Monday, December 5, 2022

Featured

Cheetahs In India

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Source - https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2022/9/17/india-welcomes-back-cheetahs-70-years-after-local-extinction

by Ishaan Rajan

Cheetahs have been extinct in India since 1952, after over 70 years of extinction with unsuccessful efforts to reintroduce them to India’s national parks and wildlife. However that has changed since September 17th 2022, otherwise known as Narendra Modi’s birthday, when twenty big cats were moved from Namibia (South Africa) to India. They were moved in batches, the first of which is reported to be in an age group of two to six years.They have five males and three females. When the Cheetahs were finally transported to the city of Gwalior(Madhya Pradesh), they were transferred to the Kuno National Park in Madhya Pradesh. Spanning for a distance of 289 square miles, the park is known to have prey like boars and deer for the cheetahs to hunt. 

They will be quarantined (for healthcare purposes) in a space surrounded by an electric fence for around a month before they can be released to the open wild. Each cheetah has a respective team of volunteers who will track their habits and movements. For extra measure, a radio satellite collar has been fitted around each of the cheetahs necks to provide their geolocation. The national park officials have also explained that the cheetahs won’t be harmed by any animal within the site, as the park has been fully examined for any possible threats to the Cheetahs. 

Experts working on the cheetah reintroduction project have stated that some of the main reasons the cheetah went extinct was because a large number of them were killed by shepherds and herders during the period of colonial India. Others were killed by hunters when they were responsible for the death of livestock in villages. But now even as the Cheetahs are close to being freed in India, there are still potential problems that stand in the way of this project. Devavrat Pawar, a conservationist and doctoral student has stated that Cheetahs co-existing with tigers, leopards and lions at the same time could prove to be problematic since the Cheetahs are still young and are yet to adapt to the Indian wildlife especially with other predatory races in the region.

While that is a problem in itself there is a whole other issue involving the relocation of individuals in Bagcha village (located within the Kuno National park) to further regions. This is apparently being done to create a larger space for the Cheetahs. A resident of Bagcha village, Guttu Adivasi, has firmly asserted how every person in the village has a right to compensation for relocation and if they are going to be relocated, either everyone in the village goes or nobody will. While Baghca has been resettled last to ensure a safe zone for the wild cats, the rest of the 24 villages consisting of a population around 5000 have been safely resettled. The Government of Madhya Pradesh has promised to provide the local villagers with revenue status to the land in which the villagers will be now living in to compensate for the cost of resettling.

It is definitely apparent that there are many flaws involved with this Cheetah reintroduction project but overall it seems like a huge portion of India’s population is welcoming the Cheetah back to India and there is excitement to finally reintroduce the big cats which have been extinct in the nation for a long seventy years, when they are finally released from quarantine.

Sources:

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-62899981
https://www.dailypioneer.com/2022/pioneer-exclusive/last-of-25-kuno-villages-to-make-way-for-cheetahs.html
https://www.businessinsider.in/international/news/india-reintroduced-8-cheetahs-after-the-big-cats-were-wiped-out-70-years-ago-but-some-scientists-say-its-more-of-a-pr-stunt-than-a-conservation-effort/articleshow/94743879.cms#:~:text=Cheetahs%2C%20the%20world’s%20fastest%20land,that%20India%20has%20lost%2C%22%20S.P.
https://scroll.in/article/1033217/cheetahs-are-back-but-what-about-the-long-displaced-people-of-kuno#:~:text=In%20order%20to%20settle%20the,inviolate%20area%20for%20the%20cheetah.

Brahmastra: The Indian MCU?

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By Diya Barmecha

Brahmastra, is the first part of a planned trilogy known as the Astraverse which is directed by Ayan Mukherji. After seeing the success of the  Multiverse of DC and Avenger universe of Marvel from Hollywood, Bollywood has wanted to create such a national phenomenon. Ayan Mukherji, even went to the extent of talking to Kevin Fiege, the current president of Marvel studios, in order to align the Astraverse with what the Marvel Cinematic Universe has created. 

Brahmastra has had the nation conflicted. Since its first teaser to the first song and then to the first screening, fans have been conflicted. While some agree, this brings about a new age of Visual Effects and its integration into bollywood movies, others believe that this movie was 400 crores put to a waste. Grade 11 student Tara Hebbar agrees with the latter and although appreciates the song, believes that the “special effects got a bit too much”. 

