We’re Losing Water

By: Chris Wilcox

Today, our Earth is running out of usable, fresh water. Freshwater makes up very little of the world’s water supply. 70% of the Earth is made up of water and yet only 2.5% of it is fresh. Even though we have 2.5% of fresh water only 1% of it is accessible,and a lot of that is trapped in glaciers and snowfields. This leaves 0.007% available to fuel and feed everybody on the Earth.

According to the Newton Falls Water Treatment Plant, residents of Newton Falls get their water from the east branch of the Mahoning River. Newton Falls uses about 600-650 K Gallons of water a day in the summer, but decreases down to 400-400 K a day in winter time. This is great because we’re able to treat 1.2 million gallons a day. According to Ray Kovacs,a Supervisor at The Newton Falls Water Treatment Plant, “ We meet EPA standards and have great quality water.”

However, we need to remember although we are able to treat tremendous amount of water, we need to still do our best to save water. For example, you can help conserve water by shutting the water off while you’re brushing your teeth and  taking faster showers. Every little bit helps.

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Are You Addicted?

By: Alli Sembach and Bailey Shrum

Teenagers these days tend to be addicted to their phones and other electronic devices. 8th grade students Sidney Bryant and Andrew Steffens volunteered to give up all internet and electronic devices for 48 hours.

On day one, Sidney says she reached for her phone a few times and when she realized it wasn’t there, she felt like it was more of a punishment. Other then that, the first day wasn’t too bad for her. Andrew said that he was so bored that he took two naps, which he never does.

On the second day, Sidney says she wanted her phone more, but it wasn’t like an addiction, she just felt deprived from talking to her friends. Andrew tells us that his boredom became worse.

After the experiment, Sidney said that it helps to know she can go without her phone, but she wouldn’t do it again. She believes that in today’s society it is becoming more of a necessity to communicate with your phone. However, she hopes that this experiment will help her be less engaged with her phone so she can do more things with her life. Andrew says “ It felt like I was grounded for two days.” He also stated that he would never do the experiment again.

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Breaking Dawn

Breaking Dawn

By Stephenie Meyer

Reviewed By: Ashley Benetis

Vampires…..Werewolves…..Humans. Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer is a great fiction book if you like reading about a girl who gets whatever she wants and everyone thinks everything is about her.     

    Edward and Bella get married and go on a honeymoon in Isle Esme, off the coast of Brazil, where Bella ends up getting pregnant. “That was the best night of my existence,” Edward Cullen, the vampire, says. Jacob Black, the werewolf, leaves his pack, and Leah and Seth follow Jake and are now their own pack to help protect Bella. After Bella gets home from the honeymoon and they realize she’s pregnant, Jacob’s old pack tries to kill the baby. Jacob won’t let that happen because killing the baby means killing Bella with it.

    Meyer describes Bella and Edward as these people who have no relationship problems, but scary, breath-taking, life and death moments where Edward worships the ground that Bella walks upon. I would say that gets really annoying to see a couple where one does everything for the other.

    I wouldn’t want anyone to read this book because everyone does everything for Bella, and I feel that Bella is a person that doesn’t deserve everything Edward gives her. The only good thing about this book is Edward tries to compromise with everyone. The bad part is he always gives into what Bella wants. Bella wanted a small wedding and ended up changing her mind and wanting a big wedding. Plus, she ended up having over 500 guests.

    While reading this book, you will lose focus so many times, and you’re going to want to flat out throw the book at the wall. I’ve read all four books in the series and the only reason I did is because I wanted to see if the books were anything like the movie, and after I start reading a series, I can’t stop in the middle of it; I shouldn’t have wasted my time. The book itself is fine just the writing inside is what makes it horrible. Also Meyer tries to make the book sound like a great book, but really the only part that’s good about it is when Jacob tells his story. You actually can get into Jacob’s head, and you understand it so much more. When you get to the middle of the book everything starts to go down-hill, and that’s a bad thing. Most people want to read a book that’s good all the way through, not something that will put them to sleep with almost two or three hundred pages left.

    Although I hate the book, I liked the movie a lot more. It actually makes you want to see more and even though Bella still gets whatever she wants, it makes her look more like an actual person, not like the little girl who can’t defend herself.

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Holes

                    Holes

By: Louis Sachar

Reviewed by Caitlyn Wood

    ”I’m not saying it’s going to be easy. Nothing in life is easy. But that’s no reason to give up. You’ll be surprised what you can accomplish if you set your mind to it. After all, you only live one life so you should try and make the most of it,” Mr. Pendanski said as he was trying to give inspiration to these miss-fits and rebels.

