Friday, January 23, 2015

Back in the Saddle!

Winter Madness
(In a good way) 
First off, to our followers, we apologize for the lapse in coverage- YVHS has been doing some outstanding things this winter, but one of them has not been the Internet. So we are hoping to catch up and stay up after this week! 

Now, in Warrior Territory, we celebrated the holidays in a ton of different ways. The halls were adorned with cheer and the skies were clear, scarves are out, boots strapped on, and winter is upon us. Here are some of the things happening in the winter months at YVHS. 

Winter Spirit Week
Our ASB Spirit Commisioners Michael Mendoza and Josiah Cisler put together a fun week for winter spirit week- with students encouraged to bust out their craziest socks, winter hats, holiday colors and of course, the sweaters you only wear once a year. 

Eren Tugcu and ASB Teacher Corissa Stobing sporting the holiday sweaters

Warrior Jam
ASB put on our annual Warrior Jam event, where students come out to meet this year's basketball teams, our own version of Midnight Madness. Prizes are given, a three point and free throw contest, and of course the ever-popular Staff/Student basketball game. This year's game was light on the ladies of the Warrior Staff, and for this reason we believe, the staff lost to the students for the first time in this blogger's recollection. Next year, Warrior fans. The comeback will be huge. 
Kimmel Sadat (12th) and Mark Tran, our AD go head to head in a free throw contest.
Tran dominated. Of course. Unbiased opinion obviously. 

Carols by Candlelight
Our 27th Annual Carols by Candlelight was a huge hit thanks to the hard work of the wonderful performing artists! Concert Choir, Madrigals, Guitar, and Dance 3 all performed holiday hits and standards, and the audience was treated to homemade cookies as well! This is a tradition and a favorite, and many arts alums came out to show their support and love for the staff involved - Mr. Carter our vocal music director, at the helm of this wonderful tradition for the last two decades and counting, and his counterpart Ms. Kelly Cooper, running the dance program side of things. What a great event, and thank you to all for attending! 
MadMen give it to us Country Style

Winter One Act Plays
The Drama Club (and class!) once again produced some outstanding one act plays for our English classes to enjoy, and our evening audience on Wednesday the 17th as well! Directed by Ms.Cooper and Ms. Hopper were two short comedies - Office Rumors and Detective Story. The third play was longer, called the Fourth Wall, and directed by Rachel Gephart, our resident stage manager! The Spiegatorium was packed to the brim, reminding us thespians that our next YVHS project REALLY needs to be a theater. What do you think Warriors? Can we get that going? 
Wall to wall audiences for Winter One Acts. Time to expand.

Audiences were delighted and the actors did a wonderful job of pulling these together! 

The One Act Cast. Plus Special Emcee Guest Leah Cooper (5) 

Hall Decorating 
Our Annual Club Hall Decorating contest brought out some great new themes this year, and clubs worked hard to deck the halls of YV and put us all in the holiday spirit! The winning hall received a pizza party, and this year's winning hall was Nightmare Before Christmas, by our brand new Breaking Down the Walls club and the Art Club! (obviously artists--- the decorations were amazing!) 

Senior Breakfast
Our incredibly busy (and state recognized) ASB put together yet another event this week, our annual Senior Breakfast. Seniors were treated to a fresh cooked meal by the senior teachers, playing board games while waiting, in pajamas, and sipping orange juice. They were then serenaded by the same teachers with some interesting carols. Some surprises all around, including Principal Stephen Brady's impressive baritone! What a great time for the class and a great send off tp Winter Break! 
Just Dance Battles

Senior Breakfast highlights

Mid-Month Madness is Back
Staff went back to some sweet traditions from the Principal Sheila Walker days, and that included MidMonth madness staff bonding! Nice for the Warriors to see each other outside of the copy room and be reminded of our human-ness. Yay for staff bonding! 

