Thursday, January 19, 2017

Siblings

by Meghan Mallory
Grade 7

When you do something crazy
But you don’t really care
Because you have someone
Who is willing to share
The person who is by your side
Even when your plan is lazy
They know what to do


Whether you are a team of two
Or a band of waterloos
You share the leadership
You share the pain
You share the glory
You share the fame
The person who tolerates
Your imperfections, big or small,
Expecting you do the same


Siblings

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Adventures in School

by Sam Burnham
Grade 6

Brothers

by Kaden Pattershall
Grade 6

Featherheart's Decision, Chapter One

by Kaitlyn Libby
Grade 6 Featherkit opened her eyes to the sunlight, squeezing its bright rays through the woven roof of the nursery. Yawning, the gray tabby she-kit began to exit the nursery.
“Featherkit, what do you think you’re doing?” The tiny she-kit turned around to see that her mother, Daisyleaf, was awake as well, her bright amber eyes dimmed by exhaustion.
A pang of guilt coursed through Featherkit’s veins. “I was going to go see Mapleheart,” she admitted, glancing nervously at her mother.
Yet Featherkit was taken aback by her mother’s reply. Instead of scolding her, Daisyleaf instead began to purr and murmured, “Go ahead, Featherkit. I’m sure she’ll be delighted to see you.”
Featherkit stood there for a few moments, surprised, before passing through the entrance. It was chilly outside of the nursery, without the warmth of many bodies to keep her warm. She shivered, setting off at a trot towards the elder’s den.
Brambletail, the Thunderclan medicine cat, was there when Featherkit arrived. “Why, hello there,” the white tom welcomed her warmly. “Mapleheart’s doing quite well today. Her fever’s down and she’s got her appetite back.” He nodded to her and ducked out of the den.
“About time,” Mapleheart snorted. “He’s been pestering me for weeks, trying to get me into his den.” Then she sighed. “I’m getting old, yes. But I’d rather die here, where I spend most of my time.”
Frostclaw grunted his agreement. “You know, Featherkit, I really appreciate the company. And it’s good for you kits to get used to this, especially if you become a medicine cat someday.”
Mapleheart looked disgusted. “And turn out like Brambletail? Nobody should have the right to be that nosy.”
Featherkit sighed and backed out of the den. “I’ll see you later,” she called to the two elders. Would she be that way when she retired from her duties? This thought pestered her all the way over to the medicine den when Brambletail’s voice broke into her thoughts.
“You’ll be a great medicine cat someday, Featherkit.” But was she truly ready to take on such responsibility? Would she have to constantly endure the pain of caring for suffering elders?
By the end of the day, Featherkit’s head was swimming with thoughts. That night, sleep felt better than ever; she didn’t have to think about anything until she woke up.

Can People Change?

by Isabella McLaughlin
Grade 6

Can people change? People have many different views on things, we’re just humans, so that’s not a bad thing. Everyone is different and opinionated, so people may think very differently of this small question with such a big longing for a great answer. People can change. I have experienced it many times in my life. Friends, family, strangers, and myself. A situation or an issue may cause change for the good or for the bad, one may not ever know. Changing all depends on the situation. My grandmother died at age 53 because of cancer. This changed my view on a lot of things. How I take things for granted, how little time people really have to live, and how incredibly nice my grammy Mac actually was. I’m not proud of taking all the time we spent together for granted, absolutely not. I could’ve been so much closer with her and so much more involved, but I wasn’t. I can’t help that now though. I loved her deeply and that’s all that matters. I changed on February 23, 2009––the day of her death. It was hard for me. When people change, they change in different ways. They could be sad or jubilant throughout their change. Either way, it’s just because of all of the things they need to express. It was a secret to me for a long time. I noticed she lay in a bed a lot and she had wires and tubes in her nose, but I thought she was playing pretend and everything was okay. I pretended to be her nurse, not knowing that she actually needed one. I would jump on her bed, laughing with joy. She would smile up at me and laugh with me, just letting me know she wasn’t in pain and it was okay for me to go on. When my parents told me she had cancer, I was confused. I thought that was like some sort of cold, but when she died 4 days later, I knew it was not. So yes, people can change and I’m walking evidence. Everyone has hardships and to change for the good is not bad. A small change can make a big difference. Something small that people may change is getting all A’s, or getting better at soccer. A lot of people may argue that people don’t change and aren’t granted with a second chance, but I’m going to have to disagree with them. Change can happen if change is wanted. A situation so powerful can change you whether you want to or not. “Don’t throw second chances like confetti, throw second chances like your mom’s bones.” Giving out a second chance should be rare, but people absolutely can change.

