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    PTS International Festival


    PTS Falconer Staff


    This Saturday, March 18th, was Palmer’s 17th annual International Festival.

    We, Elena and Dani, asked a few people at the festival what their favorite aspects of it were. We received many general answers, such as “The food, definitely the food.” However, we were also surprised and interested to learn about each person’s favorite booths and about their special connections with the festival.

     Jonah Stevens, one of Palmer’s Breakthrough Miami directors, explained that the International Festival was definitely his favorite event put together by Palmer. He enjoyed the fact that so many people of different cultures and backgrounds would come together once a year to celebrate each other’s similarities and differences. Mr. Stevens said that he also enjoyed the fun-spirited vibe that the festival gave off, and was glad that it gave the chance for family, friends, teachers, and students to have a great experience together. He added that his favorite booths were, of course, the Breakthrough Miami booth, Lebanon (because of the amazing spinach pies and grape leaves), Thailand, China, and Brazil.

     Rohan Myers and Katherine Martinez, both tenth grade students here at Palmer, also expressed their views of the festival. Rohan said that his favorite booths were France, because he was a part of the French Honor Society, and Thailand, because of the outstanding Thai iced tea. Katherine had similar positive views. She explained that, because she has Cuban roots, her favorite booth was Cuba and expressed her utter love for their sandwiches. When asked why she likes to go to the festival, she replied, “I like to come here because I like to socialize with my friends and I get to experience the many different cultures.” She was also very enthusiastic about a new booth this year: Sophia Baker’s Agents of Change initiative which promoted equality. “I love Sophia Baker’s initiative because it promotes acceptance and diversity and tries to do away with stereotypes.” Both Katherine and Rohan also added without hesitation that anyone thinking of going to the International Festival next year should definitely go.

     Julia Brand and Ana Paula Zalles, a pair of juniors at Palmer, expressed their opinions of the festival, which were really positive as well. In the case of Julia, this was her first time attending the festival since she is new to Palmer this year. She conveyed how delighted she was with the food and how amazed she was with the cultural diversity of our community. She said that it was a nice way of, "bringing cultures together," as well as appreciating how each is different. Another aspect she brought up was the student involvement at the festival. She was impressed by the number of student volunteers and how most of the booths were run by them without the help of a parent or teacher. On a final note, she said that the teacher dunking activity was definitely a really amusing one that should be repeated each year. Ana contributed with some of her takeaways from the experience. She loved every aspect of the festival and even though she has attended it many times, it never disappoints her. The food, as always, was really delicious and diverse this year. She loved the new additions to the activities and thought that it was a great way to learn about other cultures.



    Breakthrough Miami Explores the Environment

    By Francesco Lombardo '17


    Recently, Breakthrough Miami at Palmer Trinity School took a field trip to Deering Estate. We met up at the school and then took buses over to the 444 acre archeological, nature, and history preserve. We had a full day of activities planned ahead of us.


    What is the Deering Estate? As I stated above it’s a preserve with 444 acres of native Floridian ecosystems located right on Palmetto Bay. This estate used to belong to Charles Deering, who lived on the property from 1922 to 1927. In 1985 it was acquired by the State of Florida and it was turned into a preserve in 1989. Among the numerous things to see at Deering Estate, there is an ancient Tequesta burial mound located on the grounds. The kids had a lot to learn and see.


    We started off the day by learning about what lives in the shallow waters of Cutler Bay. Each kid was put into a pair and they were given nets. They then had the task to see what types of animals they could pull out from the bay and into the plastic examination container. Shrimp, crabs, and fish were pulled up amongst the algae and red mangrove seeds. From there a caretaker explained how all the animals live together in this ecosystem and how algae was the home to many different types of animals.


    After a quick lunch break we were ready to continue our day. We then followed a guide into the mangroves and had to create our own path. We climbed over fallen tree trunks, limestone rocks, and trudged through sticky black mud. After about 15 minutes of walking we arrived at the site of a crashed airplane. This plane was believed to have belonged to a drug cartel and made an emergency landing there in the 80s. We found our way back to the trail and from there it was back on the bus and back to Palmer Trinity.


    Overall it was a wonderful day full of interesting sights. The kids part of Breakthrough Miami really enjoyed it and were exhausted by the end of the day.



