The Green Pride The student news site for De Soto High School Journalism. Fri, 04 Oct 2019 17:35:29 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Science Olympiad starts new season Fri, 04 Oct 2019 17:35:29 +0000

With the new school year in play, De Soto High School’s Science Olympiad team has started practicing after school in order to prepare for meets.  

According to junior Isabel Haake, Science Olympiad includes all elements of science. 

 “Science Olympiad is an organization where students compete with other schools in different science categories such as biology, chemistry, physics and engineering.” Haake said.

Junior member Brent Smith is looking forward to a great season.

“This season, I am looking forward to trying out new events, and getting better at the ones I did last year,” Haake said.

Smith also shows great compassion towards the club sponsor, Chemistry teacher Lauren Sixta.

“Our team sponsor, Mrs. Sixta, is an incredible sponsor as well as a mentor. She has an outgoing passion for science that makes being part of the team such a great experience,” Smith said.

Similar to Smith, Haake also appreciates all Sixta has done for the team so far.

“She checks up on us during the days we have meets to make sure that we’re in the right locations with the right people at the right time,” Haake said.

A goal the team has this season is to  change how things were done during previous years. 

“Members from last year want to change how the team was organized, and our main want from last year was to have more members,” Haake said. “Last year there were about 15 of us, which was very tricky because for the State team, there are only 15 members allowed to go. This caused members to not work as hard to reach their full potential.” 

Along with increasing group numbers, another goal is for them to achieve on a bigger level.

“Seeing other clubs such as Scholars Bowl succeed, I know that success was possible for Science Olympiad too, only if we could get a team that was wanting to put the work in needed now so future teams can succeed as well,” Smith said.

The Science Olympiad team is excited for a great season and are eager to make changes to increase the success the team will achieve.

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De Soto providing classes in preparation for PSAT Fri, 04 Oct 2019 17:30:54 +0000

The practice SAT, or PSAT, held on Oct. 16, is a strenuous three-hour test that can provide a great practice experience  for students to excel on the SAT exam. 

Preparing for the test can be overwhelming for some students. With this in mind, English teacher Phillip Hamilton and assistant band director Philip Kaul are providing prep classes for those taking the PSAT. Classes take place after school on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6 to 8:30 p.m. 

These prep classes  prepare students for the three main sections of the test. There will be two small math sections, one with a calculator and one without, as well as reading and writing sections. The math portions will be taught by Kaul and the portions of reading and writing will be taught by Hamilton. 

The inception of these classes originally began after last year’s test results came in, showing promising scores that, if improved, could land students National Merit benefits. 

“There were a number of people from the junior class [last year] who were really close to the point total for National Merit finalist. . . we had the opportunity to support students more than we had in the past,” Hamilton said. 

The PSAT will provide students with benefits for National Merit opportunities, but also test experience for future rigorous tests such as the SAT and ACT. Although the PSAT may have lower stakes for sophomores taking the test for practice, success on this test for juniors could mean large scholarships. 

“It can be pretty high stakes for juniors who are shooting for that designation, we just want to make sure that our students are as prepared as possible,” Kaul said. 

Because students taking the prep classes are shooting for these goals, there is no shortage of effort and commitment from them. 

“It’s been really productive and a positive atmosphere where everyone is working hard and improving at the things that are weaknesses and showing their areas of strength,” Kaul said. 

The class ultimately utilizes a workbook that students paid for at the beginning of the course, with practice tests being taken during class time as well. According to Kaul, doing work at home is encouraged to the students, but is not mandatory. 

On top of giving students materials and direction for the test, the class provides students with new strategies for test day. Junior Connor McCall believes that the PSAT classes will improve his score on this years PSAT. 

“I took the PSAT as a sophomore and I got a fairly high score, but I wanted to make sure I knew strategies to do even better this year and possibly qualify to be a National Merit scholar,” McCall said. 

With the addition of these voluntary after-school classes, Hamilton and Kaul hope to improve students scores and put them in a better position for their futures as well. 

