Student News

05-28-14 - State Track and Field Championships Results
It was a "phenomenal meet" said Coach Emma Petshow about the State Track & Field Championships held this past weekend in Eugene. The eleven student-athletes represented Horizon well! The team included Hannah Kempf (junior - 100m, 100m hurdles, triple jump), Austin Requa (senior - relays)), Micah Engel, alt (senior), Patrick Foss, alt (senior), Luke Kempf, alt (senior), Mason Bloomster (junior - 100m, 200m, relays), Salvador Ramirez (sophomore - 800m, 1500m), Luke Holste (freshman - hurdles, relays), Jony Nelson (freshman - 3000m), and Chris Hoeffner, alt (freshman), Andrew Rinella, alt (freshman). Several athletes set personal records and new school records.

Hannah Kempf - 4th in 100 meter hurdles, 5th in triple jump, and 8th in 100 meter
Mason Bloomster - 3rd in 100 meter, 3rd in 200 meter
Salvador Ramirez - 5th in 1500 meter
Jony Nelson - 5th in 3000 meter
Patrick Foss, Austin Requa, Luke Holste, Mason Bloomster - 6th in the 4x100 meter relay / 9th in the 4x100 relay
Boys Team - 10th in the State
Girls Team (Hannah) - 25th in the State

05-06-14 - Geography Impact Project
William Decker, a 9th grader, has chosen an interesting Impact Project for his geography class assignment. He contacted Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF) and asked if they would come and tell students about what they do - and give people a taste of flying while here. The mission of MAF is "sharing the love of Jesus Christ through avia-tion and technology so that isolated people may be physically and spiritually transformed." They work with Samari-tans Purse, Operation Blessing, Compassion International, and other ministries to provide disaster response, evangelism, community development, and medical assistance by getting people where they need to go.

The MAF pilots will be at Horizon on Friday, May 9 to talk with students. They will take people up for rides on Friday and Saturday, May 9-10 at the Hood River and The Dalles airports. Cost is $35 a seat or $315 for nine seats. Click here to download the Voluntary Release and Waiver form or pick one up at the school office. For more information contact William Decker or call (541) 340-9546. Check out Hood River or The Dalles from the air!

Note: The Geography Impact Projects came about because of a comment made by a student, "We're learning about all this geography, but we're not doing anything about it." As a result students developed projects with the goal of making a difference in someone's life, either in their own backyard or on the other side of the world.

04-29-14 - Outdoor Camp
Sixth graders were at Outdoor Camp last week in the Yamhill and enjoyed it, rain and al! Reports are that in spite of a LOT of rain and mud, slipping and sliding, the students made the best of it, learned lots, had fun, and didn't com-plain. Way to go, 6th graders! And thank you, moms, for washing all those muddy clothes when they got home!

04-29-14 - Junior High Students at the Theater
Junior High students saw The Giver at the Oregon Children's Theater in Portland. The book, written by Lois Lowry, is one of the junior high English curriculum books and is a wonderful testament to how God created everyone different. Their conclusion - we are blessed to be able to have our own uniqueness, personalities, and gifts. And seeing it made the book come alive!

04-15-14 - Science Fair Results
All agreed that this year's projects were some of the best ever! Students really "stepped it up" as one teacher said. Ribbon winners included:

  • 6th Grade: 1st) Anna Funk, 2nd) Caden Mathisen, 3rd) Lizzie Hawkins, 4th) Savannah Demchuk
  • 5th Grade: 1st) Chloe Bullock, 2nd) Luke Rinella, 3rd) Nolan Ryan, 4th) Ellie Bounds
  • People's Choice (by grade, 1st - 6th): Griffin Earley, Lily Sullivan, Maxwell Al-Rubaie, Marisa Rigert, Faith Pichura, Anna Funk

Science Fair

04-10-14 - Forensic Team Results
The first ever Horizon forensic team finished strong at the district tournament with two first place winners that will move on to the Speech and Debate State Tournament. Junior Dhora DaLuz took 1st place with her memorized humorous story, The Cat in the Hat, and freshmen Amy Requa and Isabelle Cullen took 1st place with their dramatization of the book, Awesome. Other students competing included William Decker and Shaun Wang (public forum debate), Austin Requa (poetry), Salvador Ramirez and Zack Walker (impromptu), and Tayler Lage and Luke Kempf (parliamentary debate). The state tournament will be at the Western Oregon campus in Monmouth on April 24-26.

