Author Archives: Jordan Singh

Local Wilderness course helps students survive in the wild

By Matthew Goncalves and Jordan Singh 

Staff Writers

The Local Wilderness course is a class at Summit Shasta where students learn about survival tactics in order to survive in different situations, and it taught by Vaughan Wilkins.

This course will better students, and it will make sure they are prepared when it comes to a survival situation where there are not that many natural resources available.

Shasta senior Billy White, when asked to explain this class in two to three sentences, said: “It gets you to try out new things and new experiences, and you kinda, like, meet new people you didn’t know before.”

White added, “I learned how to build campfires, how to create different, like, tools when you’re out in the wilderness and generally how to survive in the wilderness.”

When asked what to expect in the Local Wilderness course, White said, “Definitely expect to try new things and expect to have fun because it’s going to be a whole bunch of fun.”

When White was questioned on how being in the Local Wilderness course has strengthened his friendships with others, he said, “There are some new people I didn’t know before, but now I actually found out that they are pretty chill and stuff like that.”

White also explained, “I think everybody should definitely try it once in their four years of high school, as long as it’s still a thing, ’cause it’s definitely fun, and just, like I keep on saying, you get to try out new things. I think people will like it.”

Shasta freshman Brandon Bodestyne, when asked to describe the class in a few sentences, said, “We did a lot of interesting stuff; for example, the teacher put charcoal on his face to camouflage himself, and it was pretty weird.”

When asked what Bodestyne learned that was valuable in this particular course, he said, “I learned how to make a fire without using, you know, like a match or something.”

When Bodestyne was asked what to expect in the class, he said, “[Students] can expect to get their clothes dirty a lot and, uh, expect to do a lot of hands-on activities and stuff.”

Finally, when Bodestyne was asked if this course helped his relationships with others, he said, “Uh, yeah, ’cause of most or maybe like everyone in that class I did not know at the beginning of the year.”

Local Wilderness teacher Vaughan Wilkins, when asked what students learn in this class, said: “Pretty much this is a year-long staff training. So, it’s pretty much teaching them how to be a wilderness skills instructor.” He also said that they learned how to “make their own trips” and “run their own lesson plans and their games to make people excited.”

When Mr. Wilkins was asked about what students would be able to take away from this class, he said, “They will have a whole portfolio of skills that they now have … they’ve almost mastered their fire skills; they can do campfire cooking; they know how to use knives and carve a different variety of tools.”

Finally, when Mr. Wilkins was asked if the course helped him strengthen his relationships with his students, he said, “Just by the nature of us going out and doing different challenges, and there is a certain amount of vulnerability involved when your blindfolded and you’re not sure how to get through the woods and you have to listen to your friends guide you through … it puts us in a place of dropping our guard and actually having to connect as a community.”

See below for a video about the Local Wilderness course:


Sports form community

By Matthew Goncalves, Ethaniel Reyes and Jordan Singh

Staff Writers

Sports are physical activities that involve individual teams competing against each other in order to appeal to certain fans, and they are also used to entertain people. Some of these sports include soccer, basketball, baseball and football. Although these sports are used for entertainment, they are also able to create an opportunity for people to bond with others, which creates a sense of community at school, and it doesn’t matter if you’re a fan or if you’re a player. We at Summit News decided to ask people in our community our essential question: How has sports impacted society and the way people work together in society? This is a question that needed to be answered.

Milagros Morris, a Spanish teacher at Summit Shasta, is also a fan of the New York Giants and Golden State Warriors. During her interview, she said that she is an avid supporter of the New York Giants, and she said things such as “Eli Manning is the greatest quarterback ever!” and “I don’t like Tom Brady; he’s a cheater.”

Ms. Morris also said, “It helps me a lot with my students; I start a discussion with them about sports, like I have a fight with Jordan saying who is better: Curry or Durant.” Ms. Morris was also very supportive of sports, as she said that sports help her make new friends and they help her understand her students’ views on sports.

Several Summit Shasta students were also interviewed. These students were interviewed because of their involvement in sports at Summit Shasta; they are also fans of professional sports teams.

The first student who was interviewed was Shasta sophomore Vincent Chu, who plays on the Summit Shasta JV basketball team. During his interview he said, “What makes basketball exciting is to like form close relationships with teammates and the joy of winning a game.” He also said that he can watch “any NBA” game because “you can see your favorite players play and score” and that you can form relationships with your friends while playing or watching basketball.

