Archive for the ‘Trips’ Category

Members of the marching band practice outside in preparation for their trip to Arizona State University. The group played on the field at halftime of the ASU football game on Oct. 8. (Photo by Brooke Wine)

Members of the marching band practice outside in preparation for their trip to Arizona State University. The group played on the field at halftime of the ASU football game on Oct. 8. (Photo by Brooke Wine)

Sigfrido Ibarra
Cougar New Blog

     The Cactus Canyon marching band had the benefit of performing with ASU’s own marching band during halftime of Arizona State’s football game Oct. 8 in Tempe.
     The group, along with other bands from around the state, helped ASU by performing “Maroon & Gold,” ASU’s fight song and “1999” by Prince.
Aimee Vining, the band director, thought it would be a excellent way to get her class a hands-on experience on the field.
     “I really just wanted them to experience marching band in a big way,” she said. “They were able to interact with the members of the band.”
     The CCJH marching band members thought it was a good idea to visit ASU, have a tour, and thought that playing on the field would help them in the long run for other activities at school.
     “This would help me in marching band because I know what playing on a field is like,“ said Melvin Lopez, who plays the trumpet.
     Ms. Vining heard about the trip by getting e-mailed by the coordinator from ASU. The trip costs the school about $100, but that money was used to pay for the bus to get there and back. Student had to get a slip signed by their parents to be able to go to ASU and they had to learn the songs.

NJHS students take a photo on their trip to Disneyland. (Photo by Talon Izbicki)

NJHS students take a photo on their trip to Disneyland. (Photo by Talon Izbicki)

By Lexi Demery
Cougar News Blog

     Cactus Canyon National Juniors Honor Society took a trip to the happiest place on earth.
     NJHS left to go to Disneyland and California Adventure after school on Wednesday, April 20. This trip wasn’t only an award for their hard work, but also for leadership training.
     “Students gained the confidence to overcome obstacles,” said Tammy Howard.
     Directors Tammy Howard and Paige Reesor started planning the trip months before they left. Members of NJHS had to stay at an average GPA of 91 percent and had to complete 20 hours of community service in order to go. Students had courage and determination to accomplish goals and believe in their dreams.
     “The trip is great motivation for me to keep being a good person and keep my grades up,” said eighth grader, Haile Miller.
     This trip has been going on at CCJH for many years. Howard and Reesor decided to include the leadership piece and make the trip longer last year.
     “I was extremely excited to see the growth and critical thinking of our students,” said Howard.
     This trip is about learning how to be a leader and just have fun. The NJHS team finally got a chance to unwind and relax for all their hard work, in the form of Southern California.
     “I’m excited because it’s going to be my first time at DisneyLand and hopefully I will meet Mickey,” said Miller.
     The leadership training was to teach the students to have confidence and to be courageous. NJHS applied their leadership training at Disneyland by listening and learning about others interests and planning an imaginary party.
     “We discussed diverse point of views, like everyone thinks differently and it’s okay because it could lead to great things,” said Miller.

Life Skills students participate in a mock sword fight during a trip to the Renaissance Festival on March 3. (Photo by Mr. Davis)

Life Skills students participate in a mock sword fight during a trip to the Renaissance Festival on March 3. (Photo by Mr. Davis)

     Students in the CCJH Life Skills class and Student Council recently went to the Renaissance Fair for their yearly trip.
     Desirae Bickle’s Life Skills class and the Student Council, led by Jason Davis, went on a one-day trip to the fair on March 3 so that the Life Skills kids could interact in a new environment.
     “The Life Skills students go every year,” said Mr. Davis. “StuCo kids get to come with because we work with those students during seventh hour most days.”
     The Life Skills students’ goal was to learn in a new situation where they weren’t completely comfortable and learn how to react to it. This was to teach them how to cope with uncomfortable situations.
     One of the Life Skills class’ goal is to teach social skills. To be polite in public, to deal with weather and people, and to teach them how to be positive. This trip was a good test run on their people-skills.
     “You have to make decisions about what activities to do, deal with hot weather and thousands of other people, and be polite when talking to the vendors and workers at the fair,” said Mr. Davis.
     In addition to social skills, the kids also had some fun during the course of the day when they weren’t learning.
     “One of the things I enjoyed was the show in which a person juggled sticks with fire on them,” said JoseAntonio DeSantiago.

