Monthly Archives: February 2015

The CCH Curling Team

You’ve probably watched the sport on TV. You’ve probably switched the channel to something you thought was more interesting (ahem, hockey) but you probably didn’t realize just how interesting the sport could be. It is very popular in Canada, with over 1200 clubs, but it also defines our school, as we had two teams competing in this sport this year. Which sport is it? Curling: the only sport where you can throw rocks at houses.

Curling dates back to medieval Scotland. Back then, it was played on frozen ponds using flat-bottomed stones. Today, curling is played on a curling sheet, 45 m in length, with granite stones weighing 20 kg. A game is played by two opposing teams of four players. The purpose of the game is to score points by throwing rocks closer to the center of the house than the other team. The series of concentric circles found at each end of the sheet make up the house. Players alternate shooting their rocks, and each team plays eight rocks during an end. The captain of the team, known as the skip, provides the direction of the throw and the force used to throw the rock. The current thrower then aligns himself or herself with the line at the other end of the ice and delivers the rock by pushing out of the hack. Upon releasing the rock, he or she gives it a spin which ultimately makes the rock curl. It is the job of the sweepers to ensure that the rock arrives at the intended location by sweeping to slow the rock’s curl or to increase its traveling distance.

I joined the school’s curling team in Grade 10; I had never played a game before in my life. As a team, we are taught how to throw rocks at the skip’s line with the correct weight. We learn to read the rock’s speed to see if we need to sweep it. There is also a lot of other strategy involved; the skip has to set up guard rocks in front of the house, and must decide when to take out opposing rocks, and when to draw to gain points. Indeed, curling is colloquially known as “chess on ice”. I played for two seasons and I enjoyed both of them. There is a feeling of pride when you shoot that perfect rock that changes the game.

This year, both CCH curling teams played well during tournaments. The all-men’s team (consisting of Brody Wauters, Ethan David, Brendan Morden and myself) finished second in the Cities tournament and the mixed team (consisting of Garret McKay, Keely Watt, Catlin Theissen and Brianna LeBlanc) earned a silver in Zones.

Curling is more than watching people throw rocks on TV. It is a sport that one can experience only by playing. If you are interested in joining the team next year, talk to Mr. Le Bleu, the head coach of the team. Until then, rock on!

– Quentin

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Quentin Golsteyn is a Grade Twelve student at CCH. When he is not working on his latest experiment as an evil scientist, he enjoys biking, playing piano, and programming. HIs favourite thing about CCH is the incredible school spirit.

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CCH People to Know: Mr Fox, Mr. Kobza and the CCH Grad Coach Program

From a young age many of us are bombarded by a common message that in order to succeed we need to do our best as students. In a similar vein, at CCHS we are tasked to see the value of both academic rigor and doing our best. Over the years the school community of Catholic Central High School has always done its best to assist students in realizing their ambitions both in and outside of the classroom. In September 2014 the Holy Spirit School Division implemented an FNMI (First Nations, Metis & inuit) Graduation Coach Program at Catholic Central East and although it is a relatively new program, thanks to support from the community, it sees its ability to offer supports to students growing over time.

The program, which was provided with the Blackfoot name  Oohkaanaayiikaakii’moap, or translated  “We are all striving for success” by Blackfoot Elders,  not only represents the dedicated efforts of the Holy Spirit School Board and Central Office personnel, but also embraces the school’s philosophy of working to help every student succeed.

As a school principal Mrs. Carol Koran well knows that importance of finding ways to help her students succeed. Over the past number of years Koran and her administrative team found themselves putting their heads together and envisioning ways to enhance student learning opportunities at the sites. One of the areas that has been on their list of priorities has been addressing the needs of FNMI students that attend the two campuses. One such example is a gathering space for students, which can involve everything from academic to cultural needs. For students, it is a facility that both welcomes students throughout the day but also challenges them to stay on top of their studies and helps them to realize their goals.