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CatPRIDE attends youth leadership summit Fri, 04 Oct 2019 16:07:20 +0000

When it comes to keeping the school spirit and morale up, making sure that a school’s environment is positive and healthy to ensure that a student succeeds is crucial.

A Youth Leadership Summit was held this school year on Aug. 30. De Soto High School representatives were chosen by social worker Robert Kordalski.

Five CatPRIDE students went to the Youth Leadership Summit at Cleveland Chiropractic College in Overland Park, including sophomores Emily Bell and Emma Klingler, junior Emily Kresin and seniors Lauren Stanton and Chase O’Bannon. 

“Mr. Joe [Kordalski] contacted each of us directly,” Stanton said. “He talked to people he thought would be positive influences throughout the school and invited them to go with.”

According to Bell, the conference was a melting pot of different topics that affect DHS today.

“We did a lot of things that focused on ways to make our school better … like the vaping problem, reducing mental health stigma and just being a nice person in general,” Bell said.

There were different kinds of lectures at the Youth Leadership Summit.

“It started with a speaker talking to us about the dangers of vaping. We learned about all the different types and ways of vaping and how it can affect your body,” Klingler said. “After that, we went and did individual sessions in different classrooms. We learned about various things such as the mental health stigma and the dangers of drugs and alcohol. Finally, we met with our school group again to talk about what we would like to do this school year in our club.”

Klingler believes that the summit was a success in educating students about modern day problems.

“It was a very enlightening experience for me to go to the Youth Leadership Summit,” Klingler said. “I really hope I can go again next year.”


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DHS makes changes to annual food drive Thu, 03 Oct 2019 23:06:22 +0000

This week, the annual De Soto High School food drive is taking place. The Cats Care organization has made some significant changes to the event this year in order to gain more involvement from DHS students. 

In years prior, the food drive has been more directed toward the De Soto community, rather than to DHS students themselves. Students have not previously had the chance to actively participate in the drive, and this year, members of Cats Care felt that the process needed to change. 

“In previous years we’ve involved the community more than actual DHS students. We’re really hoping that students can be personally involved and participate to help out the food pantry,” said Cats Care sponsor Lindsay O’Neil.

The food drive has ceased to be a popular event at DHS, especially because the majority of the donations came from the community members, rather than the students themselves. O’Neil and other members from Cats Care are aiming not only toward student participation, but student awareness. 

“I want there to be more involvement,” said junior Cats Care member and chairman of the food drive Egan Putman. “I would like more students to be aware and actually get involved instead of ignoring it.”

While the goal is for students to become more interested in the idea of donating for a good cause, it can be hard to generate excitement for something that seems unrewarding. 

Knowing that fact, Cats Care has decided to establish a prize that is eligible to be won by one donor on Friday, Oct. 4. When students donate their food items, they will receive a ticket for each item, which will be entered into a drawing. This entry will make the student eligible for a chance to win a prize that consists of a giftcard to the Cat’s Closet, as well as additional DHS merchandise. While they would like students to participate in order to support a good cause, O’Neil and Cats Care members are hoping that this incentive will be able to bring popularity to the idea of the food drive. 

“My hope is that [the prize] brings more awareness to the fact that we are conducting the food drive, and that students will be more excited about the opportunity to win a prize,” O’Neil said. 

“I think that the prize is a big enough incentive to increase donations,” Putman said. “While I’m hoping that the people who want to support the cause will still do it for those reasons, the prize will help the people who normally wouldn’t donate to go the extra mile.”

Although this food drive will include a prize, Putman believes that it is important for students to realize the benefit of donation and the cause that they are supporting. 

“It’s for a good cause. There’s a lot of people who are much less fortunate who rely on the food pantry for food, so it would benefit the overall De Soto community if everyone put in some effort and donated,” Putman said. “You could be helping students and families who live in De Soto and who walk in the same halls as us.”

With their newly renovated plan for the food drive, Cats Care has set high goals for the drive’s turnout this year. 

“In previous years, we’ve had as many as 1,900 non-perishable goods, and we would love to surpass our previous donations and raise more than 2000 items,” O’Neil said. 

