Students of the MONTH

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Oh the Weather outside is FRIGHTFUL

Warrior Weekly
December13, 2013
By: Devin Rader (with some help from Ms. Cooper)

Mads Sing for Alzheimers
Last Sunday, our Choir and Madrigal Group had the opportunity to sing for Alzheimer's patients. These people were very happy to have good tidings during the holiday season, with songs sung that invited Christmas and Hanukkah. The groups also did a few songs that were sung in the fall concert and All District Choral Festival. “It’s great to look back and see what we have done. It reminds us of a couple funny things that happened along the way,” said Nicolas Hutchins, who is in Madrigals and Choir, singing bass for both groups.   

One Act Plays
The Drama club had been working long and hard on the One Act plays that they had since early in the year. On Friday, the One Act plays featured all of our very talented performers. “Superhero Support Group” tells the story of a few superheroes that had enough of the world they lived in. A Doctor had promised them a solution to their problem, but at what cost? Full of wannabe superheroes, this one act was full of hilarity and tears. The next one act, named “Twitch” tells the story of Nancy and Don, a young couple from a small town. They lived a relatively normal life, when their neighbors suddenly disappear without warning, and are replaced by a strange new couple. Nancy detects something “off” about the couple, because she thinks that their new neighbors watch their every move. They act normal except for a twitch that happens sometimes with their new “friends.” Promised to confuse you till laughter, it was a great thing to see. The last one act was called “Promaggedon” and tells the story of four normal teenagers, Gil, Alexis, Dot, and Theo, who experience a nuclear war on their Junior Prom night. Trapped in the school’s basement, they have only each other too keep company. Secrets come out of all the teenagers, even some that have been kept for years. Soon they figure out that all of them aren’t as normal as they seem. These One Act plays were hilarious to watch, and we can’t wait to see what happens in the coming months with more Drama productions.

Matt Tortolani and Claire Rader in 'Twitch'

Winter Wonderful Concert for Band and Orchestra
Thursday, the Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band, and String Orchestra, had the opportunity to spread some holiday spirit of their own. With Mr. Pattison leading the way, the band and orchestra performed a variety of holiday magical songs. String Orchestra strummed out a very good four sets of songs. Following the Orchestra was our Wind Ensemble, which performed a group of great holiday favorites. Ending the Concert was the Jazz Band, which swung its way into the hearts with a group of songs that got everybody swaying. Special thanks to the groups for putting in the time and hard work to make this Concert a complete success. “It’s great! I love it! It’s always awesome to play in the band and hear how far we have come with the songs,” says Bassoon player McKenna Duncan. Thank you band and orchestra! Way to kick off the break!

Carols by Candlelight
Parents! Teachers! Students! Staff! Alumni! Come one; come all to the annual “Carols by Candlelight” event on Monday and Tuesday held in the Multi-use room. This event includes members of our Choir, Madrigals group, Dance 3 class, and a few feature soloists. Tickets are five dollars at the door or if you want a ticket early, they are on sale if you buy one from the members of Choir! They are still five dollars, but if you get in early enough, you can get great seats! It’s going to be a great Carols this year, so come to YV next Monday and Tuesday! Also as an added bonus to the alumni of Ygnacio Valley High School, please join us for the final carol of the night. If you went to Ygnacio Valley, and joined our Choir or Madrigals program at some time, you know exactly what the last song will be.

Warrior Cross Country Team Works for Walnut Creek Marathon
The Warrior Cross Country team was out on the streets of Walnut Creek Saturday, bright and early, to cheer on fellow runners at the Annual Walnut Creek Half marathon. They manned a water station and passed out water to runners as they cruised by. 

Education Academy Juniors Gear Up to Build a School
The Education Academy Juniors were just handed their large semester project and got straight to work- the task? In groups of four, you are to design a comprehensive high school. With a 90 million dollar budget, students need to come up with building plans and measurements, as well as the school vision, mission statement and staffing procedures. Good luck future educators! 

Health Academy gets a visit from an alum
 Daniel Rosso came into the Health Sciences class and talked to students about his decision to pursue a career in the health care field after graduating from Ygnacio Valley HS.  He talked about his experience as a Paramedic and encouraged many of the students to pursue a career as a Paramedic because of the opportunity that this career provides to help others.  

 Classroom Snapshot... Ms. Weintraub- Biology
This week Warriors in Biology class were fine tuning (knee slap) their microscope skills, learning how to handle the equipment and pull a microorganism into focus.A skill our budding scientists will indubitably use in the future!

