deal with my problems and let go of my past.  So 10 years from now, I see myself being a loving mother of two and a wife.  Because of my life goals, and the way that I am planning to live life in the future, I will have a good life.  -Monique G.

Ten years ago I would have been able to describe my future perfectly. Aside from hover boards, flying cars and being a pretty pretty princess, I wanted to live in a huge mansion with ten kids, a maid for each one, and a rich husband who provided everything for the family. My bar was set high; little did I know life happened in between.
I’m eighteen, as much as I act like I know everything, there is much more for me to learn. Through trial and error, I continue to learn each and every day. I’ve made mistakes and will continue to do so throughout my life.  Lets be quite honest; I don’t know what I’m eating for dinner tonight let alone what my future will hold. But if I had to describe perfection, I see a small blue house surrounded by a white fence my perfectly imperfect husband chasing our one son around the yard. If all I have in life is my family, I will be living like a queen.
No, I do not know what the future holds for me, all I know is I want my family by my side the entire ride. Through thick and thin my family will always be my rock and my reason to keep pushing forward. For whatever my future holds, bring it on.  -Cassidy C.

Music booms out of very large speakers, which stand at a reasonable distance from the crystal clear waters me and close family and friends splash and jump around in.
“Does anyone else feel like they can’t hear the music clearly?” My boyfriend (whom I consider family) announces. Without a word, my little sister, who is not-so-little anymore, hops out of the water and dries off her hands before turning the volume up.
The music is booming even louder now. It’s almost midnight, but no one worries. We’re in my backyard, playing in my pool, listening to my speakers, and not to mention all my neighbors are either in my backyard, or too far away to be bothered.
“It’s getting late,” I say. “I should go to sleep, I have work in the morning.” I have already stayed up way past my bedtime considering that I need to wake up at 4am the next morning to make it to the hospital.
“Lame!” my sister teases but assures me she’ll turn down the music and walk all our close friends out when she decides to go to sleep. My sister lives less than a few blocks away, but is at my house most of the time for the pool and the company. She decided to spend the night tonight.
I say goodnight and head inside to make a midnight snack before bed. My boyfriend comes with and ends up making the snack for me as well as one for himself and the rest of our friends. Although we are close we have different rooms (so that we can keep our space and sanity), he tells me he’ll see me after work  and returns to the backyard.
I pass the 50 inch flat screen in the living room which my tabby cat almost seems to be watching animal planet on, then My boyfriends room, which is full of video games and his German Shepard whom sleeps silently on his bed. I reach my room which is full of stuffed animals, movies, video games, posters, and cat toys. A blanket of comfortableness falls over me as I smell the candles I had lit earlier that day. I jump into PJ’s and prepare for bed by putting Harry Potter on my 60 inch flat screen TV and feeding my cat.
I drift off into sleep remembering how all of this was just a dream for me 10 years ago. At 15, I was determined to make this dream come true. I began planning my future and taking college classes Jr. year. It took a huge amount of determination and focus, but I got my masters degree by the time I was 23 and found a job soon after. Now I work hard as a pediatrician, have a pool, a gigantic house with a library and many flat screens, I have two fluffy cats, a loving boyfriend, and my sister and I are as close as I always thought we’d be. I worked hard to get where I am, and I am proud of myself.
However, I have more plans. Me and my boyfriend will soon be married and have children. Eventually I will quit my job as a pediatrician and open a business with my boyfriend and my sister. I have already taken business classes and went to culinary school and I’ve been saving up to make this possible. This is a dream that me and my sister have had for more than 10 years and we will make it come true.
My cat curls up beside me and both of us drift into a deep sleep.
This is my life 10 years from now. I will be 26 years old, work as a pediatrician, be super close with my boyfriend and my sister, have a pool in my backyard, 2 cats, and a gigantic flat screen TV in my room. I will never stop working to make my dreams come true. But most of all, I will be happy. I will be the same person I am today just with a little more experience and knowledge; I will love cats, swimming, music, and always Harry Potter.  -Alyssa P.