Raising for Relief Club
Run by President (Senior) Kayla Samuels, the Raising for Relief Club put in their charity efforts this Winter with a successful canned food drive, and by getting together and cooking for the Winter Nights shelter! What a way for our Warriors to spend their holiday break! #WarriorProud

Spotlight On- ART- with our own amazing NATHAN VASARHELY
If you ever have a chance to walk down the 600 wing, you may be treated to some of the outstanding projects that Mr. Vasarhely has his class focusing on. We wanted to take a moment to talk to Mr. V about what the classes were working on with these outstanding tile renderings of John Wayne.

"In my Art Design, Art II, and Advanced Art classes, we were focusing on high contrast imagery. As a source of inspiration we first looked at a street art documentary, "Exit Through The Gift Shop." This doc focused on the stencil art of Sherpard Fairey (OBEY) and Banksy. As an introductory project we collaborated on these John Wayne posters as a class. Collaboration is an important aspect we were working on this first quarter. First, I made screenshots of several images that I then copied and pasted into Photoshop. I then changed the image size and adjusted the threshold to transform the images into high contrast black and white. After I made a grid of the image with one inch squares. Each student was then responsible for three little squares, that they transcribed onto larger 8 in. squares using a quadrant system. After creating a contour drawing, they started collaging down the black and white areas using magazines. I call each grid a mini abstract piece of artwork. What we do at the end is piece each square together as a puzzle. (This is done with a number/letter combination set forth at the beginning of the process.) ---- The grid system is taken from the portraits created by artist Chuck Close. Since much of the imagery from many modern street artists is taken directly from popular culture, we mimicked that with each classic John Wayne character.

Rooster Cogburn - "Tue Grit"
Captain Nathan Brittles - "She Wore A Yellow Ribbon" ----- "Actually where I got my first name; My dad is a big JW fan"
Ethan Edwards - "The Searchers"
Tom Doniphon - "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance"

Clearly not John Wayne, but a similar process was used in creating Frankenstein with a different medium

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

What is this wet stuff?

Winter Season at YVHS 

As the Warriors gear up for a busy week of holiday activities, we bust out the galoshes and umbrellas and hunker down in the corners of the buildings to try to stay dry. A lot has happened in Warrior territory so let us recap some highlights--

Performing Arts takes Broadway... In SF
Performing arts students took a day to the city to dance and watch one of the greatest Fosse musicals, Chicago. 
They started the morning on Bart getting off at 16th and Mission to walk to the renowned ODC dance center, taking an energetic class called Fusion Rhythms from teacher Dantè. He took the dancers through aerobic routines in a variety of styles from Afro Hatian to Salsa and the students sweat for a good hour and a half, garnering a lot of attention and compliments from class regulars who noticed the "intruders" immediately. 

Then it was off to the Curran theater where John Stapleton (of Seinfeld fame) played the enigmatic Billy Flynn. Great day had by all, and the Health Academy juniors joined in for the show too!

The Health Academy took their own trip to the theater that day as well- #WarriorProud

Our runners were treated to a wet final as they ran the NCS race in the rain. Junior Jorge Bernabe Velazquez finished 27th overall in this high capacity race and the Warriors represented well with 5 males and one female runner qualifying. Congrats to our outstanding runners! 

WOW ASSEMBLY celebrates achievement 

The annual fall wow assembly did not disappoint, and students were honored for GPA improvement, Honor Roll, Principal's list, and more. The Assembly also featured our Golden Warrior announcement, with 16 seniors reviewing the honor. 
Finally, our many talented students were featured with Nelson Flores, Rosemary Cruz, and Dance 3 ending with the staff dancers working their stuff to TI. 

Warrior Family loses a legend
Mr. Art Atkinson, who taught at Ygnacio for 35 years, passed away over the thanksgiving break. Mr. Atkinson had retired in 1986, and was living in Oregon. He is survived by his daughter Deirdre who followed in the legend's footsteps and is a teacher as well. Mr. Atkinson was known to the students as the 'Big Mamoo', and is remembered fondly for pushing the envelope and his dedication. He would greet students at the door and instruct them not to disturb the 'Wa', when they came in, teaching them to focus their energy in a positive way in the classroom and leave the drama behind. He was a huge Bob Dylan fan and would deconstruct lyrics with the students, recognizing the poetry in great songs. 