The story of this film started in 2011 with director Ayan Mukherji thinking of an idea. He believed that by taking elements from Indian history and stories he heard in his childhood, merged with the drama and storyline of a common man, he could create a frenzy. Similar to the Indian author, Amish who has written several books, incorporating elements of Indian history in a story of a common man. This story was first developed in 2014 with a planned release date in the year 201. However, with countless hurdles and financial troubles, this movie saw the light of day only when Karan Johar recognised it in the year 2017. With the pandemic and even actors busy schedules, it was finally released in 2022. 

11 years and 410 crores later, we were presented with a story of a common man named Shiva, played by Ranbir Kapoor. His love interest Isha, played by Alia Bhatt, and him have an instant connection. Upon releasing his connection with the world of astra’s, they both go on a journey in order to resolve an age-old conflict and even get a few of their own answers. This movie had a multitude of star cast from veteran Amitabh Bacchan to current in the media Alia Bhatt. The vast majority of the star cast shows the extent to which the actor wants people who watch and enjoy the films. 

The marketing done by the team of Brahmastra was catered towards the wider audience. This movie aimed to reach multiple audiences around the nation. Seeing the recent elevation and success of south indian films in the bollywood market, this movie was professionally dubbed into 4 more languages alongside the hindi one. This went to the extent of the music, dialogues and even the directors. 

The smart marketing that surrounded the first teaser of Kesariya around the time of Alia and Ranbirs wedding only increased the hype placed with the two actors and even built up some conversation for the new song. Overall, the cinematography of all the songs was greatly appreciated by the audience. Even those who did not enjoy the movie found themselves humming along to the tunes of the songs for a few weeks after. 

Attending the screening of this movie twice, I was able to see the love pouring in for this movie when the songs came on. With multiple people screaming and singing to the tunes of the songs. However, this film wasn’t perfect. The dialogues of this film were basic and pretty rudimentary, so much so that instead of laughing due to the dialogues, many were laughing at them. Even grade 11 student, Tara Hebbar, who often does not watch bollywood movies due to their bad dialogues and storyline, has not changed her opinion after this film. 

Overall, the idea of this film was a perfect fusion of history and modern day love story. However, the way it was translated into the script could have been improved. But regardless of much criticism, the shoots for the next two parts of the trilogy have begun and so have the idea of many origin stories of the various characters. Vir Kamath, a grade 11 student believes that this trilogy has the potential to be a “desi marvel of bollywood,”. Ayan Mukherji is on a mission to create the Indian MCU, and its success is in the hands of the audience. 

Are Hydrogen Powered Cars the Future?

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The Ascent claims no ownership over this image.

by Aman Sethia

Hydrogen powered cars have been touted to be an alternative to electric powered cars following the gradual extinction of combustion engines. Electric powered cars are made of Lithium, Cobalt and other rare Earth metals. The extraction of these materials results in the emission of greenhouse gases. Furthermore, the refining of said materials results in the emissions of even more harmful greenhouse gases. The disassembly of electric car batteries has only resulted in a recycling of 5% of all dead batteries collected. If the process is not conducted properly it can result in causing a potent neurotoxin that can damage brain development for children. 

Hydrogen powered cars have fuel cells that are similar in design to a lithium -ion battery. They consist of an anode, a cathode and a catalyst that triggers a separation of electrons and protons from the hydrogen gas pumped inside. The hydrogen gas from the car’s fuel tank combines with oxygen inside the fuel cell stack to generate electricity through reverse electrolysis. Electrons are removed from the hydrogen gas, sent through the circuit to power the motor, and combine with oxygen on the other side of the circuit to form water vapour. This is vented out the car’s exhaust. Advantages of such a system is that refuelling takes as long as the refuelling of a combustion engine car. Hydrogen powered cars have a larger range as compared to electric powered cars. They also have lower degradation on their range over time. 