March 2014

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Valentine’s Day

Valentines’s Day is the most exciting and wonderful holiday.  I don’t feel that it is only about couples; to me it is about spreading out the love, spending time with the ones you love, and caring about family and friends. During the good old days in elementary school, the love spread out through the school by classrooms having Valentine’s Day parties and passing out valentine cards. During those Valentine’s Days when we were little, no one felt left out or alone because everyone would get something.  Now that we are older we think that Valentine’s Day is all about couples that are in love.  It doesn’t matter to me because every year I get excited for Valentine’s Day. This Valentine’s Day I spent with my boyfriend and my son, and for the first time I got balloons and five pounds of chocolate! This day is just amazing! Valentine’s Day is not about only love; it’s about being together and people showing their love and care.   -Melissa

 

As an eighteen year-old girl, I am all for celebrating and sharing time with the people I love most, but Valentine’s Day has become a commercialized day for teens to spend their parents’ money on someone they won’t even speak to next year. I feel as if love should be expressed 365 days a year, not just one.  Now I am young; I have enough experience to not make the same mistakes twice, but I’m not experienced enough to not fall into a situation I’ve never been in before. Unlike most people of my age, I have experienced a love that will last a lifetime. The day I became a mom was the day I knew what love really was. Not only do I love my son with all of my being, but his father will forever have my heart for blessing me with the amazing gift of life.

Valentine’s Day should be celebrated, but not in the ways our generation celebrates it. We have Instagram wars of whose boyfriend is better because they spent the most money, and spend too much time worrying about what we are going to get our loved one instead of spending that precious time together.  The holiday is not about gifts and glamor, it is about love, PERIOD.  My little family didn’t get to spend all of Valentine’s Day together, but we ate dinner, watched a movie and cuddled until it was time for bed.  However, that will not be the only night we do that.  Our family is based on pure love, so spending the nights we can together is important to us and we take advantage of it. Our generation may celebrate the holiday as a competition, but I refuse to fall into the ways of the world.  I will continue to celebrate Valentine’s Day as it should be done, and as a result, my love for the holiday will never fade.   -Cassidy

 

Valentine’s Day is the most loved the day or the most hated: it just depends on who you are. To be honest, Valentine’s Day is just another day to me. I mean if you love someone every day, why only show them on Valentine’s Day?  My favorite part about Valentine’s Day is when all of that candy goes on sale the next day! For some reason Valentine’s Day and Easter have the best candy!  This is when the Reese’s are the biggest, and you all know that Reese’s are the best candy on the planet. I don’t personally see anything wrong with Valentine’s Day; I think it is a great holiday. It is a day that a woman (when she has someone to share it with) looks forward to.  My boyfriend and I celebrate our day, but my friends and I also celebrate. I mean it isn’t just about your other half: it could be your friends and everyone else too.

One thing that bothers me about Valentine’s Day is when you have girls out there who are complaining because they don’t have a guy to spend it with. You don’t have to spend it with a guy; you can spend it with friend’s family or anyone you love. It doesn’t have to be a significant other, and that is what people get confused.  They think they can only spend it with that other person, but that isn’t true.  Every year, my grandma buys me something for Valentine’s Day; she isn’t my boyfriend, but she loves me and she wants to show that to me.  That is the point of Valentine’s Day: to share it with the ones that you love.  However, you should not do that only one day of the year! When you love someone, show them as much as possible because you never know when it will be the last time you get to show them.  I asked my teacher if he liked Valentine’s Day and he said he loved it because he can be a giver.  I doubt the only person he gives to is his other half; he gives to his children and family because he loves them. So the next time you are waiting for Valentine’s Day, don’t be upset if you don’t have a boyfriend, or girlfriend.  Be happy because even if you do not have that other guy, you have your friends and family.  At the end of the day, they turn out to be way more important than a one time Valentine.  Don’t just use that one day to let everyone know, use any chance you get let them know. It doesn’t take much to say I love you or to give someone a hug, and trust me, when you do, it you will feel a billion times better and so will they.   -Taylor

Knowledge and School

 It seems that teens can’t focus on what’s important; most of them look for easy entertainment. Instead of focusing on things like television or social networks, they should try to be more productive, like finding healthy hobbies, focusing on school, and building good relationships with their parents.  At only eighteen years of age, I am able to understand far more complex things than a usual teen. I see that many people around my age don’t relate to me when it comes to ideas and understanding of life.  If teens would focus more on reading about important topics, and trying to understand history, politics, ethics, morals and present circumstances, they would develop a better understanding of life. These aspects would help them mature into better persons and have more sympathy for one another.  Knowledge is the only good we humans posses. If teens remain ignorant to what has happened and what is yet to come, then there will be no progress. It is a priority to empower ourselves with knowledge in order to provide a better, more peaceful earth for our next generations. The world will continue to suffer until we don’t learn to make better decisions.  -Carlos

