Coffee House: A Review

By Sapna Humar

Last Wednesday, Forest Hill’s music department hosted its second coffee house of the year, and it was a great success! For those of you who don’t know, FHCI’s coffee house is a gathering of students where anyone can perform and showcase their musical talents, whether it be singing a song or strumming a tune on the guitar. 

This was the second time coffee house was held in the music room, and the atmosphere was one of the defining characteristics of the night. The dim lighting, numerous lamps, and yoga mats on the ground really set the mood, and made for a relaxed environment where performers and the audience could feel comfortable.

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To top it off, free food was offered as well! During intermission, a wide variety of snacks were given to both the audience and the performers, and this really solidified people’s enjoyment of the event.

Overall, it was a great night, with a supportive audience and extremely talented performers. However, if even more people had come to cheer on their friends, or just to simply hang out, the event would be that much better. Coming to coffee house, even for a few minutes, would have instantly brightened your day and would have made for a great place to just relax and relieve your stress. The next coffee house, which will be held this November, will no doubt prove to be even better than this year’s!

A sincere congratulations goes out to all performers, and a special thank you to all those who organized the event!

FHCI Students “Saddened​” By​ Holocaust Announcement Assembly​

On Friday Morning, instead of the regular Holocaust Assembly on Yom HaShoah, Forest Hill Collegiate Insitute changed it up and had a 15-minute assembly on the announcements during the second period. Jewish Culture Club members discussed the tragedy that was the Holocaust and honoured the approximately six million Jews and five million others who perished in the Holocaust as a result of the operations by Nazi Germany and its collaborators.

The assembly was broadcast across all classrooms in the school and discussed the importance of hearing about the Holocaust, the horrendous nature of genocides and listened to beautiful prayers for peace. Students were encouraged to turn off their phones and direct all their attention to the assembly. The announcement also talked about the recent anti-Semitic graffiti that was found on a student poster at Northern Secondary School.

Although many teachers and students believed that the assembly was a positive change, others had very different opinions. Grade 11 Student, Bailee Cohen, says that her “entire class had a debate” and felt like the assembly was “lazy” and “disrespectful”. Cohen also noted that the school has long assemblies in the auditorium for Prom but lack assemblies for “important days”, such as Pink Day. Her English class wrote a letter to the administration with her teacher that expressed their feelings for the assembly, according to Cohen.

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Other students shared similar opinions with Cohen. Noa Wolfe, a student in Bailee’s English class, says “the announcement played at my school this morning was a cop-out for the Holocaust assembly that Forest Hill has put on for years.”

I believe the millions of people who died during this time deserve more than a 10-minute speech over the intercom.

Wolfe says that she looks forward to the assembly every year. “It is an opportunity for me to learn more about this issue in an engaging and creative way. However, this year the assembly was cancelled and a quick announcement was put in its place.” She thinks that the regular assembly should not have been cancelled, “especially because of the large Jewish community Forest Hill has.” She adds that “we as a school should have given the very few survivors left the respected that they deserve.”

Marlee Moskoff, a grade 11 student at Forest Hill Collegiate Insitute, says that “the announcements were not nearly as effective as an assembly would’ve been. Assemblies have visual and audio components which are more engaging for students.” She noted many flaws with the new assembly, such as the fact that students tend to tune out for announcements. “The message of the Holocaust is important enough to take students out of class to better communicate the message.”

This is an extremely important message to me because my family was targeted in the Holocaust and I want there to be as much awareness as possible.

After the assembly, classes were invited to come to the foyer to sign a poster for “upstanding,” which was discussed in detail during the announcement. Upstanding is defined as an “honest” and “respectable” member of the community.

 

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Students on the March of the Living (2018)

 

A grade 12 student, who requested to stay anonymous, had this to say:

 I will agree that being an upstander is important but I am unimpressed that more time was spent on discussing the addition of this word to the dictionary than was spent honouring and remembering the Holocaust.

Eight students, initially driven by grade 12 student Jalen Manett, wrote a formal email to the administration about the importance of having a “real” assembly. They write:

“…Yom HaShoah is a day that hits close to home for many students at our school, a school with an above average Jewish student population, as for many it is a day to remember personal connections to the Holocaust through family members who perished or were affected by this tragic event. Many of us were even lucky enough to have had the unforgettable opportunity to march through the death camps in Poland and hear first-hand recollections of the heart-breaking stories of those who survived this tragedy. That is why myself and countless other students, both Jewish and not, were particularly upset by the decision to condense this year’s remembrance assembly into an eight-minute announcement. During which time my classmates who do not understand the significance of the Holocaust went on their phones, completed their homework, and took nothing away from this presentation.