04-10-14 - Track Meet Results
Nineteen high school students are training and competing in track events that include running, jumping, and throw-ing. This past week-end they participated in the Condon/Wheeler Invitational and both the boys team and the girls team took second place. Several athletes were in the top three places for their event (shown below) and many oth-ers placed high in their category.

Boys Team  
Mason Bloomster, 11th gr 1st - long jump / 1st - triple jump
Salvador Ramirez, 10th gr 2nd - 1500 meter / 2nd - 3000 meter
Luke Holste, 9th gr 3rd - 110m hurdles / 3rd - 300m hurdles / 3rd - long jump
Jony Nelson, 9th gr 3rd - 1500m / 3rd - 3000m
Team 2nd Place (out of 11 teams)
Girls Team  
Hannah Kempf, 11th gr 1st - triple jump / 2nd - 200 meter / 3rd - 100m hurdles / 3rd - long jump
Savannah Hawk, 9th gr 1st - 400 meter
Kaylee Demchuk, 12th gr 3rd - 400 meter
Haylee Becnel, 9th gr 3rd - 200 meter
Team 2nd Place (out of 8 teams)

04-10-14 - Robotics Recycling Project
The Robotics team impressed veterans of the recycling program with their energy and commitment last Saturday. The results — 15,000 beverage containers were recycled. Amazing! The proceeds will be split between the HR Leos Club, the student arm of the HR Lions Club. Thank you to all who participated by bringing their cans and bottles.

04-10-14 - Writing Festival
Last week we shared that all six writing entries from students in grades 6-8 to the ACSI Creative Writing Festival received a good or better score. (Scoring - Superior, Excellent, Good, Honorable Mention)

Connor Wells, 8th gr Superior Rhymed Poem: The Valley of the Shadow of Death
Madeleine Koch, 6th gr Excellent Free Verse: My Box
Isaac Hollenberry, 8th gr Excellent Essay: Curiosity
Katelynn Harris, 7th gr Excellent Essay: Titanic
Audrey Marble, 8th gr Good Essay: My Not so Snowy Winter Break
Savannah Demchuk, 6th gr Good Rhymed Poem: The Life of a Glob

ASCI Writing Festival

01-27-14 - Student Challenge and Insights
Sixth grade students were challenged to "think on these things" and the results in their life of being kind with God's help. Here are some of their insights — good reminders for all.

  1. I would be more willing to share. More people could trust me. I would think about what I say before I say it.
  2. I could be more gentle and treat my friends with more respect and care.
  3. I could probably wake up happy and help more people.
  4. If I was more gentle, people would be gentle with me. If I showed more thankfulness maybe other people would too.
  5. I would get along better with my friends and probably have a lot more friends. My parents would be even more proud. I would be proud of myself.
  6. I could be kinder by listening to people.
  7. I could maybe not get mean and forgive people who are not nice to me. Outcome: Maybe I would either have more friends or better relationships.
  8. If I was more gentle, maybe more people would want to be around me. If I showed thankfulness, I would not want what other people have.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, let your mind dwell on these things." Philippians 4:8

09-09-13 Elementary Chapel
Are you making decisions right side up? Or upside down? Our first elementary chapel was held today and after wor-ship time and pledges they got right into this year's theme: "Living Right Side Up in an Upside Down World." We re-viewed that the Bible tells us the Right Way to act and the right things to do and sometimes the world or culture gives us wrong or upside down advice. Our memory verse for September is Philippians 4:8. If you would like to join the elementary group for chapel time, please come. They meet in the sanctuary from 10:20 to 10:50 each Friday.