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By Skylar Sosa
Cougar News Blog

     To help bond members and to have each other come together as a whole, Student Council went on a retreat to learn about leadership, bond, and to just have fun.
     Council members attended the Arizona Association of Junior High Student Council’s annual retreat Feb. 6 at Talking Stick Resort Arena.
     “The overall goal, at least for me as the adviser, was for students to bond as a group and come away with at least one thing they can use make our council better,” said Jason Davis. “That may not be the same thing for everyone, which is great.”
     Attendees had the chance to listen to Steven Hunter, a former Suns player. He shared his knowledge on leadership, persistence, and goal setting.
     “Those are good messages for young leaders to hear because expectations for them are very high and it’s easy to get caught up in nonsense that can get them off track,” said Mr. Davis.
     Having Hunter speak to the students is not where the list of opportunities ends. The whole moral of this trip was for teamwork and communication. There were leadership sessions that covered everything it takes to be successful in StuCo. Leadership skills it takes to be in Student Council were showcased during the activities and games the conference had given. The activities provided to the students had them working with complete strangers or even people from their own class that they usually didn’t partner with.
     “I wanted to create opportunities everyone to bond with someone they maybe didn’t know that well,” said Davis. “It’s those bonds that create better teamwork and make us better.”
     “The activities we did while on the retreat had some people getting out of their comfort zones, but it also caused everyone to have a great time,” said representative Arleen Preciado.

Photo by Talon Izbicki

Photo by Talon Izbicki

By Natalie Delintt
Cougar News Blog

     Eighth graders reeled in a new way to learn by going on a fishing trip.
     Students in Regan Roach’s advanced science class went to a pond at the Arizona Game and Fish Department in Phoenix on Jan. 5 to help further their knowledge of ecology.
     “I wanted my students to learn about native and non-native fish,” said Mrs. Roach.
     Mrs. Roach hasn’t done this trip before and planned it with Arizona Game and Fish to create an authentic activity for the students. Students learned about how fish are related, why they look the way they do, what bait to use for each fish, and how to unhook certain types of fish.
     “I thought it was a true, hands-on experience to the standard,” said Mrs. Roach.
     “I learned that different fish have the same features and how some were related,” said Stephanie Cervantes.
     Most students had been fishing before the trip, but the ones who hadn’t been were taught how to hold the pole correctly, how to keep the hook from hurting themselves or anyone else, how to bait the hook, and how to cast them. It took practice, but eventually everyone was sitting and waiting for a bite.
     The students started fishing around 10 a.m. and fished a few hours before they piled back onto the bus for the long drive back to school.
     Mrs. Roach caught the most fish out of everyone, reeling in six. Some students also caught a few fish, while others weren’t as lucky. A few only caught sticks or leaves and others had fish bite their bait off before they could reel in them in.
     “All I caught was a rock,” said Cervantes.

StuCo joins AAJHSC

Posted: November 23, 2015 in Student Council, Trips


By Jenevieve Saidi
Cougar News Blog

     Cactus Canyon’s StuCo joined AAJHSC. Joining the Arizona Association of Junior High Student Councils will give the group a chance to attend leadership conferences and meet other students in student council.
     CCJH’s StuCo joined AAJHSC to get the opportunity to learn to become better team members and individuals and meet other people in student council around the state. Their first leadership conference was on Nov. 5 and they listened to speakers talk about becoming a better leader and how to learn from their mistakes.
     “There are workshops for advisers, which will allow me to learn from the experiences of other teachers,” said Jason Davis, the StuCo advisor. “The students get to attend workshops that help them with school spirit, leadership, community involvement, and fundraising.”
     Becoming a part of AAJHSC gives students the opportunity to see over 1,000 other kids being a part of student councils. It lets them interact with someone other than one of the 20 people they see every day at Cactus Canyon.
     “From my experience with StuCo joining AAJHSC I learned that there are councils like us around the state, eager to learn and inspire,” said Robynn VandeKrol, a student that attended her first conference on Thursday.
     In this association, Mr. Davis will be able to learn from and get tips from teachers with different experiences.
     “There are workshops for advisers, which will allow me to learn from the experiences of other teachers,” said Davis. “I’ve been the StuCo adviser for six years now and I figure new things out all the time. Having others teach me how to do it better is amazing.”
     Student Council will attend another leadership conference in February at the Talking Stick Arena.

