Voice Recognition

2018 -2019 Online Blog Posts

Online News

Goodbye Seniors

Goodbye and hello! A farewell to the 2019 Montezuma High School Seniors was given yesterday as they walked through the halls one last time, seeing the transformation they were a part of. Tomorrow they will take their last steps as Montezuma Students and turn their tassels to become a contributing part of this community. Little did we realize that from the first day of kindergarten that we would have gone through so much with the boys and girls that make up a class. The bonds that have been created within these halls are the foundation for the many memories made in this school. Thank you to our seniors for showing the future generations of Montezuma what classifies hardworking as hardworking and all those characteristics that make a quality person. We are excited to watch you take part in the next steps of your lives.

The Montezuma Journalism Staff

Dessie May All-State Performer

To Dessie May, she didn’t know that two pieces of paper would impact her life in the way that they did on March 16th, 2019. Dessie performed an Interpretive Poetry selection entitled “Butterflies” by Miko Berry. She received ones from all three of her judges and impressed reactions from the audience at State. Her first advancement was at Grinnell High School, where her performance had paved a path for her 2019 All-State Nomination. At the end of her first performance, her highly-regarded judge sat her down for the allotted comment time. He was very thrilled with her performance and in telling her so, he gave advice on how to improve her vocal variation and fluidity. She took his advice and by State time, she was performing the works. Dessie has accomplished such a grand feat for only a sophomore. The Montezuma staff and Students are beyond proud of her achievement. 

Individual State Speech

      A turn of events led to All-State Nominations to be released this Saturday on March 16th, 2019 instead of the traditional Monday after State. This is because the unpredictable Iowa weather left two schools to reschedule their state performances. The Montezuma performers arrived before nine on contest day and prepared for the watching, performing, and results. Amanda Armstrong started the day off strong with her piece entitled “Deadpan Diaries” that captured the separation of a young girl with her diary as she gives her last entry. The day was filled with giddiness and hard work. Performer, Nolan Reynolds, said that his performance at State was the best time he’s done it. At the end of the day, nearly all of the Montezuma speechers walked away with ones and now await the All-State nominations. 

Student Stories of the Week (03/11/19)

      This year was Harry Hamilton’s first year of participating in cross country. We wanted to hear how he felt about his experience. When asked about why he decided to go out he responded, “I went out for cross country because I really wanted to try something new, push myself to the limits, and embarrass myself in front of the whole community. Yep that’s why…” In the 2018 season, one of Harry’s accomplishments included learning how to properly run. One of his greatest strengths was his athletic ability. His biggest weakness was his athletic ability as well. After asking him if he will miss it next year his response was “yup.”

      At the Wells Fargo Arena during the first round of IGHSAU State Basketball Tournament, Brian Diaz was nominated at half time to eat as many chicken wings as he could in a minute as part of a wing eating competition sponsored by Jethro's BBQ. The yearbook staff asked him various questions including how he felt about the rigourous competition between the rival opponent from CAM. The reason why he was interested in doing it was because he heard someone talking about it in the student section. At first, Keaton Minner was shaking his head no, declining the nomination, so Brian decided to do it himself. His expressive response was “yes.” He apparently lost by one wing, but his opponent did not clean the wing, like Brian did. “One thing I could've done better was following my opponents strategy” he said. If Brian could've participated in another wing eating contest, he said “he would make them hotter.” 

Yearbook Leadership

To be able to understand what exactly happens in Journalism and Yearbook, one must first begin to recognize the amazing staff that’s behind the activity. Although there are several students who work extremely hard to achieve their goals, they’re headed by three individuals who overlook sections of the yearbook. This include Elizabeth Vangorp, an english teacher and Advisor of the yearbook, Carissa Vanzee who is the yearbook editor, and Chiane Hartman who is the public relations coordinator. All three jobs are extremely important, and we’re going to dig deeper to find out who they really are in depth. 

Elizabeth Vangorp, who has held a teaching position at Montezuma Community Schools for three years, is the official advisor of the yearbook staff. Although her time is split between five other English related classes, which proves to be a challenge sometimes, Ms. Van Gorp tries her best to stay focused on the journalism team by helping them succeed. One of her passions is seeing her students take ownership of their work, and using their leadership qualities to become successful in their day-to-day life, in and out of school. In her interview, she also stated that she enjoys giving back to the kids who are not necessarily athletic. This ties in to one of her biggest goals; She hopes to make outsiders realize that Journalism is much more than just a class, it’s a club organization, and it’s a team. 