The main reason why myself and many others were so concerned by this is this gradual shortening of our initiatives to commemorate the Holocaust just goes to enforce the naysayers and Holocaust deniers who base their claims on a lack of information and knowledge, which we as a school are enforcing by neglecting to educate students properly on this important piece of history. Especially in light of the recent actions at Northern Secondary School I know the Jewish community at FHCI saw an increased importance in this year’s Yom HaShoah initiatives. I hope you will take our concerns into consideration as we only want to celebrate our history in a positive way with the rest of the Forest Hill community.”

 


The views reflected in the article do not necessarily illustrate the opinions associated with The Golden Falcon newspaper.

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The Autonomous Hour

        After spending an intense six weeks working on the most complex robot Forest Hill has ever seen, it was finally time for our robotics competition at York University. This year’s robot was equipped with a pneumatic (pressurized air-based) intake system and conveyor belt to play in the FIRST robotics competition. Our game strategy was to be a quick, nimble, low-profile robot that could perform its task with consistency and efficiency.

        As we passed inspection and tested our primary mechanisms, we knew it was time for our first match. It began with an unfortunate start, as our robot’s pre-written code did not execute as intended in the autonomous phase of the game. Nevertheless, with a bit of luck, we managed to get through this portion of the match unscathed. When the tele-op phase of the match began, our driver rushed to grab the Xbox controller to manually command our robot to pick up cubes and put them in the necessary locations. The first couple of cubes were successfully placed without much difficulty, but after those, we found ourselves unable able to pick them up anymore. From the driver’s station, we could not tell what was wrong with the robot. We kept trying to pick up cubes and failed each and every time. We lost our first match by a substantial margin, but this was not of much importance compared to the fact that a piece of metal on the robot’s intake was bent. Quickly rushing back to our pit, we replaced the warped gusset plate and reinforced it with another one. With this out the way, we felt more confident that our performance would improve.

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At the competition

 

        The following match began somewhat innocently; the robot’s code was still error-filled, but we came close to figuring out the root of the issue. Everything was going decently until our robot smashed into one of the field elements, ripping the entire intake mechanism off of the robot. As I saw the robot’s arm dragging across the field, I thought the damage would be irreparable. After the match, we bolted onto the field hoping to fix the robot as quickly as humanly possible – only to find out that our next match was in ten minutes. It was humiliating. Without an intake mechanism on the robot, there was little we could do to contribute. A few frustrating games without an intake system later, we finally had the chance to reattach the robot’s arm to be able to play the game as intended. Learning our lesson, we secured the robot’s intake system with a combination of bolts and rivets. We also pinpointed the issue with our autonomous code and corrected it.

        It was an incredible feeling for us to be able to play matches without technical issues. Our autonomous code did exactly what we needed it to and we finally got the chance to play our own game rather than one dictated by our more experienced alliance partners. We got to show all of the other teams at the York that team 5699, the Robo Sapiens, came to compete.

Despite all of these setbacks, this experience was anything but a failure. We built a robot that could accomplish what we intended it to, had the opportunity to express our creativity a medium that unlike any other, fundraised thousands of dollars, worked alongside professional engineers, and most importantly went from a group of nerd building robots in a biology room to a family. And, of course, we worked with what are unquestionably the most dedicated teachers in the school. They sacrificed enormous amounts of time away from their families so we could undertake this daunting – and incredible – project. I would like to extend the sincerest thanks to our lead mentors, Mr Kleiman and Mrs Wilk. In the most literal sense, this would not have been possible without their work on the robot and behind the scenes to get us to the competition. I will look back upon robotics as the single most important activity I could have taken part in during my high school career. At the end of the day, we didn’t just build a robot, we built character.

Semi-Formal Tickets Go On Sale This Week

By Matt Lindzon

Forest Hill’s Student Council has been working for months in preparation for FHCI’s first ever Semi-Formal. The event, taking place at the beautiful 2nd Floor Events, is $35 and will be sold in the cafeteria every day this week at lunch. There are only a limited number of tickets, so don’t miss out!

If you are interested in going, make sure you bring your signed safety agreement that was emailed to your parents.

FHCI’s Best Dressed: Halloween Edition

By Befftwo Ali

On this spooky holiday, Forest Hill was filled with spirit! Here are some of the highlights:

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The magical Ms Jephcott dressed as a Hogwarts student from the iconic Harry Potter franchise.

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Jori, Paige and Izabel dressed up as middle school slumber party girls, and we’re here for it.[restrict]

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Probably one of the most terrifying costume yet (minus Winnie) so far. Amelia, Sage, Tianna, Krystael, Rebekah and Trisha all posed up as the cast from the Purge.

 

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Ms Newman looked aesthetically pleasing today with her pop art makeup inspired by Roy Litchenstein.

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We also have the lovely Ms. Burnip dressed as one of the monsters from Where the Wild Things Are.