Grad Night E-Waste Fundraiser
Wait!! Before you throw out that old tv, computer monitor, electronic toy... The Grad Night committee has put together an e-waste event at YV for March 1st- hold on to it and deposit your e-waste then! All proceeds go towards production costs for Grad Night 2014! 

Saturday, December 7, 2013

It's beginning to look a lot like... WINTER.

Warrior Weekly News
December 6, 2013 

This week has been a good one for the Warriors, filled with events and celebrations, as well as hot cocoa and woolies. We welcomed everyone back from Thanksgiving break with freezing temperatures and smiles. 
Students took a moment of silence and the flag was at half mast for the passing of a great world leader, Nelson Mandela. 
May his teachings and example remain alive in all of us. 
Kaiser Secrets Assembly
This year marked the first time in a long time that we have had Kaiser Permanente's Education program come in and present their outstanding production of 'Secrets', a straight shooting play that approaches sexuality and its realities and risks. Reintroducing HIV to everyone's minds, as well as the other STI's (Sexually Transmitted Infections) that are so common and so well hidden. Students were divided into two groups, the senior and junior class attending first, then the sophomores and freshman. The students were silent and engaged as the cast approached these topics on their level, and questions were allowed at the end. Kaiser stuck around during lunch and had information, games and prizes, and it was an outstanding educational day for the Warriors. Thanks to Corissa Stobing for arranging the production, and YV Alum Jared Randolph (Class of 95) who is in charge of the education program for Kaiser. 

Cast of Kaiser's 'Secrets'
 Spring Musical Reveal
Mr. Carter and Ms. Cooper held an interest meeting on Tuesday about this year's spring musical production, and had the best turnout to date of actors, singers and dancers interested in participating. The musical title was announced- 'Legally Blonde'- a hilarious adaptation of the movie following Elle Woods as she sets out to pursue her true love all the way to Harvard Law School..."What, like it's hard?" Dates for auditions have been set, and a Master class for students interested in audition getting tips from a professional in the industry has been set up as well. Gia Solari-Welch has toured with the National Company of 'Evita', and is the former creative director for the Diablo Theatre Company. She won a Shellie Award for her production of Legally Blonde with DTC in 2011 for best direction and best production, a show Ms. Cooper had the pleasure of working with her on as a featured dancer and Delta Nu. 
Look for more information to come!  Auditions and master class will be held in January.

Diablo Theatre Company's Legally Blonde (photo courtesy of Ben Krantz)
 Gatorade kicks off 'G' Week
Winter Sports Athletes were treated to a week's worth of Gatorade product as a 'G' Week promotion, with Gatorade Rep Christy Samson talking to the athletes about priming, hydration and recovery techniques. Athletes have been trying the energy chews, protein shakes and of course Gatorade powder as part of the practice regimen. Thank you Gatorade for your support and generosity! 

Warriors join with the Marines for 'Toys for Tots' program
Sargeant Yang of the Local Marines Recruiting office came to talk to several groups on campus about the 'Toys for Tots' program, and we are off and running in collecting new or very lightly used toys for children. Renaissance Leadership, ASB Leadership, Sports Medicine, and Winter Sports are all collecting toys, competing to collect the most for bragging rights, all in good fun of course and for the greater cause. Students were excited to do their part for kids in need, and toys have already been coming in. Contact Ms. Cooper if you would like to donate, collection boxes are in the Leadership and SportsMedicine classrooms. ( 

Warrior Jam celebrates "Afternoon Madness" 
Because Midnight Madness is past our bedtimes... The 8th Annual Warrior Jam introduced the Boys and Girls Varsity Basketball teams, and featured free throw contests, basketball trivia, and the Staff vs Students Basketball game. After a three-year run as champions, the staff fell to the students 41-40. Staff players included coaches from Football, basketball, baseball, softball and soccer, as well as teachers Mr. Pattison (instrumental music), Ms. Cooper (dance and sports medicine) and Mr. Galvan (Health I and II). Mr. Macaluso (Biology) served as a referree. 

 Warriors Lead Off the Walnut Creek Christmas Parade
Our Golden Warrior Marching Band and Cheerleading Teams led off the Annual Walnut Creek Christmas Parade, which culminates in the Broadway Plaza tree lighting and Santa visit. Chilled to a wintery 23 degrees, the Warriors decorated their instruments with LED's and wore Santa Hats, making YV proud as they marched the streets of Walnut Creek. 

Rock Band, 'Neo-Geo' visits YV 
The Warriors were entertained on Friday at lunch by the band, Neo-Geo, presented by Skool Live, a promotion company that brings up and coming bands into the schools. The band was well received, even in chilling conditions, and we were excited to have them! 