The drawbacks of using hydrogen is that it is expensive to produce. The refuelling Infrastructure is lacking worldwide due to the gases flammable properties. The plants that are responsible for the production of hydrogen fuel cells are made by burning fossil fuels in a process called steam reforming. To create hydrogen, it must be passed through water through electrolysis (which is the process of splitting hydrogen and oxygen in water), this process is 75% efficient. The hydrogen must then be compressed, chilled and transported to the station. Once into the car it must be turned back into electricity, which is 60% efficient. The energy is used to power the motor which is 95% efficient. This entire process is only 38% efficient as compared to Electric cars 75% overall efficiency.

Hydrogen powered cars technology is still behind electric vehicle technology. Until large investments in research and development the purchase of Hydrogen powered cars still seems impractical for everyday use. Large automotive manufacturers such as Porsche, Toyota and Hyundai have been investing massively in Hydrogen cars, with a racing series set to advertise and spread awareness about hydrogen technology set to release in 2024 called Extreme H.

The Death of HM Queen Elizabeth II – The End of an Era  

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By Vir Kamath

On September 8th, 2022 Buckingham Palace announced the death of Her Majesty the Queen by quietly putting up a notice board outside the palace gates and the world that England once knew changed forever. For seven decades, the Queen remained a constant in a changing world for the British population. With her death, it was the end of an era for not only the British people, but also for the Commonwealth countries as well her many admirers and followers around the world. Such was the respect she earned and commanded from everyone. 

In a statement released by the Royal Family Social media account it was said “The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon” HM Queen Elizabeth II was in Balmoral, her castle in Scotland near Aberdeen which is famous as every Prime Minister is formally appointed by the Queen at Balmoral. Queen Elizabeth II appointed a total of 15 Prime Ministers, her first being Winston Churchill and the last being Liz Truss (just two days before her death). She assumed power in 1952 at the age of 26, reigned for 70 years and is officially remembered as Britain’s longest serving monarch. On 8th September 2022, the same day of her death, news about the Queen’s health concern was shared with the British public who hoped for her recovery. However, it was not to be. 

After these headlines, all of the Queen’s children including the former Prince of Wales (Prince Charles), her grandchildren (Prince William and Prince Harry) as well as other senior royals were all present at Balmoral the same day. 

The very same evening, Prime Minister Liz Truss in her speech labeled the late Queen as 

“The Rock on which Modern Britain was built ” Multiple world leaders, including US President Joe Biden, French President Emmanuel Macron, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeu among others offered condolences. Many notable world leaders also attended the Queen laying to rest in Westminster Abbey, London as well as her funeral on September 19th at Windsor Castle. 

Some of the major global events the Queen witnessed include a World War, A moon landing, England’s only ever football and cricket world cup win, the discovery of DNA’s double helix, being the first Monarch to tweet and the first organ transplant among others. 

With the death of Queen Elizabeth II, there were many apparent changes which occurred in the Royal Family. To begin with, the former Prince of Wales (Prince Charles) now became King formerly known as King Charles III. His son and heir to the throne Prince William is the new Prince of Wales and his wife Catherine Middleton the new Princess of Wales. For the first time in over 70 years, the national anthem will change to ‘God Save the King’. 

After the death of Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh (former King Consort) and husband to the Queen in 2021, HM the Queen’s public appearances reduced dramatically. Her final major public appearance was at the celebrations of her Platinum Jubilee which celebrated 70 years of the Queen’s service to the throne. The public’s last memory of the Queen, however, was at Balmoral Castle, her beloved childhood home. Where she fulfilled her final duties by appointing her 15th Prime Minister, Liz Truss on September 6th 2022. On September 29th, the Queen’s death certificate was announced publicacly and stated the cause of her death as ‘Old Age’

She died at 15:10pm BST while her death was announeced at 18:30pm BST. 

Even though it has been over three weeks since the death of HM Queen Elizabeth II, and over 10 days since the end of her mourning period, she will be more than a memory to not only the British public but to the rest of the world. She lasted almost a quarter into the 21st century, a time period where the relevance of monarchies in the modern world is being questioned. HM King Charles III has large shoes to fill after the demise of his mother, and Britain’s former Queen. 

Breaking Records: Splatoon 3

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By Akshat Ambekar

Nintendo’s newest IP, Splatoon 3, is in its third iteration and is breaking records. Nintendo’s response to the COD, Fortnite, and PUBG genres is the Splatoon series. However, the game emphasizes movement rather than killing, allowing it to stand out and maintain its family-friendly nature like most Nintendo games.

