The Explorer The Student News Site of John Glenn High School Mon, 24 Feb 2020 01:58:25 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Is going to college the only option? Thu, 13 Feb 2020 15:43:40 +0000 While there are many different ways to further education, why is college the better option? There are many reasons, including how most jobs require a bachelor’s degree or above. It can be a great experience, and usually, most people that go to college make more money, and according to freshman Riley Niece, “you need money.”

Going into further detail about the reasons why you should go to college, one is, “statistics say by 2030, 20 percent of the job market will need something beyond a high school diploma,” says college advisor Mrs. Kelly. 2030 is in our near future and will affect our generation.  Generally, most of the jobs out there that make the most money do require at least a bachelor’s degree.

Another reason is that usually, people that go to college make more money, and while it is not always the case, it is the most likely outcome. For example, doctors make $193,415 a year and pharmacists make $144,768 a year, and those jobs do require at least a bachelor’s degree. Let’s say that you are lucky and do not have to go to college and still make good money. It is a good idea to have a backup plan in case it does not work out. One thing to mention is how some worry about student loans or student debts. Now, some schools are fundraising to earn money to help students pay for college. There are also so many scholarships you can earn or apply for to also help pay or decrease the amount you would have to pay. You also do not have to physically go to a university. There are online or community colleges, which can be just as good and less expensive, so you can still get credits for a bachelor’s degree without leaving or being far from home.

The final reason is the experience you can have at college. For example, you get to have some freedom, go out and explore the world, and even learn more about yourself in the process. It can also be a way to prepare yourself for the future by learning things like how to manage money, how to work with people, be responsible, and even how to finally take care of yourself on your own. And it is okay to not know what you are doing; it is the experience and the failure you learn from.

It may seem scary, but college could be the best thing you experience. Like chemistry teacher Mrs. Mazon said, “be brave.”

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John Glenn: Helping or hurting our Earth? Thu, 13 Feb 2020 15:38:30 +0000 The Earth is dying, the sea levels are rising, the climate is changing, and our school still uses hundreds of nonbiodegradable styrofoam trays at lunchtime. There are many ways that our school could help our planet thrive, and the Environmental Club is working on making those the ways of John Glenn.

“The Environmental Club wants to replant the courtyard or cleanup the greenhouse and take care of it better,” Junior and member of the Environmental Club, Emma Elinksi said.

According to NASA, the carbon dioxide levels in the air are the highest they have been in 650,000 years, the sea level has risen almost seven inches in the past 100 years, and global temperature has increased by 1.9 degrees since 1880. These may not seem like a big deal, but if our planet continues on this track, the effects will be irreversible in only 20 years (National Resources Defense Council).

“It’s not about the environment right now, it’s about the environment when you’re gone,” Elinski said. “You have to look after it now before it gets to your kids.”

According to Ms. Glassmeyer, a cafeteria employee, John Glenn serves about 875 lunches per day and 280 breakfasts, meaning about 1,155 styrofoam trays are used every day. Per week, that’s approximately 5,775. For the whole month of January, which only contained 16 school days where lunch was served and 19 days where breakfast was served, about 19,320 styrofoam lunch trays were used. Keep in mind that styrofoam is not biodegradable, meaning it does not decompose.

Members of the Environmental Club are looking to change the amount of styrofoam lunch trays that John Glenn uses.

“We use a lot of styrofoam,” Elinski said, “and we wanted to find an alternative, like washing trays.” Co-founder of the Environmental Club and Junior Erin Knape agreed. She said that she wants to help get rid of styrofoam at John Glenn.

Another one of the Environmental Club’s goals is to start recycling again, especially cans and bottles.

“We want to fix the recycling problem. We contacted a few government officials about it, but there’s not much progress,” Knape said.

Aluminum cans, for example, are not recycled at John Glenn, and they can take up to 80-200 years before they decompose completely. Think about how many Kickstart cans are being tossed into the garbage on a daily basis. Those could all be recycled and saved from their up to 200-year decomposition fate in a landfill.

The Environmental Club is working to help save the planet, but they cannot do it alone.