Holes is about Stanley Yelnats and his “family curse.” Stanley is framed for the theft of a superstar’s shoes and gets sent to a juvenile camp. I know that makes this book seem like it’s going to be really interesting and is going to keep you on the edge of your seat, but don’t get your hopes up. He has to dig holes with every other delinquent who was sent to the camp. This takes up about half of the book; just digging holes and some minor, non-important events. They don’t realize it at first, but they are actually just helping the camp owner find a buried treasure. Through all the long hard days of suffering in the heat, Stanley is able to make friends with another camp recruit who’s been nicknamed “Zero”. This is the point in the book where the cheesiness starts to begin. Zero eventually runs away from the camp, and Stanley follows in attempt to save him from dying. That part was one of the most predictable parts of this whole book. With about seven chapters left in the book, it’s a little obvious that something major is going to happen. Stanley and Zero find each other, but instead of going back to the camp, they decide to go to the giant rock they see in the distance that looks like “God’s Thumb”. It’s there that they realize they were sent to this camp for a reason, and they make their way back to the camp to complete their mission and discover the reason they were sent here.

To tell you the truth, I really didn’t like this book whatsoever. The book was predictable and boring. I could always tell what was going to happen next. There was no big “WOW!” in the book. The theme itself is quite cheesy and over-used itself. I mean, how many times have you heard of a book with the theme “you can accomplish anything with teamwork” or something like that? There’s probably about a million books out there with that theme. Just like the movie, the book is just blah. Though I must admit, I liked the movie more than the book.

I would recommend this book to anyone as long as they like books that are cheesy and predictable. This book would be perfect for anyone who likes books like that.

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The Hunger Games

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Review By: Sidney Drake

    ”That’s mine. It’s meant for me.” Sprinting into the Cornucopia, she is fighting for a bag that gives her the supplies she needs for survival. The Capitol wants them to fight, and this is just one of many in the arena of 24 tributes fighting till the death. Whether their strategy is staying hidden in the trees, or attacking people one by one, only one tribute comes out alive, and the rest are gone.

    Suzanne Collins wrote The Hunger Games, a dystopian society book, which is a compelling novel about a 16 year old girl named Katniss Everdeen who volunteers to take her sister Prim’s place in the 74th annual Hunger Games event. Two tributes are picked from each district, one boy and one girl, to be put into an arena made by The Capitol to try and be the last one standing. Katniss is bold and strong, so she volunteered herself to take her sister Prim’s place that wouldn’t stand a chance in The Games. Katniss has to trust Gale, her best friend, which she would do anything for and he would do the same. The boy tribute, Peeta Mellark, doesn’t want to let The Capitol turn him into a toy for their amusement. He even tells Katniss, “We are not just another piece in their games.” Before The Games began, Katniss didn’t understand what he meant by this until she was put in a situation in the arena where all she wanted was The Capitol to be proven wrong for what they do.

    These District Twelve tributes are not only at a disadvantage from where they come from, but their mentor Haymitch spends the majority of his days drunk. He is supposed to be keeping them alive, but he doesn’t really have much to say when it comes to helping them prepare for The Games. Despite being drunk half the time, he does at least say, “Here’s some advice. Stay alive.” He does pull through though and make a contribution to their team: fake love as a game winning strategy. But what if it isn’t fake love at all? What if for one of them, it’s real?

    I recommend this book to everyone above the age of ten. It is addicting to everyone, but it has a dark topic that younger children probably aren’t ready to understand. Teenagers being put into an arena to kill each other might not rest well on younger kids when they are trying to fall asleep. It has so many unexpected twists and turns that there is no way anyone could be prepared for what would happen next.

    I’m not even sure if I read this book. It was like I wasn’t reading at all, there was just a picture movie going through my head as I was reading, like the words weren’t even there. It was like I was following the same path as Katniss did throughout The Games. I could hear everything she heard as if it was being said to me. I could feel everything, physically being touched or understanding her feelings throughout her heart and mind, as if it was happening to me. I saw everything she did: the pain, the suffering, and the sadness that she went through. Now, the book is becoming a movie and it is entering theaters, and it just might become the world’s next phenomenon. It is definitely the best book in the series, and by far one of the best books I’ve ever read.

    Now that the book is becoming a movie, there is a discussion about whether you are “Team Gale” or “Team Peeta.” Although I picture Gale much cuter than Peeta, Peeta is just so clever with words that I am “Team Peeta” all the way! He is so caring and thoughtful, he doesn’t push you away, and as I read this book I was wishing he was real! If I was in Katniss’ place I would have rather take Gale into The Games since he has taken care of himself and his family his whole life, but I would win so I could go back to Peeta!

    Never in my life have I read a book like this before. It’s got everything a book is supposed to have, and it stands out in my mind as being one of a kind. So as Effie Trinket always says, “Happy Hunger Games, and may the odds be ever in your favor.”