The first game was launched in 2015 to critical acclaim on the WiiU:

Overall, Splatoon makes for an amazing online game, likely the most engaging online experience Nintendo has ever made.” – Metacritic 

The second, in 2017 to positive reviews on the Nintendo Switch: 

Splatoon 2 takes what was great from the original game and improves every aspect, every detail of the experience. It’s a fun and compelling product, a true Nintendo game.” – Metacritic

The third released on the 9th of september 2022 to major success on the Switch. Splatoon has grown to be the most popular online multiplayer game in Japan, even if few people in the west may be interested in or even know about it.

Splatoon 3 sales at launch surpassed Breath of the Wild, the original Mario games, and even Pokemon, the biggest multimedia franchise in the world, in Japan after just 3 days, selling over 3.5 million copies and becoming the fastest-selling game in Japanese history. This is a huge development, because not only is splatoon as a franchise just 7 years old, but it doesn’t have revolutionary improvements like BoTW or SM64. It shows that games don’t have to be incredibly innovative, that sometimes it’s okay for games to be more of the same, which is something a lot of people have forgotten.

Games for a long time have been ostracized for being the same thing over and over, and while some game series fall victim to that, there is still benefit in giving us more of what we love. Nintendoomers, as they’ve come to be known, have been talking about how “the game added nothing new” and how “it didn’t need to exist”. But despite the amount of evidence to prove that wrong, the game still sold, and it was still loved. 

Revolutionary games often fly off the shelves at launch, but that doesn’t mean a game has to be revolutionary to be good. If a game as “formulaic” as the splatoon series can sell, then why can’t other games. Splatoon is a scant 7 years old, and it shows Nintendo isn’t running out of ideas.

The western half of the world’s sales haven’t been officially reported, but once they do, they’ll be on par with those in the eastern half. With the announcement of Tears of the Kingdom, many fans are labeling this a short-term success, making it uncertain whether this will still be the case in the upcoming years. Even though it is only temporary, this nonetheless demonstrates Nintendo’s capabilities and the reasons they are the market leader in the video game sector.

Mankad – Right or Wrong?

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The Ascent claims no ownership of the image.

by Tara Hebbar

The most recent series between the England and Indian women ended with a bang, but also sparked yet another debate on the Mankading (running out the non-striker batter)and its compliance with sporting rules and spirit. This is one debate that splits the cricket world into two. One side argues that it is against the spirit of the game, while the other argues that it’s completely fair. So, what happened to ignite the fire?

England needed 16 runs of the last ball to win the last game (at Lords) of the 3 game ODI series, which India had already won with 2-0 lead. The aspect that made this game special for India, however, was the fact that it was Jhulan Goswami (their veteran bowler) last ODI game, before she retired from International Cricket altogether. Deepti Sharma, while taking the run up to bowl the last ball of the match, slowed down, and before she knew it, Charlie Dean was out at the non-striker’s end. 

Later, after both appreciation and criticism, Harmanpreet Kaur (the captain) and Deepti Sharma broke out of their silence to claim that they had warned the batter, but Heather Knight (the captain of the English team) countered this claim and said that no warnings were given. In my opinion, mankadings are completely justified and are as against the spirit of the game as a runout, stumping. Should in a race, a runner be allowed to start early and get away with it? Why should bowlers be penalized for crossing the line by the smallest of margins when batsmen can get away with the same thing? The new rules ICC have also acknowledged this by removing the Mankad from the group of action that are “against the spirit of the game” and made it the same as a run out.

It is the batter’s responsibility to make sure that they are complying with the rules of the game, and the fielding time has every right to penalize them if they break the rules, just as is done when they cross the crease and get stumped. Most england fans and crickets are strictly against this action and condemn India for winning the game in this manner. “Mankad is in the rules,but I hope it’s not a go too tactic … You surely don’t train all your lives to win a game using that tactic … and I know Batters should train to stay behind the line but it stinks seeing a game won like that .. Yesterday was a bloody good game too #India,” is what ex-english cricketer Micheal Vaughn thinks about the situation and he was severely trolled by Indian fans for this comment. 

In conclusion, the Mankad will always be a source of debate in the cricket world, however, with the rules coming to support the makad, it’s less likely that people will be able to argue against its use. However, will this change the formula for cricket altogether? Will manakds become as common as a run out, and what will this do to the game as a whole?

