Club Drive

by Katie​ ​Willoughby

The West Hills club drive is today! There are a variety of clubs here at West Hills. All students are welcome to join any club of their choosing. There are academic clubs, social clubs, clubs that focus on the environment, and clubs that focus on the well being of others. Good candidates for clubs are people who would like to be apart of something bigger than themselves or people who want to meet new people who have the same interests as them. Anyone can join a club no matter who they are or how they feel. Clubs can help people who are new to the school to feel welcomed and feel a sense of community. Clubs also help create friendships that can last a lifetime. My club experience was a short but a sweet one. I was in the club Friday Night Lights for one semester of my freshman year. I loved the sense of comradery that was brought on by my club it made me feel welcome and important as a freshman. Friday Night Lights is a club that shows the bad side of drugs, alcohol and especially smoking tobacco. It shows teens that you can have fun without the use of illegal substances and I found that to be very influential in my life and the lives of those around me. Clubs are an important part of the “high school experience” and all people should give them a try.

App Review: Sky Guide

by Gianna Creighton

My name is Gianna Creighton and I am affiliated with West Hills High School Journalism. The name of the app I am reviewing is called Sky Guide: View Stars Night or Day. The version of this app is 6.2.3; the developer of this app is Fifth Star Labs LLC-fifthstarlabs.com. The platforms for this app include: on IOS 9.0 or later and can be bought on devices like iPhones, iPads, iPod touch, and Apple Watch. The price for this app is 2.99$. There is no free or lite version available but when looking up sky guide in the App Store I was able to find other free apps that provided the same use as Sky Guide. Sky Guide does offer in-app purchases.

Sky Guide is an app that allows app users to learn about and study the different types of constellations and stars that are in the sky above them. Sky Guide is designed for all ages four and up and can be used by astronomers ranging from beginner to intermediate. People who may be interested in finding a certain star may be drawn to the uses of Sky Guide. When you first buy the app, steps and directions are provided that are easy to read and understand, which make the app easy to use when new to Sky Guide. The app is very easy to navigate because it matches your location with the stars around you, so when you are looking at a comet in the actual sky the comet is appearing on your screen at the same time.

Sky Guide keeps the user interested with its playful sounds that you hear when you click on a star. The hotter the star is the higher the pitch. The larger stars have louder volumes, so based on sound the user could easily figure out which stars are bigger than others.

Sky Guide is fun to use because of the images that are shown with each star constellation. When you rotate the screen and stop at a constellation lines are drawn between the stars and  an image is shown in the background of what the stars are supposed to look like. This feature is especially fun to use. Sky Guide is visually very appealing. The app uses bright colors like purple, pink, yellow, and orange to represent planets. The Milky Way, stars, comets, and satellites brings an exciting tone to the app that invites the user to investigate.

The icon of Sky Guide is probably the most eye catching  I have ever seen. The icon has a dark blue and purple background with a light blue constellation with silver and gold stars connected to the line. It really stands out when scrolling through the app store.

The sounds used in the app include high pitch sounds when you click on a hot star and when you click on larger stars they have louder volumes. The sounds are of high quality, but are non customizable. Also when using the app there is constant soft background music playing which gives a warm feel to the app.

The app does provide for users with disabilities because of the IOS that is needed when you download the app because IOS has distinctive features that helps those that are disabled. This app could have been used during the solar eclipse so you could look at the eclipse on your phone without harming your eyes. Sky Guide can also be used on a super starry night, during a meteor shower, or for a passing comet. This app is of a higher quality than its competitors; Sky Guide has easier navigation of the app, brighter colors, and interactive audio, whereas the other similar apps only have bright colors and lacks the sound and easy navigation. Sky Guide allows you to easily take a picture of a constellation you found and upload it to any social media account. This app has a favorites section where you can store all your favored constellations and then look back on them whenever you want. The app tells the user what stars they are looking at and information on those stars which many users are unable to do without the app.

Beat:Best Buddies

by Taylor Gomez

Best Buddies is an organization dedicated to help spread awareness of the 200 million people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, also known as IDD. Best Buddies Programs allow people to get involved and advocate for others within their community. This organization is an unbelievable opportunity for creating life-long friendships and leadership development.

Here at West Hills we are lucky enough to have a Best Buddies Club ran by Mr. Knopp and student representative, Ilan Matkovski. In the club you have the choice to get matched up in a one-on-one friendship with someone with an IDD or you can participate in all the club happenings and be a part of all the friendships. The club meets every Tuesday in the library at lunch for fun games and videos. Go check it out!

