All posts by Newspaper Staff

Just Because: Ranking Holiday Movies

By Brody Beaupre

There are hundreds of thousands of movies, but a select few have been categorized to be watched every year in December: holiday movies. I have ranked my personal top five favorite holiday movies. If you don’t like spoilers, you might want to stop reading! 

#5: The Polar Express – This movie is a go-to favorite and a staple to watch every year. This movie features a young boy who is failing to believe in Santa Clause, so he is picked up by the Polar Express train and after a visit to the North Pole his faith in Santa is reaffirmed overnight and he wakes up in bed the next morning to find presents waiting for him under the tree, along with a toy train.

Trailer for “The Polar Express”

#4: How the Grinch Stole Christmas – This is a live rendition of Dr. Seuss’s book, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”. This movie features Jim Carrey as the Grinch, a vile creature who hates being happy because his heart was two sizes too small. Through the kindness of a little girl, and the Christmas spirit of the village, his heart grew to triple the size it was. 

Trailer for “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”

Making the top three is a somewhat controversial holiday movie, but I think it falls into the category: Die Hard – This is an action-packed movie where a cop from New Jersey saves hostages (including his wife) from terrorists trying to steal millions..all on Christmas Eve!. There is lots of cursing and blood, but that just adds to the excellence of this movie.

Trailer for “Die Hard”

#2: Rocky IV  This movie is an emotional roller coaster and features one of the single greatest training montages ever. Rocky prepares to fight for personal pride as well as revenge and he is carrying the weight of the United States on his shoulders. After a long and bloody fight, which occurs on Christmas Day, Rocky pulls out the win in the ultimate fight against the Russian machine known as Drago. 

Trailer for “Rocky IV”

And finally, the number one holiday movie of all time: Elf  This is one of those movies that can be watched year after year, while laughing at the same parts every time. After 15 years of watching this movie, I still love it just as much after seeing it for the first time. In my world, it’s the undisputable number one holiday movie ever. 

Trailer for “Elf”

Midterm Exams – What to Know

By Ella West

Midterms for Middle and Upper School students are next week. While this is the first round of final/midterm exams for the sixth graders, students in all grades may be wondering what they can do to prepare for exams, or when the exams occur, or how long an exam is, and when students should start studying. Luckily, teachers (and this article) are here to help students prepare and be informed for these exams.

In all Middle and Upper School grades, the last day for teachers to teach new content is Dec. 6, while Dec. 7 – 9 are designated as review days. Most classes will hand out study sheets for students to use at home in order to prepare for exams. 

Middle School Information
Middle School exams are classified by period and grade level, and exams are two hours long, from 9 a.m. until 11 a.m. 

Middle School Exam Schedule:

Dec. 12Dec. 13Dec. 14Dec. 15Dec. 16
6th gradeA periodB periodD periodE periodG period
7th gradeA periodC periodD periodF periodG period
8th gradeA periodB periodD periodE periodG period

Not every Middle School class will give an exam, however, as projects and papers are also options.

Content Areas that Assess (Exam, Paper, or Project) by Grade Level
6th Grade: English, Math, Science, Social Studies, STEM
7th and 8th Grades: English, Math, Science, Social Studies, World Language

After Middle School students have completed their exam, they can either be checked out at 11 a.m. as part of early dismissal or go to study hall until noon. Extended Day is available Monday through Thursday, but all students must be picked up by noon on Friday, Dec. 16. If your student will be in Extended Day, please note that lunch will not be served, so please pack a lunch for your student.

Upper School Information
For the Upper School students, the exam schedule is as follows:

Dec. 12Dec. 13Dec. 14Dec. 15Dec. 16
HistoryWorld LanguageScienceEnglishMath

Upper School Learning Specialist Amanda Metzler recommends using a “study map” to organize what to study and when. For example:

When studying for exams, Metzler recommends spaced repetition; a studying technique in which you go over a set of materials take a break, or look at another subject, then go over that same material again. She also sent an informative PowerPoint presentation to the Upper School students with tips and tricks:

Just Because: Rating Cereals

By Ryan McKinney

Today, I will be ranking the top 10 cereals as there is a wide variety of different choices to debate, and yes there is only one correct list: this one. I am basing my list off of three factors: how good it is dry, with normal milk, and with almond milk. Some options are featured higher on the list though due to its delicious taste when mixed with chocolate milk. 

