Wednesday, November 30, 2016


    Sparta High School's 2016-107 Olympian Yearbook is available for order! Make it one-of-a-kind by adding your name and up to four icons to the cover. The personalization deadline is February  24, 2017.
   Yearbooks can only be purchased online - extra yearbooks will not be ordered for purchase at the end of the school year. Buy your yearbook before its too late at ! Direct any questions to Mrs.Sclafani in room 252 or via

Friday, November 25, 2016


Conducted and Written by: Lauren Groff 

   With the school year in full swing, one thing pretty much any Spartan can tell you is that they feel rushed to get to their busses after the dismissal bell. As a matter of fact, most students do not visit their lockers after their last period class, leading them to carry all of their books for not only the second half of the day, but their homework from their morning classes as well. Out of the students interviewed, 93% of students agreed that the time allotted between the last period of the day and bus departure should be increased.

When asked for her stance on the issue, freshman Camryn Gundry quoted, “I leave my coat in my locker and I have to run back to get it. The process is unnecessarily stressful.” Most likely, Camryn is not the only student who faces this issue… who wants to lug around extra books and coats for the entire second half of the day just to catch the bus in time? The statistics have proved themselves - Spartans should be given more time to get to their busses after dismissal. Until next week!

Wednesday, November 23, 2016


Inspired by Mrs. Lopez's lunchtime coffeehouse performance sessions, the SHS library decided to expand the jam session to an evening performance.  Acts included students singing, reciting poetry and playing piano. In addition, some faculty members showed off their talent. Performances included a beat poetry reading by Mr. Rivers,  Mr. Schels on the drums for two Beatles songs and Mrs. Kopp performing a slam story.  Guests were also graced with little Jack and Josie Lopez sharing their Christmas and holiday tunes.  The event was open to anyone who wanted to perform or attend and was free of charge. The library is looking forward to hosting another coffee house night in February 2017.

The Beatles!

Silent Night

The Beatnik


Monday, November 21, 2016

Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them Movie Review

Article by: Sean Hannon

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Movie Review
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is a book written by J.K Rowling as a prequel to the popular Harry Potter books. The success of the Harry Potter movies makes transforming this book into a film a profitable idea for Warner Brothers, Inc. The movie was an attempt to reignite the Harry Potter frenzy that had gripped America not too long ago. The movie is directed by David Yates, the same director of the last four Harry Potter films. The cast is completely original, but of course some Harry Potter characters are mentioned, and I'm confident some will show up in the four sequels Warner Brothers has planned. A lot of references to the past Harry Potter movies were left out.
In the 1920’s Newt Scamander, a young British man, had just arrived in New York City. He is a wizard who collects magical beasts in his magical suitcase, which acts as reservation for these magical beasts. He is writing a book documenting the beasts, hence the name of the book/movie.  But in the United States wizardry is driven underground and is very secretive and restricted to the public. While in a bank, one of his smaller beasts gets loose and Newt has to recapture it. This is when he runs into Jacob Kowalski, a nomag(non-magical person/muggle for Harry Potter fans) who is caught up in Newts shenanigans and accidentally switches their suitcases, meaning Jacob Kowalski has the magical one containing the beasts. After the suitcases are switched, Newt is met by Porpentina Goldstein, a wizard who tries to turn in Newt to the wizarding body of America, for unleashing the beast on the city already afraid of magic. But they discover that Jacob has the suitcase and they have to track him down before he opens it. They are too late and a wide selection of beasts are released and Newt, Porpentina, and Jacob have to track them down.
The characterization and interactions in the film are great. Newt is characterized as awkward, book smart and anti-social where Jacob’s traits are almost exactly the opposite. He may be considered awkward but the almost the entire film he is in a new world of magic which is alien to him. Jacob is the most memorable character in the movie. I would almost call him an Olaf from the movie, Frozen but not just serving a comic relief. His jokes come at perfect times and are never repetitive - seeing him interact with the magical world can be humorous. Newt and Jacob make a perfect team as they hunt down magical beasts in 1920’s New York City. The setting is very fitting as the political turbulence and enormous wealth of the 1920’s seem integrated with the plot and make for a more interesting movie.

