• November Theme: Spartan Alumni

    Every Monday-Friday since August, we have found a narrative to add to our daily announcements. September we talked about the history of our town, and October was all about connecting the work place careers and school, November, our gratitude month is going to highlight our Alumni. Who are Spartans who took on outsized responsibilities and got work that got attention. We know that there are dozens we are going to miss, but we have doctors, athletes, statesmen, beauty queens and more on the docket. If you know of someone from a graduating class that deserves their moment, send us the information and we will celebrate with the school as a whole. Our purpose is two-fold, we are hoping to say, Way to Go, to those who walked our halls before we got here, and to inspire the current generation that there are so many options and avenues to having a great life. We are rich in history and in potential, and this month is where we put that altogether. But if you have a name from the past who fits in, email us at kkleiman@wccusd.net and we will find a day to bring you to light for this edition of Pinole Valley High School

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  • Artist of the Day: Kevin Hong

    We spoke with the senior artist who has already built a solid portfolio of art in his three years working with Ms. Shokrai. Kevin explains that some of the haunting beauty in this selection is what he took out. The foliage has been trimmed back from its actual literal scene, so as to create a mood with a more minimal look. The green wash generally took on a kind of glow and we have for us a scene that may not evoke Halloween but certainly does create a vision of something slightly otherworldly. A number of Ms. Shokrai's students are preparing for the Advanced Placement test and International Baccalaureate exam. Both require portfolio's and written summaries of what is on the canvas. Lots of stories to tell. Stay tuned.

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  • Trunk or Treat Welcomes All Ghouls and Goblins and...

    With thanks to our PTSA and parent community, Pinole Valley's school parking lot turned into Halloween headquarters for Friday night. We had two dozen cars decked out in full spooky fashion to welcome the littlest Spartans to our community. We saw storm troopers, Darth Vader, pigs, princesses and all the Iron Men that one parking lot could host. People kept to safe social distance and all protocols to make it possible were in place. We loved seeing the young people and our students interact as there were lots of photo opportunities and a lot of candy heading to happy homes. We are honored to have a Parent body willing to transform our school to a Halloween party for one night. Thanks to everyone for making it fun

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  • Spartan Support all Day Long

    The conventional wisdom is that the school day ends at 10;25 when homeroom finishes. We beg to differ. The school offers a tutoring for general purposes Friday from 10:30-11:30 and hope that our freshmen students take advantage of our armada of peer and adult tutors. Then for those who have questions about college and the application process, we have Ms. Stephanie prepared to answer any and all questions beginning at 11 a.m. Then we have a long list of college videos put together this week by our counseling department that can be viewed from their google classroom page, which includes everything about getting letters of recommendation to writing your personal essay. Don't let the weekend roll without you getting some supplemental work done. We even get an hour back on Sunday giving you sixty more minutes to get ahead

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  • Make Mine Music--Luke Shalz

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/15wUilCSTANY7oQmp2NpuwkR5sU2pAhN_/view and you will as impressed as we are with the An Excerpt from J.S. Bach's Toccata And Fugue in D minor. which our senior Piano player, Luke Shalz has brought to share with the school. Thanks to Ms. Aguirre and the Band for providing us with musical talent every other week. We are hoping that students throughout the school can contribute to our Open Mic October, reach out to joseph.lim@wccusd.net to send your song, dance, or spoken word. But for the weekend, we want you to enjoy a classic sound of All Hallow's Eve and use it as a soundtrack to your evening. We are looking for more musicians to perform for our Dia de Los Muertos which is going to be live streamed next week, so you still have time, if you can reach alanderos@wccusd.net. There are all sorts of opportunities to display your art at Pinole Valley even in quarantine this Fall season

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  • Artist of the Day; Mar Jay Manansala

    Mar Jay Manansala took this memorable self- portrait using dramatic lighting and carefully casting of the shadow right down the middle of his face. Mr. Pinto, our photography teacher is bringing in a variety of techniques and tools. We are looking forward to seeing what November brings to the student gallery. Mr. Pinto is putting together a yearbook for 20-21 too, and will be looking for images that capture the vibe of the year that is. We think Mar Jay gets off to a good start for Standard Time, the darkest time of the year. Or is it the lightest?

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  • Ready for Clubs?

    Whether you are fired up to part of the Virtual Robotics team or the Math Engineering Science (MESA) club or the Forensics team it is a good time to sign up. That's just what is going on today after school. Each of them has a club meeting today after 330 p.m. tomorrow we have the Culinary Club and SHE meeting. We figure if there isn't a club to your liking, that you reach out and start one of your own. The Well-Being club is going to begin its life in the next week. Thanks for being a part of the extra part of Pinole Valley HIgh

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  • Support our PTSA and Pizza!