 

100 years ago, neither woman nor African Americans were allowed to receive education, and white people who were allowed to were required to pay for it.  This meant many people were very poorly skilled and had very little knowledge. Today, children from the ages 5 to15 are required to attend school. They are required to get their education, unlike those people 100 years ago that grew up with no knowledge to make correct decisions. However, many children take this opportunity for granted and if given the chance, they would choose not to go to school. There are many excuses: school is boring, you need to wake up early, the teachers are mean, or the lunch is awful.  But the fact is: no matter how schools teach you, they are teaching you.  If you are making a choice on whether you want to attend school or not, it is the same choice of being smart or dumb.

I agree: traditional school can be a pain in the.. rectum.  First of all, you are required to wake up at the crack of dawn and go sit in a desk and listen to a teacher talk for the next 8 hours of your life.  Studies even show that children’s brains do not fully wake up until about 9 a.m! Then at lunch (in most schools), you are given leftovers again and again until they run out and decide to make some stale food they were originally supposed to make the day after you were first served those “leftovers.”  Not to mention the milk is either expired or a few days from being expired.  Then there are those terrible teachers.  Schools continue hire teachers based only off of their knowledge; they should be hiring them off of personality and wittiness, how efficiently they can interact and relate to their students, as well as on their knowledge. Most teachers expect a student to agree and do everything that is asked of them without question.  Not only are they extremely boring but they lack understanding of their students. This is especially an issue because students are not told why they should go to school in the first place, only that it is required and it will help them be successful. As children, do we even know what being successful is?  So, yes I understand. I agree. School sucks. However, no matter if you know or not, your teachers are teaching you, they are making you smarter, and that’s what school does.

Although school may have many flaws, there are a few good things that are left unnoticed. When I was little, I loved school simply because that is how I made friends. Yes, it sucks waking up early and having to make it to your classes on time, but that is preparing you to make it to your job on time. Teachers can suck, but, most likely, so will your boss. Lunch sucks, but no one notices that many schools have vending machines full of chips and Vitamin Water (which is way better than milk and leftovers). Also, there are extra curricular classes that you choose.  School gives you social skills, time management skills, skills to help you deal with a horrible boss, and many more skills that go unnoticed.  Yes, I agree that schools may not teach students the right way. However whether they teach the right way or the wrong way, in the end school is educating you. Your teachers, believe it or not, are there to help you. School gives you a chance to be smart enough to make good decisions and opinions and learn skills that will help you to maintain a career later in life.  School helps you to be successful: successful by making money and hopefully being happy.  -Alyssa

 

When school would come back from summer I would always put on my hard hat and attempt to keep a positive attitude about the experience, yet that never lasted. I always seemed to have this problem; a problem where I would end up giving up half way through the year.  I would believe that I had done my part in school yet I would end up not going. I am fully aware people have expectations for kids and when they are in high school their senior year: they are expected to go out into the world and decide where their path is heading. Somehow we are expected to leave high school and learn how to pay bills, make a living, hold a job, and raise kids. The idea of choosing what you are going to do for a living in a year is just… stupid.  Plain, rusty ol’ stupid.  When you are going through the school system, you are taking the same old classes until high school.  Though high school allows you to choose what you want to take it’s not something that will benefit you.  Yes, if you enjoy photography you can decide you want to be a photographer.  The same goes with many other classes, but the whole idea of those things being what you want to do for a living is a fraud. People change throughout their lives, losing interest and gaining new ones. I have never seemed to rap my head around why school doesn’t teach you about the real life situations you will be facing.  School doesn’t teach you the following: how to be a parent, how to raise children, how to pay bills (mortgages, health insurance, life insurance, electricity etc.), how to do well in interviews for jobs, how to fix your car when it breaks down, how to pick the right home, how to do taxes or if you should have someone do them for you or do them yourself, how to vote for the right candidate (or simply how to make wise decisions), how to get a loan for collage, how to use money wisely, and how to make sure you aren’t being ‘screwed’ in job.  There are so many things we are just assumed to know when we go into college.

