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The Student Voice of Prosper High School

Eagle Nation Online

The Student Voice of Prosper High School

Eagle Nation Online

The Student Voice of Prosper High School

Eagle Nation Online

Prosper builds up the competition

Students come to Walnut Grove High School, expand knowledge about academic events
Walnut+Grove+High+School+hosted+a+UIL+academic+learning+day+on+Oct.+21.+Students+from+all+around+the+state+came+to+gain+more+knowledge+and+experience+about+the+types+of+events+they+will+be+competing+in+this+year.+Students+will+compete+in+practice+events+before+districts+in+April.
Erica Deutsch
Walnut Grove High School hosted a UIL academic learning day on Oct. 21. Students from all around the state came to gain more knowledge and experience about the types of events they will be competing in this year. Students will compete in practice events before districts in April.

Walnut Grove High School opened its doors on a Saturday to help students from around the state prepare for this year’s UIL season. Racy Kane, the district’s director for UIL said she wanted to make sure this season is one of the best, so Prosper volunteered to host one of the state’s regional academic activities conferences.

“We want to build our program to create the best opportunity for success for our students,” Kane said. “Our coaches and coordinators are simply amazing.”

Students arrived in buses with some coming all the way from Tioga High School and Caddo Mills High School. This regional conference took place on Oct. 21 and started with sessions at 8 a.m. and ended at 1:30 p.m. The district competition will start in April, but practice meets have already begun.

Kane said that as far as getting ready for competitions, the district has started early this year.

“Our coaches and coordinators have been amazing at providing these opportunities for our students to get involved in their school,” Kane said. “Coaches work with those students to make sure that they have the opportunity to compete and practice to extend their best opportunity for success.”

Caitlyn Ketzle, a junior at Walnut Grove High School, said she competes in the five different journalism events.

“I’m looking forward to the different UIL events,” Ketzle said. “Also, getting ready for UIL season.”

The conference covered many UIL categories such as debate, oral interpretation, social studies, and computer science. Launa White, an AP Biology teacher at PHS, also attended the event.

“I’m excited today to see all these people come out to learn more about UIL,” White said. “(I want) to be able to see them grow their teams.”

Another competition category was theater one-act plays. Senior Corbin Billings, from Tioga High School, attended a session on CSI: character/scene investigation. In this lesson, the students received training on how to find evidence of a character’s motives.

“It was about reading the script and dissecting it,” Billings said. “I learned how to show emotions and how to tell different emotions from other people.”

Before she headed to her next session of the day, senior Mackenzie Anderson, from Caddo Mills High School, shared how her ‘Celebrating Positive Change Over Time’ session went.

“We learned all about the new Poetry Prose and Category B piece – and all the things you need to know for it,” Anderson said. “It went really well, and we learned a lot.”

Middle Schoolers and high school students have started virtual challenge events, and other practice meets will take place in January and February. Kane said that they have made changes this past summer in order to for all students to have a successful UIL experience this year.

“We pulled Modern Oratory and Impromptu Speaking (middle school events) down into the elementary levels and dropped Oral Reading down into third grade from just fourth and fifth, ” Kane said. “We also have created a science event for fifth graders that will require students to work together in small groups to problem-solve, research, and create a Google slideshow before going to present to judges. We pulled ‘Current Issues and Events,’ ‘Feature Writing,’ and ‘News Writing’ down into middle schools from the high school level as well as ‘Original Oratory,’ ‘Poetry and Prose,’ and ‘Informative/Persuasive Speaking.’ We hope that this will best help prepare our students to excel in their chosen events once they get into high school.”

Sofia Ayala made contributions to this article.

 

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Erica Deutsch
Erica Deutsch, Feature Editor
Erica Deutsch, originally from Orlando, Florida, is a junior at Prosper High School. This is her second year working for Eagle Nation Online and she serves as the feature and entertainment editor. She adores photography and hopes to create a positive impact with her writing and podcasts. Outside of school, she enjoys playing guitar, watching movies, trying new baking recipes, traveling, and spending time with friends and family.
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