06-03-13 - Frogs and Special Speakers
Students in grades 7 & 8 are enjoying some interesting year-end activities. Last Friday, 7th grade students progressed from the dissection of worms (done previously this year) to frogs. Yesterday the 8th grade class listened as Ray Kulper, a pilot during the Vietnam War, explained flight operations. One student had the opportunity of trying the flight suit that Mr. Kulper wore during flights. In Tuesday's Bible class Jr. High students will hear from Callie Yates who is returning to Borneo, Indonesia where she will be a midwife and teacher in a village hospital. Lastly, on Wednesday, Tina (Brown) Johnson will share about she and her husband's plan to go to Indonesia where her husband, Jake Johnson, will be teaching in an urban school. Callie, Tina, and Jake are all graduates of Horizon Christian School and are going out to minister through their professions and share the love of the Lord.

05-29-13 - Kindergarten Underwater World
Kindergarten students walked into a magical world this morning - an undersea world with fish and whales and all kinds of wonderful and beautiful sights. Collette Kingrey, kindergarten teacher, makes this scene happen one day each year as a gift to her students. "They work so hard all year, and this is my gift to them," said Collette. "It is a gift that shows them the power of imagination." Collette started with one mural several years ago that she painted and it has been growing every year since then. The walls, the ceiling, and the window are all scenes of vibrant color, sea creatures, and beautiful flowers, most of them painted by Collette. Activities during the day focus on the ocean and its mysteries. Students wear their pajamas to school, enjoy plenty of food, and watch Finding Nemo. It is a day of wonder, splendor, and lots of imagination.

Kindergarten class enjoying an underwater world

05-29-13 - May Term Concluding Presentations
Last week's study on unmanned aerial systems (drones) concluded last week with student "community" groups" answering the question, "Is it in the best interest of the citizens of 'Clackanoma County' to allow unarmed drones to fly over civilian airspace in the interest of public safety purposes only?" The three groups included a law enforcement/search and rescue group, a civil liberties group, and a chamber of commerce group. The groups made their presentations to the "commissioners" of the county (i.e. teachers).

05-21-13 - May Term 2013
Horizon strives to give students a well-balanced education. Part of our program for secondary students is there-fore crafted to allow students to explore, in a guided way, issues that relate to the greater world around them out-side of a traditional classroom approach. This year our May Term "classroom without walls" focuses on an issue that will surely touch the lives of the residents of the Columbia River Gorge and beyond - unmanned aeronauti-cal surveillance equipment, more commonly known to many as drones.

Students in grades 7-12 will explore this topic from several angles in an active, hands-on way: economic issues, flight theory, computer programming, ethical issues, antennae (theory, construction, and ethics), FAA implica-tions, uses of UASs, drone invasion—fact or fiction, and news surrounding UASs. Guest speakers will be pre-senting some topics and students will also be taking field trips.

05-21-13 - Upcoming Spirit Week
Students will be celebrating Spirit Week, Tuesday 5/28 — Friday 5/31. All students may participate in the "dress for the day"; secondary students will also have some special activities. During spirit week, students may be in regular dress code OR they may dress up in that day's theme.

Tuesday Sport Day - dress in your favorite team's garb
Wednesday Twin Day - dress alike
Thursday Blast from the past - dress like an era gone by

Color Day - Elementary: just part of their clothing must be in that color (e.g. colored shirt with jeans); Secondary: students will receive "credit" or points for each elementary student in their paired class that dressed in that color. All attire must follow standard modesty rules. Go teams!

12th & K - Black
9th & 3rd/4th - Green
11th & 1st - Red
8th & 5th - Purple
10th & 2nd - Blue
7th & 6th - Orange

05-21-13 - Voice of the Martyrs
Mr. Culbertson, a special guest from Voice of the Martyrs, visited the 3rd and 4th class last Friday. Students viewed a video of pastors and missionaries in other countries who have been persecuted and imprisoned for their faith. After the video, each student chose a profile of a person and wrote a letter of encouragement to them. The class then mailed their letters directly to the prison addresses of those pastors and missionaries. The class is praying for these individuals – that they will stand firm in their faith and be encouraged by the letters they receive.