According to Putman, the organization has worked hard to advertise for the event and feels that this promotion can help boost the benefits of the drive. 

“I feel like if we do enough marketing and ensuring that everyone knows when to bring the food, where to bring it, and all of that basic information, this could be one of the most successful food drives,” Putman said. 

For students who wish to bring non-perishable items for the food drive this week, donations are being accepted in the main office and in room 230.

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Wild Cat of the Week: Faxon Freeman runs for clean water Wed, 02 Oct 2019 16:02:57 +0000


Since June of 2018, De Soto High School junior Faxon Freeman has been running for an organization called Team World Vision. He raises money to provide clean water to those in need. Most of what the organization does benefits those struggling for water in Africa. In 2018, they supplied 4.6 million people  clean water.

 “I feel like it can be my way of giving myself [in order]to help other people,” Freeman said.

When Freeman began training, Team World Vision provided an optional regimen to get him prepared for half marathons. He started with a simple regimen to get him into shape and grew to run 15 to 20 miles a week. Now, Freeman runs full half marathons. 

“I’m not super fast and the short distance stuff isn’t my forte,” Freeman said.

After training for a little over a year, Freeman is now doubling the provided training regiment. In fact, most Saturdays he runs up to 10 miles.

“We collect donations individually and then all of that money goes to Team World Vision,” Freeman said.  

Team World Vision is one of the largest charities for clean water. With $50 they are able to provide one person with clean water for their entire life and each person has their own fundraising system.

 Freeman hopes that by seeing his dedication others will join or donate to help those in need. Donations are accepted at

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Girl’s tennis places third at home tournament Wed, 02 Oct 2019 02:16:04 +0000

The De Soto High School High School tennis team has made big improvements through working on individual skills. They have been competing this fall in many tournaments and have become stronger players.

Junior Hallie Scott has been playing tennis since her freshman year and is now playing singles on the varsity team. She loves the aspect of individuality within tennis.

“I love how it’s different from other sports. We’re a team yet we get to play individually,”  Scott said.

DHS recently hosted and finished third as a team at the Wildcat Invitational on Sept 28, which had some ups and downs for some of the girls.

“I lost to Saint James Academy’s No.  1 singles player in a tiebreaker (8-7). The score was 7-3, which was heartbreaking because I had been ahead most of the game. But I ended up in third place for the tournament, which was my first medal for Varsity,”  Scott said.

By playing in multiple tournaments, the girls gain skills  by repeatedly being in competitive situations under pressure. 

“My goal is to continue to progress with my skill and learn things from every game I play,”  Scott said.

Junior Jenna Doran has been playing for the team since she was a freshman and has made many steps forward in her overall game playing doubles for the varsity team.

“I have improved on modifying my shots and learning new shots and angles and just overall being more consistent and skilled,” Doran said. 

As a team, the Wildcats placed second at the Lansing Quad on Sept. 26. Doran teamed  with her normal doubles partner, junior Hannah Hamilton, who had not recently been playing due to an injury, and ended up 1-2.

“It was my partner’s first meet back from her injury, so we hadn’t had the chance to really work together with each other, but we just made little errors. We tried to do many different shots and new ideas while we played and it worked for us,” Doran said..

The duo rebounded from Lansing to finish third at the Wildcat Invitational. 

Both Scott and Doran plan on playing for the girls’ tennis team their senior year and will continue to make improvements and work hard.

“I will for sure be playing tennis next year since it will be my senior year and I want to finish out high school tennis strong,” Doran said.


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Students react to new delayed start system Sun, 29 Sep 2019 21:26:07 +0000

De Soto School District implemented a new day into the school year’s schedule: delayed start. This new system pushes back the start time of school by two hours, (7:50 to 9:50 a.m. for the high schools) and is intended to be used for inclement weather days. 

On Sept. 18, students from across the district practiced this concept and were able to arrive at school later. With school starting at a later time, students had the opportunity to spend the morning however they wanted. 