 

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Last, but certainly not least, we have Evelyn dressed up as our former principal, Peggy Aitchison.

 


To view more costumes, browse through the FHCI Photo Stream. Have a spooky Halloween falcons!

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Did Anyone Really Expect This from FHCI?

By Ethan Blummberg

  The pep rally curated by Forest Hill students this past week was the most triumphant spectacle I have witnessed during my tenure at the school. The event was willingly enjoyed by hundreds of students, discrediting the notion that Forest Hill has no spirit. The event that unfolded in the gymnasium was unlike anything I had ever seen at Forest Hill. The disparity between this rally and previous attempts at school-wide events may be in large part to why it was such a success. As a student of three years, the change was refreshing.

The event was willingly enjoyed by hundreds of students, discrediting the notion that Forest Hill has no spirit.

                A highlight for my self-was the unorthodox methods such as the relay races, the hockey video and Kahoot game that was all used to appeal to the audience of nearly 1000 people. The well-executed video, made by grade 12 student Cole Chypyha, was a captivating insight into this year’s boys varsity hockey team. The visual component was a nice touch to the already stellar line up put together by the powers at be.  The commotion in the middle of the gym caused by the relay races was an outstanding example of the creativity we have in our school. Students from around the school participated in these clever races as their peers enthusiastically watched on. This element of the school-wide event brought a lot of comedic value out of the mishaps classmates endured attempting the relay challenges. All of the different parts of the rally, from the beginning to the end were integral to its success and I wouldn’t have changed a single thing.

                It is nice to finally have someone at Forest Hill who is able to entertain the entire school body, while still clearly articulating the points he must make. This can be found in current school president, James Michael Kabitsis. This captivating speaker led off the fourth period with a great speech that was a catalyst for the rest of the day’s success.  I don’t think it would be too far off for me to say that many of the staff in the school could benefit from listening to one of his speeches; so when the time comes that they must speak in front of the whole school they can properly engage the audience and convey their message. Rather than deliver a boring talk to hundreds of students that have endured many speeches alike.

After seeing Friday’s events unfold it is really hard to determine whether the lack of spirit in the school should be blamed on the students or the staff members of Forest Hill Collegiate Institute.

                I believe the recent rally was a huge success amongst the students, largely in part to how different the event was to what we have been accustomed to at FHCI.  Credit must go to the people who took part in planning the whole ordeal for hosting an event many, including myself, wouldn’t see possible coming from Forest Hill. Nevertheless, I think that this remarkable feat for the students of the school sadly will not occur again in my lifetime at Forest Hill. After seeing Friday’s events unfold it is really hard to determine whether the lack of spirit in the school should be blamed on the students or the staff members of Forest Hill Collegiate Institute.


This story was written by Ethan Blummberg, a Social Issues Editor for The Golden Falcon. The opinions expressed in this article reflect the opinions of the author.

The Terry Fox Run: A Tradition Worth Continuing

By Josh Blatt

Social Issues Head Editor

Every year, the students of Forest Hill walk, run, and donate money in honour of the great Canadian Terry Fox. Terry Fox, despite losing one of his legs to cancer, decided to run across Canada in order to raise money to cure the complex sickness he faced. In total, over $750 million dollars have been raised in the humanitarian’s name. This event not only collects money for the paramount issue of cancer research, but gives students and staff the opportunity to take a break from their busy schedules to get active and celebrate a truly inspiring man. Terry Fox is a person who will be remembered for his determination and selflessness and Forest Hill plans to continue celebrating his work and raising money in his name for a very long time.

Exclusive: Spirit Week Events Announced

Spirit Week is next week!

Here is everything The Golden Falcon knows about Spirit Week:

Monday, September 25th

Club Fair at lunch in the courtyard

Tuesday, September 26th

Athletic Council Activity (to be determined)

Wednesday, September 27th

Music Directorate Activity (to be determined)

Tropical Day

Thursday, September 28th

Terry Fox Run in the morning

Student council Activity at lunch in the foyer

Blue and Gold Day

Friday, September 29th

Pep Rally

Orange Day

Dance Fashion Show 2017 Review and Photos

By Osvald Klimi 

On Thursday the 13, April 2017, Forest Hill Collegiate held its highly anticipated Dance Fashion Show for the third year in a row, where students showcase various trending outfits and original dancing routines. This year’s theme was “The Time of Our Lives.” A lot of the choreographers, producers, and models of the show have been part of the show since its conception a few years ago and – being in grade 12 – wished to reflect on their experiences while in high school.

There were various scenes presenting common things that most high school students have experienced. These scenes ranged from parties to exam season to prom and more – including all types of occasions throughout the years. Following suit, the outfits also ranged from down-to-earth and everyday wear all the way to glamorous and extravagant dresses to anywhere in between.