04-23-13 - National Honor Society Students Help Deliver Message in Elementary Chapel
"Be strong and courageous" from Joshua 1:9 was the verse and "Rise Above" was the theme at Friday's chapel for elementary students. National Honor Society students wrote and performed a series of vignettes showcasing situations in which students must tell a teacher even if it is a hard thing to do – things such as if there is a weapon at school or if someone is being bullied. Elementary principal Kim Spotts followed up with discussion and teach-ers continued the discussion in their classrooms.

04-23-13 - Secondary Chapel Speaker – Teen Mission
Ryan Fast, the west coast representative of Teen Missions, was in chapel on Friday presenting opportunities for short term summer mission trips worldwide. He spoke of Jesus' great commission of Matthew 28 saying that God uses people that are willing to serve and He is the one that equips them as they go. He shared video of the Lord's Boot Camp in Merritt Island, Florida where all youth start their mission and then a video of one of the groups that ministered in Africa. Students were challenged to see where God might want them to go.

02-20-13 - 100 Day Celebrations
Several elementary classes will celebrate the 100th day of school on Wednesday with some fun and interesting activi-ties including a 100 hunt, 100 hats, 100 necklaces, how many _________ can you do in 100 seconds, and 100 news. A highlight of the day — second graders will have a very special 100 year old "guest" teacher. Be sure to ask your elementary student about the day!

02-20-13 - Junior Hawks Basketball Awards Announced
On February 12th several athlets were recognized at the Juniot Hawks Basketball Awards.

  Girls Boys
MVP Jodee Hicks Luke Holste
Most Improved Kloee Borwn / Ally Funk Connor Wells
Christian Character Savannah Hawk Christian Cunningham
Coaches Award Jodee Hicks / Abby Walker Derek Johnston

02-12-13 - Students Inducted Into National Honor Society
Seven students were inducted into the National Honor Society at the Friday ceremony. The founding inductees include: Alyssa Bryan (12th), Kasia Nielsen (12th), Jenna Mobley (11th), Dhora DaLuz (10th), Hannah Kempf (10th), Hannah Lingel (10th), and Anna Robison (10th). The ceremony included a welcome by Board of Trustee Chair Don Hoffman, and keynote address by Debbie Lingel, a member of NHS and former president of her high school chapter. Secondary teachers also lit candles representing academics, service, leadership, and character. A big thank you to coordinator and teacher Susan Wade, volunteers Andra Mobley and Shaun Requa, and the 8th grade girls their mentor, Janell Hoeffner.

National Honor Society Inductees

01-06-13 - Spelling Bee Results
Two students from each grade level participated in the district spelling bee in Portland last Friday. They competed in grade level competitions with top spellers from nine other schools. All of our students, five of whom were alternates with less time to prepare, represented our school well! Congratulations to all of you. Three students took top honors at their grade level.

  • 1st place in 1st grade: Colby Somerset
  • 1st place in 8th grade: Amy Requa
  • 3rd place in 2nd grade: Ellie Rinella

Horizon Christian School student at Spelling Bee in Portland, Oregon

02-06-13 - Second Semester Electives
Students will have some new elective options with the beginning of the second semester. Check out these two new, "never before offered" classes:

Current World Problems - will be a fast-paced, discussion-based course covering some of the greatest chal-lenges facing Christians in the world today. After a brief look at our own presuppositions and biases, we will explore issues such as the rise of militant Islam, human rights for women, famine, water-shortages and eco-nomic challenges both in the US and around the world from a critical and biblical world view. (Mr. Ueland)

Lab Technology – This course is a hands-on supplement to biology and will be useful and relevant for all high school students. We will explore various methods of preparing, analyzing, and preserving biology re-search through preparing models, mounts, field casts, display cases, and much more. (Mr. Brown)

01-29-13 - Ninth Grade Giving Experience
The 9th grade homeroom had a recent taste of what it is like to be used by God. Students sold donuts at school to raise money to help a family in White Salmon - three teenagers whose mom is dying of brain cancer. Just before Christmas, the proceeds ($120) was delivered along with a card signed by the students. They discovered that the oldest child, a senior at Columbia High School, had been saving to buy a chainsaw so he could supplement the family's income. The amount he still needed was $116! What a blessing to be used in such a specific way to provide for a very real need.