“There isn’t a second planet. This is the only one we have,”  Zander said. “Please take care of it.”

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Bowling Thu, 13 Feb 2020 15:31:21 +0000 The John Glenn bowling teams are nearing the end of a strong season. Girls’ varsity has won all 12 of their matches, and boy’s varsity follows closely with ten victories. On Feb. 11, 2020, the John Glenn bowlers all competed against Stevenson High School. Both varsity teams won their matches, as did girls JV and boys JV team B.

With only a few weeks left in the season, some of the bowlers are making goals.

“I want to get a 300,” said Carter Johnson, a Senior varsity bowler and captain.

The girls’ varsity captain, Anna Maxwell, said, “I would like to finish in the top three for state individuals.”

“I want to make a new high game over 244,” said Karley Chouinard, a Freshman varsity bowler. Chouinard also talked about how she’s going to miss the seniors next year.

In addition to the match against Stevenson, the seniors were celebrated for senior night. Their coaches talked about which colleges the seniors planned on going to and other goals they had.

Each bowler is working hard to improve on their skills. As Anna Maxwell said, “We mess around for a little bit, but we always go over what we need to work on and how we can improve.”

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Competition Cheer 2/12/20 Wed, 12 Feb 2020 16:43:47 +0000 0 Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez Wed, 12 Feb 2020 16:33:50 +0000 The new Netflix limited series Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez does an impressive job of digging into the life of former NFL star, Aaron Hernandez, before, during, and after his murder trials.

The three-part, true-crime docu-series delves into the ins and outs of Aaron Hernandez’s troubled mind in a unique way. The series does a strong job of keeping viewers intrigued while telling an intense murder story. Certain techniques help to tell the confusing tale efficiently; however, others do not. Overall, the true-crime series does a pretty good job of informing and of keeping viewers interested and wanting to watch.

Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez shows the before and after of Aaron Hernandez’s life of crime. The series showcases the factors in Hernandez’s life that may have contributed to his hard-to-control temper and violent tendencies. It incorporates interview segments with some of Hernandez’s closest friends and family to add first-hand encounters to an already “up close and personal” series. It also includes a timeline of all of the events that added anything to the crimes or anything that may have made a significant difference in his life. The series explains the trials in an in-depth way, involving clips of witnesses and attorneys speaking in order to give insight into the mood of the courtroom and the actions of Aaron Hernandez.

The true-crime docu-series tells a puzzling story in an intriguing way. By using interview segments from close friends and family of Hernandez, the series adds a sense of personal attachment to an otherwise impersonal narrative. In doing so, viewers are drawn-in and involved more so than ever before. The Netflix original series also uses a surprise-factor technique to add suspense to a narrative that viewers may already know in order to keep them watching and wondering what is next. For example, during an interview, one of Hernandez’s teammates reveals rather shocking information in an “out-of-the-blue” manner, causing viewers to want to know more.

While the three-part series does most things well, one technique in particular worsened its rating. The timeline technique could have been a perfect way to tell this story if it hadn’t been executed so poorly. For example, when the car involved in the double-homicide is discovered while searching for evidence of Odin Lloyd’s murder, the timeline rewinds back a few years and viewers are now told of a whole new murder case that Hernandez may be involved in. After this point, the docu-series jumps back and forth between cases. resulting in lots of confusion in some of each case’s details.

     Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez tells the story of a football player gone rogue in an informative and entertaining way. As it leads viewers through the tale of Hernandez’s downfall, it gets viewers wondering if other athletes have lived or are living similar crime-filled narratives.

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She-Ra, worth the watch, or just another reboot? Wed, 12 Feb 2020 16:28:52 +0000 In 1983, He-Man hit television and captured the imaginations of children across America, especially those of young men. Out of a desire to tap into a potential audience of young women, Mattel made a spin-off series set in the same universe, but following the heroic adventurers of She-Ra, He-Man’s sister who shared similar powers. The series lasted a mere two seasons before fading into obscurity.

Now, backed by Netflix as an original series, She-Ra is being revived in a new show in a similar but different world. She-Ra and the Princesses of Power has already finished its fourth season and a fifth one is in the works, but in a market already saturated with reboots and remakes, does it work as a stand-alone show, or has it been skating on by nostalgia?