Many models and dancers from grades 9-11 are keen on continuing to keep the legacy of dance fashion show going – and to have the time of their lives while doing it.

These models and dancers worked on this show together for quite some time and created memories that will be hard to forget, both for themselves and their spectators. Through the multitude of scenes, a viewer was sure to be reminded of all their most memorable times.

Dance Fashion Show 2017: Keyanna B.

By Osvald Klimi 

What’s your role in the show?

My role in the show is a model and I’m in the exam scene and party scene.

What are your outfits?

For exam: leggings and sweatshirt Party: caramel? Camel? Grey body suit black jeans

If you could put any celebrity in the show to model with, who would it be?

Tyra banks, hands down.

If you do the show next year, what would you like to do?

I hope to be one of the coordinators.

Dance Fashion Show 2017: Sara P., Danielle F. & Daniela H.

By Osvald Klimi 

What’s your role in the show?

Sara: I am a co-producer, but specifically, a choreographer for the hip-hop dance.

What’s the show about?

Danielle Filler: the show is about high school and how it’s the time of our lives and we just wanted to choose a theme that represented high school and what high school meant to us – and that’s exactly what we did.

What was the most memorable thing that happened at rehearsals?

Sara: The finale, when we all walk together and we dance – we realized we were having the best time and we love what we’re doing and that we’re all dance fashion show family.

What celebrity would you cast to appear in the show if you could?

Danielle: Zac Efron, Channing Tatum. Sara: Adriana Lima.

What will you miss most about the show?

Daniela: Our friends, and being all together – it’s chaotic but then it all comes together and its fun.

Dance Fashion Show 2017: Cassie L.

By Osvald Klimi 

What’s your role in the show?

I’m a model in the party scene and exam scene.

What are your outfits/dresses?

Exam scene: sweat pants and tank top. Party: leather pants, heels, t-shirt.

What’s your favorite part of being in dance fashion show?

It’s fun to be with all your friends in the show and get out of school and look good.

What will be your role next year?

I’ll probably be a model again.

Dance Fashion Show 2017: Emma K.

By Osvald Klimi 

What’s your role in the show?

I’m a model.

What are your outfits?

For the back to school scene I wear a red skirt and a jacket and for the summer scene I wear a denim dress

What was the most memorable thing that happened at rehearsal?

The most memorable thing was probably the first time we did the dress rehearsal, because it was new for a lot of us and it was really fun.

If you could cast any celebrity to be in the show who would it be?

Probably Kendall Jenner

What do you hope to do in the show next year if you decide to do it?

I would probably like to be a model again.

Planning For a Better Future with Lego Blocks

By Muhammed Izol 

On December 1st 2016, a group of students from FHCI attended a field trip led by Mr. Ketchum. The trip was to Metro Convention Centre to participate in a seven hour long workshop done by Urban Land Institute. The workshop was previously done in high schools in the UK and US, but never in Canada before. So, the Forest Hill Collegiate students had the honour of participating the first Urban Land Institute workshop in Canada.

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The purpose of the workshop was to engage teenagers in the leadership, work, planning, and effort that goes into designing the neighbourhoods that we live in and to understand the importance of urban planning.

During the workshop, students were put into groups, and each member of the group were given jobs such as finance director, marketing director, city liaison, neighbourhood liaison, or site planner. By the end of the workshop, students were to design and plan a neighbourhood while satisfying the requests from the city council and the residents living in the area.

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A group of students in a workshop at the Metro Convention Centre

Throughout the workshop each group was visited twice by two different professionals and were asked challenging questions on their decisions. This was done in order to better prepare them for the final presentation to the city council as the groups would compete with each other to be chosen as the best neighbourhood plan.

Even though the presentation was difficult, as the groups were being asked critical questions by professional adults, each group was successful in their presentation. The participants were given the Urban Land Institute Certificate for completing the workshop with success.

More on Urban Planning and Its Importance

Urban planning is the developed, safe, and sustainable use of land. It becomes a great concern for future generations as the population shifts from rural areas to more urban areas. As populations of cities get larger, the area used by the cities grow, so does destruction of wild life habitat and carbon emission. Raising awareness amongst the youth and educating them about the issues of tomorrow allow for them to plan better for the future. Which is why it is important to have field trips and workshops (like the Urban Land Institute Urban Planning Workshop) designed to educate kids on real life issues outside the classroom

Sources
http://www.metronews.ca/news/toronto/2016/12/01/program-brings-responsible-urban-planning-to-life-with-lego.html
http://uli.org/programs/leadership-network/urbanplan/
http://uli.org/programs/leadership-network/urbanplan/urbanplan-high-schools/
http://sacramento.uli.org/uli-in-action/urbanplan/