Appreciating Your Siblings: China's Limit Of Children

by Amelia Kresge
Grade 7

For some time, in China, people were restricted to how many children they were allowed to have. This is rather inhumane and unlucky to most, especially if you have more than the limit. Put yourself in their shoes. Is that how you’d want to live?

What happens if you have more than the limit, you may ask? If you want more, you have to pay the government, which is hard for a lot of people, especially when the price is high. If you have more than one, or two according to the parents siblings, you are forced to prevent the birth before the child is even born. Luckily, the laws have been changed, and it is easier to have two children.

When you already have three children, you have to pay around three times the amount of your income and you have to pay for your child yearly, as if you are taxing them on their every breath. Imagine how hard it would be for a poor family with more than two children? They would be broke within a year, already having to deal with taxes, mortgages, and food, and now have to pay thousands more just over having more children than you should!

Be grateful that you have siblings and that your parents don’t have to deal with a government like China’s which taxes your children. Be happy you have a sibling and someone you can love.

The Simple Rhymes of John Quincy Adams

by Kayli Varnum
Grade 8

Born on July 11
In 1767,
The sixth president of the United States
Who lasted a few debates.

For someone who didn’t attend an official school,
The man known as John Quincy Adams was no fool. 
He succeeded at being our president
Which is particularly evident. 

Before his great presidency,
Adams was helping his father over the seas.
During his voyage he learned French and Dutch
Because he had time on his hands,
Maybe a little too much.

Eventually, he attended the school of Harvard
To get a little more than sharper.
Where he studied the fine and devine arts
Where he attained all of his smarts.

With four children and a wife named Louisa, 
Who had a smile like the Mona Lisa,
He was able to withhold a full term,
Who his wife was able to affirm. 

Other than his great job of being the president, 
He was a practicing attorney where he was able to supplement
In president George Washington’s neutrality policy.
Then Washington gave him his full honesty*. 

*Washington expressed his appreciation to Adams for his hard work and support.

After his life of being an attorney had ended, 
Adam’s presidency was recommended.
In the year 1797
Adams officially represented.
He couldn’t have done it without his sidekick 
Who was anything but impolitic.

John C. Calhoun [“k”al-hoon] was best known for being a defender of slavery
Which took the one thing many people didn’t have then, bravery.
Together Calhoun and Adams conquered the White House 
In the party of Federalist that not many people espouse. 

From March 4, 1825 to March 4, 1829
John Quincy Adams ran this old country of mine. 
He was involved in the closing of all exclusive trading relationships with the British.
In 1827 he successfully put all deals with them to a finish.

Adams decided he had had enough
With the drama caused by tariffs, navigation, and duties,
He was done with that stuff.

Now you know some new things about John Quincy Adams that you may have heard before.
But I’m going to tell you a little more.
Did you know he was the only ex-president to serve as a representative in the U.S House?
There he proved even further that he is no louse.

You may be wondering, “How did this great man die?”
“Was it old age or disease?” Well, let me specify.
Adams had had a paralyzing stroke one day while working on the House floor,
But that stroke didn’t take him to Heaven’s door. 

Adams later collapsed while expressing his opposition
To the Mexican-American War, where he was seen as a patrician.
He sadly died two days later.
When he left, it seemed like he left quite an empty crater.

John Quincy Adams, as you know, was a great man.
But his life on Earth seemed to have ended as quickly as it began.
Another one of our founding fathers was gone to join and stand
With all the great presidents we know, together hand in hand.

Friday, January 6, 2017

The Nelson Twins' Christmas

by Kaitlyn Libby
Grade 6

It was Christmas morning, and the Nelson’s house was as bright as any. It had snowed the night before, covering the earth in a blanket of white. It was still dawn, the sun casting a soft orange glow over the earth,when the first person awoke.

Zoe blinked sleepily, then her eyes flew open at once as the realization fell upon her. It was Christmas! Leaping out of bed with her curly golden hair frizzy after a night of restless sleep, she threw open her bedroom door and raced downstairs.

Zachary, on the other hand, was not quite as excited as his sister. Grunting as he opened his eyes, he slowly slid off his bed and climbed sleepily down the stairs.