Certainly not. A viewer doesn’t have to go in even with a passing knowledge or understanding of the original He-Man to become immersed in the world and its characters; He-Man doesn’t even exist in this interpretation of the world. The world of Eternia shares its name with the world of the original He-Man and She-Ra, but uses its predecessor as a source of inspiration rather than a blueprint. If you are familiar with the original He-Man and She-Ra, do not go in with the expectation of a beat for beat replica, the crew behind the show have used the ideas, the places and people of the work, as tools to create their own story.

Eternia is a world full of fantasy and science fiction alike and has a similar plot structure to the original series. Adora, once a soldier for the Horde ruled by Lord Hordak, breaks away from them after realizing that they are destructive conquerors and discovering a sword that grants her the ability to transform into She-Ra, a hero of legends. She joins the rebellion against the Horde and forms new relationships and friendships with her fellow rebels. The rest of the show consists of battles and missions that Adora and her two friends Glimmer and Bow go on to fight against the horde and to recruit princesses of other kingdoms to the rebellion.

The plot is simple and predictable at times, but it makes for an enjoyable overarching story; the animation isn’t always impressive, but there were many times where I found myself appreciating the effort that must have gone into this show. It was definitely made by people who loved what they were doing. However, the best part about She-Ra is undoubtedly the characters and the relationships that they form. Every character has personality, and the complex relationships that they form are developed and full of stakes. I was bored by the show’s emphasis on friendship at first; I originally thought that the reboot was going to be an uninspired preach-fest ala something from the crew of Rebecca Sugar, but the relationships between the main characters are developed and real. It’s not always sunshine and rainbows, there is conflict as well as comradery, and it makes a point to have the characters communicate with one another in order to resolve issues, which is an important moral to teach young viewers.

Furthermore, it would be easy for the creators to write off the Horde and its characters as mustache-twirling villains, but the relationships explored there are the most interesting. She-Ra explores the abusive relationship between a mother and her adopted daughters, and loyalty to people who don’t really care about you. Catra is a character who was best friends with Adora before she left the Horde, and feels scorned and abandoned by her, and later on, she comes to believe that her former friend was only ever nice to her to manipulate her. It’s these fascinating connections that really make the audience care about what is happening in the world. If the writers can make the audience conflicted about what side they should be rooting for, they’re doing something right. By the end of the series, I was even empathizing and rooting for the main villain in a way, who could have simply been written as big bad with no human qualities. I should not have to explain why that would be so much less interesting.

The cast is also diverse in gender, ethnicity, and sexuality, without feeling forced or like it is filled with token characters, although it could be argued that queer relationships in the show are hidden inside characters to avoid angering the crew’s corporate backers. It is great to see a show write minorities as characters and people rather than leave them in the show at an attempt to appear progressive without actually being such.

She-Ra is definitely a binge-worthy series, a show with great characters and stakes that feel real and significant to the viewer. The most recent season has left its audience on a major cliffhanger, which will leave you genuinely frightened of what’s to come in the land of Eternia, and what will happen to your favorite characters.

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Ways to reduce stress Wed, 12 Feb 2020 15:51:34 +0000 So finals just passed. And with finals come piles of notes, study guides on study guides, and… stress. So, what is stress? “Stress is a natural bodily response to frightening or threatening life events,” according to a Washington Post article about chronic stress and the effects of it on children. Stress can increase your heart rate, blood pressure, and blood circulation.

According to Gallup, 55 percent of Americans are stressed during the day, regardless of age.

“I deal with too much stress,” says Mrs. Grimm, English and Creative Writing teacher.

Junior Emily Ayres stated, “[I deal with] way too much stress, I get stressed over the smallest things… There’s almost never a week where I’m not stressed.”

Stress can cause annoyance, loneliness or depression, feelings of overwhelment, headaches, clammy hands, rapid heartbeat, nervous behaviors such as nail biting or fidgeting, and trouble concentrating; 59 percent of teens also say balancing all their activities can cause stress.