There are numerous problems with this movie. First, the plot is odd as in there's almost two stories within the movie.  One is ignored throughout the middle of the movie, but for little references here and there. These plots are very loosely connected and if one plotline were gone it wouldn’t very much affect the other. Secondly, the overuse of CGI is also a problem as it gets pretty old throughout the movie and can even hurt your eyes.  The ending is pretty underwhelming(don't worry, no spoilers here!). It feels like nothing has changed in the world, or was learned by the main characters. It is almost as if this movie was made just to set up the characters in the next film. As well as the plots, there are also two villians. One of them is defeated in 20 minutes and the other in a half a minute, which is odd for a movie from Warner Brothers.

This movie was good. If you are a Harry Potter fan I fully recommend it - you would probably enjoy it more than me.  If you're indifferent on the franchise, it's an okay movie and if you are really want to be introduced about the franchise I still recommend it. If you could care less I would go and see a different movie.

The Fantastic Friday Facts - 11/18

Article by: Will Nichols

This week in history!
  1. On November 19, 1863, Abraham Lincoln gave the Gettysburg Address.
  2. November 15, 1941, was the War of Starvation against Leningrad. Beleaguered Soviet Red Army units southeast of Leningrad finally crumbled under the heavy firepower of the German Army, allowing the city of Tikhvin to fall.

Some “Happy Birthdays” of Sparta High School! If I didn’t call you out then pat yourself on the back, throw yourself a party, and I’ll sing you Happy Birthday too!:-)  

James Lynch - November 1st
Peyton Martini- November 2nd
Nick Elnasser-  November…..
Brian Schoch-  November 11th
Rachael Schmidt- November 13th
William Nichols- November 14th
Quinn Van Es- November 16th
Coralyn Kurz- November 16th
Matthew Fede- November 19th
Samuel Jules- November 23rd
Alex+Alyssa Schimpf- November 23
Sara Vincelette- November 25th
Lauren Zanetakos- November 25th
Alexis Faria- November 26th

Snapple Fact of the Week:  Drumroll Please!!!!!! “An Eagle’s nest can weigh up to two tons. “

Juniors in Gym are playing soccer, while some seniors have left the building for health. Meanwhile, Sparta High School Football team is undefeated with 11-0.

Outside look
West Point Military Academy on 11/19/16 hosted a  football game  against Morgan State University of Baltimore, and West Point creamed Morgan State 60-3. Everything From great plays, exquisite scenery, working cannons, military parades, parachutes, and helicopters. Don’t miss out, on the experience of a lifetime!!!!!  Former SHS Alumni  James Schoch was there to give Boy Scouts Troop 95 of Sparta a tour of the Academy!  

As always Thank You, and I’ll see you soon!

Yours Truly,
William Nichols A.K.A Wild Will  ( Junior.S.H.S)  
A Picture  Below of The West Point Military Academy.


Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Super Moon Lights up Sparta's Night Sky

Last Sunday’s super moon was brighter than even this 2014 super moon. Source: International Business Times

This Sunday, a super moon made it’s way across the sky, grabbing the attention of astronomers the world over.

Super moons seem to occur almost annually, but the unique thing about this super moon was that it was the brightest super moon to occur in almost 70 years.

Now, most students would spend their Sunday nights studying and catching up on forgotten homework, all around getting ready for Monday. I’m not like most students, and I get excited about these kinds of things. I decided to spend my Sunday night with a telescope viewing the astronomical marvel myself.
Sunday’s super moon

Scientists were not kidding when they said it was bright! The area which I set up my telescope was illuminated by the moon, with a long shadow being cast behind me. Not only that, the moon was so close, very distinct details could be seen on its surface, such as craters of meteorite impacts which looked like little white freckles on the lunar surface.

I watched as the white behemoth slowly crept across my field of vision, leaving me stunned at how fast such a large object could move with such haste.

