International Night at CHS

On Wednesday, April 24, 2013, National Honor Society’s International Night was held at CHS. International Night is a celebration of diversity in the Centennial Community. Korean Drum Team, Indian and Greek Dances, Martial Arts, a fashion show, and various foods were just some of the evenings excitement.

Photos: Caitlin Martin

29th Chemathon Results

On Saturday, April 27, 2013, the CHS Chemathon team competed at the 29th Chemathon, at the University of Maryland – College Park. Congratulations to the following students on their achievement at the event. Angela Chan, Victor Chang, Gabriel Koo, Morris Mou, Mina Sun, Joanna Ye, and Amy Zhang.

The CHS team received the following rankings in various categories:

1st Place in “Chemistry Sign” event.
1st Place in “Weighing by Redox” event.
2nd Place in “Chemistry Crystal” event.
2nd Place in overall competition among 24 high schools from Maryland, Virginia, DC and Pennsylvania.

Graduation Day School Start Time

from HCPSS News:

The recent announcement of the commencement dates for the class of 2013 shows the CHS date to be May 24, 2013 at 8:00 a.m. The early start will necessitate a late opening for our school and remaining students at 10:30 a.m. All bus transportation pick-ups will take place 3 hours later than normal therefore the earliest bus arrival at CHS will be approximately 10:00 a.m. On that date, please note the change in schedule.

NAHS Field Trip

Words: Shweta Maruvada

On Friday, April 19, 2013, 28 National Art Honors Society students from Centennial High School taught various art forms at Pointers Run Elementary School (PRES) to students from grade levels 1-5. Preparations for this event have been occurring for the past 6 weeks, and the students will be teaching at the school the entire day, until 3:30. This event usually takes place every year, but was cancelled last year due to the lack of grant money.

According to art teacher Nan Collins, “Our students are basically learning how to deliver an art lesson, and have the students create something in a 45-50 minute window (class) and actually walk away with a new skill, or a new artifact, or a new understanding of some aspect of art. And our students are basically learning to teach. And they are going to learn what goes into creating a new and creative art lesson.”

There is a general protocol that PRES performs every year, according to Collins. “They suspend all other classes for the day, and they have only art classes. And so the kids go from one art class to the next all day long. Our students will be teaching the same lesson three times,” she said.

The students formed groups of 2-3 people in order to teach around 25 elementary school students. They collected enough materials for the 75 students, and created a prototype of the artifact the students will create as an example. The activity being taught by each of the groups is specific to a grade level, which each team was allowed to choose.

Participating in the event are NAHS students: Cassie Bernhardt, Blair Dettmer, Alex Booth, Kylie Caldwell, Jacqueline Chen, Christin Downie, Carolyn Gagnon, Julia Gao, Delaney Green, Giana Han, Isa Hanssen, Hanna Jackson, Aneeza Khawaja, Karina Kotyleva, Beth Lyman, Feitian Ma, Morris Mou, Eunice Nam, Daniel Park, Ye Eun Park, Courtney Payne, Manvith Sama, Roxanna Shadmehr, Alison White, Erin Yamaguchi, Mary Yu, Weong Yun, and Parastoo Zia Zarifi.

Senior Kylie Caldwell, junior Morris Mou, and Erin Yamaguchi are planning to teach fifth graders a project entitled “I Come in Many Folds”. This artwork focuses and stresses the significance of combining text and art in real life. According to Mou, “For our project, we are working with the medium that is perhaps forgotten often – paper itself. We really want to share with the kids, the fact that ordinary paper that we draw and paint on in our everyday life possess tremendous possibility of being molded, shaped, and even sculptured.”

Although this is Mou’s first time working with PRES students for NAHS, he remembered the field trip two years ago was also a success with a lot of participants from the society. “I think this field trip definitely provide an amazing opportunity for art students to experience and explore a possible career in the education fine arts. Like everyone else, I [was] really excited about Friday, considering how much I have always wanted to spread my passion for art with the community, and through National Art Honor Society, we are able to connect with the elementary school students and share our love of arts,” said Mou.