So, basically the whole world is full of stress. Stress follows us at home, work, or school. What can we do about it?

“I think about what stresses me and fix it,” Grimm said.

Ayres says she “mostly listens to music and overthinks the situation until [she] forms it into something good. It usually goes away after whatever [she is] stressed about passes.”

There’s been an abundance of self-care apps directed to dealing with stress. The most popular are coloring apps like Sandbox Pixel Coloring and Paint By Number: Coloring Book (I personally like Happy Color). There are countless mental health games. Breethe, Meditation, & Sleep is an app the helps users “de-stress, sleep better, get happier, and be healthier with guided meditations, soothing music, nature sounds, masterclasses, and much more.”

There’s even a “Smash the Office” game, whose tagline is “Instant Stress Relief!”

Another app, Calm, is a #1 app for “Sleep, Meditation and Relaxation. Join the millions experiencing better sleep, lower stress, and less anxiety with our guided meditations, sleep stories, breathing programs, stretching exercises, and relaxing music.”

Ayres uses an app called Vent-Express your feelings. “It’s pretty self explanatory,” she explains. “It’s a very safe community of people who go through similar issues and whom you can relate to. Talking to friends helps a lot more than a bunch of strangers, but sometimes it’s nice to talk to someone who isn’t biased and doesn’t know you.”

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Opposing Viewpoints: Is caffeine addictive? Wed, 12 Feb 2020 15:41:49 +0000 Caffeine is Addictive

Cole Haas

I personally believe that caffeine is addictive… depending on two things: What you drink, and how much you drink it. In my eyes, there are two types of caffeinated drinks: natural drinks like coffee, as it comes from coffee beans, and energy drinks, such as Kickstart or Five Hour Energy. Both can be bad for you if you drink too much of it.

“I once saw someone who wanted to get four Kickstarts out of the Kickstart machine!” Junior Alexa Richardson told me, who had a Kickstart beside her.

She also added that Redbull, “tastes like battery acid.”

At JGHS, we have vending machines that sell Kickstarts throughout the school, which come in different flavors. Like Mountain Dew, the drink is very sugary and contains high amounts of caffeine. Walking around the school before first hour, it is likely that you will see multiple students carrying a Kickstart in their hands.

Coffee, on the other hand, is something that teachers drink more than students or at least is more noticeable.

Art teacher Mrs. Darling says she drinks 1-2 cups a day and says that you can “maybe become dependent.”

“Sometimes I can get a headache if I don’t drink coffee for a bit,” Darling said.

She also implies that it can affect kids. “If [kids] get too much, it can affect their heart.”

JGHS Principal Mr. Wegher, who is also an avid coffee drinker, admits that he needs coffee every day.

“It shouldn’t become an everyday thing, it’s funny coming from someone who needs it every day.”

Wegher also added that “caffeine is like every other drug that you crave.”

And he’s right! According to, “Caffeine is defined as a drug because it stimulates the central nervous system.”

If you drink too much, you may want to cut back, but slowly, because “you could get headaches and feel tired, irritable, or just plain lousy”.

There you have it, the withdrawal symptoms of caffeine. Therefore it is addictive.


Caffeine is not Addictive

Sierra McIntosh

Every day, about 90 percent of adults consume caffeinated products according to Caffeine, society views it as something that helps energize the common folk in the form of coffee typically, with the occasional soda or energy drink mixed in as well. But is it truly an addictive substance?

It definitely has the potential to be depending on the intake an individual consumes of said product, but as an avid drinker of caffeinated products like energy drinks, kickstart, and coffee; I personally think that most people are not addicted to caffeine, as most people can truly quit if they wanted to.

According to, the stimulant caffeine is categorized as a dependence drug, not as an actual “addictive” drug due to the user not experiencing the same severe withdrawal or harmful drug-seeking behaviors of drugs such as alcohol or cocaine. Instead the user would only endure side effects of a post-caffeine world for a day or so, depending on the amount they consumed on a daily basis.

“You can have an upset stomach, lack of sleep, if you overdo how much caffeine you drink,” Math teacher Mr.Hurick said.