Grade 5, Getting Ready for Exhibition.

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source - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cg53k-oEXYM

by Aryana Ahuja

Grade 5 is edging closer to the final project of the year, the exhibition. In the exhibition students create an entire unit, all the way from the TD theme to the key concepts, and everything in between. They take topics that they are interested in and want to become experts about and create a project representing their ideas and research to present to parents and fellow students.

Here are some interviews from grade 5 students talking about what their process looks like and how it’s going.

What does the exhibition process look like?

The Exhibition process is normally: It starts with you picking your passions, and turning it into a unit of inquiry, with the TD theme, lines of inquiry, etc. We do some research and think about an action piece. Then you must do lots and lots of research if you want to have a good action. It’s about learning different skills like time management and presentation skills. It’s very structured and helps me keep my work organized.

What does exhibition mean to you?

To me, Exhibition means a time where you can display all your learning throughout the year through one of your passions, and contribute to the world with your solution. It’s a fun passion project where you and your peers can grow as learners, it means finding information about a certain topic and displaying that information and research to people. Exhibition uses all my skills and talents. It especially uses my research skills and creativity. Exhibition has helped me organize my work and think outside the box.

Tell me a little about your topic…

Zidaan Asrani – 

 My topic is how advances in war technology (negatively) impact environmental and human health. I am focusing on military technology (things like bombs and tanks) as they are the most destructive for the world. 

Ameira Ramachandra-

My topic is stray dogs and I’m making an awareness website. I chose stray dogs because I adopted a stray dog and I think people should know what they go through.

Advika Maheshwary –

My topic is ‘Performing arts can influence social and environmental change’. It is about Theatre, Dance and Music creating awareness and influencing social and environmental change such as racism, water conservation, gender inequality, etc.

Vihaa Rajgarhia – 

My topic is about children and how they do not have access to any education.

 How is exhibition going?

Zidaan Asrani – 

My Exhibition is going decently, as I am trying to manage my time as best as I can

Ameira Ramachandra – 

Exhibition is going good.. Right now I’m almost done with my website and starting to make some posters. I think I’m good 🙂

Advika Maheshwary – 

 I am sticking to my timeline and it is helping. I am making some elements at home also so that I don’t have to make it all at school. I am getting the content at home and putting it together at school.

Vihaa Rajgarhia – 

My exhibition is going well. I think I have created a pretty good timeline and I am using my time wisely.

What is something you want people to know about your topic?

Zidaan Asrani – Something I want people to know about Exhibition: time management is very important, and you will need to use it to get everything prepared by the deadline of Exhibition. About my topic: I want the people who actually contribute to this to be a bit more aware so that this doesn’t happen

Ameira Ramachandra – 

I want people to know what Stray Dogs go through and what they can do to help.

Advika Maheshwary –

Many people underestimate the power of performing arts. Performing arts is a topic which I am really passionate about and it is really close to me. There are many examples of performing artists creating awareness about any social or environmental change.

Vihaa Rajgarhia – 

Something I want people to know is that by April 2020 around 1.4 billion students were shut out of their schools. I also want people to know how big of an issue this is.

And finally, What are some challenges you are facing?

Zidaan Asrani – 

I sometimes cannot find sources for research questions, though mostly there are at least a few.”

Ameira Ramachandra –

I am right now kinda worrying about what my project and action piece is about because im looking at others and wondering if i should do something else.

Advika Maheshwary

One challenge I am facing is to make stuff for my diorama at home when I don’t have my diorama with me all the time to see the size. Another challenge I am facing is to do many things at once since I am doing a lot of elements.

Vihaa Rajgarhia – 

I am struggling a little with building the format of my website and getting a lot of research done.

The exhibition is important for students so that once entering MYP they understand the system. Exhibition readies them for what grade 6 has to offer and the assignments they should expect ahead. So excited to see the final outcome of these creative and impactful projects and congratulations on doing so well so far!

People Who Predicted The Covid-19 Pandemic

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source - https://www.scientificamerican.com/podcast/episode/covid-19-predicting-the-path-and-analyzing-immunity/

by Aryana Ahuja

While we are living in a world filled with uncertainty and unpredictability have you ever thought about the people who predicted a pandemic? Something worldwide and uncontrollable, something we didn’t have the resources for? Well some people have been warning us, for the longest time about a crisis like this.