Sophomore Shelby Marquis used her extra time to go to Cause Coffee with her friends and enjoy a nice breakfast on the patio. 

According to Marquis, it was “for sure a good way to start [her] day” and be in the “company of friends and sit down for coffee.”

Junior AJ Poulain slept in and went to Cause Coffee with a friend to complete some homework assignments. 

“[It was a] good time to study and get extra work done,” Poulain said. 

While other students slept in or spent their time relaxing, other students used their time to work and get some hours in. 

Senior Adison Reinertsen, who has Senior Symposium in the morning, went to work at 6:30 a.m. and then came to school at the start of the third block. 

Many students feel that the late start is beneficial for the well-being of students. 

“I feel like it’s good for them [students] to get the extra time to sleep or do whatever they need to do. I think that it will be helpful because sleep and things like that are good ways to calm and destress,” Reinertsen said.  

Many students enjoyed having the extra time in the morning to get ready for the day. 

“It’s good to have extra time to sleep, get ready and have breakfast. I felt better throughout the day,” Poulain said. 

Although late start gave students extra time, it also caused some issues throughout the rest of the week. 

“It kind of screwed up my sleep schedule for the rest of the week. I didn’t want to wake up as early,” Poulain said. 

The schedule itself may have also caused issues with the students. 

“During the practice day, people didn’t quite know where they were going or what they were doing,” Poulain observed. “If we keep practicing this, then it should roll smoothly [when it is used during the winter].”

Late start could be used during the winter when a snowstorm is not severe enough to cancel a full day of school. 

“If it [a snowstorm] is not that bad and it gets cleared up, I think that late starts will help since we won’t have to miss so much school and content during the school year,” Reinertsen said. 

With this new system being tested, some students believe they will be more productive during the winter. 

“For me, snow days are boring. With late start, you still have time in the morning to wake up a little bit later and get work done, so it’s not a complete loss,” Poulain said.

 However, some students still enjoy having snow days throughout the winter. 

“Snow days are always a good break [from school and stress],” Marquis said. 

Overall, students had a mainly positive experience with the late start and hope to use it during the winter.

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DHS students discuss how to manage work and school Fri, 27 Sep 2019 19:41:17 +0000

While graduating from high school is an expectation held by most parents and colleges, obtaining a job during one’s teenage years is also a supposition. When it comes to students at De Soto High School, the vast population deal with the stress of maintaining a job and getting sufficient grades. 

For senior Aspen Grieshaber, working after school can be strenuous, but over the years, she has found what works best for her when getting her school work done.

“Learning how to manage your time and plan ahead is crucial for staying on top of school work,” Grieshaber said. “I think the biggest thing I have learned is planning when you work and then figuring out what homework you can get done based on your work schedule.”

Along with using the weekends to finish projects and other homework, many students have found that finding jobs with enough downtime to work on homework is beneficial when juggling both work and school. 

“Working on homework during my free time at work has taken a lot of stress off of my shoulders, and it has helped free up my schedule,” Grieshaber said. “I would recommend a job that doesn’t make you stressed because stress from work on top of stress from school is not ideal.” 

The new addition of Senior Symposium has also played a role in helping students manage their school work. This class provides two free blocks either in the morning or afternoon for students to complete homework or pick up extra hours at their jobs. Senior Adison Reinertsen, however, uses Senior Symposium for both work and school. 

“Senior Symposium has been very helpful for when I have a lot of homework,” Reinertsen said. “During my free blocks in the morning, I either work so I have more time to finish homework after school or vise versa.”

According to senior Graci Molzen, finding a job that is flexible with high school students is key to keeping up with school work.

“I work at a daycare which is nice because it normally closes around six or seven, so when I get off there is still time to complete any homework for the next day,” Molzen said. 

Molzen also recommends finding ways to avoid procrastinating, such as using Seminar time or even studying with friends.

“As you get older, you realize how important any free time is. Instead of using seminar time to mess around, I have learned to work on any homework I have,” Molzen said. “I also think finding a group to study with is helpful because you can still have fun while being productive.” 

