What I gained from my year on The Beat

July 16, 2013

Writing for The Beat this year taught me that journalism is very much a team effort. Earlier in the year, I approached it as an individual venture, but I quickly learned that is not the case.

Sophie Mittelstaedt Issaquah High School

Sophie Mittelstaedt Issaquah High School

Although articles are written independently, a huge portion of our success stems from our ability to work as a group. Showing up to meetings, brainstorming story ideas, working together, communicating well and fundraising are essential if we want to have a strong page. Over the course of the year, I have become a more active team member than when I started out, and this skill will aid me in other areas of life.

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The Beat makes me pay attention

July 16, 2013

This month marks the completion of my second year of writing and reporting for The Beat and I can honestly say that I learn something new from every assignment.

Sampurna Basu Skyline High School

Sampurna Basu
Skyline High School

When I first joined, I remember I was super excited in general. Excited to learn new things about the community, excited to have my writing read by the entire community, excited to be a part of a new team.

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A unique opportunity

July 16, 2013

This year on The Beat was an eye-opening experience for me. From meeting deadlines to interviewing students to raising money to keep the page going, I learned quite a bit about what it means to write for a newspaper.

Madeline Wells Issaquah High School

Madeline Wells
Issaquah High School

The paper is a team, and everyone needs to pull his or her own weight in order to keep it going. I learned that it is vitally important for the writers to keep their hearts in it and do whatever it takes to keep their paper alive, because oftentimes, this is a difficult task in the face of the declining print journalism industry.

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Finding my voice

July 16, 2013

When I joined The Beat just about a year ago, I had an entirely different vision for what I’d be doing and for the significance of what I’d be writing about. I imagined research heavy articles in a style as formal as that used in high school papers. But I didn’t end up doing that at all. Instead, my articles became far more personal than I’d imagined, changing my original goal.

Nitin Shyamkumar  Skyline High School

Nitin Shyamkumar
Skyline High School

While I originally imagined having a voice in my community, what actually happened was something much more personal. The process of writing for The Beat turned out to be far more for my own sake than for the sake of expressing my voice in my community.

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Looking back on two years with The Beat

July 16, 2013

I would have to say that my one regret about my time at The Beat is that I didn’t join the team earlier. In the fall of my junior year, I was an excited, newly inducted member, and from the September issue to the last one in June, I looked forward to contributing my ideas to make the paper the best it could be. Every Wednesday that the issue would come out, I would happily retrieve it off my driveway and read the page that I had helped create.

Lee Xie Skyline High School

Lee Xie
Skyline High School

When I became editor in the fall of 2012, the tradition continued, but I felt a more personal connection to the page that I now helped curate each month. As I type this reflection with this year’s issues, September through May, sitting in a stack across from me on a corner of this desk, I can’t help but be grateful that each issue serves as a reminder of the lessons I have learned from working for The Beat.

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Feeling heard is essential

July 16, 2013

I’ve always had a thing for writing. I’m in love with the seemingly nonexistent boundaries to whatever thoughts happen to peruse my brain. I’ve been lucky enough to write for The Beat this year, and it’s been an honor for which I’ll always be grateful.

Salma Mahmoud Skyline High School

Salma Mahmoud
Skyline High School

Our Sunday morning meetings are the best — getting to bounce ideas back and forth with some of the kindest and most talented young writers the area has to offer, and well as learning to explore new writing styles that will inevitably be part of our lives in years to come.

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Things I learned at The Beat this year

July 16, 2013

1. Writing lists is easier than writing articles. People love reading lists, even if they don’t care about the topic at all. I think adding numbers makes them think that it’s important.

Jacob Brunette Issaquah High School

Jacob Brunette
Issaquah High School

2. Writing articles is hard. Coming up with an interesting take on a subject isn’t easy, and writing about it is harder. I’d much rather just tell other people to do that stuff for me. Except…

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Lessons learned

July 16, 2013

Over the past three years, I have been fortunate to have been a member of The Beat. I started off as a kid that wanted to be involved in journalism, but I couldn’t write to save my life. Granted, I still can’t write to save my life. However, as I end my time with The Beat, the lessons I have learned during my tenure will forever stay with me.

Iman Baghai Issaquah      High School

Iman Baghai
Issaquah High School

One of these lessons is about persistence. I learned that if you are persistent, success will start coming your way. Even though my writing skills were far from superb, I kept volunteering for writing tasks so that I could have my writing edited and gain mentorship through the staff. After a lot of work and support, my writing started to mature. But, The Beat has also taught me about persistence in another avenue as well.

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Eagles music program works, plays as a family

May 28, 2013

Participation in band, orchestra or choir doesn’t just mean practicing your instrument or working on your piece in class each day — it is also an after-school commitment.

Issaquah High School’s spirited band, directed by Patrick Holen, fired up fans and cheered on the football team at nearly every game this year. The band marched and played in the annual Salmon Days parade. In winter, there were basketball games, the Solo and Ensemble contest, concerts and “Swingin’ in Vienna.”

Sophie Mittelstaedt Issaquah High School

Sophie Mittelstaedt
Issaquah High School

In addition, the Greenwood Orchestra and the Evergreen Philharmonic Orchestra, both directed by Doug Longman, have become trademarks through the various concerts they perform each year. The choir, directed by Barbara Irish, is also a much-enjoyed and respected program. Each year, they perform in assemblies, musicals, the Candlelight Concert, the Choir Bash, the Solo and Ensemble contest, and deliver Sing-a-grams.

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Students choose many classes for creativity

May 28, 2013

Art students at Issaquah High School express their creativity on a daily basis.

With a wide array of art classes, including “Studio Graphic Arts,” “Ceramics,” “Photography,” “Visual Art,” “Advanced Art” and, starting next year, “AP Studio Art,” students have many opportunities to engage creative outlets.

Madeline Wells Issaquah High School

Madeline Wells
Issaquah High School

Photography classes utilize technology with digital cameras and editing, as well as darkroom techniques with film. Visual art focuses on various forms of painting and drawing, and ceramics involves learning the clay-working process and design and glaze techniques.

Sophomore Hannah Balducci, a student who takes photography, filmmaking, drawing, printmaking and painting, enjoys taking advanced photography at IHS. She also plans to take “AP Studio Art” next year, and said she is looking forward to a challenge.

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