Good News from New Prairie High School

March 15, 2020

• With the Mock Exam close-approaching for NPHS AP Lang students, Erin White has tasked her students with researching and selecting a variety of source material pertaining to the recent erosion of the nearby Lake Michigan shoreline in an effort to prepare a synthesis essay. 


 “It has exigence and is more interesting,” said junior Amelia Culp, when comparing this topic with something less timely. These AP Lang students have been busy preparing for the argument essay portion of the AP Mock Exam, so it seemed like a natural fit to transition them into preparing for the synthesis essay in which they must select and blend a variety of sources to support and develop their argumentative position. 


They are researching the “big picture” in order to understand what type of position they would take on the erosion issue and how to objectively argue in favor of their position. They are practicing with making concessions to the opposition as well as the art of refuting those with differing claims. 


Not only will these skills prepare them for the AP Exam, but these are key persuasion and communication skills that will benefit them in many areas of their lives in the future!


• Audrey Henning participated in the Northern Indiana Science and Engineering Fair on Saturday, February 29th at Notre Dame.  Audrey earned a first place rating and won the DNA Center - Workshop Scholarship Award.  Congrats Audrey!


• Mr. Schellinger’s APUSH classes had a Document Gallery Walk.  Students had to analyze multiple Primary Source documents about Manifest Destiny and Western Expansion.  Students walked through the “gallery” in the hallway and analyzed each document, finishing by comparing their observations with other students.


• Mr. McGhee’s art students tried experimental painting, and they are coming out awesome. These paintings will be submitted to the Congressional Art Contest.

 

• Students in Spanish 1- 4 participated in tortilla making last week.  Using a Maseca dough, flour, and water mixture, students mixed dough to use for the tortillas.  The students learned the correct ratio for the perfect masa to make the best tortillas.  Students mixed and felt the consistency with their own hands.  With the help of the cast iron tortilla press, students learned how to shape the perfect tortillas.  

 

A tortilla is a thin flatbread that is typically made from corn or wheat.  The students made the tortillas from corn Maseca.  In Spanish, the word tortilla means “small torta” or “small cake”.  The tortilla was first made by the indigenous peoples of Mesoamerica before European contact.  The Aztecs and other Nahuatl speakers call tortillas, “tlaxcallis.” Tortillas are used in such dishes as nachos, enchiladas, taquitos, tostadas, burritos, chimichangas, tacos, and quesadillas.  These tortillas the students made are perfect to make empanadas. 

 

• Several FIRST Tech Challenge/Robotics and Innovation class members, including Gunner Baughman, participated in the Olive Elementary Fun Fair on February 6.  Fair attendees got to drive an FTC competition robot and demolish a tower of plastic bricks.

 

The robot, built by NP FTC team 4368 Ruh Roh Raggy, had recently competed in the IndianaFIRST semi-state tournament.  The team was led by senior Zach True who also doubles as the assistant captain of the high school’s FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) squad. 

 

• Elementary wrestling is up and running.  We have a great group of New Prairie wrestling giving up their after school time to help train the next batch of Cougars.  

 

• After spending the year learning to code through a block based program, the Computer Science I students have made the leap to text-based coding in the language Python. Their first assignment after learning about basic syntax and reviewing data types like: strings, integers, floats, and booleans was to create a text-based food order system. 
Their program had to ask what type of sandwich you would like to order, if you wanted fries and a drink as well as the size, and calculate the total price of your order (including a $1 discount if you ordered a full meal. The next step is learning how to implement loops to repeat sections of code when needed. 
 

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