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The Way Things Never Were: The Truth About the Good Old Days

The Way Things Never Were: The Truth about the Good Old Days

BY NORMAN FINKESTEN

Reviewed by: Vince Dragich

 

“It was a world of limited choices – black and white television and white bread.”

“When I was your age, I’d walk fifteen miles to school every day. And during the winter, the snow was up to my shoulders. They had winters back then, we loved it.”

Do your grandparents constantly babble about how good life was in the good old days? They’re crazy! The Way Things Never Were: The Truth about the Good Old Days by Norman Finklesten can prove it if you can stand to read through fact after fact of pretty much useless information.

The book is split up into eight sections, each one proving that the United States today is better than it was in the past. Inside each section it lists one way the past wasn’t as good, the list’s reasons why. One example is no constant threat of war. During the 1960s the USA constantly had to be prepared for a nuclear war with the Soviet Union. People would have to own nuclear fallout shelters. In 1962, the Soviet Union sent nuclear missiles to Cuba. Another example is African Americans had little rights unlike today. That changed in 1965 when the Civil Rights Act was passed after a march by African Americans in Washington D.C. The book does teach that you should be grateful for what you have because people in the past had it much worse.

Overall, I don’t care too much for this book. The book has way too many facts, which makes me feel overwhelmed. The book doesn’t read smoothly because there are too many facts. The book is extremely out of date because it was written in the late 1990s. For example, the book babbles on and on for a whole section about VCRs and outdated computers.

The book does do a good job of picture selection. In spite of this though, I would still never recommend this nonfiction bore to anybody besides a historian or to a teacher to use the book as a punishment to students. The only thing this book is really any good for is proving your elderly seventy-five year old grandma with dementia that her memory isn’t working again.

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The Clique: Dylan

The Clique: Dylan

by Lisi Harrison

Reviewed by Jordan Lahiff

 

Dylan Marvil, a teenage girl who falls in love with a major tennis fan named J.T. while on a business trip with her mom in Hawaii, must do anything to get him to love her back, but Dylan has already had two break-ups this summer. Will this be number three? This is what The Clique: Dylan by Lisi Harrison is about. Dylan must get J.T. to love her back. But the only way to with his heart is to get help from Russian tennis star, Svetlana Slootski.

Svetlana has had major anger problems in her past. One time she knocked another person’s teeth out with a tennis racket. She says she simply went into a “blonde rage” at that time. That blonde rage almost destroyed her career. In this story Dylan forces Svetlana to teach her about tennis so she can win J.T’s heart, but Svetlana would not just simply help a poor girl in need, unless they had some video to blackmail her with. Dylan and her Chocolate LG phone are a team, and if Svetlana comes near that phone, Svetlana will be ruined. Although Svetlana does try to take the phone, Dylan protected it and said, “Try that little stunt again and the only thing you’ll be endorsing is kitty litter.”

The fact that Dylan is going to train in tennis is surprising to all. Dylan Marvil is a rich girl used to spa-ing and relaxing all day. The training she will have to do with Svetlana in “The Svetlana Way” is going to be difficult. She is going to have to deal with jogging five miles with a pebble in her shoe, eating only boiled chicken breast at dinner and much more, or she will forever be what Svetlana calls a “size six loser-fan.”

So, what happens between Dylan and J.T.? All I can say is that they both will have their happy moments and at some point they will both crash and burn. In the end though, Dylan’s hours of hard training and eating nothing but boiled chicken breast only to impress a boy pays off, but not exactly how you would expect.

Personally, I love this book. I read it every day. I even get in trouble in some classes for reading it. The author did a great job in writing this book. It has everything: love, anger, betrayal, disgust, hatred, and even some action. Plus there is so much detail in what Dylan is seeing, smelling, and hearing.

This book is probably for people who like romance and even some who like betrayal. This book is mainly awesome because of the romance and betrayal. One part in the book is especially my favorite and says, ‘”I lost my mind out of my love for you,’ Dylan wanted to say. But it sounded too cheesy.”

Well, I told you all I can about this book. If you want to find out all that happens, read it. I promise you will at least like some parts in the book so just try it. You will not be disappointed.

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Shooting Star: Jaden Walton

Shooting Star: Jaden Walton

By: Madi Pelyak

 

Fast breaking, Jaden Walton goes hard into the paint for a lay-up. The whistle blows as the ball slowly rolls into the hoop. Foul! Two shots number twenty-three!” said the referee.

Being 5’11″ has advantages, especially for eighth grader Jaden Walton. Jaden’s an exceptional shooter, a very good rebounder and can play both post and guard positions. He averages 15-18 points and eight rebounds per game. “Jaden is one of the better players on the team,” his eighth grade basketball coach, Mr. Scott Kernen said. “He’s always hustling and tries his hardest with every step he takes on the court.”