Dance Program Takes in the Ballet
YV's Dance program had a wonderful opportunity to preview Ballet Joyeaux's presentation of, 'Once Upon a Christmas' at the Lesher Theater, thanks to the generosity and outreach of program director Jennifer Perry. Ms. Cooper brought 125 students to the Lesher to see the production rich in classical ballet, many seeing the genre for the first time. The students loved it, and were excited for the opportunity. Thank you to Laureen Fender's Ballet School!   

The Week in Sports
It was a great week for Winter Sports, with the Girls Soccer team handedly beating Hercules High 14-0 on Tuesday, Boys VA Basketball edging over Albany 42-40 that evening, and Boys Soccer winning over Las Lomas 3-0 on Thursday. Congratulations Warriors, and keep it up! 

Improv Team hosts First Show of the Year
YV's Improv Team hosted their first show Friday night to a great audience of staff, parents and alums. The team entertained the audience with games, splitting into two teams led by seniors Nic Hutchins and Devin Rader. Games at the end invited audience participation, with star alums like Dante Comstock and Jamaal Smith jumping up to participate. It was a great night showcasing our dedicated and talented actors. Don't miss the next one! 

Morgan, Nick and Bryan building a snowman in 7 seconds or less

Team 2 led by Devin Rader
Nic Hutchins introducing one of the night's games

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Turkey Lurkey Loo- Toodle Doodle Doo!

Warrior News
Week of November 22

GIRLS Start of with a WIN
Girls Basketball season began on Tuesday with a Varsity WIN over St Elizabeth's, 39-28. Kia Howell was the leading scorer for the girls, as the Lady Warriors posted up their first victory of the season. Congratulations to the team, and to Head Coach George Streeter for a great start! Looking forward to an exciting season! 

 Girls Soccer Start 1-0 for the season
 Our Lady Warriors Dominated their first game of the season at Hercules High School, posting up a score of 7-0. GREAT start ladies, we are looking for some amazing things this season!! 

WOW Assembly Celebrates Success! 
The fall WOW assembly, produced by the Renaissance Leadership class, celebrated many student achievement successes and showcased some of the amazing talent at YV. Among the accolades were the 95 Freshman with a 1st quarter GPA of 3.0 or higher, The 21 Sophomores headed to the Principals list with a 4.0 or better, more than 160 students who raised their GPA by .5 or more from last fall to last spring semesters, and more. The Top Ten Inspirational Staff were celebrated, as voted on by the students, and our day time Custodian Robert received the first "Unsung Hero" award, and was brought out to the floor with chants and a standing ovation. 

18 Golden Warrior nominations were announced, for seniors who were nominated by staff and students for this prestigious award based on their academic success, their contribution to the school and greater community, and their leadership habits. These nominees will be featured on the school website throughout the year, as well as in this blog. 

Some of the performers included a wonderful rendition of 'Your Man' that the audience went crazy for, performed by Sophomore Nelson Flores, and a group performance of the Cup Song, with the cups begin performed by 115 of the dancers in the dance program, sung by Nic Hutchins and Claire Rader. The staff dancers wrapped it up with, "What does the Fox say" with George Streeter running around as the elusive fox.

Honored guests included parents, alums, and school board member Lynne Dennler, and the Assembly was an overall success! 


Friday, November 15, 2013

Winter Sports Begin!

Warrior Weekly
By: Devin Rader

YV Jazz Rocks at District Jazz Festival
On Wednesday, our very own Jazz Band had the opportunity to play for all the schools of the district. After school, the Jazz Band drove over to DVC, where from 4 o’clock to about 9 o’clock, they were surrounded by Jazz! Not only did they play at the festival, but the band listened to Jazz Bands from around the district. Performances by Northgate, Concord, College Park, and Mount Diablo had the bands entertained for a while. After all the schools had performed, everyone took a break for a pizza dinner. Following the dinner, all the groups returned to the auditorium where they performed, and listened to the District Honor Jazz Band. Students from around the district auditioned to get into this group, and two of our very own students were in the performance! Congratulations to 1st Trumpet Andrew Buschemi, and 2nd Trombone Chris Kinny, for an awesome performance! Following the Honor Jazz Band, everyone was privileged to hear the Jazz Band that was once the DVC Night Jazz Band. With plenty of soloists and exciting charts, the students, though tired by the end, were happy to participate.

Winter Sports Tryouts Underway
Aaaaaaaaand they're off!! The Winter sports teams began tryouts this week, with Wrestling, Boys and Girls Basketball, and Boys and Girls Soccer. Turnout was fantastic, with Boys Soccer topping 100 vying for spots. With teams set by the end of the week, the Warriors are set to begin games as early as next week, with the girls playing their first game on Tuesday, and the boys playing at home Friday and Saturday. Wrestling has their first match on Wednesday at Pittsburg High School. 