    Get lunch and dinner at Mod Pizza today, have it delivered or pick it up. Either way 20% of what you purchase will come right back to Pinole Valley PTSA and support all the good works, the scholarships and the spirit that PTSA provides. And then with the money you save from buying at Mod, why not consider renewing or starting up your PTSA membership for 2020-21. Look above for the code to get your pizza and PTSA together

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  • A Virtual Visitor to Pinole Valley

    Today, Ms. Tremor's art class got a visit from a pro, Michael Korz who shared his story of being an animator along with examples of his work and the works in progress. We are having a roofer come visit next week and we have a contract that allows us to both visit speakers and have specific contributors come to class too. Nepris offers us daily opportunities to join live, virtual chats with professionals on a variety of topics that prepare students for college and career. The topics follow the national themes in education along with several unique series being offered throughout the school year. With one click, students can sign up to participate in one of these chats along with other classrooms from across the country. Some topics include: Women in STEM careers Employability skills Computer Science education week Healthcare pathways Financial Literacy Virtual tours of workspaces etc.. Check out this workshop for Friday as example: Join this interactive session to find out what it’s like to be a interior designer for the retail industry! I’ll give an overview of my background and current work in the field, and provide a snapshot of the industry as a whole. I’ll use visuals and questions throughout the session to engage students and help them envision my real world work.

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  • College Day Tuesday

    Two college events today: The first called College Wise is happening today and tomorrow. We have the link right here; strivescan.com/collegewise. There are more than 150 schools in attendance and both days have workshops beginning at 4:30 the first is Chief Academic Officer of Collegewise, as they explore the Varsity Blues scandal, how college admissions has been impacted, and what it means for high school students. The second explains how students can find and write their best stories for personal statements. We’ll explain what admissions officers actually want (and don’t want) to read, reveal the most overused essay topics, and teach writing techniques. Tomorrow Myth Busters takes ten of the most stubborn and tantalizing myths about getting into college straight to the experts: deans and directors of admission! This session will feature admissions leaders from a small liberal arts college, a private research university, and a public university, so that attendees will learn from various perspectives.Also today Ms. Stephanie Zambrano, our college advisor hosts a college knowledge session starting at 4:00 p.m. we will have an hour today and Friday so come with queries about admission, acceptance and acclimation. Email stephanie.zambrano@berkeley.edu

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  • Hear all About It!

    The Pinole Valley Administration wants to share its thoughts about the first quarter of the school year and ambitions and plans for the Second quarter. If you want to hear us in live time, we will be on zoom for our juniors and seniors tonight. We will talk about areas of growth and need and then take questions from our families. We will talk about our resources and interventions as well as strategies and best guesses for the future. We will be recording all of the sessions for those who can't be there (and don't tell us the World Series scores, we want to watch that too). We will encourage you to ask questions in the chat feature and if you would like, to set up your own individual conference with us as needed. We look forward to hearing what you have to say about the year that is and will be too. Go to our morning announcements or your email for a link to this evening's event. We will do these meetings quarterly, but you can reach out anytime

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  • Saturday with Spartans

    Delta consulting leads a college tour led by a fully-student run non-profit organization. They provide strategy consulting services for companies in the Educational Technology sector (i.e. Khan Academy, Google, Udemy, Coursera, etc). You can learn more by visiting their website at delta.berkeley.edu That's from 10:00-2:00. Meanwhile our speech team participates in the very first Individual events tournament of the year, this is Impromptu, Extemp, Oral Advocacy, Expository, and Humorous and Dramatic Interpretation amongst others. Want to take part? Email coach mlamons@wccusd.net. And of course, it is also Photo day for seniors on campus, go to Prestige photos to get your appointment made. Track conditioning on the field from 9:00-12:00 and our choir teacher will be distributing material to students in the morning as well. And that's just a warm up for the week ahead....

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  • Artist(s) of the Day: Fiona Jaida Robinson and Stephen Huang

    Students were introduced to the Element of Art : shape. Students were introduced to conceptual art. Art in which the idea is more important than the concept, Students were asked to create their own conceptual art piece that mapped out their favorite time of day using personal symbols and stream of consciousness thinking. Today it’s Fiona Jaida Robinson, we love looking at this over and over again.. Also on piano today is Stephen playing a sweet solo to start the weekend off in style https://flipgrid.com/s/5HjqUZ2mgr5dfzh7. And all of this precedes the busiest art week of the year, not only is it Open Mic October, where we encourage our team to record a spoken word poem, a guitar riff or a song, and then it is Dia De los Muertos where we will be looking for more music, art and culinary offerings. If you have something to show or something to say, this is your time!