01-14-13 - Fifth Grade Students Study Undersea Exploration
Fifth grade students simulated the exploration of sunken ships during the 1400 – 1500s in a recent social studies unit. To make the experience more real students wore goggles and face masks in a darkened room with underwater sounds played through speakers as they examined artifact place cards that gave clues about what the explorers took with them on their journeys. See pictures of the activity on the Horizon Facebook site.

12-18-12 - Special Chapels - Students "Make Music in Their Hearts!"
Both elementary and secondary enjoyed special chapel time last Friday. Pre-kindergarten students joined the K-6 chapel where everyone made music in their hearts as they sang Christmas carols. In doing so, they followed the instructions of their verse for the month, Ephesians 5:19-20 "Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for every-thing, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ." It was also Bible Bowl Day in which the names of students are drawn and they have an opportunity to recite the verse to others. Two kindergarten students and one 1st grader did just that. Well done, students!

Students in secondary chapel also sang Christmas carols led by the student worship team.

Jaideep & Emily Jadhav then shared about their ministry in India.

12-18-12 - Spelling Bee Representatives
Several students spelled their way to representing Horizon Christian School in the District Spelling Bee to be held at Crossroads Christian School in Portland on February 1. Congratulations, students! Now study hard and be prepared!

  • 1st Grade: Colby Sommerset (1st), Shelby Froehle (2nd), Jackson Bullock (alt)
  • 2nd Grade: Ellie Rinella (1st), Miyana Robertson (2nd), Ella Moring (alt)
  • 3rd Grade: Emma Cervantes (1st), Alex Whitaker (2nd), Joshua Johnson (alt)
  • 4th Grade: Talon Achziger (1st), Chloe Bullock (2nd), Kalena Calloway (alt)
  • 5th Grade: John Tran (1st), Caden Mathisen (2nd), Eric Schneider (alt)
  • 6th Grade: Alex Petshow (1st), Derek Johnston (2nd), Abby Hawkins (alt)
  • 7th grade – Miranda Roberts (1st), Makoa Whitaker (2nd), Emily Wheat (alt)
  • 8th grade – Amy Requa (1st), Andrew Rinella (2nd), Quinn Roetcisoender (alt)

12-11-12 - Spelling Bee Schedule
Students in grades 1 - 8 are preparing for the annual spelling bee which will be held at Crossroads Christian School in Portland on February 1. The first step is grade level spelling bees to determine which two students from each grade (1st-8th) will be representing Horizon Christian School at the district spelling bee. Parents are wel-come to come and be the "audience" for these spelling bees.

Tues, Dec 11 5th & 6th grade — 10:30-11:40 (elementary commons area)
Wed, Dec 12 1st & 2nd grade — 10:15-11:30 (elementary commons area)
3rd & 4th grade — 12:35-1:35 (elementary commons area)
Thurs, Dec 13 8th grade — 9:00-9:50 (classroom #161)
7th grade — 9:55-10:45 (classroom #161)

12-11-12 Girls Win Quarter Drive!
Thank you to everyone who participated in the Junior Class Quarter Drive. The class raised a total of $93.81! The girls won by $6.33 so they have earned two free dress days! Those free dress days are scheduled for this Thurs-day and Friday, December 13 and 14.

11-06-12 - 6th Grade Class Receives "Mini-Grant"
The 6th grade class has been awarded a "mini grant" from Energy Trust of Oregon. Teacher Sheila Sletmoe ap-plied for the grant as part of the LivingWise Program, which is designed to engage students in learning about en-ergy efficiency and water conservation. The program offers classroom curriculum, hands-on energy experiments and take-home energy-saving tools and activities that teach sixth-grade students how they can help their families save energy and money.

11-06-12 - Life Along the River Fair (6th Grade) Awards
People's Choice Awards — Derek Johnston (1st), Alex Petshow (2nd), Carrmen Ramirez (3rd) Excellent Work Awards — Carter Rigert, Grace Pichura, and Nikolas von Lubken

"I was pleased with everyone's work, but these kids went the extra mile!" commented Teacher Sheila Sletmoe.