“Zoe,” Zachary groaned, “why’d you have to wake me up so early?”

Zoe glared at her brother. “It’s Christmas, Zach! Have a little holiday cheer!” And with a last angry look at Zachary, she went to wake her parents.

“Mom! Dad! Wake up! It’s Christmas! It snowed! Santa was here! It’s Christmas!”

Her mother and father smiled up at her, the last remnants of sleep wearing away slowly. “Let’s go see what he brought, Zoe,” Mrs. Nelson yawned, stretching and climbing out of bed. She was followed by her husband, who was seemingly just as excited as Zoe.

Zachary was still in the living room, finishing the plate of cookies on the coffee table. “Zach!” Zoe whined. “You just ate Santa’s cookies!”

Zachary snorted, clearly indignant. “D’you honestly think, ahem, ‘Santa,’ is going to come again? Why do you even care?”

Zoe seemed to be at a loss for words, so Mr. Nelson decided to break the two up. “C’mon, kids, let’s go see what you got in your stockings!”

“Yay!” Zoe dashed over to her stocking. “Zach, look at all the chocolate I got! Ooh, and a necklace! What’d you get?”

“Honestly, I couldn’t care less.” Zachary stuffed two pieces of bread in the toaster.

The angry expression returned to Zoe’s face. “Zach, you don’t care about any of this, do you? Not even the presents! I guess I’ll just claim all your presents as my own, then!”

“Zoe, c’mon! Those are mine!”

“Exactly.” Zoe grabbed a present from under the tree. “Hmm… to Zachary, from Santa.” She began to tear a strip of paper off the present.

“Zoe!” Zachary snatched his present out of his sister’s hands. “Give it here!”

Zoe smirked at her brother. “I guess you do care after all, huh?”

And so this went on until all that was left under the tree were a few scraps of shiny wrapping paper and pine needles.

“Hey, Zach, mind taking care of the paper for me?” Mr. Nelson put a hand on his son’s shoulder.

Zachary grumbled and started gathering up the scraps of red and green paper.

“STOP!”

Zachary jumped, scattering wrapping paper all over the floor. Cursing under his breath, he turned to his sister. 

“What?”

“There’s a note! Look!” A folded piece of paper was lying among the torn and tattered paper.

“Dear Zachary and Zoe,” Zoe read aloud, “I wanted to let you know about a certain surprise I left at your aunt’s house. Have a happy holiday! From Santa Claus.”

“Yeah, like I’ll believe that.” Zach rolled his eyes.

Later that night, their Aunt Jacqueline was handing out the last of the presents. At the very end, she announced with grand enthusiasm, “The last present is for Zoe and Zach!” She handed a bright red present to the twins.

“Hey, it’s making noise!” Zoe put her ear to the box.

“Go on,” their aunt insisted.

Zoe tore open the present and opened the box. Inside was a golden retriever puppy, a festive plaid bow tied loosely around its neck.

“She’s been dying to meet you two!” Aunt Jacqueline smiled.

“How did she know…” Zachary broke off, glaring at her suspiciously.

Aunt Jacqueline winked. “Christmas magic.”

“She’s adorable!” Zoe gushed. “What should we name her, Zach?”

And for the first time that day, Zachary smiled. “Noelle,” he replied. “We should name her Noelle.”

Zoe, taken aback, stared at her brother for a few moments before grinning. “I told you, Zachary! I told you it was real!”

Her brother’s eyes widened, as if suddenly realizing what he had done. "Noelle, Zoe, as in the name!”
Zoe, still smiling, turned back to the puppy. “Come on, Noelle. Let’s go home!”

No matter how much he denied it, it was all too clear that Zachary did not doubt the legends. He could pretend as much as he wanted, but every Christmas morning after that, he was awake even before Zoe, racing downstairs and emptying the contents of his stocking. Miraculously, the twins got along much better around the Christmas season, and all was well at the Nelsons house for many years afterward.

The Negatives of Siblings

by Georgia Boudreaux
Grade 6

Annoying
Bossy
Curious
Demanding
Embarrassing
Fearocious
Gabby
Hateful
Impolite
Judgmental
Killer
Loud
Messy
Nasty
Obnoxious
Peculiar
Quirky
Rabbid
Strange
Tiresome
Unfriendly
Violent
Wacky
Xenodiacle
Yucky
Zany


Thursday, January 5, 2017

Hawk's Blaze Chapter One

by Rose Parker
Grade 5

Fanfiction based on the Wings of Fire series

(Set before the NightWing Island Eruption)

Sunrise woke up from her blissful sleep. Looking at her brother, Hawk, she silently got up and spread her wings. He stirred, then drowsily opened his eyes. His flame colored scales moved as he got up, blinking at her. Sunrise hissed.