We will miss you Mr. Atkinson, and thank you for all you gave to all of our Warriors. 

Mr Atkinson and his Daughter Deirdre
A YVHS school newspaper from 1969

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Save the Daylight!


In Collaboration with Aidee Hernandez (Senior), Rafael Maciel (Senior) and Crystal Roblejo (freshman) 

Warriors have a LOT going on, so it is a great thing we manipulated the clocks to eek out some extra daylight! Let's look at what's been happening in Warrior Territory...

College Fair
For the second year in a row, a district college fair descended upon our campus, inviting students in the MDUSD and presenters from colleges around the country to meet together and discuss what they could do for each other. The fair was incredibly organized, spear-headed by our own PTSA President, Ilana Samuels, and students came to get an idea of what schools were out there and how they can get their feet in the door.

Combined Choirs Concert
For the second year in history, the choirs of MDUSD came together musically at Ygnacio Valley for a wonderful combined choir concert. Each group sang pieces prepared at their school sites, and they had the opportunity to sing together for a couple of numbers as well. What a wonderful event! And thank you to all of the vocal music directors for bringing the kids together in song! See a video HERE...

Guitar Concert OGMS
YV guitar players, led by Geoff Carter, collaborated with their younger counterparts at Oak Grove Middle for a guitar concert that was a wonderful success! Congrats to all of the strummers and thank you to Mr Carter for all of the hard work pulling this together! 

Puente Field Trip
Our Puente program, in its 3rd year, took their students on a whirlwind tour of Southern California colleges for a wonderful field trip organized by program leaders Kara Yu and Socorro Lomas. Students traveled by charter bus and averaged about 4 college visits a day, favorites being UCLA and USC of course. The program goal is to graduate college bound students, ones who would be the first in their families to go on to higher education - and this trip was certainly inspiring to our kids! Thank you Ms. Yu, Ms. Hopper and Ms. Lomas! 

Special Olympics
For the 5th year at YVHS, the regional Special Olympics came to our campus, where students (including some Warriors) competed in soccer. Over 80 YV students served as volunteers for the event, coordinated by interim VP Mike Ing. Many classes brought their students out to watch, and it was a wonderful day on campus for all! Be on the lookout for the spring dates for the Special Olympics track and field event as well! 

Senior Night Football and Cheer
Regular football season wrapped up with a game versus Clayton Valley Charter at home, and we took some time to honor our senior football players and cheerleaders for their last home game. 12 seniors on football and 7 on cheer were escorted by their parents, families, teachers and loved ones to wish them luck for the years ahead and to say thank you for all you've done for the school- we are proud to have you Warriors! 


NAPA Band Review
Our marching band also celebrated their seniors in their last March of the year at the Napa Band Review. While the Golden Warriors did not place, they had a wonderful showing at this prestigious event and we look forward to them marching on the French Quarter this winter!

Watch part of their performance HERE

Halloween was festive and fun for the Warriors with what felt like the largest costume participation we have had in years! Some great creative costumes came out for the occasion and a good time had by all.. 


Monday, October 27, 2014

Getting Darker these Days...

As fall darkens the skies, the Warriors march on- here is what happened last week- 

The Band Takes on Santa Cruz
The Golden Warriors marched on Santa Cruz for the annual Band Review, where the Color Guard took the honors this time around in 3rd place. Excellent work, Warriors! 

ASB Cleans the Campus
In an impromptu service project, the ASB team while cleaning up from the homecoming dance, found the campus to be riddled with trash- best way to make change is to start within, so the class decided to run a quick campus cleanup. Great job Warriors, and thank you! 

Ed Academy Bonding
The Education Academy took a day on Wednesday to work on their cohesiveness and tolerance between grade levels as they went to the field for the day and did team building with a barbecue. They enjoyed field games, food, and then got a little deeper as the day went on, getting to know each other on another level. Kudos to Ed Teachers Thatcher Palmer, Leslie Addiego, Nicole Kipnis, and Jim Lyon for bringing the kids together and running this great event! 