I asked myself for years why teachers don’t just teach us these things, the things that will better our lives.  I finally came to the conclusion that schools are too concerned about what ranking the school is in the state or in the country. It is STUPID. When I was younger my mother never even wanted me to take CCAP or TCAP.  She said, “I want you to focus on your grades, those tests are for the schools ranking, not for your grade”.   Do teachers really care about how students will thrive after school? Are they concerned about if we know the proper tools?  Or do they care about their pay grade and if they have the highest grades in the school?  It makes me wonder if the teachers really care about students, if they hope for the best for kids who have to become adults when their 18th birthday smacks them or if they just hope to get the year over with cashing their check.

Though many people will say, “Teachers care!” If they did, they would make their lessons about real life scenarios. They should help the sad kid who doesn’t show up to school because bullies are scaring him.  They shouldn’t taunt kids by what they don’t know, but lift them up for what they do do, and they should never give up on a kid or try to kick him out of school so their school rating doesn’t drop.  If teachers care, they will be sure their students are the brightest strongest people out there, and be determined to help even if the kids don’t want to. That should be their prize: knowing they have made hundreds of skilled strong warriors for the world to watch.  -Ashley

 

I love school! It prepares me for the real world and gives me skills for when I want to work at a business.  I am an online student who also goes to a technical college to be an ASE certified mechanic. I enjoy logging into my online school to do my work because it’s at my own pace, and I feel like I have more help/support from teachers.  It’s good for me because there is technology (computer, tablet, phone) that helps me learn by listening and seeing material.  I don’t have to worry about other students distracting me from my work, even though in the real world there will be distractions, challenges, and difficult people.

Normal public schools are okay, but I’d rather continue my schooling online. It was so difficult for me to focus in regular school.  When I would be on my way to my next class, it would be heavily crowded and many of my peers were in my way.  It took forever to move.  It’s like most of them didn’t even care if they made it to class on time or not.  Many of them were just talking with others or playing around.  When I would finally make it to class, I’d be distracted by some disrespectful kids talking back to the teacher or just being loud. This made it harder for me to focus, but I still got my work done.   Then, to add the cherry on top, I’d get picked on because I was quiet and trying to get my work done.  There were so many haters!  I guess misery likes company.  After three years of high school, I finally went to a online school to get caught up and feel more comfortable.  I was tired of threats in school and just seeing kids go wild as if it was a zoo!  Now I’m getting an education without distractions and I’m also attending a vocational education program.  I’m just pretty happy that this year of school is more peaceful and easier to understand!  -Brianna

APS Awards3 (35 of 16)

A New Hope

APS Online has been a life saver for so many students, whether they have had a kid or they just did not do well in regular school.  This school is a blended model.  You can work from home, but you also have to go in twice a week.  There are a lot of students here that have had a lot of success here. I am one of those students.

I was going to a high school that I loved. I had friends and I loved my teachers, but then the worst possible thing happened: I got an MRSA infection and I was rushed into emergency surgery.  I was in the hospital for a week.  They sent me home, and then 3 days later I had a fever of 105.5 and was rushed back to the hospital.  They took me into the ICU and put me under freezing cold water and ice packs. They needed to do surgery again, but I was not stable enough to go under.  After three days they finally got my  temperature down enough to make it through another surgery.  This time I was hospitalized for three weeks.  When I went back to school they told me that I had already missed too much school, and in the state of Colorado there is a law saying they had to fail me for that quarter.  I was lost and did not know what I was going to do. I had done all of the work and kept my grades up, but because of the law I was now going to be behind in everything.  They told me that it would probably a good idea if I found another school.

APS Online had just opened on the same campus and they were willing to work with me to get me back on track to graduate.  I went through a lot more medical challenges.  I was on IVs medication, I had a PIC line in and a vacuum on.  The school worked with me when I was in the hospital, and they did much more for me.  I decided I wanted to go into the health care field and they helped me start my college while still in high school; that’s something I probably could not do if I was at a regular high school.  I am happy to say that this year I will be graduating on time! I have overcome so many challenges and with out APS online I don’t honestly think that I would even be graduating.  -Alea

 

It’s amazing that something so simple, like changing schools, can impact and benefit a persons life.  Before I came to APS Online, things were a mess for me.  I was failing with my education and doing absolutely nothing with my life.  After a while I got sick of it and had to figure out some way to improve my life and education.  I looked into many different schools; I had already been to two different high schools, and one of them I went to twice.  I was mainly looking into some alternative schools, and that’s when I cam across APS online.  Many people I spoke to told me that online school is boring, and you just sit at home all day on a computer, but I decided to check it anyway.  I saw the opportunities this school offered and immediately tried to get enrolled.