Coming at the 10 spot is the second-best cinnamon tasting cereal, Apple Jacks. This is a delicious cereal that tastes unlike the name, but is rated at a solid 7 out of 10. Apple Jacks were invented by William Thilly in 1965 but the name wasn’t originally used until 1971. Apple Jacks received the rating based off a good dry and with normal milk score but tastes a little odd with almond milk and/or chocolate milk. 

Apple Jacks: 7/10

Taking the number nine spot is Captain Crunch Berries. The berry explosion is what brings this cereal so high as there is a burst of flavor when the amazing cereal hits your tongue. With almond milk especially, this cereal receives a rating of 7.4. This average comes from a good score in all three categories. 

Captain Crunch Berries: 7.4/10

Moving on to number eight comes the original brand of cereal, Honey Nut Cheerios. This cereal is dynamic as it tastes delicious mixed with any milk, and many consider it the “OG” cereal. Although this cereal is vintage, along with good tasting, there are top contenders that simply outlast Cheerios due to its lack of complete flavor. This brings the cereal up to a score of 7.7 as it is a striking competitor but just can’t make the top five due to its blandness in flavor.  

Honey Nut Cheerios: 7.7/10

Coming in the lucky number seven slot is Frosted Mini Wheats. Frosted Mini Wheats is a dynamic cereal as well as a blessing to the taste buds with all types of milk. The reason this cereal lands in the seven spot is also due to its blandness of flavor when eaten dry, but slightly beat out the Honey Nut Cheerios due to the frosting adding a little bit extra taste. The total score for the Mini Wheats rounds out to a 7.9, slightly edging out its previous competitor. 

Frosted Mini Wheats: 7.9/10

Barely missing the top five is Fruity Pebbles but make a major jump in the scoring system. Fruity Pebbles sum up to a total score of 8.5. This cereal is near perfect as it has an extreme amount of flavor along with versatility with various types of milk. The only issue is that it gets difficult to finish as most of the tiny pebbles sink to the bottom. This is why this amazing cereal barely misses being part of the fantastic five. 

Fruity Pebbles: 8.5/10

Entering the top five comes the only cereal on this list filled with chocolate and peanut butter. Reese’s Puffs exhibit a strong tasting cereal especially with chocolate milk. The total score on the scale reveals a solid 8.9. This is due to its elaborate ingenuity and its wild mixture of flavor. This cereal clearly resembles a look alike taste along with fan favorite candy Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. 

Reese’s Puffs: 8.9/10

A shining contender coming in at the four spot is the “magically delicious” cereal, Lucky Charms. This cereal combines both bland flavors along with bursting marshmallows to form a delicious cereal. The total scale score comes out to the first “A” at 9.2. This score is basically carried by the taste of the marshmallows as they are the heart and soul of this cereal brand. The slight blandness on the other side of the cereal, however, is what slightly carries this brand outside of medal contention. 

Lucky Charms: 9.2/10

Barely entering the leaderboard is the Tony the Tiger led, Frosted Flakes. Tony the Tiger is really the king of this brand as its total score comes to a 9.4. The sugar in this cereal portrays the perfect recipe for frosting as it is 10 times better than the frost on Mini Wheats. This cereal is also very compatible with all types of milk, including a strong push of extravagant taste with almond milk.

Frosted Flakes: 9.4/10

Froot Loops are not worthy of making this list at all, but taking the silver medal is Froot Loops WITH Marshmallows. The marshmallows are a complete gamechanger as the cereal itself tastes good, but every color tastes the same. This cereal displays a strong explosion of flavor coming from both the melting marshmallows and the tasty loops. Out of 10, this cereal comes in at a solid 9.8 as it is near perfect, but barely misses out on being crowned champion. 