Several freshman, such as Tyler Reyes, were interviewed. An athlete for the Shasta JV basketball team, Reyes is originally from Los Angeles; this ultimately led to a liking for the Los Angeles Lakers at a very young age. He said that, back then, he found interest in other teams as well, explaining that “some other teams played differently” and he liked watching how they played. Reyes believes that the Lakers’ franchise is “one of the best franchises in the NBA,” which is one of the factors that sticks out to him as a fan. Nowadays, he also finds the Golden State Warriors appealing to watch.

As an athlete for a basketball team, Reyes expressed how bonds naturally form within his team: “You have to practice with them every day, and you play games with them. So you build chemistry with them, and you build bonds.” He also said that he “has to make a lot of new friends” as a result of the chemistry in basketball.

Another student we decided to interview was Shasta freshman Alison Blair. Blair is an athlete on both the Shasta Varsity basketball and volleyball teams. Growing up, Blair was a big supporter of the Golden State Warriors; she said, “I really like Steph Curry and his work ethic that he had.” Although Blair is a big Warriors fan, she also mentions that she likes to watch other teams like the Celtics, explaining that “they have great up-and-coming players like Jayson Tatum but also have like players that everybody knows that is good like Kyrie Irving and stuff.”

Blair added, “Especially ‘cause we are in high school now, we’re not like playing with our same age / grade like we are playing with different age / grades and it like creates a bond between all age groups, I guess, because I’m friends with senior, juniors, and sophomores now.”

Shasta freshman Owen Laxa was also interviewed. Laxa is an athlete for the Shasta freshman and JV basketball teams. Growing up he also played baseball and watched football occasionally. Growing up, Laxa was a fan of the Lakers and Heat because they had a lot of good players on their team and they were always winning championships. Nowadays Laxa finds himself watching the Celtics and Warriors, because they are some of the best teams in the NBA. Laxa also stated that playing and watching sports also help create a “bonding experience” with others.

Lyanna Cruzat is a freshman at Summit Shasta. Cruzat doesn’t play any sports at Summit, but she enjoys playing badminton. Growing up she said she used to play soccer, volleyball and basketball. She said that she watches the 49ers and Warriors with her step-dad. She said they were exciting to watch because she said it was fun to see them “work for things as a team and as a group, and that was really something nice, and it brings my family closer together.”

Cruzat mentioned that these teams influence other people now because you can see them work hard, which inspires young people to work harder and fulfill their dreams that they have in the future. She also said, “Through sports, whenever I am going through stuff or something like that, it’s like another world I can put myself in and forget about things that are going on.”

 Dylan Hadden, another athlete for the Shasta JV basketball team, was interviewed about his experience. He said he only started playing in eighth grade, but he had been a fan of the sport for most of his life. Growing up, he watched the Golden State Warriors “until they started getting too good.” He also expressed his liking for the Portland Trail Blazers. 

Another student who was interviewed was Shasta senior Billy White. White was a former member of the Shasta freshman and JV basketball teams. Growing up, White was a 49ers fanatic and also a huge Golden State Warriors fan. When it comes to daily life, White says that it helps him live a more “healthy life and to be able to exercise helps establish a healthy lifestyle.”

Kevin Kuang is a junior at Summit Shasta. Kuang plays on the Shasta Varsity baseball team. Growing up, Kaung was a fan basketball and football and was not into baseball until sixth grade. He is a fanatic of the Golden Warriors and the 49ers because “everyone else was kinda into those teams, and it’s like being surrounded by someone with the same thinking of you.” Kuang watches the Giants and A’s now because they are Bay Area teams.

Kuang said that sports get him a lot closer to his friends, and baseball helps him get closer to freshmen on his team. He said that he had a “50/50” feeling about sports helping him strengthen his relationship with his teammates and fellow students. He said that in baseball “there’s always someone better than me, and I’m always working to achieve and become better than that person.”

Most, if not everyone who was interviewed, said that watching and playing sports allowed them to strengthen their relationships with their peers. Throughout the interviews, people also gave a variety of responses that really gave off more of an understanding of sports and how sports help others in their daily lives. They also mentioned that sports allow them to work harder, which means they put a lot of time and sacrifice into playing these sports.

See below for a video about the sports community at Summit Shasta: