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5 Tips to Keep Your Sanity

By: Olwyn

Hello! If you are anything like me, you have a problem with siblings or pets being loud. I have two siblings that apparently think that since I’m in the middle of our house, I’m free to talk to during a class connects. And our neighbors, they are nice people, but they have three extremely loud dogs. So, today, I’m going to give you five simple tips that just might make distractions a little more tolerable.

Tip 1: The loud sibling. Sadly, it would just be mean if you locked them in their room. First, try to explain you are in school, and that they cannot talk to you now. If that doesn’t work, before school, or when you have a bit of a break, make a quick bag (or box) or toys and fun things. This typically works only if they are 6 or younger. If they are 7 or older, tattle-tailing or making an alliance is probably the best idea.

Tip 2: The neighbor’s dog. There are three simple techniques to deal with the neighbor’s dog. First, ask them (politely) if their dog is doing well. Then, ease into the conversation and eventually mention that their dog is loud. Being polite is the way to go with this, it could go bad fast if you are rude.

Tip 3: The everlasting desk mess. The best thing to do is probably to have a time set aside for cleaning your desk. Either do it on the weekends, or after school. Also, having bins or other sorting containers can help with the mess.

Tip 4: Your pet. Cats are easier to take ignore, though they can be annoying. The easiest thing to do with cats is to lock them up somewhere. I’m not a dog owner, but what you could do is feed it, ask a parent to play with it, or fix whatever is causing the dog to bark or making noise.

Tip 5: The most obvious fix; I can almost guarantee that all your teachers have told you to get headphones. This cannot stop siblings from talking, or dogs from barking, but at least it will be a bit quieter. You could also play music or white noise if it doesn’t distract you or kill your internet connection.

That was 5 tips to help you keep your sanity!

Mrs. Wilson — Math Teacher

By: Roha

image010Mrs. Wilson is the 8th-grade math teacher. She has two children, two dogs, and a fantastic boyfriend.


MW: Why did you become a teacher?

Mrs. Wilson: Math was a struggle for me in high school and I wanted to teach others that although math can be difficult to learn, math is fascinating and is also the language of physics, my second love.

MW: When did you make the decision to become a teacher?

Mrs. Wilson: I was working as a special education assistant in a middle school and found that I was good at explaining math to the students, so I decided to change my major from English to math.

MW: What was your favorite teaching moment?image012

Mrs. Wilson: In my first year of teaching at a youth correctional facility. Through games and thinking puzzles, I was able to influence their opinion about math and help a lot of them graduate from high school.

MW: Which of your teachers was the most influential in your life?

Mrs. Wilson: My High School English teacher Mrs. Whalen. I had her all four years and she taught me how to think, to write well and to be a great person.

MW: What is one thing you want your kids to learn from you as a teacher?

Mrs. Wilson: I want my students to learn perseverance and to appreciate the beauty of mathematics.

MW: What are some things you do when you’re not teaching?

Mrs. Wilson:  I read constantly and do math puzzles. I also love to cook and listen to music.


MW: What is your favorite food?

Mrs. Wilson: Hands down my favorite food is any kind of cheesecake : )

MW: What is your favorite holiday?

Mrs. Wilson: Fourth of July; it is always a time to go camping on the coast and spend time with my family.

MW: What’s one book you would suggest to someone?

Mrs. Wilson: The Harry Potter Series

MW: What’s one thing you wish you would have known before you started your teaching career?image013

Mrs. Wilson: I wish I would have known just how much joy teaching can be and also how teaching can influence so many young people.

Thank you, Mrs. Wilson, for all you do! 🙂 We’re so glad to have you here at ORVA, being an awesome teacher!

Zakk Wylde Bio

By: Sierra

He was born in Bayonne NJ, January 14th, 1967. As Jeffrey Philip Wielandt. Zakk played the guitar at the age of 8. He sometimes played up to 12 hours a day. At the age of 19, Wylde sent Ozzy Osbourne a demo tape. He replaced Jake E. Lee as lead guitarist in 1987. Zakk is known to play a Gibson Les Paul. It stood out due to its amazing paint job, it had a Bullseye on it.

  • Here is Zakk Wylde with his Gibson Les Paul, also known as “The Grail.”Zakk Wylde

Zakk had played for Ozzy until 1995. Wylde had made his own band called “The Black Label Society.”  He had returned to Ozzy in 2001. On January 17, 2006, he was put on the Hollywood Rock Hall of Fame. The Black Society released their first album in September 2006. He married his wife Barbaranne in 1985. They have four children, Jesse, Hayley, Sabbath, and Hendrix

Fun Facts

  • Zakk Wylde had played the Bass Clarinet.
  • Wylde had built a shrine to Randy Rhoads.
  • He has lot’s of guitars mostly named after the New York Yankee


Sorry this Bio is not as long as the others. I was trying to find some good sites for information. But as you can tell I didn’t find many good sites. I didn’t want to use Wikipedia because as most of you know it’s not the best site in the world for information. Anyway, I hope you guys like this short and sweet bio.


Guitarist – Slash 

By: Sierra

Slash.jpgSlash’s birth name is Saul Hudson. He was born in London, England, July 23rd, 1965. Saul’s mother was a clothing designer. His father an art director for a recording company. When Slash was 11 he moved to Los Angeles with his mother. Saul was an outsider in school, and in the Mid 70s, he moved in with his grandma.  Slash lost interest in school and got into BMX racing. At the age 14-15, he got his first guitar. Slash sometimes practiced 12 hours a day. Meaning he sat all day in school playing the guitar. Saul got tired of school and dropped out in the 11th grade. He joined his first band Tidus Sloan and started to tour. He formed and joined many bands for 4 years. Then he joined Guns N Roses when GNR released an album called Appetite For Destruction in 1987. Saul and the other bandmates started to have a drug problem. In 1991 the band did a tour called Use Your Illusion. Slash announced in 1996 he was no longer in GNR. He formed a band called Blues Wall, who played blues covers. Saul met Perla Ferrar in 2000, they got married on Oct 15th, 2001. The couple had two children. Divorce came in 2010 but they got back together. Slash has been sober since 2006.

~Fun facts~

  • The first instrument He ever played was the drums. He was the little drummer boy in a school production of 12 days of Christmas in Stoke-on-Trent, England, when he was five years old.
  • He’s a cat lover.
  • He has candy and chocolate stashed in the house that he secretly gets into.
  • He’s a non-smoker, but he’s addicted to coffee (the stronger the better).
  • He doesn’t eat anything from the sea.
  • Slash wears sunglasses because he is shy.
  • Slash found a top hat in Los Angeles at a store, and got it and put some stuff on it.
  • The reason why he wears a top hat because he thinks he looks cool in it. And he is shy and gets nervous in front of a crowd.
  • Slash is 5’10 tall”
  • He is mixed race.



Music Bio: Ronnie James Dio

By: Sierra

Dio2Ronald James Padavona, born in Portsmouth, New Hampshire USA. On July 10th 1942.  Ronald died on May 16th, 2010, from metastasized stomach cancer. His stage name Ronnie James Dio, Dio is an Italian word for “God.” The reason for adding Dio, instead of Padavona is because Ronald didn’t want a long last name like Padavona. But he wanted it to be Italian so he chose Dio. He was a heavy metal singer, Ronald started out as a trumpet player and then he played the bass guitar. When he was in high school Dio formed three bands, The Vegas Kings, The Rumblers and the Redcaps. Later in 1961, Ronald formed a band The Prophets. Then later on The Prophets changed to The Elves. Ronnie was in a car accident in 1968, two of the band’s members were killed, Nicky Pantas Ronald’s best friend at that time, and a guitar player. Dio had a scar from that accident on his face. RJD, hard rock roots started with Elf, a band.  Ronnie was credited with making the “Devil horns” a metal sign. Dio claims that his grandmother said it was to ward off the evil eye. The first band Ronnie had shown the Devil horns was in Black Sabbath, he replaced Ozzy Osbourne (Because he was fired) in 1979. And Ronald stayed with that band until 1983. He made his own group named Dio, their first album was “Holy Diver”.  Before he became famous he intended on being a pharmacist, but he dropped out of the University of Buffalo after he had been there for one year. Ronnie was married to Loretta Berardi and adopted one child. They got divorced and after a few years, he married Wendy Galaxiola.Dio

Fun Facts!

  • Wendy was/is the band manager.
  • Dio Returns Tour kicks off in Germany. Featuring Ronnie James Dio via hologram. With his Dio Bandmates.
  • Ronnie had a metal spider that came out of the rafters in one tour. He didn’t even kick the price up on the tickets!


Reason Why I Wrote This

I wrote this because Ronnie was amazing. He is a role motel really, he has a great voice and he gave the metal spider in that tour as a gift for his fans. I would want to be like Ronnie to a point, with giving gifts to the fans and just… Rocking it! I know Ronnie inspired a lot of people, due to how much respect his bandmates had for him. Having a hologram for the Dio Returns, it’s just awesome how he touched so many lives. There is not one word that can describe RJD, its two words… Heavy Metal!

Dee-licious Lemon Cake

By: Roha       

For All My Friends with 1 too Many Allergies!

All holidays are great, wonderful even! I mean, what can possibly be better than no school? But if there’s one holiday on every food lover’s mind, it’s Thanksgiving! Unless, of course, you have a thing against turkey. Never the less, there’s always plenty to choose from when the Thanksgiving dinner is set. Warm, delicious cornbread, buttery smooth mashed potatoes, heaps of hot, mouthwatering gravy, my personal favorite, the scrumptious stuffing, and let’s not forget the turkey, with plenty of cranberry sauce on the side. Believe it or not, these aren’t all the dishes set on a traditional Thanksgiving table, and we haven’t even reached the desserts yet!!

But what of those who have allergies? Well, you can’t have allergies to every single dish on the table, right? Well sure, but believe it or not there are people who are allergic to pretty much all the common desserts on the table. One of these special people happens to be my close friend. So when she came over to the spend the day with us, I started racking my brain for a dessert I could make; it had to be eggless, dairy-less, nut-less, and a few other things “less”, all the while being delicious. It was a definite puzzle; a puzzle for Mr. Google! After a searching for an annoying few minutes or so, I finally stumbled across something that looked worthy of interest. Labeled “Lemon Cake,” but looking a lot more like a bread with cream on top, I decided to give it a shot. I did make some twitches of my own to it, ditching the cream, which by the way, was a mixture of lemon juice and icing sugar, baking it in a bunt shaped pan, and etc. (changes to the recipe). I also decided to sprinkle the cake with some lemon and dust it with icing sugar as it looked rather incomplete without its icing. The final outcome was, dee-licious! And so, with no more ado, I present to you my secret to success…or lemon cake!

Dee-licious Lemon Cake


2 ¼ cups Flour + 2 tsp Baking Powder (For Self-Rising Flour)

1 cup Sugar

1tsp Baking Powder

Zest of 1 Lemon

100 ml Vegetable Oil

170 ml Cold Water

Juice of ½ a Lemon (Add more depending on your desired taste)


Preheat your oven to 350° F. Mix all the dry ingredients i(Flour, Sugar, B.K, and Zest) in a large bowl. Then add the wet ingredients, one at a time, mixing thoroughly, so that there are no lumps. Pour the batter into your lined pan and stick it in the oven for 30 minutes.

Note: This cake probably shouldn’t be left in the fridge for more than 2, 3 days.

This recipe is accredited to


Alice Cooper Biography

By: Sierra

Alice CooperGodfather of Shock Rock, Alice Cooper was born as Vincent Damon Furnier on February 4th, 1948 in Detroit Michigan, as the son of a pastor. Alice moved to California when he was 12, then later on to Arizona, where he still lives today. Vincent formed a passion for music in high school at the age of 18.  Furnier and his track friends got together and performed the Beatles at the school talent show. The band was first known as the Earwigs and then as the Spiders in 1965.  They did band covers of The Rolling Stones and The Beatles, the bands that Alice adored. The band renamed itself to Alice Cooper, a twisted name for the band, who did their acts with dolls, guillotines, and skulls (and the creepy costumes.) The band got their first huge break from Frank Zappa, who signed them onto his record label. The original band broke up in 1975, with the lead singer Vincent getting his name legally changed to Alice Cooper, then went to his mom and said “Oh, by the way, I’m changing my name to Alice Cooper. What’s for dinner?” Alice was then a solo artist and then continued with the album, “Welcome To My Nightmare.” Alice met his love of his life and future wife Sheryl Cooper on his incredibly theatrical tour.  Alice appeared on television and movie like The Muppets, and Alice Cooper: The Nightmare.  In the late 1970s, Alice’s problems with alcohol became life threatening to the point where he threw up blood every morning. Cooper just sat there and watched television and drank beer all day, and didn’t want to perform. He was very thin at the time and entered into a clinic for rehabilitation. He was almost at the point of dying, but sobered up; this time for good!  But he got into another addictive thing… golfing. Alice Cooper was saved by God and is a Christian now with three children; Calico Cooper, Sonora Cooper, and Dashiell Cooper. Alice has been sober for 36 years now! And plays golf EVERY morning, his two favorite things to do, golf and rock n roll! Way to go Alice!

Fun Facts

  • Cooper claims that the infamous “Chicken Incident” at the Toronto Rock and Roll Revival concert in September 1969 was an accident. A chicken somehow made its way onto the stage into the feathers of a feather pillow they would open during Cooper’s performance, and not having any experience around farm animals, Cooper presumed that, because the chicken had wings, it would be able to fly. He picked it up and threw it out over the crowd, expecting it to fly away. The chicken instead plummeted into the first few rows occupied by wheelchair users, who reportedly proceeded to tear the bird to pieces.Alice Cooper1
  • Alice Cooper’s “shock rock” reputation apparently developed almost by accident at first. An unrehearsed stage routine involving Cooper, a feather pillow, and a live chicken garnered attention from the press. The band decided to capitalize on the tabloid sensationalism, creating in the process a new subgenre, shock rock.
  • The band Alice Cooper wanted parents to hate them.
  • Alice Cooper is 69 years and still rockin’ it!
  • In 1975, Alice Cooper returned as a solo artist with the release of Welcome to My Nightmare. To avoid legal complications over ownership of the group name, “Alice Cooper” had by then become the singer’s new legal name.
  • He is credited with helping to shape the sound and look of heavy metal, and has been described as the artist who “first introduced horror imagery to rock’n’roll, and whose stagecraft and showmanship have permanently transformed the genre”.
  • Away from music, Cooper is a film actor, a golfing celebrity, a restaurateur, and, since 2004, a popular radio DJ with his classic rock show Nights with Alice Cooper.

Albums (Some)

  • Killer
  • Trash
  • Billion Dollar Babies
  • School’s Out
  • Welcome To My Nightmare
  • Hey Stoopid

Why I Wrote a Bio about Alice

The reason I wrote this is because Vincent is inspiring, his songs are just great to hear. His character Alice Cooper, a twisted and creepy lunatic, has a dark and light side.  I like to hear some of his creepy music and the ballads that he sings. The character Alice tells a story in some way. Oh, and I can’t forget his acting on stage! The guillotines, the swords, the skulls. Every time Alice goes into the guillotines I think he’s never coming back. But he is!  It’s amazing. The fact that Alice Cooper (The person) is a Christian is great to hear because I am Christian and I listen to heavy metal and Rock n roll. Some people think it is well… Devil’s music. It just depends on what you are listening too. And the way that Alice got over his drinking is awesome, and he is still living, not most of the 60’s 70’s and 80’s  rockers are still alive.


Mr. Benedict – English Teacher

Our very first Teacher Spotlight of the year is, Mr. Benedict!Mark Benedict


MW: Why did you become a teacher?

Mr. Benedict: I became a teacher because I loved reading and sharing that joy with others.

MW: Did you always want to be a teacher? 

Mr. Benedict: I decided to become a teacher in high school and haven’t changed my mind yet.

MW: What was your favorite teaching moment? 

Mr. Benedict: My favorite teaching moments are when I get to laugh with my students (luckily it happens a lot!).

MW: Which of your teachers was the most influential in your life?

Mr. Benedict: My sophomore year English teacher (Mr. Wade) was most influential to me– he allowed us to delve into deeper topics in lit.

MW: If you want your kids to learn one thing from you, what would it be? 

Mr. Benedict: If my students learn one thing from me, it would be to not use the word “thing.” Just kidding! It would be to walk in others’ shoes and learn to see the world through others’ eyes.

MW: What do you do for fun?

Mr. Benedict: For fun, I like to read, run, bike, and hang out with my wife and our three cats!

MW: What is your favorite food? 

Mr. Benedict: My favorite food is ham and pineapple pizza.

MW: What is your favorite holiday?

Mr. Benedict: My favorite holiday is Thanksgiving: delicious food and delightful company.

MW: What is your favorite quote?

Mr. Benedict: My favorite quote is “Don’t believe everything you read on the internet,” -Abraham Lincoln

MW: If you could choose one book to suggest to someone, what would it be? 

Mr. Benedict: A terrific read is A Short History of Nearly Everything. It’s a comedic adventure through the history of our earth. It’s both hilarious as well as factual.

Fun Facts:

Mr. Benedict has visited 27 countries!!

Mr. Benedict got married last weekend!! (Nov. 18)


Thank you, Mr. Benedict, for being such an amazing teacher! We are glad to have you here at ORVA. 🙂