JV Cheer Team Developed for first time in years! 
Our outstanding cheerleading team, led by coaches Audra Bern (YV class of 2012) and Ashley Alvarez (NG class of 2010) has done a great job recruiting and hosted tryouts this week to form a JV team in time for basketball season. The level of interest was high and a great team was formed! Look for them on the courts this Winter! 

Performing Arts Goes on Tour
Thursday, all the performing arts programs including Dance III, Jazz Band, Advanced Guitar, Madrigals, and Drama, had the chance to go around and perform for Oak Grove Middle School and Pleasant Hill Middle School, in an attempt to show the eighth graders how great the performing arts at Ygnacio Valley really are!  With all of the performances, the students of both middle schools were talking about YV and requesting an encore before they even got out the door. In short, YV has entered the minds of the Oak Grove and Pleasant Hill students in a very positive way! Way to go Warriors!

YVHS Performing Arts

What's Wrong with this Picture? 
In the quest to see who is the Staff Handstand Champion of the World, Mr. Freddie Galvan and Ms. Kelly Cooper stepped up to the challenge for round 1... 
Wait a minute... I think I know why Mr. Galvan claimed to win... 


Saturday, November 9, 2013


Ygnacio Valley High School
Week of November 4-8

Marching Band Ends Their Season on a HIGH NOTE!
The Golden Warriors marched to Victory at their very last competition this season, the Napa Band Review, earning a third place finish for the band, and another FIRST PLACE finish for the Color Guard. This has been a stellar year for the band, and a particularly excellent start for first year Band Director, Zach Pattison. Congratulations, Warriors- we are proud of you!  See their performance HERE

Education Academy Loses a Great One
The Warriors and the Education Academy said goodbye to their 19 year CTE teacher, Ms. Laura Hallberg, as she served her last day with YVHS. Ms. Hallberg has accepted a special assignment with the district for the Equity and Disproportionality Team to work with schools in solving their disparities as seen by the Office of Civil Rights. Ms. Hallberg has been a campus favorite for many years, teaching German in the early days, and then Education I and II, overseeing the academy and the student internships into local elementary schools. She bravely and publicly battled breast cancer and has served as an ambassador on campus for Breast Cancer Awareness month.We will miss her greatly, but it's only see you later... YVHS is a pilot school for PBIS, and she will be working closely with our team. And of course, Once a Warrior, Always a Warrior.

Warrior Music performs in the Annual Fall Concert
The Music Department shined in their annual Fall Concert as the Jazz band, Madrigals, and Concert Choirs performed selections for a great audience on Thursday. Zach Pattison, instrumental music director, led the Warriors with aplomb and Geoff Carter, Vocal Music Director kept everyone hoppin' with a variety of Doo Wop and classic tunes. The Warrior musicians will perform together again with the Dance III class and Drama Club on a recruiting tour Thursday the 14th at feeder schools Oak Grove Middle and Pleasant Hill Middle.

Ygnacio Valley Hosts the Fall Special Olympics for the 6th year
The Special Olympics brought area students from the district and area districts to compete in soccer events on Thursday in Warrior Stadium. Over 100 YVHS students volunteered for the event, serving as timers, referees, welcome crews, sports medicine and more. It was a great day of hope, inspiration, camaraderie and sport. Ygnacio Valley will be hosting the Special Olympics again in the spring for track and field events. Congratulations and thank you to VP Rianne Pfaltzgraff for coordinating these events.

Front Office gets a Facelift
The campus just got more beautiful, with a huge help from Memory Woodard and the Concord Rotary Club. Memory has been a long supporter of YVHS, along with Rotary, largely funding our Link Crew program and Interact club. Memory saw a need at the front office for a makeover and recruited Scott Bevan, from Studio Attune, to help design it. Hands down, the office looks amazing! What a great upgrade to the campus- thank you Memory, and thank you to Concord Rotary! 

Warriors play the last game of the Football Season
The Warriors fell to the College Park Falcons on Friday 42-12 in the final game of the season. It was a busy season for the Warriors, and for the Sports Medicine team as well, as they were able to serve the football teams all season long, learning essential medical skills and patient care techniques along the way. Thank you to the entire coaching staff, led by Julius Cross for JV, and Philip Puentes for Varsity, for their dedication and leadership all season, and to our Head Athletic Trainer, Kelly Cooper, for keeping our teams healthy and safe.