The trio decided to focus on a group of fifth graders due to the complexity of the project. The students would need to be able to handle a more creative and intellectual attitude in copying and redesigning one’s font. “So, on one side of the foldable we require the kids to write their name in aesthetically pleasing font, whether its cursive, serif or sans serif. And, since we are only requiring them to design their names on one of the four side, there also leaves a lot of artistic freedom for them to utilize their creativity to produce intricate visual composition themselves,” Mou said.

Seniors Blair Dettmer and Courtney Payne are planning on working with fourth or fifth graders, teaching them how to create “Nature Fans”. Although this is the first time Dettmer is going for NAHS, she still feels comfortable with the idea of handling the students. “Nature fans is a play on words that Mrs. Collins came up with. They’re simply paper fans with a design on each side – one with complimentary colors, and the other with analogous. This way, the kids can learn about the different types of colors, along with detailed patterns found in nature,” she said.

However Dettmer and Payne had first planned on creating Fans that resembled designs on Grecian pots than Nature, but later decided on Nature Fans due to the complexity of the latter project. “We thought that perhaps girls would want to draw flowers on theirs, but of course we couldn’t exclude the boys! Instead, we went with the more broader term of just nature,” said Dettmer.

Alison White, Ye Eun Park, and Daniel Park are going to teach fourth graders an art entitled “Impressionistic Gardens”. They are planning to taking two pictures of impressionistic gardens and giving each student a tiny section of the picture. The student will then have to recreate the their portion, which afterwards will be combined to form the complete picture again. “It was a group idea,” said White. “We started out thinking of paper flowers and combining them to make 3D gardens. But working with tissue paper seemed easy for them, so we let go that idea and started thinking about different mediums and decided on oil pastels for their waxy texture.”

White is attending this trip for the first time, and though she is not a fan of public speaking, she enjoys being around children. The group plans on demonstrating the basic idea to the fourth graders, then giving them free rein for their own projects. They also plan on educating them about a few impressionistic artists, during the class time.

This event was exciting for both the NAHS members and the PRES students, who were allowed to take a one-day leave from classes to attend the art activities in their rotation schedule. The NAHS team worked hard to make this event a success, and hoped to learn and teach new forms of art to the elementary students who had been looking forward to the day.

Last Day of School Announced

HCPSS has announced that the last day of school for students will be Friday, June 14, 2013, unless additional modifications to the school schedule become necessary. Three inclement closing days, due to Hurricane Sandy and other inclement weather, were waived by The Maryland Department of Education, allowing for the June 14 last day.

This day is not the last day for seniors, as graduation dates and seniors last days vary by school. For a complete list of graduation dates, click here.


HCPSS Prom Safety Letter to Parents

On Thursday, April 18, 2013, the following letter was released to parents via HCPSS News. This letter from William J. McMahon, Chief of Police and Renee A. Foose, Ed.D., Superintendent of HCPSS is designed to remind parents to encourage their children to stay safe during prom and graduation season.


Dear Parents/Guardians,

With the start of prom and graduation season this weekend, we are reaching out to students and parents to reinforce the legal and safety consequences of underage drinking.

Too often, we have seen this time of celebration turn into a time of tragedy. Criminal charges related to underage drinking can change a person’s life. Even worse, serious injury or death can turn what should be a new beginning into a tragic end.

We want our kids to have a great time and celebrate. We just want them to do it safely and we don’t want to see them get into legal trouble that could have a long-term effect.

Alcohol—Teens should know that buying or possessing alcohol under the age of 21 can result in multiple, serious criminal charges. It may prevent them from being able to have a driver’s license

DUI—A DUI conviction could mean the loss of a license. Young people driving with provisional licenses have to wait 18 months before they are eligible to get a license again.

Parents—Parents and other adults can play a role to help ensure teens’ safety. Please don’t provide alcohol to anyone under the age of 21, even in your own home. Parents can be charged in these situations. Charges each carry a fine of $2,500 and violators must appear in court. Please don’t take the chance.