11-06-12 - Peace Poster Awards
Sixth grade student George Lowell, took 1st place among Horizon students for his Lion's Club Peace Poster. Brady Lynn, and Carter Rigert, also 6th graders, were awarded 2nd and 3rd place. These students' posters will represent Horizon Christian in competition among local Hood River schools.

10-30-12 - LIving History Lesson for Sixth Grade Students
Sixth grade students had two visitors from the past last Friday in a Living History lesson. Mrs. Alberta Carson Kirk-wood (1903 – 1993), portrayed by Jean Harmon, taught in Hood River schools and music for many years. She was a member of many opera companies throughout the nation and traveled internationally. Mrs. Kirkwood has a con-nection to Horizon Christian School. She taught Latin at Baptist Christian School, a precursor school of Horizon, and had three great-grandchildren graduate from Horizon including Scottie Halliday, a 2012 graduate. Ellen Blowers (1847 – 1908) was portrayed by Kate Dougherty. Mrs. Blowers and her husband were a founding family in Hood River County and Mr. Blowers was mayor. The two women are part of the Cemetery Tales group that performs each year in Hood River.

Jean Harmon portraying Mrs. Alberta Carson Kirkwood Katie Dougherty portraying Ellen Blowers

10-30-12 - 6th Graders to Present "Early Inhabitants of the Gorge" Learning Fair
On November 2nd, from 8:30am to 10am, sixth graders will share what they have been learning about what life was like in the Columbia Gorge in their "Early Inhabitants of the Gorge" social studies unit.

05-22-12 - Student Highlights
Here is what's been happening at Horizon:
Secondary students kicked off the week with a Community Service Day. Each class identified a project and Mon-day was the day set aside to work on it. Classes helped out at FISH food bank, spent time with the folks at Hawks Ridge, made cookies and took them to folks at Brookside Manor, sold baked potatoes with proceeds going to the Ronald McDonald House, pulled weeds at several churches, and participated in a fundraiser for "Turn on the Tap." May Term starts on Tuesday with special week-long classes, internships, and a college exploration tour. The in-ternational travel group left last Friday to explore Greece.

05-22-12 - State Track Meet Results
Gabe Holste placed 4th in the long jump at the state meet. Hannah Kempf, a 9th grader ran the 200 meter, but didn't qualify for the final heat on Saturday. Hannah is a 9th grader, so will have other opportu-nities in future years. Congratulations to both students!

05-17-12 - Student Highlights
Here is what's been happening at Horizon:

  • Constitution Conference - Horizon held it's first ever day long Constitution Conference last week with more than 125 students in attendance.
  • 6th Grade Outdoor Camp - Sixth graders returned from their outdoor camp at Yamhill. Students studied sever-al science topics and all participated in the challenge course. They had a great time, reports Mrs. Sletmoe!
  • Band Competition - The concert and jazz band traveled to Coeur d'Alene, Idaho where they competed. The jazz band took 1st place and the concert band took 2nd place. Students also enjoyed some recreational time at the Silverwood Theme Park.
  • Golf - Austen Requa, 10th grade, qualified for the state golf tournament and is playing in Banks, Oregon on Mon-day and Tuesday.
  • Track - This was Horizon's first year with a track team and there are two students who qualified for state. Han-nah Kempf, 9th grade, will be running the 200 meter and Gabe Holste, senior, will be competing in the long jump. The meet is in Monmouth, Oregon on Friday and Saturday.

05-10-12 - Student Highlights
Hands-on Science
The first and second grade class has been learning about insects in Science. They have watched mealworms turn into beetles and made new habitats for their milkweed bugs in anticipation of their metamorphosis. They are also watching painted lady caterpillars change into pupas and are looking forward to seeing them turn into butter-flies. A fourth insect will be introduced very soon. In other classes — kindergarten students are observing worms, Jr. High students are dissecting frogs, and 6th graders are attending an Outdoor Science Camp this week. It is an exciting time to see how God's creation comes alive in so many ways!