In 2015, during a TED talk, Bill Gates stated that we were “not ready for the next epidemic” but that’s not all, in 2018 when he attended a discussion hosted in Massachusetts, he said that an epidemic could occur within the next decade. 

Gates also presented a simulation of the creation of a new flu, he said this flu could occur as a “natural disaster or weaponized disease” he finally remarked that we need to prepare for pandemics like we prepare for war.

In 2005, Michael Osterholm said “Time is running out to prepare for the next pandemic. We must act now with decisiveness and purpose” and in his book mentioned that the United States isn’t properly prepared for a pandemic. 

Similarly virologist Robert Webster expressed worry for America and its readiness for the next pandemic, “Nature will eventually again challenge mankind with an equivalent of the 1918 influenza virus, we need to be prepared.” He also mentioned that millions of people could die before we find a solution to a forthcoming global crisis. 

Jeremy Konyndyk stated in a 2017 article “At some point a highly fatal, highly contagious virus will emerge — like the 1918 ‘Spanish flu’ pandemic, which infected one third of the world’s population and killed between 50 and 100 million people.”

In 2018 Dr. Luciana Borio, former member of the White House National Security Council said “The threat of pandemic flu is the number one health security concern. Are we ready to respond? I fear the answer is no.”

A 2006 Pandemic Preparedness Plan, shared similar concerns, predicting somewhere along the liknes of 80,000 people would need hospitalization.

And finally, Psychic Slyvia Browne claimed “In around 2020, a severe pneumonia-like illness will spread throughout the globe, attacking the lungs and bronchial tubes and resisting all known treatments.” however she had also mentioned it will disappear as quickly and shockingly as it arrived, bringing us hope for a completely Covid free lifestyle.

If only we had evaluated these ideas before our global pandemic struck, maybe we would have had more clarity and certainty about how to get through it and understand the virus better.

10 things you probably didn’t know about your teachers

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Source - https://www.compilatio.net/en/blog/plagiarism-among-teachers

by Aryana Ahuja

Celebrating 10 years as the Ascend Community is definitely a milestone! And we thank all the teachers and members of staff who have made this year possible, with COVID and returning back to school. 

As we are coming toward the end of this school year, what better way to wrap it up with 10 things you probably didn’t know about your teachers. It’s important to know what your teachers are interested in to get to know them better and to relate to them, to understand what they do in their free time.


Ms. Shweta Chandrapota (Design)

“I have practiced as an interior designer for more than 25 years and personally I have got a lot of feedback from lots of people saying that I am very good with smaller spaces” 

Mr. Rohan Sonar (Visual Arts)

“I am a singer and most people don’t know it!”

Ms. Maryse Saldanha (Music)

“I have 4 tattoos. But the interesting fact is that I got my first one when I was 10 years old”

Ms. Deboleena Sengupta (Language & Literature)

“I have lived in 18 houses, 8 cities, 5 countries, 3 continents”

Mr. Rhajiv Ratnatunga (Individuals & Societies, 7B homeroom)

“I have built 52 lego sets and am ranked very high in RuneScapes”

Ms. Anshu Rana (Integrated Sciences)

“Something that most people don’t know about is my love for gardening. I love to see plants growing and blooming. The moment I get time I get myself busy with plants that I have at home. I make manure for them using leftover peels of vegetables. I also spray them with neem oil to protect them from any diseases. I’m famous among my friends as ‘Plants Doctor’ and they often bring their plants to me or call me to see if their plants are doing fine. 🙂 I guide them on how they can make it better by suggesting the right amount of water and the right amount of sunlight exposure. I have inherited this from my mother who was also very passionate about gardening and we literally had a kitchen garden during my growing up years. Currently, I have grown some chikoo plants and lemon plants. I grow them from the seeds that are left once we eat them. I have given some lemon trees to my society garden and for the chikoo tree, I’m looking for a place where I can transfer it. 

My dream is to own land and grow a kitchen garden and devote my entire time to it, as I like to see things growing and blooming whether it’s plants or children!”