His success has gotten him far in life, sports, and school. “Jaden is an above average student. He’s very well behaved in class; he’s always working hard and trying for an A,” said Darlene Schaefer, junior high math teacher.

    Jaden is an honorable student and said, “I’ve improved a lot over the years. I’ve increased my study habits, and I practice sports in my spare time.”

    Although Jaden stands out with his height, speed, and talent, to eighth grader Alan Boone, there is more to Jaden than just that: “There are two things that make him stand out. He’s best at shooting, but when he blocks shots, he makes it look too easy. Jaden is just a complete beast.”

    ”Jaden’s been pretty consistent all year, but the game he stood out the most was Girard. We were down by 11 points, and Jaden singlehandedly brought us back to win the game,” Kernen said.

    Correspondingly, Jaden has made a good impact on many people, especially his teammates and coaches. However, if there’s one person who has made an impact on Jaden, it’s his fifth and sixth grade basketball coach, Mark Medallis. “He was always willing to go out of his way to make me a better player than I already was. He showed me the importance of basketball,” Walton said.

    All in all, Jaden is an extremely hard worker and a basketball star. He has been playing basketball for five years, and in the future plans to be on the court with the varsity team. “Without basketball and other sports, I probably wouldn’t be the person I am today,” Walton said.


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Clooney for President

Clooney for President

By: Ashley Sembach

 

According to Pewresearch.org, a website that focuses on young voters, teens do not care about the presidential elections before they are able to vote.

    ”Who cares about the elections? We don’t have to worry about it until another five years,” said an anonymous seventh grade student at Newton Falls Junior High.

    ”The decisions that are made today affect the world. You should care, speak, and be heard,” stated Mr. Bugos, Newton Falls High School government teacher.

    Many students said they have no interest in the people that are going to be running our country. Seventh grader Brett Shiflett thought George Clooney was running in the next election. He is not the only one that has no clue who the candidates are.

    Have you ever heard of Mitt Romney or Newt Gingrich? If you haven’t, you need to start paying attention. One of these people could be your country’s next leader.

Mitt Romney’s plan is to seek to reduce taxes, spending, regulation, and government programs. Meanwhile, Newt Gingrich wants to keep Americans safe, improve the economy, and create more jobs.

    Teens assume the elections have no effect on them, but what about creating new jobs? Some parents are unemployed, but if Gingrich is going to create more jobs, which would eventually give the families more money. More money means that the children will have a chance to get new items that are in high demand. Who wouldn’t want there to be a tax reduction? If Romney is successful, lower taxes will get more money in your family’s pocket.

    ”I don’t think society involves the kids enough. They should gain government information. We could even set up some mock elections and presidential debates,” said senior Joe Spletzer.

    In 2008 there were 13 percent more registered voters 18-29 years old compared to 30 and older. All together there were 146 million people that voted. If the younger age group represents a greater number of voters they should take responsibility to be informed before they have the right to vote.

    Voting is a privilege in our country that is not shared by people in other countries around the world. Unfortunately, not everyone chooses to exercise that privilege. Teens need to understand that their time to vote will come, and when it does, they need to be informed. They should start paying attention to issues and candidates now.

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The “411” on Cell Phones

The “411″ on Cell Phones

By: Emma Rader

 

In the middle of math class, you’re taking a huge test that will determine if you fail or pass. The night before the test, you were unable to study because you had basketball practice. Tired, confused, and desperate, you take out your phone and text a friend for an answer. Your teacher sees you looking up answers and takes your paper. As a result to cheating, you get a zero percent F, and fail the class.

In an informal poll, 10 percent of eighth graders at Newton Falls Jr. High School admit to having used their phones to cheat on a test while only 1% of seventh graders admitted to cheating. Also, 51 percent of eighth grade students admitted to texting their friends in the middle of class.

Miss Conroy, seventh and eighth grade math teacher, said her policy on cell phones is as follows, “I see them; I take them. I don’t think there is a way to make sure students are not using them to text their friends.”

Seventh and eighth graders mostly use their phones as a calculator. The next most common use is texting and taking pictures. Most of the seventh graders say they do not use their phones in school; one of the reasons being they do not have one. However, more eighth graders said they used their phones every day.

According to Conroy, “Not everybody has phones, and since some people cannot afford them it is pointless since we have calculators. Therefore there is no reason students should use them in school. Students just want to text and be on Facebook.”

Eighth grade student Kyle Phelps disagrees with teachers who take phones and then look through the student’s messages. Kyle said, “They shouldn’t because it’s our personal property.”


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