Feature Stories

D.I.T.L. of a 5th Grader vs 8th Grader

Today I'm going to compare the life of a 5th grade student (Lilly Anderson) to the life of a 8th grader (Raina Decker). We are going to start with Raina's day. She usually wakes up at 6:30-7:00am and at 8:25 gets ready for class. Then, she goes to class OR goes into the office hours she needs to. She has 3 to 4 classes and usually will go to 1 to 2 meetings for office hours. Sometimes she won't need to get into any meetings at all. In between and after classes or office hour meetings she works on whatever homework she has. She then eats lunch and plans for the next day. She usually goes to be around 9:30pm. Lilly wakes up at 6:30 as well. She has band, music, or PE first thing in the morning. Then she has MTSS and a homeroom period. She has time for lunch and recess. Then depending on what day it is, she has 2 or 3 classes. She goes to bed around 9:00pm. Both students wake up and go to bed at similar times. The 5th grade student continues most of her learning and classes in the afternoon. The 8th grade student does most of her school work in the morning. The 8th grade student will get onto anywhere from 0 to 4 meetings a day. The 5th grader gets on up to 6 meetings a day. Raina has 3 to 4 classes and Lilly has 2 to 3. The two students have very similar schedules including a couple classes, having similar sleep schedules, and changing from day to day. Raina isn't much of a fan of online school. She would much rather actually go to school and class but she is trying to make the best out of it and enjoys it much more than not doing anything at all. Lilly has a very similar opinion to Raina. She enjoys online school but she prefers going to a regular school day.

Article By:Raina Decker

Information From: Raina Decker and Lilly Anderson

Positive things in our world today!

Article by Ava Broxterman

I know by now everyone is tired of hearing about COVID-19 and the bad things happening because of it, but some people don’t realize what good things have happened in our world because of this. For instance, the pollution numbers have decreased really fast. If you live in big cities look outside and see how much pollution there is. The air is cleaner and there is just less smoke from automobiles as well. Also in Venice, Italy that canals are running clear! You can see the bottom of the canals which is said they haven’t been able to do for years. Doctors are finding more cures for medical issues such as cancer. A 103-year old woman in China survived the virus after being treated for 6 days. China shut down its last coronavirus hospital. Stores are opening in China, and if we keep on fighting the same will happen here but faster! Scientists in Israel is also very close to announcing that they may have a cure for this virus! Most importantly though, wildlife is starting to come out and roam where we usually are. They are exploring and aren’t as scared or hidden anymore. One zoo said that they are letting penguins now roam free around because there aren’t any humans to harm them. So, what I have taken out of this experience was, even in the bad times, look for the light or the positives coming from it. Hopefully, these positives will keep up even when the virus is over because they are so good for our Earth and economy.

Plastic can be turned into gold?

Yes, it is indeed true that scientist are finding ways to chemically combine plastic, gold nano-crystals, protein fibers, salt, water, and polymer latex to create a gel. They then replaced the water with alcohol and put it inside a highly carbonated CO2 chamber. They then realized the chemical reaction between the gas and the alcohol created an aerogel that could be heated and molded into whatever was needed. You may think this is just melted plastic but is contains the same purity of gold and this material is 18-carats of gold. It has been said and proven that wearing gold jewelry is pretty but it is just too heavy so, I think this is more efficient because of the weight and the fact that it melts down much easier and at a lower temperature. You can even adjust the firmness and color of the product. It has been said that this newer material will definitely be used in electronics and motherboards in phones. Along with electronics it will be used in the making of jewelry and watches. The possibilities of the use of this material is endless. The scientist and researchers who discovered this idea of plastic to gold published their theory in a journal titled Advanced Functional Materials on January 10, 2020.

Finding Dolphins Shot and Stabbed

The discovery of two dead dolphins with gunshot or stab wounds in Florida in recent weeks has prompted a plea for help by the federal authorities, who have offered a reward for information about whoever killed the animals. Biologists with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission discovered the first dolphin off of Naples late last week, according to NOAA Fisheries. That same week, workers for the Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge near Pensacola found another male dolphin with a bullet wound on its left side-lying on the beach. Biologists believe the recent deaths were the result of humans feeding the animals, which can learn to drop their guard around people. And at times, fishermen have been blamed for killing the animals in retaliation for taking their catch. Since 2002, at least 29 dolphins, including the recent two, have been stranded in the southeastern United States after they were shot with guns or arrows, or impaled with objects like screwdrivers and fishing spears. A Kansas man was recently fined $1,250 for feeding a dolphin while he was vacationing near Captiva Island, but many cases remain unresolved.

Thursday Feb 20th Events

On Thursday there are many opportunities for the SVMS students. Directly following school there will be a friendship movie for all grades. They will be playing "Matilda" in the auditorium. This will end at about 5:45. You can bring snacks and a drink with you and if it needs to be cold Mr Steinert has a cooler available. There will also be a concession stand available for students to purchase snacks from. We would love to see you there. Later at 6:30 also in the auditorium, there will be an 8th Grade Pre-Enrollment meeting for next year. This will last about 30 to 45 minutes long and all 8th grade students and parents are invited to come. The high school principal Mr Bill Nelson and the high school counselor Mrs Lana Charvat will both be in attendance. Choosing the best fitting classes for each student for their high school career is critical because high school is a four year journey. Also, choosing the correct or incorrect classes can change and reflect on the students grades. This will be a great opportunity to learn what classes would be best for all the 8th grade students to prepare them for success in high school! We would love to see you there.