Other types of symptoms could be: headache, fatigue, anxiety, irritability, depressed mood, and having difficulty concentrating. Depending on if the individual is a long term user, consuming enough products with caffeine in it can build up tolerance to the drug. Therefore forcing the individual to want to drink more in order to achieve that same effect.

But, why would caffeine not be classified as an addictive drug? Well, according to, compared to other drugs like amphetamines or meth, caffeine does not release as much Dopamine(releases positive feelings into your body) so therefore isn’t classified as an addictive substance.

“Caffeine is addictive due to its marketing,” said Gym teacher Mr.Polk.

With influencers such as Danielle Cohn, who gained fame on the app doing ads for companies like Bang Energy, it has quite an impact on kids who look up to Cohn as an inspiration. If she does it, then her audience will want to do it as well; therefore kids aren’t addicted to caffeine itself but instead want to be like their idol.

But how do people get introduced to caffeinated products in the first place?

“By starting at a young age and having them easy to get,” Senior Jonathon Craig said.

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Nation mourns loss of basketball great Wed, 12 Feb 2020 15:31:50 +0000 On Jan 26, the world lost one of the most known athletes, Kobe Bryant. Bryant was one of nine casualties in a helicopter accident. Of those nine casualties, his daughter, Gianna Bryant,  and baseball coach John Altobelli, John’s wife, Keri, and their daughter Alyssa; mother and daughter Sarah and Payton Chester; Mamba Academy basketball coach Christina Mauser; and pilot Ara Zobayan. Fans were left feeling shocked and devastated from this unfortunate event. Many just wanted to know what exactly happened.

An outpour of tributes occurred as a result of this tragedy. The Lakers honored Kobe in an emotional tribute that took place in Los Angeles, California’s Staples Center. In empty seats sat two Lakers jerseys, number 8 and 24, both of Kobe’s numbers he wore. In a seat between 8 and 24 was number 2 for Gianna Bryant. One tribute was from Vanessa Bryant, Kobe’s wife and Gianna’s mother. She posted a series of videos and pictures to her Instagram remembering her loved ones who have transitioned. She pinned a letter to the world in hopes of helping someone who may be going through the same grief as she.

“I’ve been reluctant to put my feelings into words,” Bryant said in her post. “My brain refuses to accept that both Kobe and Gigi are gone. I can’t process both at the same time. It’s like I’m trying to process Kobe being gone but my body refuses to accept my Gigi will never come back to me.”

In an old video clip, Kobe can be heard explaining his reason for his preferred travel method, helicopter. Kobe explains that because he has to work and travel a lot for work, he missed milestones in his children’s lives.

He can be quoted saying “”Every chance I get to see them and spend time with them — even if it’s 20 minutes in the car — I want that.”

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Getting caught up with Gravity with Mrs. Grimm Tue, 11 Feb 2020 16:44:25 +0000 Q: What is it like sponsoring Gravity?

A: “I think it’s important that kids have a voice, that they leave this legacy behind with their work printed so it’ll always be there. I like being a part of it, I love words, I love reading what kids write and just being a part of that.”


Q: How frequently do students submit art?

A: “We’ve got a ton of stuff actually, I would love more art. More essays. More creative writing, I got a ton of poetry, which is great. In the beginning, I had a lot, and now it’s kinda dwindled a little bit.”


Q: Anything that stood out to you?
A: “Some of it is pretty deep. One of the short stories, one of the girls who read it started crying. The poetry I think is amazing, some that are just fun.”

Q: How do you decide what’s going in the magazine?

A: “Pretty much if you give it to us, we’re gonna find a way to put it in there, we’ll try to edit it in some way, shape, or form. We have a release form that a parent has to sign and students sign.”


Q: Where does the magazine go, how would someone get one?
A: “Our publication date is some time in April, and then we’ll be selling them. I’ll be selling some from my room, I’ll ask the Gantry to sell them, we’re going to put them out in the community. So at Ram’s Horn and certain places, you’ll be able to walk in and have it.”


Q: What’s the deadline?

A: “We haven’t set one yet, I can imagine we’ll be working right up to the last minute. So soon for sure. Sometime at the end of February?”

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