“Picture your best friend. Now imagine your life without that person. For people with developmental disabilities, the laughter and excitement of a best friend is only a dream. Best Buddies is a lifeline to the joy of having and being a friend.” – Best Buddies CEO  

 

 

App Review

by Jayden Moreno

My name is Jayden Moreno and I have been reviewing the gaming app called Crashlands by Butterscotch Shenanigans (which consists of three brothers). This game can be bought on iOS or on a PC. However so far, everyone who has tried the game on both devices recommends it to be bought and played on iOS. Crashlands was originally $14.99 but then the creators dropped the price down to it $9.99 since they have sold over 500k.
The appearance of the game is vibrant with a cool artistic style. As you first start the game it seems like the game will be calm, juvenile with little friendly aliens, but the game will surprise you as it can get violent. The plot will seem harsh but as you progress in the game it changes per player since you craft it and create your own schemes. The abstract style of art adds to the fun and desire to play further but can become dark and dramatic very quickly to enhance the fighting. Each character looks very different individually and the environments look very neat and crisp versus all of the games coming out nowadays. Crashland is a crafting and exploring game that has tons of action. This game puts you into the shoes of a delivery boy whose ship is blown up by evil aliens.
The story itself isn’t as creative as it could be, but is good enough and is very entertaining and funny. It isn’t too serious and does enough to interact with the players to keep them interested. The creator of the game did a good job making a game for kids and grown ups. All of the reviews recommend taking your time to play and enjoy this game.
The majority of the reviews are good. This game got on the top 10 chart for best new apps in 2017. From people who reviewed this game they recommended from ages eight and up are due to violence. The most talked about aspect of the game is that you can craft whatever you want and can explore wherever you want, and also they love the fun fighting experience against the aliens.

Interviewing Jordin Young

By Alex Leggate

I interviewed Jordin Young , Varsity Quarterback, about this year, and what he expects, along with how it is going. These are the questions, and his answers.

1.How do you like being the Starting quarterback on Varsity?

“It’s very fun, I have been playing football for a long time, so it’s good to finally be under the Friday Night Lights. “

2.How are you going to try and one-up last years quarterback, Hayden Roach?

“I will try to play as a team and not care about my individual status”

  1. What happened at the game versus El Centro?

“We did not play as a team and we were all so eager to finally hit other colors that we were paying for ourselves. We have many Juniors and it was their first game under the lights, so they were a little ‘Star Struck’ you could say.”

  1. What changes from the El Centro game (Lost 37-17) to the Santana game (Won 34-7)

“We played as a team, and played our hearts out to beat our rivals.”

  1. What have you brought to the team this year?

“I have brought leadership, and camaraderie for my teammates so we play more as a team”

  1. How are you guys preparing for the game this week against Mission Bay?

“We are making sure everyone knows what to do for their spots and does their job.”

  1. You guys have a pretty tough schedule this year, how are you going to prepare for teams like Helix and Steel Canyon?

“We need to make sure that we don’t let the factor of them being a tougher team get in out heads. “

  1. Since you guys got the new jerseys is there a different “feel” or “vibe” when playing?

“Not really for me, it is still the same old football; just with a better uniform”

  1. Do you think that after the El Centro game the Juniors have done their jobs and are pulling their weight?

“I definitely do! We have a lot of Juniors on the team and they are a main part of it on all sides of the ball. They have stepped up to the plate and brought their A game”

  1. Do you think the team will make it far in the playoffs if you do make it?

“I really feel like if everyone steps up we can go very far in the playoffs”

App Review:Houseparty

by Kayla Schoenborn

The app “Houseparty” is a new and improved video chatting app. By allowing you to have up to 8 people in the group, it takes your group chat on iMessage or Snapchat to a new level. “Houseparty” is available on Android and Apple devices. It requires iOS 9.0 or later and is updated frequently. The newest update was September 6th, 2017. This app is free and is mainly for kids 13 and up. Apart from children this app could be used for business purposes like video meetings. The app is fairly easy to setup and use. When you first download the app you establish a username, enter your email, and then you give them your phone number and wait for a confirmation code. Once you enter your confirmation code the app will give you a list of friends whom you may want to connect with. You can select all the friends you want. If someone does not have the app you can send them an invite over text message. The icon for the app itself is white and red much like the YouTube mobile app, only this icon is a red solo cup, linking to the name, “Houseparty”. The icon itself is not eye-catching or interesting but the interior of the app is elaborate and efficient. It is straight-forward on how to start a chat. Compared to FaceTime, which is already downloaded onto an iPhone. This app is overall a better video chatting app. If you only want to chat with one person I would recommend FaceTime. Like most video chatting apps, this app drains battery very fast. Some worries that parents have is strangers joining a chat with their kids. Parents should know that only friends of yours and mutual friends can join. Kids can lock the chat so no one unwanted can join. Another concern is the ability to screenshot. Parents are often worry about personal information being leaked, but this is very uncommon considering their children should only be in a chat with friends who would not do this. One negative aspect is the glitchiness. After trying it out myself my friends and I all noticed conversations often cut out or do not load. With more updates the app is becoming less and less glitchy. One feature I enjoy is the ability to switch between chats while on the app. For example you could be having a video chat with friends in one and family in another. One thing I will be taking advantage is the ability to work on group projects efficiently. This app is perfect for collaborating with a group of people. Overall, I enjoy using this app and recommend it to anyone who is looking for a video chatting app.