Another member of Journalism that helps guide the team, is Carissa Vanzee, she works as an editor for the yearbook. Aside from journalism, Carissa is involved in various amounts of school activities including cross country, basketball, track, softball, FFA, individual speech and drama, and student council. Carissa joined journalism to replace a class in her schedule that made her unhappy, and eventually she winded up being surprisingly passionate about the yearbook and its staff. Her personal yearbook goal is to help aid the staff in making a great and memorable 2018-2019 yearbook. However, her overall goal for the staff is to slowly begin to involve underclassmen, so that they’ll be trained when it’s their time to take on bigger staff roles. When asked what she would tell other students who were not apart of the yearbook staff, she quoted, “The first rule of fight club, don’t talk about fight club.” 

Chiane Hartman is in charge of public relations portion of yearbook, which means she's in charge of coming up with creative ways to convince students and parents to buy a book. Her personal goal is be as openly creative as possible, and her yearbook goal is to be a composed guide for the public relations staff.  She hopes to inspire people to see a creative side in everything, that the world is full of color and not everything is inked in black and white. Chiane is very active in her high school community and participates in the spanish club, cheerleading, and student council. When asked why students should buy the yearbook her response was, and quote, "We didn't make a new staff position this year to promote the yearbook for people not to buy one." Although the PR portion of the staff is relatively new, they'll be safe under Chiane's watchful eye, as one of her biggest goals is to stabilize her position.

Although these three people play the largest roles in directing the wild journalism staff, every single person on the team plays their part. They are all creative in their own ways, and without the contribution of each member, there would be no such thing as a team. It’s important to understand the people working behind a beloved yearbook, once you learn who’s behind the magic you’ll feel safer knowing that the precious time capsule is in the hands of people who care for it dearly. 

Chuck a Duck

      Last saturday on February 2nd, the Montezuma Journalism Staff put on the “chuck a duck” fundraiser during the girls and boys halftime of their basketball game against BGM. Staff members that were given the honorary role of selling ducks were Chloe Latcham and Harry Hamilton. They were selling the ducks for one dollar each and were raising money to help fund the yearbook to make them affordable for students. The objective of the game was to have the participants throw theirs ducks from their seat and attempt to make it in a large trash can located in the middle of the gym. At the end of the night, six lucky ducks went home with free ice cream cones from Casey’s! The Montezuma Journalism Staff would like to thank everyone who supported us!

Claire's Opinion

Claire’s is a fairly popular chain of retail stores that are located in many malls across America. From stuffed bears and toys, to makeup and jewelry, Claire’s sells almost everything that could be targeted toward a preteen girl; which is what makes it so memorable in most people’s eyes. Many parents flock to the retail store to buy their children their desired gifts, especially when it comes to cosmetics and jewelry which is something the brand prides themselves on. Since Claire’s products are normally under the twenty dollar range, it makes it desirable for most adults to buy their children items there instead of spending more cash on products targeted at an older audience. Since the products are aimed toward children and the brand is widely talked about that would imply that the majority of the products it sells are safe, however, in recent media the Federal Drug Association (FDA) has openly recalled several products sold from the stores. 

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Montezuma FFA District Competition

The Montezuma FFA Chapter has been preparing for Southeast Iowa District Competitions for approximately 11 weeks now. All of their hard work was shown off Saturday, March 11 in Lone Tree at their district FFA competition. Many groups performed, including Experience The Action, 7th Grade Ag CSI Blue, 7th Grade Ag CSI Gold, and 8th Grade Ag Impact.



The 8th Grade Ag Impact team consisted of back row (left to right) Maguire De Jong, Owen Cook, Kallie Robison, Abby Pope, front row (left to right) Abby Cheney, Mia Boulton, and Madison Johannes. They placed second to their rival, West Liberty FFA Chapter, and received a gold rating. They will advance onto the State Convention, which takes place April 14th - April 16th.




Back row (left to right) Ashlee Eilander, Alivia Cline, Madison Van Zee, Laila Kercheval, front row (left to right) Makenna Johannes, and Kamryn Brennan were all apart of the  7th Ag CSI Blue team. They also placed second and received a gold rating. They will advance onto the state convention as well. Alivia Cline told us that they have been preparing by practicing frequently, studying their lines, and working together. 


(Left to right) Cruz De Jong, Kaya Latcham, Garrett Watts, Tod Geiger, Jordan Ranfeld, and Izzy Roorda were all apart of the 7th Grade Ag CSI Gold team, and they placed third. They spent countless hours practicing for this competition, and overall, they performed well as a team. Although they will not advance onto state, they have many lessons to take away from this experience. “The main thing I learned is that I have to be confident,” Tod Geiger told us. Garrett Watts also told us that he learned more in depth about agriculture, and how everyone must work together in order for things to work. 


The ETA (Experience The Action) team included Allyson Larmore, Kaleah Shoemaker, Tia Shaffer, Korrinn Kehoe, Haley Moore, and Connor Van Zee. Freshman Alyson Larmore said that they were very nervous at first and had some complications during their performance with their presentation, however, they were able to push through and receive second and a gold rating. She also stated that they did the best that they ever have done on their questions. This team will also move onto the State Convention. 

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