by: Dan Castles
As the first trimester comes to a close, the Christmas spirit has swept through the Chaminade campus. Lights have been hung, trees have been decorated, Christmas ties are being worn, and the joy of the season is contagious throughout the school.
3A Average Joes doing their best to untangle the Christmas lights
The Chaminade traditon of setting up Christmas trees and adorning them with colored lights and an array ornaments adds to the Christmas atmosphere. From freshmen to seniors, each student enthusiastically decorated homerooms with the help their fellow classmates. In addition, the nativity scene was set up in the lobby of Darby Auditorium. This extremely detailed version of Bethlehem is complete with waterfalls, flickering fires, and, of course, an empty manger awaiting baby Jesus. With houses and caves on a miniature scale, the features are astonishingly accurate at portraying the atmosphere of Bethlehem during Jesus's time. Overall, despite the looming cloud of trimester exams approaching, students enjoy and cherish Christmas time at Chaminade.
Mr. O'Keefe getting into the Christmas spirit.
by: Dan Hepworth
Of the plethora of after-school activities at a student's disposal, Chaminade's Science Olympiad team is one of the most rewarding clubs. Last year, the team achieved a new school record of 8th place at the New York State tournament. Keeping that in mind, the academic athlete's main goal is to once again surpass this record and qualify for the national tournament.
One common question is, "How do these Science Olympiad tournaments work?" The answer is olympian, literally: throughout the course of one to two days, each school has members of its roster participate in and prepare for one of the twenty-three events. These events cover every scientific field imaginable, allowing those who are interested in biology, for example, to delve into the topic in a competitive manner. A winner is calculated for each individual event, and then sub-scores (scores of individual events) are added up to determine the winner of the tournament.
Another FAQ is, "What exactly does practice entail for Science Olympiad?" Well, that depends on the type of event. Some events involve building, so participants need to finalize their construction. For example, Nick Plante, '18 and Peter Camporeale' '18 work together on the event Wind Power. This event involves building wind turbine blades that are graded for efficiency in producing electricity. However, other events are primarily test-taking, so practice for Chris Mercadante, '118 means diving into an collegiate oceanography textbook. He competes in the event Dynamic Planet, an advanced test on oceanography. In addition to this studying, he has to fine-tune several note sheets which are permitted in limited quantities to many test-based events.
The team's season will commence in the early winter, with the "A" team traveling to compete in the prestigious Cornell University Invitational. Later that month, the team will also participate in a tournament at Islip High School. Ultimately, this activity provides invaluable experiences to its members: the ability to pursue scientific interests, bond with classmates who are equally passionate about science, as well as compete on a scholastic team. If you are interested in becoming a part of this squad of scholars, see head moderator Brother Benjamin Knapp S.M. '93 in room 219.