Is Gatorade healthy for Athletes?

Gatorade is sold as an exercise enhancement drink. It contains rehydrating electrolytes but also has a high concentration of sugar. With this in mind, is drinking Gatorade can be good or bad for people’s health and sports performance? Gatorade is classified as a “sports drink.” Scientists at the University of Florida developed the drink in 1965 with the aim of boosting the performance of their football team. Drinking sugary sports drinks, such as Gatorade, is associated with, weight gain, poor diet, switching from healthful drinks, raised risk of diabetes and obesity. The orange Gatorade is the most popular for kids. People can consume moderate amounts of Gatorade or other sports drinks and experience no negative effects. Gatorade will help the body regain fluid lost through exercise and other physical activity.

Should video games only be for kids?

Video games should not only be for kids. Video games have a widespread of variety. From slaying a dragon with a sword, to playing card games like solitaire. Video games help peoples imagination and they can keep some people non lonely. It also helps everyone with hand eye coordination. Also it can be like a book except you make the story or the story is right in front of you and you get to go with it. Just like Minecraft where you make the adventure you can also make it like a build design.

Is social media good for kids?

My topic today is over social media and how it has helped and changed the world. There are many different apps on the app store and google store and they all can be very helpful and very dangerous. The most trending social apps right now are tik tok, snapchat, instagram, twitter, life 360, and facebook. All of these apps have a way to text people and a way to communicate with them. One bad thing is all these apps need your number and your email and sometimes address and state, which can be turned into a very bad thing when people see that stuff they can easily go there or text you and mess with you which isn't safe. I'm not saying everyone does this but it is a very high possibility to track people down. The way they can help by showing family members things that you have done or doing. It is a good thing to communicate with friends and you can call and Facetime which is very fun for people especially when they don't live close or communicate much. I think social media is good and bad it all depends on how you use it and how old you are. I think that when they have age restriction that is for a good thing for kids. That's my opinion on social media and how it should be used and what ages kids should have it and use the apps.

"The Life of a Principal"

Have you ever wondered what it is like to be a principal for a day? Well, I know I have so I'll do the work for you and interview him on this very topic.

Boy's Basketball Update

The Boy's basketball team isn't going as well as they would have hoped. They have been working hard and they are showing huge grit. Yes, they need improving but there is nothing that the Vikings can't do. Here is a quote from Preston Clelland, "Sure, we aren't doing very well but I believe that we can still do our best and keep working hard.Here's the last quote from Cooper Whittaker, "I know we aren't doing the best but we can and will improve."

School Lunches

We took a survey on what people's favorite lunches were. Their options were crispito, chicken nuggets, and pizza. A total of 21 people answered our survey. The most voted option was crispito, and the least voted option was pizza. We got 15 votes on the crispito, 4 votes on chicken nuggets, and 2 votes on pizza. With that, we can conclude most people's favorite school meals are crispitos.

Girls Promo Night

On Thursday, January 16th the SVMS will host a Girls Basketball Promo Night. SVMS students from all grades are encouraged to come, sit in the stands, and cheer on the team! All students are expected to watch the game and not run around the school. Students will have the opportunity to shoot free throws for only a dollar. They will get two shots, if they make it or not they will still win a prize. Students will have another opportunity to win prizes. All the prizes in the display case by the front door will be given out for the students who come. You're encouraged to deck out in SVMS gear and colors. Come out and support our players!!


Why Do Cats Knead?

Think about when your cat is most likely to knead. You're probably petting her. She's likely purring. Loudly. She might even drool a bit (although she'd never admitted to it).

Obviously she's very content, and feeling the love. So kneading might be her way of helping you feel it too. Cats knead with their front paws, but nobody's sure why they do it. ... In adulthood, a cat supposedly will knead when it's feeling happy or content because it associates the motion with the comforts of nursing and its mother.

Adding further weight to the explanation: Some cats even suckle on the surface they're kneading. Kneading is a common behavior seen in domestic cats, in which the feline pushes in and out with its front paws, alternating between left and right. A third theory looks to more recent history, specifically, your cat's infancy.

Cats actually start to knead instinctually as kittens, when they are nursing, to help stimulate their mothers' milk. While your cat might be past nursing age, she might still enjoy that comforting, "food-is-love" feeling she associates with kneading. Many cats knead but we all don’t know why we can just let the cats be themselves and knead away.