Students Wrestle with Tough Issues
The seniors in the calculus class have finished their math course, but they aren't done with grappling with tough things. The class is reading about the adventures of a young missionary woman in Uganda in the book 'Kisses from Katie'. Last week they wrestled with a Frederick Beuchner quote that says, "The place God calls us to is the place where your deep gladness and the world's deep hunger meet." In talking about where their lives go after graduation the students discussed what it means to use our gifts for God's glory. Ideas they talked about were: Going to medical school to become a medical missionary, using a physical therapy degree to help special needs orphans, using an engineering degree to help plan sewer design in third world countries, using a mechanics de-gree to help fix cars for widows and homeless women, and taking a love for children to help those who are disad-vantaged. It is so encouraging to see the love God is growing in these students for the bigger world. Teacher Shannon Miller says, "I cannot wait to see what God does with them as they step out in faith!"

05-04-12 - Outdoor Learning at Indian Creek
Fifth and sixth grade students, teachers and several parents recently tromped down to the end of Section 2 of the Indian Creek Trail for a day of water quality testing. Knowledgeable employees from the Soil & Water Conserva-tion District and Indian Creek Stewards brought the materials necessary for testing dissolved oxygen, pH, nitrates, phosphates, and turbidity. Five temporary stations were set up along the creek where students could easily retrieve water samples. Three knowledgeable parents came along to assist and help students learn how to test the health of the stream.

Cheryl Cunningham, a parent and pharmacist, taught the students about pH, and how our bodies have many different pH levels, depending on the bodily function. The optimum level of pH in the creek should be around 7, and the seven samples revealed an average pH of 7.8.

Using a drawing, Steve Stampfli showed students how nitrates, which come from human or animal waste, seep into water and soil. Students were glad to find that there were no traces of nitrates in Indian Creek.

For the five tests students worked in small groups collecting samples, conducting tests, and recording the results. "It's scary crossing the bridge!" commented Abby Hawkins, a 5th grader at Horizon. "However, if you take a sample from the bank and the center of the stream you will probably get different test results." The leaders showed students how to follow the step-by-step instructions in order to get reliable results.

Of the five tests, turbidity was the only one outside of the preferred range. Turbidity reveals the murkiness in the water. The test is measured in Jackson Turbidity Units (JTU's range from 0-100). The higher the JTU's, the more stuff there is in the water. Indian Creek had an average of 20 JTU's. This gave students an opportunity to talk about why the creek was so murky on that particular day at the end of a very stormy week. "I think it was caused by all that rain we had yesterday!" said Sebastaain Johnson, a 6th grader.

As is the norm on Indian Creek field study days, the time flew by quickly. As they rushed back to school students took the opportunity to jump in puddles and race each other up the trail. Ian Gray, a 6th grader, yelled out, "that was so fun! I love Indian Creek!"

04-11-12 - Student Doings

Calculus Class Scores!
The calculus class recently completed their class through Eastern Oregon University and all students scored near 100% on their final and received an A for the course. The students completed the same class as students who are on the university campus. Horizon students view the professor as he teaches via a DVD of the class, then com-plete assignments on by logging in to the EOU website. They are also able to ask questions and receive help as they work through an online discussion board.

The class will now pursue a variety of activities including how to decide what is important in choosing a major, reading a book by a 22 year old missionary in Uganda, and exploring what it means to serve. The students will visit Hawk's Ridge once a week. During their first visit, the students discovered a love for the men and women and came back bubbling with ideas about how to serve them even more.

5th Grade Travel Service
The next time you are planning a trip you might want to get some assistance from a Horizon 5th grader. Students in that class researched regions of the United States, then presented their findings including an itinerary, places of interest, budget, and special facts about the area. The students used PowerPoint to aid in their presentations. They were informative and fun! Good job, 5th graders.

Clever Writing
Felicity Durkovitz, a 7th grade student, submitted the following story in her World History class. Enjoy!

Hey, I'm Hungary! Then go Czech the fridge. Okay, I'm Russian to the kitchen. Maybe you'll find some Turkey! But what if it is covered in a layer of Greece? There's Norway you can eat that! Maybe I can settle for a can of Chile. Do you think I can have a Canada that too? Denmark your can. Let's wash our hands first, they could be Germany. I'm Japan up and down! Let's Finnish the can when we can, then let's France around!