By Pauline Harner
Cougar News Blog

     Next year’s Cactus Canyon yearbook editors will be going to Scottsdale, Arizona on June 1 and June 2 to visit the Lifetouch Yearbook Workshop.
     With the difficult job being placed in front of the students, this will give them a head start to just jump right in and start helping other students.
     “The workshop is an opportunity for the students who will be next year’s editors to learn more about making a yearbook and being a leader in the classroom,” said yearbook adviser, Jason Davis.
     Last year’s yearbook editors also went on this trip, tell me what they did.
     “I had a great experience and I left with many new ideas including cutouts, gatefolds, and many more,” said eighth-grader Cameron Krueger.
     This year the yearbook editors and advisers will be going to the Lifetouch workshop so they can get a jumpstart on the 2015-2016 yearbook. They hope to be designing the theme, design a cover, and figure out the overall style and layout of the book. They also finished the ladder of the yearbook, which is the outline of the pages that tells staff members what content goes on what page.
     “Basically we hope to accomplish everything we can to make the overall experience of creating the book less stressful and more enjoyable for others during the school year,” said seventh-grader Rosellen Hansing.
     Each year the yearbook staff tries to add something new and original to the book to capture what happens at Cactus Canyon in a creative way.hopes they will be able to learn something new to make the book special to students and yearbook members.
     “Last year, we got to collaborate with students and advisers from other schools,” he said. “It’s always helpful to see what other people are doing because if you like it, you can steal it.”

By Bailey Tower
Cougar News Blog

Cactus Canyon eighth grader Calista Smith received the “When You Wish” Award when she went on the music trip to the Heritage Music Festival at Disneyland in March.
Band director Aimee Vining nominated her because Smith showed dedication, perseverance, and leadership. Smith had mixed emotions about this experience.
“Honestly I was both excited and nervous, I suppose you can say I was crying out of happiness,” said Smith.
While the musicians played at Fullerton college, Ms.Vining nominated Smith for the award by submitting a form to the judges. The judges were giving little hints to the audience about the winner was and he whole band was shouting out Smith’s name saying that she was being chosen.
“I had no idea it was me until they spoke that ‘she lives with constant back pain from surgery.’ After they stated that, the whole Cactus Canyon band was shouting it was me,” said Smith.
She was called on stage and publicly given this impressive award. This took her totally by surprise because there were thousands of kids wanting this award,
“Talking about it now seems kind of crazy; I still can’t believe I won an award like that,” said Smith.
At first Smith didn’t want to go on stage after a long day. “After a long day at Disneyland I really didn’t want to go on stage and accept an award,” said Smith.
Many people were congratulating her on her achievement, but Smith has stayed humble.
“There are many other deserving people out there,” said Smith.


By Harrison Talbott
Cougar News Blog

     The Raging Readers Book Club is on its way to a science adventure on May 1. The club will be holding a field trip for its members that will take them to Phoenix.
     Book Club advisers Sheryl Anderson and Lisa Smith want to show their students how important science is in their lives. Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Anderson decided that the Arizona Science Center would be the best place to take them.
     “This field trip is to provide a rich learning experience, support science standards, and create excitement for learning science through the hands-on exhibits and activities provided by the science center,” said Mrs. Smith.
     The science center trip will be free to attend for book club members who have completed reading “I, Q Independence Hall” by Roland Smith. Members are also required to participate in Book Club fundraisers in order to attend the trip.
     “All the money comes from the literacy fair held and the generous money from our leaders,” said Book Club member Nathaniel Candelas.
     The field trip has been planned since the beginning of the 2015. There have been several Book Club trips that have occurred throughout the year. The group has gone to the Renaissance Festival.
     “I have been looking forward to this trip since I found out about it at the beginning of the year,” said Candelas.
     The Book Club students will be representing CCJH at the science center and are expected to be on their best behavior.
     “I hope the students reading the novel and going to the science center will see that science is a very important part of our everyday lives, even when we don’t always realize it,” said Mrs. Anderson.

By Haley M.
Cougar News Blog

     Desirae Davis, Life Skills teacher at Cactus Canyon, took her Life Skills class to the Phoenix Zoo in November.
     Ms. Davis teaches a class with seven seventh- and eighth-grade special needs students to educate them on different ways to have fun while also learning new objectives.
     “My students learned community skills,” said Davis.
     Ms. Davis and her students decided to take a trip to the zoo to where they learned about animals, got to touch some of them, and also learned about what the animals classifications are.
     “We finished up our science unit about animals with a trip to the zoo,” told Davis.
     Davis wanted her students to go to the zoo so that they could have fun while also gaining community experiences. The students said that they enjoyed the trip and the experiences they got to have.
     “I was excited to go there for the zebras,” said Katherine Wood, seventh-grade student. “I love their black and white stripe designs, they are so cute and I had a lot of fun spending a day at the zoo.”