Froot Loops with Marshmallows: 9.8/10

The greatest and clear-cut champion in this competition comes the ideal breakfast of Cinnamon Toast Crunch. The diverse and unique cereal portrays many positives, as it is flawless with a score of a perfect 10. This cereal is seen in my pantry at all times, as it is dynamic with many amazing milk-to-cereal combos that you can make. Overall, Cinnamon Toast Crunch undoubtably takes the title and will hold onto this title for the rest of my lifetime. 

Cinnamon Toast Crunch: 10/10

Just Because: “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” Review

By Amelia Chen

This past weekend, I had the pleasure of watching the new Marvel movie, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. From the emotion of the plot to the acting, to the cinematography it was all around incredible to watch. 

This film paid a beautiful and touching tribute to Chadwick Boseman, the actor who originally played Black Panther, and sadly passed away two years ago from colon cancer. Instead of just “replacing” his character T’Challa, the creators of the film made a way for him to live on. They created this theme that even though a person may die, they live on in our hearts. Although in the movie, it was about T’Challa, what was really being displayed was how the actors carry the legacy of Boseman as the Black Panther. The amount of respect and love for Boseman was shown throughout the entirety of the movie. The writers did an extraordinary job composing this grief that was not shared just by the actors in the movie, but with the audience as well. They were able to properly show how people deal with grief differently, giving the opportunity for necessary character development.

Not only was the film moving and emotional, but it was also cinematically beautiful. Two completely different worlds were created with amazing detail, making each world unique on its own and entrancing to look at. The action sequences were intense and had me on the edge of my seat.

Official trailer for “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever”

Above all else, the acting was exceptional and really stood out. The actors portrayed their real pain and loss of Boseman with such emotion and pure genuineness. Letitia Wright (Shuri) was exemplary and poured her whole soul into every scene. It was beautiful to watch these actors morph their characters from the first movie to the sequel. 

Overall, I would give the movie a 10/10. I don’t have any critiques because of how well it was done. This is one of those films that really shows that it doesn’t take one person to make a movie good. It takes a whole cast and crew and it’s not just the actors. Without the incredible work of everyone behind the camera, it wouldn’t be as amazing as it is.

All in all, this was an incredibly moving film and quite possibly one of my favorite Marvel movies. It is definitely worth the watch, and I highly recommend it. Chadwick Boseman’s unfortunate and untimely passing was handled with care and this incredible movie is a dedication to him.

OHS Open on Friday

Update – Nov. 10 – 6:30 p.m.

Given the improving forecast of TS Nicole, campus will reopen, and classes will resume normal schedule tomorrow, Friday, Nov. 11. We’ll see you then!

Update – Nov. 9 – 10 a.m.

Dear Families,

Due to Tropical Storm Nicole, effective 6:00 p.m. this evening, Wednesday, November 9th, Oak Hall’s campus will be closed. Campus will remain closed and there will be no classes on Thursday, November 10th. A decision regarding campus reopening on Friday, November 11th will be communicated using our Emergency Notification System via email, text, and phone call on the evening of Thursday, November 10th.

To satisfy the required number of school days for this academic year, we will be combining Wellness Day and Conference Day on February 27th. School will now be in session on February 28th.

The Junior Class Introduction to College Night scheduled for this evening has been postponed. Mrs. Wilkins will be in touch with more information.

If you have any questions, please reach out.

Stay safe,

Nov. 9 – 8:30 a.m.

As of the 7 a.m. advisory, Tropical Storm Nicole is a Category 1 storm with winds maxing out at 70 mph. Its current track has it coming near Gainesville on Thursday afternoon.

Alachua County is under a Tropical Storm Warning. Oak Hall will make the decision campus will be closed tomorrow (Thursday, Nov. 10) after the 11 a.m. advisory.