Once I got enrolled at APS Online, my life completely changed.  I started to get straight A’s, which had never happened before.  I began going to work with my dad to save money.  I also started to buy all my own clothes, school supplies, accessories, and any other necessities I needed.  I learned how to become responsible, I got my drivers license, bought my own car, enrolled myself in several college classes, and have dedicated myself to getting caught up on credits and graduating.  I have never improved my life this much in this small amount of time. I t simply amazes me looking back on who I was three years ago; I’m completely different now.   I can’t thank APS Online enough for everything it’s offered and done for me.  I would probably be a dropout right now if I didn’t enroll at this school.  It’s not just me either; I see so many people who were going to give up, but didn’t because they were given the opportunity to finish what they started: they stayed in school and graduated.  I have never been more pleased with a school, I am actually proud to say I go to school at APS Online.  I see what it has done for me and many others and it makes me happy to see that there are so many people who have graduated and accomplished so many great things all because of APS Online.  I honestly wish there were schools like this everywhere so more people can get the opportunities and environment we do.  Someday I’m sure there will be.  -Emma

High school for me was amazing at first, but soon it all went downhill. I had to deal with an unhealthy relationship that I was afraid to get out of, girls wanting to jump me because of who I was dating, and not having many friends.  It doesn’t sound bad, but we all handle things differently than others and for me, it was a war that I couldn’t win.  I knew I wasn’t going to unless I did something about it and tried to fight for myself to prove that those girls and other people were wrong about me.  I was afraid to fight for myself and prove them wrong, so eventually it led to something that I am not at all proud of.

I loved the high school experience at first; it was fun and amazing.  I had friends and I wasn’t getting into any trouble.  The teachers were okay and the work was not that hard.  It was everything that my parents said it was going to be.  I was getting good grades, hanging out with the cool girls, and everyone knew me.  I was having fun and wanted to go to school every morning.  I didn’t really care about how I looked, or what others thought of me.  Some days I went to school in sweat pants and a t-shirt with no makeup, and no one talked crap about me.  Other days I got all dolled up and pretty.  I got along with just about everyone and I was doing great. I eventually even had an amazing boyfriend and everything was perfect.

It all started to go downhill as soon as everyone knew that I was dating this boy.  Everyone got into our business, and people told me that he was cheating on me.  He and I were arguing a lot and he made me seem like the bad guy.  He told lies about me and he was such a good liar a lot of people believed him. Rumors about me went around and it wasn’t helping the fact that I was already depressed and going through a lot.  He and I were on and off for a while and that is mostly because he was self harming and threatening to commit suicide.  I was holding back feelings and wasn’t talking to anyone about it and it was not at all healthy for me.  I went through a lot of similar issues,  but I began to see a therapist and that helped.   The scars will be there forever, but the memory of what it taught me will always be a reminder of how strong I am. When I got back to school nothing changed: it only got worse for me.  The girls that were friends with with my boyfriend wanted to jump me.  I couldn’t take the bus anymore because that’s where they were going to do it.  I no longer wanted to go to school anymore and I was always in the office crying and calling my dad to come and pick me up.  That’s when I became an online learner here at APS Online High School.

I did not have many friends after everything that happened, but that taught me how to be a better person and to not trust many people.  I am a better person today and I am more focused on school than I have ever been. School for me is amazing now and I am happy to be an online learner.  Although high school was a bad experience for me, I am better off because I had the option to become an online learner.  -Monique

 

APS Online High School has a mission to provide each student within the system a safe environment, knowledge, skills and values needed to learn effectively.  Thanks to APSOL, students such as DJ are given the opportunity to not only succeed inside the classroom, but to also be successful and strive for greatness outside the classroom.  Students that are not enrolled at an online high school believe that it is easier to be a successful student in an online school because it does not take as much effort to meet the school’s expectations and it is not as big of a challenge to focus on the education.  DJ (a senior at APS Online High School) strongly argues against this by saying that in order to succeed as a student you need to have teachers that want to see you succeed.   The student also has to be self-motivated and disciplined in order to focus on their education as well as recognize what their priorities are so they are capable of maintaining an efficient and well balanced schedule.

DJ struggled in high school because his regular school schedule interfered with his extra curricular activities and his job.   This made it almost impossible to be successful with either one.  DJ has now been boxing for six years now and is proud to say that he has finally earned his golden gloves thanks to his more flexible schedule.  DJ also has a passion for football: he was playing for a varsity football team by his freshman year.  Ever since then, he focused all his free time on training to become an even better football player.  He also has to help out with his father’s  job.  For DJ, attending a regular high school was a huge challenge.  It interfered with his ability to productively complete his tasks and he was constantly frustrated trying to make time for everything while keeping his grades up.   All of this made him feel as if his high school’s regular schedule was setting him up to fail.

Thankfully, APSOL’s full time, part time, supplemental options and unique form of learning gave DJ the opportunity to receive the same education on a more flexible schedule.  APS Online High School also has a smaller population which allows DJ to have more effective engagement with each of his teachers.  He says his teachers always are easy to contact and they make sure to keep a positive encouraging relationship reassuring him that they want to help him learn and they are rooting for him to succeed.  DJ is more than appreciative of APSOL because he feels that the different model of learning is more beneficial and compatible with his daily schedule.  The school not only has supporting teachers, but also a fundamental and educational system that is sure to better prepare him and encourage him to look forward to his future.  –Dani

January/February 2014

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Happy New Year!

So it’s the beginning of a new year and time for some people to set their yearly goal also known as the New Year’s Resolution.  So one of my resolutions for the new year was to start a radio talk show with my buddy from Texas.  In fact I wanted to start a talk show and grow as a radio show. Some people might not call it a resolution they might just set a goal and try to accomplish it. For example, this YouTuber I know wanted to lose weight.  If that’s what his New Year Resolution was, I wish the best to him.  For the most part people make a New Years Resolution, but there are the other people who don’t.  Maybe it is because they might think they can’t accomplish it.  My advice to those people is start small, and maybe next year go for a big goal.  For example, my father wanted to move into a house, so he put in extra hours at work and bought that house.
-Dustin T

Many people make resolutions for the new year, but I don’t really believe in all that cliche’ stuff. I feel like people make these goals/unrealistic resolutions that they might do in the beginning, but will eventually quite and forget.  So here’s what I think: we should spend every day of the year making goals and doing things to better ourselves.  Why should we only do this once a year when new years comes around?  We should do this everyday! So the task I have for my readers is this: try to do something everyday this year to better yourself  or improve in some way, even if it’s small.  Sometimes new years resolutions are just plain unrealistic, there are many things I’ve accomplished that I never even made resolutions for.  Resolutions are great to try and do something good for yourselves, but it has to be a daily thing, so get out there and get motivated. Good luck to all of you, whether your lazing around, working hard, accomplishing new things, or whatever it is you wanted to achieve, have a good 2014.
-Emma R

MLK

Martin Luther King Jr. was an outstanding man.  Since he died, many achievements have been made in the African American community.  When I was younger, I was taught to respect everyone and accept them for who they were.  In the fifties, that was not the case.  Many people did participate in the role of gaining equality for everyone.  My brother is African American, and also happens to be gay.  As his sister, he has been black my entire life and I haven’t loved him any less than anyone else in my family. When he came out and told our family he had q boyfriend I was so young all I could really understand was that his boyfriend at the time was one of the coolest guys I had met.
As a kid, I had never experienced the hate and racism I do now. As a kid, you make friends no matter what race they are.  Once you get into middle school, and clichés form you start to see and experience the hatred that is forever in the world.  Now that I am almost an adult, watching the mean people in this world makes me sick.  The fact that there are still a small portion of KKK members is revolting to me.  I cannot believe the world I’m raising my son in. But despite the hatred that is occurring in the world, my son will not realize it until he is older.  Just like myself, he will see the diversity in our family, and understand that everyone is equal.  My son will always love his uncle for who he is and who he loves.  Hopefully one day, the world will not be such a hateful place and my son will never see what I have experienced.  Since the world is progressing thanks to MLK Jr., maybe my son will never see it, as I do now.
-Cassidy C