“Can't I at least have time to myself while you sleep? I never get away from you!”

“It's not my fault that you woke me up.”

He looked down.

“I just get this feeling……. it's like I can tell where you are and what you're doing.”

“Well then, we should separate!” she shot back.

A flash of hurt clouded over his startling amber eyes. It was quickly replaced with a fiery gaze that made Sunrise flinch.

“Maybe we should.”

With that, Sunrise flew into the emerald green jungle. As she passed a clump of bananas, a sharp pain stung her side. The last thing she saw was a flash of dark scales, then everything turned black.
When she woke up, she was sore. Sunrise looked around. Everything around her was black, except a few waterfalls of lava. The burning, scarlet lava that had killed her mother. All around her were muscular NightWings.

She bared her fangs and hissed. These NightWings wouldn't dare hurt her! A small, thin NightWing blinked at her as he passed. Sunrise tried to get up, but heavy chains held her down. A pitch black NightWing rushed over to her, 2 big muscular NightWings following him.
When Sunrise woke up the next day, she felt miserable. The NightWings had chained her to a wall, forcing her to shoot her deadly venom into a cauldron. Then, they had shoved her into a locked cave. Her wings ached, and her throat hurt. She flexed her talons and looked around, seeing another RainWing.

She gasped. “Raven?!”

“Yes.” Raven dipped his head.

Sunrise bounded over to him, her scales bright with hope. She twined her tail with his. “I'm so glad there's at least someone I know here!”

“Me too.”

“I wanna get out of here!” She hung her head sadly. “I wish I hadn't of left my brother……." Images of their short fight flashed in her mind.

Raven slid comfortably next to her. “What happened?”

“Me and my brother are always together! I figured I could have some time to myself, then he woke up. I got mad and said we should go our own ways. We were always so close…….”

“It's not your fault you want some time to yourself. I suggest maybe you could apologize to him and maybe sort things out.” Raven murmured.

Sunrise flinched. “But I can't. We're still here.”

“Right.” Then he brightened. “Maybe in a few days, they'll let us go?”

“Maybe…….” Sunrise murmured.

Too tired to speak anymore, she curled up next to Raven, falling asleep.

Sunrise woke up to a hissing noise. She opened her eyes, aware that it was still night. Sunrise couldn't believe what she saw. It was her brother, and his scales were pitch black. But she knew it was him by his fiery, determined, amber eyes. She woke Raven up, and he jumped to his talons, looking at Hawk.

“I'm here to get you out of here.”

He walked over to Sunrise.

“Scavenger brain, leaving me like that.”

Hawk led them towards a black tunnel in a well hidden corner. The bars looked melted by fire……or venom. How…….? she thought. Hawk led them through the everlasting tunnel. Raven followed quietly behind, his eyes dull, but there still was a spark of determination in them. They finally broke out into the noisy jungle. Instantly, monkey screeching and jungle noises filled her ears.

“I must go. Thank you Hawk.” Raven said as his tail lashed back and forth. His gaze flicked over to Sunrise. “Goodbye, Sunrise.”

She nodded at Raven, watching him disappear into the trees.

Hawk started walking towards their home. Sunrise silently followed.

As soon as they reached the small clearing of trees where they slept, she started talking. “I'm so sorry for getting mad like that and leaving. Quite frankly, I never want you to leave my side.” Her eyes were shining as she spoke. “We've always shared a unique bond.”

Hawk twined his tail with hers. “You're forgiven. I'm sorry too…..”

“Oh, and thanks for saving me and Raven back there!”

Hawk turned away. “It was nothing….”

But secretly, Sunrise knew that he was flushing with pride, the blaze in his heart growing.

Fruition


by India Hicks
Grade 9

I’m a pianoforte alongside wandering fingers,
Uptight building running with water,
An unfolding narrative descending among roses, 
Milky Way shooting through the dark,
Weightless wind, expanding in and out of confinement, 
Blistering laced memories, 
Adrenaline blessful, O so aghast,
This spiralled mop pinned concrete,
I’m a painted Mona Lisa smile.