Because working and going to school can get stressful at times, it is important to schedule some sort of down time during the week; whether that be reading a book or just watching a show on Netflix.

“Although my week does get busy with work, school and cheer, I have made it a goal of mine to save some time for activities that I like to do and I would recommend that for anyone,” Reinertsen said. 

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DHS Students give advice on how to get the most out of college visits Tue, 24 Sep 2019 16:02:11 +0000

As many upperclassmen begin to seriously think about their future,  they may attend college visits to get a better idea of how different college campuses work . A variety of De Soto High School seniors provided helpful tips for others to take into consideration.

Senior Lily Rodriguez recommends is to look into tuition fees when researching a university

“When I looked at Emporia, it was super affordable and I could see based on other colleges I considered that it was the easiest to probably get out of student loan debt,” senior Lily Rodriguez said. 

Because everyone has different preferences, size can also be a major factor in deciding what college is the best fit.

“For me, it was personally better to look at something that was smaller, and I know some people do better in bigger classes,” Rodriguez said. “I look at the size of the classroom because everyone has different abilities and academic strengths and weaknesses.”

Along with size, senior Corrine Daise, has been on numerous visits and recommends touring a campus while classes are in session.

“I think it’s best to go when there are people on [campus], because then you can see how busy campus would feel when you would be there for school,” Daise said. “I went somewhere over the summer and it was hard to tell how busy it [the school] would be.”

Scheduling visits on a school day can open more opportunities than just visualizing the crowding on  the campus.

“You get to observe what classes are like and actually pop your head in [to active classes] as long as you aren’t disrupting,” Rodriguez said. “You can look in and see how the professors interacted with the students.”

Something else that could make or break a college decision is the quality of  non-academic maybe a different word the university offers to students.

“I look to see if the dorms are nice or not, because I want to be able to live somewhere cool,” Daise said. 

While visiting a campus, Daise also thinks it’s very important to take the time to look at the rec center, dining halls and other amenities to make sure they are applicable to your possible college experience.

College visits can be a lot of information at once. These few helpful hints to keep in mind can make the process less overwhelming.


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Student streams video games as a job Fri, 20 Sep 2019 19:31:00 +0000

“Streaming” is a term that is growing bigger and bigger with the rise of video game popularity. Streaming is playing games live with a certain amount of concurrent viewers.

Eli Wilson is one of these “streamers” and is a junior at De Soto High School.  Wilson streams a popular video game called “Fortnite.”

“I usually have 30 to 50 live viewers each time I stream,” sophomore Eli Wilson said.

While some streamers can range for 10 to 50 viewers, others can have over 100,000 concurrent viewers at a time.  All of this happens on a popular website called Twitch.

“I’ve been streaming on Twitch for a year and six months,” Wilson said.

In that time, Eli has accumulated over 1,500 followers and has over 20,000 views.  

“Twitch is one of the hardest sites to grow on and gain more followers,” said Woodsie, a friend and and streamer of Wilson’s from Pennsylvania.

Twitch is a site who has creators on it such as Post Malone, Snoop Dogg, Herman Li and many more.  

Twitch isn’t all about playing video games, they have other categories such as “Just Chatting” and “IRL,” also known as in real life.

“I’ve been watching LegitElement [Wilson’s streams on twitch] for over a year almost everyday,” said long-time friend of Wilson, Joe Holiday.

Wilson streams everyday after school and during the evenings on weekends.  A lot of his time is consumed on his passion for growth on Twitch.

“I don’t have a lot of time for friends or outside of school activities. It’s a big commitment, and I enjoy doing it everyday,” Wilson said.

A lot of creators on Twitch stream as a full-time job because there is money to be made, and in some cases, a lot. Wilson doesn’t have a part-time job after school because he makes most of his money off streaming.  

“I make about $400 a month if I stay on my stream schedule and work hard,” Wilson said.

Although streaming is a unique hobby and job, it is something that really interests  people. It can be very time consuming with little results, but that doesn’t stop Wilson as a creator. 


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