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  • College Coming For You all Weekend

    If you are new to the college "experience" it can be a little intimidating. OK, a lot intimidating. The good news is we have counselor, Stephanie Zambrano, to help guide the way. She is going to be sharing and helping with our first ever workshop for students who are going to be the first in their family to enroll in college. Everything from the application process, the personal essay, grades, getting accepted, getting wait listed, getting money to pay for school or choosing between different schools. It all happens this Friday, meaning you have time to make your reservation. And invite the family (they may be in the room right over, right?). Be the first, be a Pioneer! This Saturday, we have an invitation from the Delta group which is offering virtual tours of UC Berkeley led by current students to be part of the University of California system. Here's what they've got; We provide strategy consulting services for companies in the Educational Technology sector (i.e. Khan Academy, Google, Udemy, Coursera, etc). We're driven by our passion of providing world-class educational opportunities to all students! You can learn more about us and our mission by visiting our website at delta.berkeley.edu Also the Black College Expo goes to the Pacific Northwest this weekend, so be there between noon and four p.m. for that. And Ms. Stephanie hosts her office hour for college queries stating at 11 today

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  • Boys Basketball ready for Conditioning and You

    Boys basketball coach Danny Rynning is ready for the Spartans to return the big stage this season. And even before we begin with whatever size season we are going to have, we have conditioning work to see where we are at. The Spartans are coming off a playoff year and are looking for more this season. For anyone interested in participating, please e-mail Coach Danny Rynning at pinolevalleybasketball@gmail.com Please include the student's name, grade and contact information. The first day of conditioning will be Wednesday, November 4th at 4:30pm. That gives you two weeks to dust off those wristbands and see if you dribble left or right handed (both, right?). We are looking for players at all levels, and since we graduated a handful of stars, we need you to step into place and help us not rebuild, but reload. Ball's in your court!

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  • Artist of the Day; Nicole Figueroa

    "How does society play a role in mental health?" In this work she balances positive and negative space with bold solid shapes. The subject is reduced to basic shapes almost like early Diego Rivera paintings such as "Two Women and a Child." Her face is protected from the world by her hands and her hair could symbolize the chaos or infinite within. The unknown or that without form. Her hair holds the most weight and throws off a composition with center focus into asymmetry - It breaks the picture plane and the viewer imagines infinite expansion of the universe contained in her hair. In this way it feels like a mythology or an archetypal character: the self that looks inward and imagines other worlds. The splatters of paint remind us of the abstract expressionists, and the quest to dispel meaning and representation in art, that without objects in the world and without language. What are the spaces and experiences that are beyond words?

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  • Quarter Two Begins

    The first semester is now halfway complete. This means a number of things are happening. Grades are being issued, providing a real signifier in terms of progress for the students and staff. We will determine an Honor Roll based on these marks. Students who have done 3.0 work or better will be honored and celebrated (and should put it on their resumes!). The work from the first quarter is factored into the more significant grade, that of the First Semester. We have teachers who average grades and others who grade based on final product, either way, your first quarter grade goes a long way in informing where you will wind up but it is not preordained. For many this is a great chance for a new set of habits and routines. We are also going to do some outreach for those students who didn't make their mark. Considering the final grade for the semester is still 10 weeks away, we are likely to have many opportunities to bring grades up. Teachers are gearing up for the second quarter and know that for many students it is time to make a fresh start. If you've saved the best for last, save no more!

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  • Artist of the Day: Bertha Leon Garcia

    Mind Maps: Students were introduced to the Element of Art : shape. Students were introduced to conceptual art. Art in which the idea is more important than the concept. We discussed Marcel Duchamp and "the Fountain" (his found art that consisted of a urinal). Students were introduced to 2 contemporary artists that use mind maps in their work. Students were asked to create their own conceptual art piece that mapped out their favorite time of day using personal symbols and stream of consciousness thinking. Bertha Leon Garcia: Her piece is a great example of 2 principles of Art: Unity and Movement.

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  • Senior Stuff all Week

    There is not a lot of normalcy this school year, but there are some traditions that carry on. We are going to get seniors ready for college and want to get your pictures for when you leave. So it is appointment week and we don't want to miss you or have you miss out. There are more senior events ahead, but we didn't want to wait any longer to bring these to you. The class of 21 has had a lot of roadblocks placed in its path, but this week it is all about the seniors. Every homeroom period for the next two weeks is going to have our counselors go over the particulars and the possibilities per class. We are confident that you will get some news you can use right away. Also it is the days of senior pictures. Prestige Portraits are accepting appointments for you to come to the back of the gym so you can get your best look. Here from 3;00-8;00 daily or all day Saturday. And it is the end of your last first quarter. The end is coming, ready for your close ups? Reach out to your counselors or teachers this week to make sure that you start Quarter Two off in the best way.

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  • College Conference Monday

    October has been a busy month for college opportunities, today wraps up a series of visits online and virtual. This is brought to us by our college advisor, Ms. Stephanie and while the registration deadline is past, it would still be worthwhile to try to sign up. Today at 4:00 we have the last of our college workshops for the immediate present. This is one you don't want to miss. We are going to be able to visit over 40 colleges and universities and all of them here for West Contra Costa Unified meaning that we will have more access than most. Sign up for the opportunity and then share the wisdom with your pod. It says College Night, but don't wait til it gets dark or you will be in the dark

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