How corona has affected the world

The corona virus went from only China having it to it spreading all around the world. I wasn’t very scared or worried about it. It felt like it just blew up over night and went from like 12 cases to like 50 overnight. It was pretty upsetting with people since they had trips and things planned for spring break. Almost everything was closed down or shut down till further notice because of it. In Salina they even changed the times for walmart and having it close at 8:30 and walmart stays open 24 hours. The worst part of all of this was the school thing most kids were upset because they could see friends. The only problem that we had with wifi cause not every kid had wifi so they gave out free wifi to people who needed it.Also phone stores gave everybody a free hotspot to have on their phone so if they needed something to connect to they could. When people go to gas stations they have tape that is 6 feet in front of the counter so when you pay you have to go up, put the money and then the worker will step back and then you get the money and snacks or whatever you got. The world has changed a lot, we haven’t even been able to leave the house unless for essentials. They are now not letting children into most groccie store’s. Corona has changed the world but hopefully it will all calm down soon and we can go back to normal. That’s some thing that corona has impacted/changed are world for this time being.

Wrote by- Stephanie Cole

Do you need education to get a good job?

Do you really need an education? Some people say yes and some say no, but if we’re looking at it in a way like YouTube, Twitch, Mixer, or etc. Of course, a lot of jobs are more generous to giving money than YouTube but Pewdiepie one of the biggest YouTubers makes 30,000,000 dollars per year. That is a really good paying job. Also on Twitch streamers can make around 1 dollar-1 million dollars. On Mixer, a big streamer named Ninja is probably one of the biggest streamers on there which he makes about 10,000,000 dollars per year. Of course, these are some of the biggest YouTubers or streamers so not all people who do this make this much but it can be a great job. While there are some other jobs out there like surgeons, psychiatrists, and people in the military. Surgeons make 280,000-530,000 dollars even though it isn’t as much as the social media stuff it still makes more than the average amount of those people online. As psychiatrists make 100,000-290-000 dollars per year. Finally, people in the military make about 19,000 dollars per year. Some people don’t believe that you don’t need college to have a steady life. Also, some people need to understand when their kid decides to either have an “office job” or a social media job. Also if you want to have this job it is alright. When people say “It isn’t a real job.” Then what is the definition of a real job?

Things to do during quarantine

Feeling a bit pent up during quarantine? Here’s some things to do to make you feel more occupied!


Drawing or colouring can be a great thing to do when stressed or bored. It lets your creative side show and you could end up with something you’re proud of. It’s also a great way to step outside your comfort zone. Try drawing something or try painting!

Teach a pet some new tricks

Have a dog or cat at home? Great! You can teach them something new. Dogs are quite eager to learn some new things, but cats can be a bit more stubborn. But, with persistence, you can teach both of them some pretty awesome tricks! Shake, roll over, high-five, there’s so many!

Learn a new instrument

Learning a new instrument is a fun way to challenge yourself. If you’re determined you can learn quite fast. And if you put enough commitment into it you can master it in a matter of months. Try learning something like the guitar or ukulele.

Call friends/family

Just because you can’t see your friends and family in real life doesn’t mean you can’t still talk to them. Call or text them to see how they’re doing. Catch up and see what’s new, or talk about a memory from before. It’s almost as good as seeing them in person.

Pick up a new hobby

With extra time on our hands and spring arriving soon means there’s a lot of things we can do. Try something like gardening or writing. Sharpen your skills and have fun. You can only get better at something if you try.

Written by Celeste Palmquist

d&d 101 - part 1: dice

D&D 101-part one: dice

When introducing a friend to dnd, one might find that while the new player is excited at first but then recoils back in fear when faced with the 1-inch thick player’s manual. If you have been faced with this problem, then do not fear for I shall repeat what several others have done in the past but this time It’s coming from the mouth of an ameture DM.

Dice 101

Ah yes, The true staple of everything dnd, the classic 20-sided die and then all those other die you don’t know about. Dice are mostly used for combat, ability checks, saving throws and anything the DM wants you to roll for, so they’re used all the time. Dice are named by the number of sides they have with a d for die following (d20, d10, d4, ect.). The different kinds of dice are as follows: the d20, the most commonly used die, are used for ability checks and attack roles, all the other dice are usually used for combat damage. “But what’s with this other janky die that I just found” i hear you say, well that would be a percentile dice, the dm will determine what dice to roll at what time.

How not having sports will impact your mental heath.

Article by Ciara Rawson

No sports for an athlete can be a big impact on their mental health. Participating in sports activity three to five times a week for at least 30 minutes can provide these mental health benefits. With no sports to play and no practices to be had, athletes are somewhat beside themselves right now. For some people, sports is what keeps there mental health good. Studies revealed that those who do not participate in organized sports have greater social and emotional difficulties than when they are in a sport. Non-athletes are also 10-20% more likely to suffer from mental health issues. Physical exercise in sports is increasingly being advocated as a means to maintain and enhance good mental health. It good to have 20 to 40 min of exercise a day and some people only got that in sports practice or games so now without that they probably aren’t getting as much exercise as they should. For example, seniors that were going to play spring sports mite have bad mental health right now because if they are not playing that sport in college they never get to play that sport again. Some people constantly go to the gym and train to get in shape for there sport every day and all of that is gone right now. Individual sport athletes are more likely to report anxiety and depression than team sport athletes. Exercising for longer than 90-minute sessions is associated with worse mental health. This is why sports/exercise is very important.