The holidays are looking a little stark in Rand Lothspeich’s class.
Candy canes are morning-sky gray and Christmas presents are cold metal skeletons.
But in a month, work by Lothspeich’s Shadle Park High School metal shop students will become as inviting as spiced eggnog.
Metal work by the Shadle Park students, as well as others from North Central and Rogers high schools, will be part of the annual Spokane Winter Lights Festival at Qualchan Golf Course.
A bear family, created by Don Sandborn’s North Central students, will greet human visitors.
But giving thousands the holiday cheer caused a few Grinch moments for Shadle Park students, as they learned real-life lessons.
Engineering students and their metal fabrication peers traded memos, demanding changes to the plans. Like professionals, engineers were convinced metal shop students were crazy, and vice versa.
“That’s how it happens in the real world,” said Lothspeich.
“I’d usually run down the hall and yell at ‘em,” said Shadle senior Jason Hendrickson, on the metal shop side. “I told them, you can’t bend metal like that.”
Work begun last year is almost done. Shadle’s main creation - an arch tall enough to accomodate a tour bus and wide enough for double lane traffic - will be assembled at a Parks Department garage. More than 7,000 lights are on the arch.
“These teachers are just awesome with the kids, and the kids were just awesome to work with,” said city parks official Maryanne Searude, who coordinated the students’ work. “They treated us like clients.”
City workers will help students finish welding, then use special torches to harden the steel.
“This design is stronger than anything at Qualchan now,” said Hendrickson.
To create the structure, Shadle students in Ron Clipperton’s engineering class drew up plans from scratch. They checked the structural integrity using computer-assisted drafting programs.
Metal shop students - including seniors Tim Iverson, Nick Miline, Ryan Chamberlain and junior Bryce Ault - had to learn to read blueprints before they could demand corrections.
And then the critiques started. Angles were too loose or tight. Arches were too severe. “I told them, you can’t bend metal like that,” said Hendrickson.
“This is learning at it’s best,” said Lothspeich.
North Central students created Winter Lights decorations for the second year in a row. Among the NC students involved in the project are seniors Michael Stokes and Brandon Wood and junior Ray Hinshaw.
Students cast their votes
Looks like North Side students are bellweathers of national opinion.
Most students who voted in mock elections at school chose Clinton, and by wide margins.
Madison Elementary student votes: Clinton, 73 percent; Dole, 23 percent; Perot, 5 percent.
Cooper Elementary students: Clinton, 58 percent; Dole, 32 percent; Perot, 10 percent, which were write-ins.
Riverside Middle School: Clinton, 51 percent; Dole, 49 percent. Craswell, 52 percent; Locke, 48 percent. Initiative 177, yes, 37 percent; no, 63 percent. Initiative 173, yes, 47 percent; no, 53 percent.
Rogers High students: Clinton, 62 percent; Dole, 24 percent; Ross Perot, 9 percent; Monica Gail Moorehead, 2 percent; Ralph Nader, 1 percent. Gary Locke, 71 percent; Ellen Craswell, 29 percent. Judy Olsen, 54 percent; George Nethercutt, 46 percent.
North Central High students: Clinton, 45 percent; Dole, 23 percent; Perot, 16 percent; others, including Ralph Nader and Libertarian Harry Browne, 11 percent.
Shakespeare at Rogers
Rogers High School hosted a pair of actors from the Oregon Shakespeare Festival this week, part of the school’s continuing emphasis on the Bard.
Professional actors Jesse Patrick and Andres Alcala gave Rogers students Skakespeare snippets Tuesday in an assembly and a two-hour workshop.
“You could have heard a pin drop, it was so quiet,” said drama teacher Kris Freeland.
Then the pros from the Shakespeare festival entertained Rogers parents Tuesday night with a contemporary production that skipped from Dr. Suess to King Lear.
Rogers students will perform Shakespeare themselves, starting next week.
“The Tempest” will run Nov. 14-16 and 22-23. Curtain time is 7 p.m.
The cast includes senior Kasey Kilgore as Prospero, senior Traci Wolfe as Ariel, junior Linsey Sutton as Miranda, sophomore Josh Hughart and Ferdinand, and, in one of the best roles in theater, senior Miah Brownlee as Caliban.
Freeland brought a Shakespeare focus when she came to Rogers in 1990, and has taken students to Ashland’s festival annually.
“Going to Ashland does more than anything we could do here,” said Freeland. “Once they see it how it should work, they understand.”
Salk teacher honored
Salk’s Katrina Foltz was recently named top middle school physical education teacher in the state. Congratulations.
Mead High scholars
Mead High School’s Jamie Moshin, Jesse Driscoll and Jennifer Bennett were recently named National Merit Scholarship semi-finalists, putting them among the top five percent of students who took the PSAT last year.
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