West Junior High School will celebrate National Children's Book Week and American Education Week Nov. 18-22. West will spotlight the theme "Readers are Leaders" with Read Aloud Day on Nov. 20.
The day will feature Mick Lowe, principal; Karla Andre, teacher; Julia Rombough, parent; Arden Booth, Lawrence radio personality; Ed Brunt, Lawrence Police Department; and several KU athletes reading aloud to students in the school library.
The school also will participate in the "Contribute A Book -- Reap A Reader" project. Nearly new books will be collected and distributed to United Way agencies that, in turn, will distribute them to families throughout Lawrence. The Student Council chose to support this project by asking for a nearly new book as admission to a dance to be held Friday.
The West Symphonic Band is preparing three concerts to be performed before the winter recess. The concerts include a Senior Citizens Concert, Children's Concert and the traditional Holiday Concert. The Symphonic Band plays eight to 10 concerts a year. Different music is played for all concerts. Jack Brookshire is the band's director.
Debra Burns, who has served as manager in a number of political campaigns, visited with several West students to discuss the many facets to managing and operating a political campaign.
Mrs. Burns was the guest speaker at the regular Brown Bag Lunch session for students sponsored by Janette Schwartzburg. Mrs. Burns also was the guest lecturer for Matt Fearing's civics classes. Mrs. Burns' collection of numerous campaign buttons was an added treat for the students who heard her speak.
German classes 1B and 2 have had several guests recently. Students in the classes have interviewed each and written about them.
In German 2, guests included several high school exchange students from Lawrence's sister city of Eutin, Germany, and their teacher. They were Georg von Polier, Hildegard Klessig, Christian Brandt and English teacher Soenke Peters.
Another guest from Eutin was Karsten Krenzfeldt, who was hosted for a weekend by a West student, Drew Salsbury, and his family.
In German 1B, the first guest was George von Polier, who was hosted by Alyssa Humbarger's family for six weeks. Then the class interviewed Mike and Sara Whittington, aunt and uncle of Erin Wyatt. After telling the class about their experiences while living and working in Stuttgart, they treated the class to a German dessert.
The 1996-97 Junior Players officers are Ethan McDonald, president; Cassie Hilpman, vice president; Teddy VanNess, secretary; Jeremey Antley, treasurer; Lindsay Shields, Natalie Roady and Cathy Stella, points; Mia Goldsmith, costumes; and Jesse Chamberlin and Chris Wheatley, publicity.
The fall play was "Our Town" by Thorton Wilder.
Randi Young, ninth-grader at West, represented junior high students at the Oct. 28 candidate forum at city hall. She sat on a panel with three adults and asked questions of candidates running for district attorney, county treasurer, county commission and the Kansas House.
Carolyn Derusseau's civics classes have worked on a mock election for a president of West Junior High School. Their constituents were their team classes. They created their own party, party name, symbol, slogan and platform, which was centered on ways to make West a better school.
Classes conducted opinion polls and created buttons, locker stickers, posters and television advertisements. They held rallies. And on Election Day, a popular vote and electoral vote were held. Assigned roles were candidate, campaign manager, finance director, speech writer, press secretary and campaign worker.
Ninth-graders in Keri Austin's English classes and Matt Fearing's social studies classes are working on newsletters to be sent to parents/guardians and to community members.
Student editors for the first and second hour newsletter are Jonathan Huber, Ashley Lafond and Amity Weddle; editors for fourth and fifth hours are Cassie Hilpman, Lea Larsen and John Sheu; and editors for sixth and seventh hours are Josh Fike and Charity Wisler.
From early November to late December, students in Ms. Austin's English classes will study poetry and then will complete a unit on Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet."
West's eighth and ninth-grade football players held their annual banquet Monday at the West Junior High School cafeteria. Both teams finished the year with strong victories. Head coach for West football is Kevin Allan.