    Mid-Winter Break Service Trips a Success Once Again

    By: Gabrielle Puig '17



    Palmer Trinity School has made sure that global education is a considerable part of the curriculum of students to gain new knowledge of languages, cultures, and skills. Palmer Trinity believes that through experiential learning, students will gain a better sense of themselves and widen their values for the things they have; therefore, this past “Mid-Winter Break”, students participated in two service trips to Haiti and Nicaragua and an adventure-based trip to Patagonia.

    Twelve Palmer Trinity Students embarked on a service trip to the outskirts of Managua, Nicaragua. There they spent their time building a house for a family that the people there believed needed it the most. The remainder of the trip consisted of visiting two different orphanages and taking time to connect with those children by taking part in activities such as playing soccer and taking them to eat ice cream. “This trip really helped me reflect on my future, which is something I am so uncertain about,” said Paula Gutierrez ‘17, trip participant. “It made me realize that I really want to work in something that helps others and gives back because that is where I find my source of happiness.”



    Another service trip to Haiti was taken for four days to the cities of Hinche and Lamacette. Eight Palmer Trinity students made the trip and brought the schools donations that were much needed due to their remote location. Not only did they bring them material resources, students also took time to connect with the children by playing games and interacting with them. Alexa Tannebaum ‘17, a participant in this service trip stated, “This was the most rewarding experience of my life. I had never before been in a situation with so much caring and love.”



    The last trip that took place was to Patagonia, Argentina, for the students affiliated with the Academy of Agents of Change. Leopoldo Llinas, Director of Environmental Stewardship, revealed that the trip’s purpose for the students was to determine whether their initiatives and business plans would be sustainable so that they could continue working on it. Henry Fernandez, a student in the Academy for the Agents of Change said, “The most memorable moments were summiting the Bailey Willis Mountain and learning the key components to any financial plan.”




    FHS: The Secret to Their Success

    PTS Falconer Editor-in-Chief

    The French Honor Society has hit the bulls-eye with their enormously successful croissant sale. The popularity of the club’s plain and chocolate croissants has helped to give the croissant sale the designation of the most profitable and most popular bake sale at Palmer Trinity for the past few years. Osmel Alvarez ‘16 and Catherine Dos Santos ‘16, Vice President and President of the French Honor Society (F.H.S) respectively, have been hugely involved in the croissant sale since they began as members in 9th grade.

    When speaking with them as they help to manage another successful sale, their passion for the F.H.S and the croissants that they sell is clear. Both seniors help to sort money, organize other members, and make sales whenever the chance presents itself. “We’ve learned that calling out people who walk by the room is often a successful sales technique,” says Osmel, who says that the society also sends out emails and puts up posters to promote the fundraising event. “We also play French music to lure students and teachers.”

    Even though the croissant sale has become the king of bake sales at Palmer Trinity, those in charge know that there is still potential for even more growth. “Our macarons, which are back by popular demand, are, as expected, very popular at the moment,” says Catherine. According to the two society officers, the future of the croissant sale lies in the addition of French drinks like Orangina, as well as new macaron and possibly even new croissant flavors.

    Demand for the currently available macaron flavors is so high that students are now able and willing to pre-order macarons before the French Honor Society’s sale goes on, so that they can be guaranteed some of the delicious French cookies. Osmel and Cathy say that the society is currently working with the bakery that supplies them to find new ways to innovate and increase profits. Profits from F.H.S. sales benefit the PTS Haiti Partnership.



    Review: Seussical Jr.

    PTS Falconer Assistant Editor

    Many of us grew up on the classic children books by Dr. Seuss. Books such as the Cat in the Hat and Horton Hears a Who. The Palmer Trinity Middle School Thespians recently performed the musical rendition of Dr. Seuss’s world. It included many characters such as the people of Whoville, Horton the Elephant, the Grinch, and Gertrude McFuzz. They were all brought together by the wonderful music, set, and unique story line.

    The set itself was very well done and made you feel like you were inside a Dr. Seuss book. The lighting team did an excellent job with keeping a fun and mysterious atmosphere. The colorful backdrops and trees were very eye catching. My personal favorite aspect of the set were the Who houses painted on steep mountainsides. The costume designs were also very creative and served their purpose. All these things coupled with the cute and catchy musical numbers really added up to a wonderful show that I very much enjoyed.