Hotel rooms—We are asking parents not to rent rooms for underage parties. The police department is sending letters to hotels and motels in Howard County asking them to strictly enforce their policies of not renting rooms to anyone under 21 years of age. Hotel employees will call police if parents or other adults try to rent rooms for minors.

Police patrols—Howard County patrol officers will be out in increased numbers after proms hoping NOT to find drivers exhibiting signs of impairment. We urge you to remind your kids not to ruin the night by getting a DUI, or much worse. If possible, arrange for rides both ways with a hired driver or parents.

After-prom parties—Each high school is sponsoring an after-prom party with support and funding from the county’s asset forfeiture fund. Please encourage your teens to attend. This is much safer than allowing them to go to an unsupervised party, or one supervised by adults who allow drinking.

We have one goal in mind: keeping our young people safe. We do not want to diminish the fun of the evening or make it harder to celebrate. We just want your kids to come home. Police officers know first-hand the anguish of knocking on a parent’s door to deliver the worst news a mom or dad could ever hear. Educators know the effect this can have on a family and an entire school community.

Please, be our partners in this effort. Help us make sure that every Howard County student is as safe as possible. Thank you.

William J. McMahon, Chief of Police
Renee A. Foose, Ed.D., Superintendent of HCPSS

Prom Promise Assembly

Words: Ayesha Ahmad

On Tuesday, April 16, 2013 seniors and juniors were required to attend the Prom Promise assembly during  sixth period.

Prom Promise challenges students to consider the consequences-prior to prom night-of drug or alcohol use to help avoid impulsive and possibly regretful consequences.’

The assembly started out by Principal, Carl Perkins introducing the topic. “We promise to make it a safe event for you, but we want you to make a promise to yourself and us that you will do the same,” said Perkins.

Next, an officer from the Howard County police department presented the students with a PowerPoint presentation.  In the PowerPoint presentation he provided examples of serious car accidents that happened in Howard County due to drunk driving. One of the examples was of a 21 year old driver who was driving under the influence of alcohol on route 40 in Ellicott City. She took the life of two people who were driving back to Philadelphia after dining out.  In result, she went to jail for 5 years.  “I hope you take from this to not drink and drive and make decisions that will not cause the life of anyone,” the officer said.

Lastly, Centennial parent,  Barbara Watson presented her PowerPoint presentation about her son Matthew Watson. A man driving drunk hit the Jeep Cherokee that Watson was in and in result he passed away. Watson, who attended the College Park campus, was a front-seat passenger in the Jeep. He graduated in 2005 from Centennial High School, where he was a lineman on the football team and played saxophone in the band.

Perkins ended the assembly by saying, “We want you to have a great time at Prom, but we also want you to rise up the next day and enjoy the rest of your life.”

Sophomores Have Class Ring Assembly

Words: Miranda Mason

On April 16, 2013 all Centennial High School sophomores gathered for a class meeting in the cafeteria during sixth period. During the meeting, the students voted on next year’s prom venue and theme, talked about spirit wear and discussed class rings.

The sophomores all received a packet with order forms for the rings, along with information on when to put in their orders. Representatives from Balfour, the company selling the rings, will also be available on Monday, April 22 from 4 to 6 p.m., Tuesday, April 23 from 4 to 6 p.m. and Wednesday, April 24 during all lunches for questions. Orders for rings can also be put in when the representatives are available.

Despite a price tag that some students think is a little extreme, many other students are excited for an opportunity to get their class rings.

“I feel like I’m part of something,” said sophomore Justice Andrews. “I get to show off to everyone that I have a great school.”

Along with discussing class rings, the students voted on where to have prom next year, along with what the theme should be. Sophomores filled out a ballot at the beginning of the meeting with the option of having prom at either the Baltimore Aquarium, M&T Bank Stadium, Turf Valley or the Hippodrome. Students also voted on whether to have the theme of Old Hollywood, Night in the City, Arabian Nights or a Night in Paris.