Holy Spirit Central Office Director of Religious Education Joann Bartley also shares a vision of improving the opportunities for FNMI students. Although Bartley spent part of her last Summer immersed in researching and providing a framework for the FNMI Graduation Program her efforts are greatly appreciated as those efforts made the program be realized by the Fall of the 2014 school year. At that time, although the facility barely had the paint dry, its focus was clear.

Fostered by a growing understanding of how to assist our students in their goal to succeed and the data suggesting there is a need, this year the Holy Spirit School Division has embarked on a new program for our schools. The program, which focuses on FNMI students, operates primarily out of Catholic Central High School (East) and strives also to address the needs of students both at the site and also the needs of feeder schools.

Already over a relatively short period of time the FNMI Graduation Program has both evolved and grown and will likely continue to shift over time but clearly the focus of meeting student needs will not change. Thankfully the program also has the insights of not only Central Office and School Administration but those of FNMI Support Worker Mr. Brandon Fox who also has been instrumental in the FNMI Grad Coach Program.

As a graduate of Catholic Central High school and as an employee, Mr. Brandon Fox has spent many years involved with students at the two sites. Mr. Fox, who originally aspired to be a police officer, realized during his post-secondary studies that his abilities as a mentor and coach would be well suited to working with students and helping them to succeed. As he lately pointed out on “A Public Education” the “students identify with me as I am a First Nations person myself.” Although this statement may be accurate in some respects it hardly sums up the impact he has on the school community each and every day. According to Mr. Fox’s colleague Mr. Kelsey Kobza, “whether Brandon finds himself counselling a student or helping them to make changes to schedules or look for scholarships, or when addressing any site needs, he is always there for the kids and staff.“  Mr. Fox also noted that “the Grad Coach Program is something he has always dreamed about and now it is a reality”, and that “our main goal is to make sure all FNMI students are achieving the same success as non-FNMI students”.

Mr. Kobza also reflects on this school year both thanking everyone for their support, prayers and assistance in realizing the FNMI Graduation Coach Program. As he looks back on the school year since September his appreciation for the CCHS team is more than apparent. “Working with CCH staff has been incredible as they support the concept and help us to better understand how to work with them to address the needs of students. As we branch out to other schools within the Division we look forward to that level of support and sharing at the various sites.”

– Adam

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Adam Kobza is a Grade Twelve student at CCH. He enjoys excessive naps, scheduling shuffling, and silly study groups. His favourite thing about CCH is the annual musical.

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Summer Loading 50%

Welcome to Quarter 3…it’s been waitin’ for ya! (*randomly dances to Taylor Swift*) I guess it’s not exactly New York as Taylor sings in her song, but Quarter 3 is still upon us and that means summer is halfway here! Some of you may be feeling a little low this time of year, but don’t worry – family week and Easter break fall in this quarter, so you will have plenty of time to relax and read that novel collecting dust on the bookshelf, or finally decide to try that 5000-piece puzzle you bought two years ago.

It’s a few days into your quarter and by now you probably already know if your classes are super awesome (much like mine because I have English, which is one of my favourites) or not so awesome because you would rather scrape gum off the streets than take that Chemistry quiz next Friday. I’m hoping that is not the case, but just know that there are many people here to help you if you begin to stress out and fall behind. Teachers, counselors, and the wellness committee hosts wonderful events throughout the year and during exams. (I know having the dogs at school is pretty cool, and they’re super cute.)

Sometimes Quarter 3 can be one of the most stressful times of the year. Everything seems to be dragging after coming back to school following one of the longest exam breaks, but on a brighter note, you get to start new classes that you may find more to your liking. It’s almost as if you get to experience the first day of school for a third time this year. If you’re not so keen on returning to the student life, worry not, summer is just around the corner. Trust me –  time will go by faster than you think. 

So as the third quarter begins, I hope you all do wonderful work in your classes, that all of your endeavours go smoothly for you, and that whatever classes you’re taking or teaching, work out for you in the end. I wish you all a wonderful and successful quarter. Take care.

– Nicole

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Nicole Anton is a Grade Twelve student at CCH. She enjoys spending time writing novels and spending way too much time on the internet. Her favourite thing about CCH is English class.

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