I stayed there for about half an hour, simply staring at the beautiful light through the small lens I had, feeling nothing but pure awe. Sunday's super moon was a truly a sight to see, and one that only comes around once in a lifetime.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Thanksgiving Survival Guide #1: Pilgrims Didn't Ponder Politics

Thanksgiving is just two weeks away; exactly twelve days until we all stuff our faces in the name of gratitude only to regret it after. Chances are, you'll be reunited with family you only ever see once a year, eat enough pie to last you until Christmas, be forced into uncomfortable conversation, take awkward family photos, and you know it, have to deal with your family. We've all been there. Up to Thanksgiving, I've got you covered on all the topics and how to deal with them. This issue? Politics.
Image result for thanksgiving politics
It’s better to not talk politics with your family that ranges from your super-conservative grandpa, who always mentions “When I was your age…” and “What’s wrong with this generation?”, and then to your super cool, ultra liberal aunt who always speaks her mind. We’re at the age where we have our own opinions and we’re formulating our political beliefs - we’re the future of this country, guys! With these new (for some) ideas brewing in our fresh minds, I can guarantee each one of us will be sucked into the political talk. When there is awkward silence at the table, someone is bound to bring up this presidential election we just had. You’ll be asked on your opinion on immigration/gun control/LGBTQ rights, and before you speak, your mom will give you the warning look - we all know the one. If you don’t speak your mind, you risk becoming the strange, mute cousin but if you do speak your mind, you may offend grandpa (heaven forbid.), or get into a heated discussion with your uncle who doesn’t even have a brain to function why it’s a necessity for all, yes all, American people to be granted liberty.
Don’t worry. We can handle this together. Whether you support Trump’s policies or sympathize with the Trump protestors, you can survive Thanksgiving dinner with a sigh of relief that things didn’t turn so sour. Here’s how to take action.

  1. Show off your new skills you’ve learned in the past year. Learned jiu jitsu? You can basically end cousin Tommy’s uncomfortable derogatory terms at least until dessert. Hit a new high note in honors choir? Sing “no” as high as you can, and “accidentally” crack Aunt Lynn’s wine glass. That’ll end that. 
  2. Excuse yourself. With a plate full of extra stuffing. If they can’t see you, they can’t ask you on your stance on abortion. Or because you’ve become injured; you know, burnt your mouth with some gravy, cut yourself with a wishbone - Thanksgiving is a catastrophe in and of itself, and you simply don’t have time to discuss Trump’s potential cabinet when you’re in pain.

  3. Confuse them. Don’t give them what they’re expecting - agree with their stupid beliefs. Yes, Sarah, I do believe that the government should kidnap everyone who isn’t vegan. Maybe we should place them in solitary confinement too. Let’s talk more about this later. Eat your yams, sweetie. 

  4. Offer to babysit, aka sit at the kids table. You’d rather bet on Crayola over RoseArt anyday than state and explain your stance on Syrian refugees.
  5. Leave the room. Collect yourself. Return to room with Pecan Pie. How can anyone argue with pie? Everything is good and dandy, until Joey forgot he was allergic to nuts and starts wheezing. Here comes yet another problem...