I always hated U.S. history class. No. Not because of the long class days, the pointless vocabulary words, or even the projects. I hated history class because every text book I grasped, skipped history made by different races other than whites. I could talk about the pieces of history from the US demolishing China, or anything from that sort. Yet I want to talk about, ‘behind the curtain’. In the dark lies huge African American history; Martin Luther King made it “IMPOSSIBLE” for text books to cut out his legacy. His story. He changed millions of people’s lives. Including myself.  I loathe the thought of classifying people for the pigment of their skin. I have a notion I’m not sure people would agree with, but I have always in took it this way: Racism is not only judging those of other color. Racism is singling out a group of people and classifying them what a person would call ‘stereotypical’ or ‘common’ in that group.  I do honor MLK for all of his contributions to racism. Yet racism is not only diminishing others, it is judging others based on an opinion a person has grown on.  I don’t understand many things. I especially do not understand racism. I’m not implying that I don’t understand what racism is, but I do not understand why people are so harsh and judgmental.  I am mixed with black and white. I have been raised to accept people no matter who they were, no matter what. I however believe that people who are older of age still may be racist or have tried to raise their own children to believe as they do. I think this is one of the reasons elderly say, “Children this generation are crazy”.
I know I may get a little off topic here but I do have something that really hit me. Racism towards blacks is only one thing that had been finally looked at by the public (primarily because of Martin Luther King) but the problem in the world today is people are too afraid to be wrong. Protesters no longer make ‘huge’ stands in public.  After thinking long and hard about this… I believe people refuse to make a stand because they saw what happened to African Americans; they know after African Americans made their stand, they were beaten by the government itself.  In the constitution people are no longer allowed to protest on, ‘advocacy of “national, racial or religious hatred”’. African Americans were brought the freedom they deserved but what about Hispanics, Arabs, Muslims, Jews etc. have the same freedom in America.  My final thought is, America still holds racism. The only difference now is that society is too startled to make a real stand. A stand that will not be ignored. A stand in the history books. We need our generations MLK.
-Ashley S

Throughout my life I’ve seen very different viewpoints about life, but for some reason people tend to have similar morals. For instance, many people agree that good morals are: to be kind, to not cause harm, or to be respectful. But from my experiences, I’ve seen that nobody follows those morals and some go against the morals. For example, people say killing is wrong, but when there’s an incident where somebody molests, kills, or does foul things, people are quick to wish death and harm to them. This goes against the morals these people claimed they had, so this is hypocrisy. Unfortunately society is filled with hypocrisy.
When I was young I attended school where people would tell me that killing is wrong and how you should treat everybody the same. Now it was hard for me to follow these morals, especially when everything around me went against the morals I was taught. For example, one of my teachers taught my class about the civil rights period in America and she would constantly tell us about how we should respect each other no matter what. Yet she would punish us for speaking a foreign language in her class, which went against what she kept preaching. There was another situation when I was in school: my class would take a time of silence for victims of 9/11, but shortly after that they spoke of how the suspect who caused the incident should die for his acts. All I could think was of how hypocritical they were.
My uncles would tell me that morals aren’t what I should worry about and instead create my own way of having values. They even gave me examples such as if someone harms me then I should retaliate and dismiss anything that other people say. Eventually, when I was in middle school, there was a kid who bullied other kids, but I paid him no mind until he started to bully me. Because of my way of looking at life, I retaliated and bullied him by ridiculing him around his friends and giving him no respect until he calmed down and no longer interacted with me. Seeing as how my own way of looking at my life works, my views changed from the morals I was taught. So after many situations, I have a hard time accepting these morals when no one in my life or in public has stayed true to their own morals.
-Javier S

The Super Bowl

I am a HUGE broncos fan! I was born and raised in Denver. I bleed orange and blue! I know it is weird to have girl who is a football fan, but I am a huge fan of football. I don’t just watch the game, but I also know what is going on in the game. My family all take football very seriously. They go all out for football!
I am so into football because it is the time that me and my dad have father daughter time. We have pictures of me and him when I was a baby all dressed up in my broncos cheer leading out fit  laying on him watching the game. We always have our time and sit down and have our pizza and blankets.
The week before the super bowl was bronco week at my mom school. My mom went all out for this. she had the craziest outfit I have ever seen! She got a Afro wig that was half orange and half blue, pants that were zebra striped blue and orange, 3 pairs of bronco earnings, and a bright orange shirt.
When they lost the first hike I knew that the game was going be bad. I never imagined that it would be this bad! When we lost the our whole family was in shock. The whole house went from exited to sad. No one can ever change what happened at the super bowl. I am still the BIGGEST bronco fan ever!
-Alea M