Ms. Judith Malgas (Mathematics, 8A homeroom)

“My favorite place is Istanbul, Turkey. I find it so interesting and amazing that when one sails on the Bosphorus Strait, that you are actually sailing on the continental boundary between Asia and Europe. I am also intrigued by its history and learning how the Byzantine emperors and Ottoman sultans constructed fortifications along its shores.”

Mr. Neville Bharucha (Drama)

“I have been to 30 concerts in my life!!!!!”

Mr. Lakshya (Hindi, 6B homeroom)

“I  am doing a variety of activities that keep me connected to my earth, nature and literature.

1. I have been an animal lover since my childhood and often I am concerned about the animals that make my living on the streets. I like to be a part of their special life. So I am always doing something for them. I want all the people to adopt foreign dogs as well as native breed dogs as a member of their family because they are also our natural breed and have life. Today, me and my family have 6 dogs at my house, whom I have adopted from the streets and have given them a house and I also make people aware about it and save their lives. 

2. To strengthen the national level I think we should connect ourselves with literature as well. That’s why I and my Rang Mandali called “Prasann”, through Theater Productions, are organizing a theater in education workshops in different types of schools and institutions by going amidst various plays and stories of Hindi literature today and giving our best support for their overall development. I think theater is the key to exploring your self and self confidence.  So far I have developed this idea among the children in the states of Uttrakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana.”

Ms. Radhika Naik (Integrated Sciences)

“I am a farmer, most people don’t know that”

Our teachers have done some incredible things and have so many interesting facts about themselves that we haven’t heard. A special thank you to all the teachers who participated in this, and shared this information with us, it is amazing getting to know them better. 

First Ascend Boys Basketball Match

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by Tara Hebbar

On 25th February, 2022, the newly inaugurated Ascend Basketball Team played their first scrimmage or match, against the Bombay Scottish Boys team. The match, which started out in clear favor of Bombay Scottish, ended in a close and exciting finish. The final score was 37 – 34, with the Bombay Scottish team winning. However, the Ascend boys put up a fair fight and also painted a positive picture for what the future of the team was going to look like. The match consisted of 4 quarters, the first first three being 8 minutes long, and the last one being 10 minutes long. The time was stopped each time the ball was taken out, for free throws or to be inbounded. The game was officiated by Gopal Shelokar. Since it was a friendly scrimmage, the shot clock was eliminated, and the game was played on half-court rules, therefore involving clearing the ball, etc.

The players on the team were Arnav Gorantala, Ishaan Shetty, Shreyan Gorantala, Raghav Sharma, Dheer Jain, Abir Gupta, Arvid Bhatia and other players on the bench. Most of the game, they used man to man defense to guard the opposition, and used free-throws, and fouls effectively to collect points. 

Since it was the first game, the Ascend team started off slow, getting a feel for the game, the court and each other. Basketball is a team sport, and one of the most important factors of the game is to be able to play with, assist and compliment your teammates. This game, however, was a one man show, with point guard, Arnav Gorantala, scoring 32 out of the 34 points made. Recognising the visible lack of experience the team had in the beginning of the game, he used his training and array of basketball skills to step up and give the team a fighting chance at victory. Ishaan Shetty, the center of the team saw Arnav take up this role, and stepped into his role as well, providing assist, getting rebounds, setting screens and getting the ball into the hands of the player with the open shot. Once this partnership got going, the rest of the players also adjusted to the game play, and began putting points on the scoreboard. 

When asked about the chemistry of the team, being their first game, Arnav said, “I feel like there was a lot of individual play and we didn’t really gel together as a team, especially in the beginning. We could’ve communicated better on both the offensive and defensive end, but that didn’t happen, but it’s a learning process and we’re going to learn from this and start playing together as a team unit, and the more we practice we have, the better our chemistry will be “ He also felt like they could have improved in these ways, “We faced a lot of difficulty in adapting to the other teams play style, a lot of tactics that we used were not based in their game play and so this hurt us because they got a lot of easy opportunities, and so we need to work on not giving the opposition open and easy looks.”

Overall, this game was a great experience for the players to get a feel of a basketball game, but also develop the chemistry that they will require to win matches together. Although this match didn’t end in a victory, the impressive comeback and display of talent, hardwork and determination showed that there will be many victories in the future for this team. 

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