09-20-11 - Online Academic Help for Your Student With a library of over 2,400 videos covering everything from K-12 grade math to physics, finance, and history and 150 practice exercises, Khan Academy can help your student learn. The videos clearly present a concept and the exercises help the student practice that concept. The Khan Academy's materials and resources are available free of charge to everyone and has received great reviews and recommendations. Check it out at

05-24-11 - May Term Highlights
No "regular" classes for students in grades 7 to 12 — but there was a lot of learning going on last week during May Term. Check out some of the highlights of a few of the groups.

  • Is There Life After High School - Put a mixed group of students together in a van for hours of travel and there is usually some conflict. However, Faith Kempf, the leader for this group, said these kids really bonded with each other and worked together through the challenges. They visited Oregon universities and other post high school educational institutions, studied the process for application, financial aid, and scholarships — and became better friends.
  • Computer Games - Taught by volunteer Cody Singleton, this group of students was mesmerized by the things they were learning about designing a computer game including the background.
  • Robotics — Taught by alumni Shannon Foss, this group worked with legos to create robots using design, engineering, and problem solving skills. They also coded the movements of their robots on a computer. Robots had to maneuver through an obstacle course and culminated in a battle of the robots.
  • Service Group — Teacher Susan Wade took a group of students to the Jonah retreat grounds in Trout Lake where they chopped and hauled away tree limbs, cleaned up the grounds, and set-up for a retreat. They also collected 300 pounds of food for the local FISH Food Bank and spent a day sorting and organizing donations at the Food Bank.
  • Time Travel — Robin Hood, pirates, seamanship and travel into the future became a "reality" in this May Term class taught by teacher Ray Kempf. From the sound of it these kids had a bunch of fun and learned a great deal about different time periods.
  • Other classes — horsemanship, landscaping, food from around the world, baking and decorating classes, landscape painting throughout the Gorge, a study of heroes & villains through movies, swimming, golfing, and working-out. Several students also participated in internships with local businesses.

The week culminated with a light lunch in which students applied their etiquette lessons (also a part of May Term) and a concert by a local group of musicians.

05-09-11 - Students Respond to Needs of Japanese People
Several students who decided they wanted to "do something" for the people of Japan following the March earthquake and tsunami are knitting and crocheting hats and scarves for them. Many people were left without anything and this was one way the students thought they could help. The high school students including Rachel Foss, Rachel Frost, McKenzie Mellow, Daniel Kempf, and Jaime Ingalls will send 53 colorful hats and several scarves across the ocean to the people.

05-09-11 - Junior High Students - Who They Want To Be
Sometimes being a junior high student isn't easy. Roller coaster emotions, impetuous actions, and hasty words are often part of the package. In a recent writing assignment, 7th grade students answered the question, "What do you wish others would see in you?" Their responses should encourage you.

  • A kind, loving (not mean) person who is funny and smart
  • That I am serious and care about people
  • A loyal and trustworthy person; loving, kind, belonging to God, not conceited
  • I am not a mean person or self-centered; I am nice, smart and loving
  • Bravery, love, humbleness, fearfulness, innocent, positive attitude, compassionate, and friendly
  • Loving and not a "grump" and not "lonely"
  • A believer


Web Resources for Students

  • - Create a bibliography for a paper by typing in just a little information and then let the website do
    the rest.
  • - A search engine for just the right image or video for a project.
  • - An organizational tool for storing and finding homework, papers, ideas, and research. Just scan or take a photo and send it to To find, search using any word within the document.
  • - Learn about the steps students need to take to get into college - the what, how, and when of college admission, financial aid, and scholarships. The site sets up a calendar to track steps based on your child’s year in school.
  • - This search engine checks only scholarly works for papers, books and articles from academic publishers, professional societies, universities and other similar organizations.
  • - Check definitions, hear correct pronunciations, get dozens of translations - or enter a cyber spelling bee to sharpen your skills.
  • - This site will answer any math problem and will tackle non-math queries too. Ask - and it will answer with information