Doctor Strange Movie Review

Article by: Sean Hannon 

    Doctor Strange is the most recent movie by Marvel Studios, an extension of the Marvel universe to new lore and a new character Doctor Strange.The lead role, Doctor Strange, is played by Benedict Cumberbatch, a seasoned actor who plays quite well for his character in this movie. Other seasoned actors include Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Benedict Wong featured in The Martian, who also play their characters well. The cinematography in the movie is spot on like most Marvel films, although the CGI could be better in some scenes, it is nothing that ruins the entire movie.
Summary(Minor Spoilers!)
    Doctor Strange was an egotistical, arrogant, yet talented neurosurgeon in New York. He lives his wealthy life to its fullest extent, but when a freak accident causes damage to his hands, he is in a desperate attempt to fix himself and save his surgeon career. He looks for healing by spiritual means which leads him to Nepal. There, he joins a group of sorcerers and finds himself caught up in an ideological war between two sects of the sorcerers. The plot is in the Marvel theme of villain vs hero where Doctor Strange emerges as a hero against the opposing sect.
    Overall, Doctor Strange is a fantastic movie. The fights between the sorcerers are beautiful as they incorporate many different types mystical weaponry and spells to make fights interesting. For example, a sorcerer changed the center of gravity by making people gravitate to a side of a building, therefore interrupting their spells and making them fall a couple of feet. Besides the fights the plot is very strong considering the universe they’re in and takes advantage of advanced magics like controlling time and the effect it may have on people. The clash of the ideologies of the sorcerers are very interesting, (unlike many movies) the conflict actually makes the viewer question which side is true, but after some time it's very obvious who are the “good guys”. The jokes hit most of the time and are well thought out.
    The movie had some problems that may break the immersion of many intelligent viewers. The injury that Doctor Strange has inflicted in the beginning of the film seems to fade away in a fight scene as he uses the injured body part to its full potential, but after that it appears weak again as if the whole fight scene didn't happen. Some fans may be turned away by the lack of realism in the movie, but to my personal opinion I didn't find it a problem. As mentioned in the positives some jokes miss badly and only the most dedicated of children can enjoy. The arrogance and ego of Doctor Strange lingers a little too long in the film which can get irritating quickly, but past the halfway mark he humbles up fast.
    Doctor Strange feels like a classic Marvel movie and fits well in the Marvel universe. Besides a few hiccups here and there it's a great experience and I fully recommend it. However, it should not be a first choice pick for those seeking a more realistic Marvel film.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016



Sparta High School DECA is sponsoring DECAdes Spirit Week! The days are as follows:

Monday: 50s - dress as a Greaser or prepster!

Tuesday: 60s - channel your hippie vibes!

Wednesday: 80s - show off the big, the bold, and the colorful!

Thursday: 90s - walk down memory lane!

Friday: DECA t-shirt day - students not in DECA, show your Sparta spirit!

November 14 - November 18 is also Global Entrepreneurship Week. Visit the school store to purchase items from peer-run businesses such as:

  • Lifelong Tyedye
  • Simplicity Stones
  • Spartan Strings
  • Soyful Scents
  • Rags to Bags
  • Benefit Bombs 

Friday, November 4, 2016

SHS Girls Soccer Kicks Into High Gear

Article By: Billy Stoddard  

Senior Kelly Carolan
       There is no doubt the girls soccer team here at Sparta is definitely a tremendous source of pride. With an upcoming game in the state tournament against Ramsey on November 4, the team hopes to continue its playoff run and add another win to their strong 14-4 record. When asked what her favorite characteristic of the team is, senior Kelly Carolan says she is, “Proud of how much of a team we are”. Carolan said that the team this year has more depth and more ability for everyone to score than last year. When asked about the toughest game the girls have played in so far, Kelly said it had to be Mendham or Pope John. Goalie Julia Flake (sophomore) also said her favorite thing about the team is “the chemistry between the teammates”. The student section also plays a big role in keeping momentum high and cheering the players on. Seniors Mikey Freeman and Tommy D’Ascoli are some of the leaders of the section. Freeman said the fans are “all about positivity. Everyone wins”. Tommy D’Ascoli also said he likes to support the athletes by “getting really loud and getting into it”. Overall the girls soccer team has had a great season so far and is confident for their game against Ramsey. Julia Flake says, “we are going to win it”.
Julia Flake, goalie 

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Students Refuse to Pick Sides as the Election Approaches

The election is now less than a week away. Who will you be voting for?

This year, the country was thrown into a commotion as the presidential election caused radical splits in the Democratic and Republican political parties. It can also be seen that in both political parties, party members cannot support their candidates due to the events that have occurred over the course of the year. In recent reports, the support for both candidates has dropped to an all time low, a low hat has not been seen since the election of 1984.

Now, as the election grows ever closer, students at Sparta High School have found that with all of the mudslinging that has been going on in the election, it has been hard to see through the attacks and find a feasible answer. In a candid poll, students found themselves unable to choose between the two candidates and most felt that the two were equally unfit to become president.

At the moment, the race is still too close to call. Politicians warn that the people must make their decision very carefully, for this would be an election that could change American history.