 

CYOA 9/8

by Devin Craig

  • What is your name?

My name is Isabella Craig-Ruiz.

  • What grade are you in?

I am a freshman.

  • What classes are you taking this year?

I am taking English, PreAlgebra, P.E, Yearbook, and Art.

  • What’s your favorite class  of those five?

I’d have to say PreAlgebra. I like all the people in that class and my teacher is really cool.

  • Any classes you wish you would’ve taken?

I’m actually really happy with all of the classes that I’ve taken this year, so far..

  • Do you play any sports?

I play volleyball for West Hill’s freshman team.

  • What do you do for fun?

I like to listen to music and practice volleyball.

  • Do you have a job?

I am a freshman (laughs) I won’t have a job for a while.

  • Do you like school so far?

High school is definitely WAY better than middle school and I’m really enjoying that.

  • What goals do you have for the year?

I want to get better at playing volleyball and finish both semesters with a 3.5.

Beat: “This Week in Art”

 

by Devin Craig

“What are you doing in art this week?”

We are drawing a collage of things that represent us. Basically our character traits and stuff like that.”

“What are you looking forward to the most this year in art?”

“I am looking forward to learning to techniques. I just want to be better at drawing.”

“How was your first week of art overall?”

“The first week was great! The class itself is really fun and my teacher is hilarious.”

NIall Horan by Olivia DiSabatino

I feel as if it is my obligation to write about the latest greatest music releases. Through Harry Styles, to the newest Indie bands, to Pop artists, and now Niall Horan. Niall Horan’s debut album, Flicker, came out last Friday and has been buzzing all around social media. Personally, I have been looking forward to the album release for a long time now, and am delighted to say that I am in love with it. There are 13 songs on his deluxe album, 3 of which have been released to the public. My favorites are ‘Seeing Blind’ and ‘On the Loose’. Since I do have Spotify Premium I am able to listen to it as many times as I would like. Niall Horan is starting his Flicker World Tour coming up and many fans are excited to see him live as a solo artist. All of the One Direction boys are onto their own solo projects, and Niall was actually the first one with his hit song ‘This Town, and is one of the last to release an album. His album is a spin-off of pop and a bit of country. There seems to be a theme within his songs, basically a single man and the adventures he has being single. Whether it is between breakups, parties, meeting a new love, or being absolutely alone he seems to pull off his situations pretty great. His voice is very ashy but pure, he has amazing meaningful songs and I highly recommend listening to his new album. It is available on Apple music, Spotify, Pandora, youtube, and probably more. Also, Niall patterned with apple music and released an exclusive album movie that is only available to Apple Music members. This album is very slow and calming and is great to fall asleep with, drink a cup of tea, walking, or even studying in the background.

Girls Cross Country

by Taylor Gomez

Have you ever questioned why someone would sign up for cross country? According to Makynzie Floyd, girls varsity runner, “cross country makes you push yourself to levels you’d otherwise not push yourself to, and that teaches you a lot. “  Girls cross country was off to a rough start, but soon started to pick up the pace… so to speak. Makynzie said, “we lost our first couple of dual meets, and it’s not that our team is bad because we’re not, it’s just that the other teams we’ve faced have been so unbelievably good. We used those meets as a warm- up, and then did really well at the invitationals.”

Both girls and boys cross country teams practice everyday for an average of an hour and a half. Makynzie says, “ some practices we only run about 2 miles, but other practices we can run up to 8 miles, it all depends on the day and our coach’s mood.” When asked about the teams’ pre-race routine, she answered, “that’s my favorite part about being a part of the team; the night before races both the girls and boys team go to someone’s house where they host a pasta party, it’s so fun!” Makynzie says that the relationships you make being a part of such a demanding sport are some of the strongest friendships she has. She says, “sure, when you see the same people everyday for a couple of months you either grow to hate them or love them, but struggling with someone, pushing through with someone, and being inspired by someone truly gives you so much respect for that person that it’s almost impossible not to be super close with them.” The next big thing on the team’s agenda is kicking butt in CIF’s!!!