"Lights Out" for the After School Program
The After School Program, led by Allyn Monzon, led their second annual "lights out" event, this time hosted by Sun Terrace Elementary School. There, programs throughout the district were able to highlight what they had to offer, coming just weeks after California was awarded with the Best After School Programs in the country. This valuable program continues to serve our students with Breakdance Club, Cheer, After School tutoring, Homework Center, Madrigals, Warrior Chef, and more. 

Senior Night for Volleyball
The Lady Warrior Volleyball team played their last regular home game this Thursday against Northgate High School. Seniors Kia Howell, Kyedda Gabuat, Maddie King, and Ariana Whitmarsh were honored, and the Warriors fought the Broncos valiantly, ultimately falling to them in three sets. The Ladies will end their season on the road this Tuesday against Concord High School. 

Fall Concert
The Jazz Band, Wind Ensemble and Choirs brought music to the MU Thursday with their annual fall concert. Audiences were treated to some delightful sounds, and Mr. Carter even sat in with the jazz band to play keyboards on a number. All thanks go to Mr. Pattison for the instrumental music excellence, and Mr. Carter with the choir- great job! 

JV Football with a Resounding WIN
Friday, Jv and Varsity Football met up at Mt Diablo High School to face off against the Red Devils. The JV team dominated their game and beat the Devils easily. The Varsity team fought and were up at half, only to work hard in a nail biter down to the last 10 seconds, losing by a narrow margin of 34-31. 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014


Homecoming!! The sounds of fall, the early darkness, and the on-campus festivities- ever-present this year as any other! Warriors celebrated Homecoming week with their spirit days-

Monday was Dynamic Duo day- Warriors "twinned" with their BFF's or came as a pair!
Staff Twins Kelly Perkins and Kelly Cooper

Students Kayteeand Vivi

Staff Duo from the Health Academy Shannon Carr and Bethan Lamb

JV Cross Country Runners- Sofia Campos and Cambra Lutz- Sofia placed 4th at this DVAL meet! 

Tuesday was Mardi Gras day- YV was decked out in green, gold, and purple, channeling their inner cajuns, and beads were a'plenty around campus.

Wednesday was Breast Cancer Awareness day- bring out your pink and honor our fighting Warriors in our lives

Thursday was Aloha day, with the flower prints and tropical leis all around the Warrior Ohana, capping off the events with our annual Homecoming Rally!

The Rally was one to remember, opening with an outstanding performance by our Concert Choir, led by Mr. Geoff Carter, as the Warriors sang "Minoi Minoi" 

There were some fun rally games and a lot of school spirit

Dance 3 performed a Polynesian number choreographed by YV alum Aivi Alatini (Lamipeti) who donated her time and expertise to get the Warrior Dancers ready for the theme. See their performance here...

Dancers with Choreographer alum Aivi Lamipeti-Alatini- and Leila Fa Class of 2009 

Finally, all of the homecoming court nominees were honored, and the senior nominees performed their hilarious skits.

Friday night the Warrior Football team took on College Park for their homecoming game - While they fought a hard battle, the score ended with the Warriors losing a heartbreaker to the Falcons 26-54.

Also at the game, during half time- our 2014 Homecoming Queen and King were crowned- Priscilla Arredondo and Speedy Lopez! 
King Speedy and Queen Priscilla shown here with 2013 winners Nargis Safi and Patrick Valencia

Saturday night YV came back and danced beneath the gardenias for their tropical themed homecoming dance.

What a great week! Thank you to ASB and Corissa Stobing for planning and executing these great events for our YV community!

Coming up! 

Fall Concert and Volleyball Senior Night THIS THURSDAY

Warrior FB meets up at Mt Diablo to take on the Red Devils at 7pm Friday

Then Next Week YV hosts the District College Faire on Tuesday, the All District Choir Festival on Wednesday! Don't miss them!