The Iron Press 
May Edition


SVHS - The Iron Press, May 2022 Edition

The Iron Press



Congratulations Ben!

Congrats to Ben Novotny

Benjamin Novotny has recently had a very successful run of auditions in his musical endeavors. He has recently auditioned for multiple music groups based in Pittsburgh. He has recently been accepted in to the Three Rivers Young Peoples Orchestra, Three Rivers, Young Peoples Orchestra Wind Symphony, Pittsburgh Youth Concert Orchestra, and Slippery Rock University Honors Flute Ensemble. Ben’s most recent accomplishment was placing 3rd out of 65 flutes players from surrounding area high schools. This placement allows for Ben to represent Steel Valley at PMEA District 1 Honors Band. It also makes him the alternate for PMEA District 1 Orchestra and also gives him an autobid to PMEA District 1 East Band Festival. Ben continues to grow as a musician and continues to be a shining example of what Steel Valley Music Department has to offer.

Pittsburgh Botantical Gardens

Mrs. Tracy’s biology students, along with chaperones Mrs. Logan and Mrs. Lawson, travelled to Pgh Botanic Gardens today. We walked about 5miles on trails, ate a picnic lunch, used nets to capture (and release) macro invertebrates, and even got to pet one of the resident chickens! 



CHS Argument visited Pitt today to sit in on a college class and take in the college atmosphere. 

Epidemiology Exploration

Mrs. Tracy's biology students had a fun lab experience today to explore epidemiology--the study of the causes, distribution, and control of disease in a population.  One student was unknowingly "contaminated" at the beginning of the class.  Through handshaking, others became "contaminated".  A black light was then used to see the evidence of contamination.  Then students were able to determine who was the source of the outbreak.


"Is Yeast Alive?"

Mrs. Tracy's biology students engage in the lab, "Is Yeast Alive?" as they start off the year exploring the characteristics of life.

Human Body

Anatomy and Physiology students pose with their final projects.  Students had fun choosing a human body system and creating cereal boxes with an "ingredients" list, fun facts, diagrams, and information about associated diseases/disorders.  Projects were polished off with a catchy cereal name.  Loads of Nodes or Lungy Charms anyone?

What's Your Blood Type?

Do you know your blood type?  Many people do not realize that certain body fluids can be used by forensic scientists to determine the blood type of a suspect.   Students in Forensic Science classes had the unique opportunity to determine their blood type using their own saliva and proper laboratory techniques. 

Natural Selection

Darwin observed that living things change over time.  Biology students performed "natural selection" in a lab where they were "predators"--capturing colored dots ("prey") that either were or were not equipped to survive and reproduce in a particular fabric "environment."  Results were then graphed for analysis.

Battle of the Beaks

Ms. O'Toole's Biology students had a "Battle of the Beaks" today.  This lab simulates Darwin's discovery that different beaks benefit different finch species while eating specific food types.  Students were also introduced to Darwin's 5-week exploration of the islands of the Galapagos.  Students worked in groups, shared out data with the class, and graphed and analyzed  their results.

Eye Labs

Anatomy and Physiology students concentrate their studies on how the rods and cones of the eye's retina work to help us distinguish motion, color, shape, and letters.  Seen here are students working in groups to use a peripheral vision disk to explore their own eyes' abilities in a lab activity.

Nervous System

Ms. O'Toole's Anatomy students have continued their studies of the nervous system this month--this time focusing on the special senses.  As a part of this unit, they were able to dissect a cow eye to see the analogous structures it contains.  Students use their iPads to document the lab and then create a video lab report to demonstrate what they have learned.

DNA Discoveries

Ms. O'Toole's 1st period biology class has been studying DNA and DNA replication.  As a part of this genetics unit, students enjoyed a lab experience in which they isolated their own DNA from their cheek cells--this shows students how easy DNA can be isolated for cutting-edge research such as gene mapping and DNA fingerprinting.

Careers in Art

Local Artist, Ryan Clark came to speak to Mrs. Wright's art classes today to discuss how to become a successful artist.  Topics ranged from the history of tattooing, to art education and owning and running a successful business.  Students were also given question and answer time.  This is just the first of many artist to visit Mrs. Wright's classroom as she kicks off her careers unit.

Pulling the inside out

Students in Anatomy and Physiology enjoyed dissecting the sheep heart in class.  To prepare for their own exploration, students first watched (via the Polyvision board) a heart dissection performance in which major anatomical features were identified.  To also aid their work, students had written step-by-step directions to help identify these major features.

Real Life Lessons

On January 11th and 12th, Anatomy and Physiology students, who have been studying the cardiovascular system, were given the opportunity to practice taking pulse and blood pressure on each other.  To do this, they enjoyed using both the stethoscopes and sphygmomanometers.  Students also learned about the systolic and diastolic numbers (ex:120/80), what those numbers mean, and common factors that affect blood pressure.  In the near future, these same students will be dissecting a sheep heart which has structures analogous to the human heart.

Hammie's Travels

Each week High School teacher Ms. O'Toole's class pet, Hammie, spends the day with students in Ms. Luvara’s Middle School ELA classes.  Ms. O'Toole was delighted to see this delightful picture posted outside the classroom and learn that Ms. Luvara is a vessel for their writing skills.

Chemistry Week

Mrs. Logan, Mrs. McGrew, Mrs. Churilla and Mrs. Clark's students all participated in Chemistry week at the high school.  High school students led experiment stations for the elementary and middle school kids to rotate through.  They did a great job talking about safety, why and how the experiment works and walking the kids through the different experiments. 

Day of the Dead

Mrs. Wright's Art classes have been learning about The Day of the Dead holiday and have created projects based on it.  Art 1 created Ofrendas, Mixed Media is working on Calaca Masks and Ceramics is working on Calavera Sculptures.

Student Led Lesson

Mrs. Logan's Chemistry students introduced Bunsen burner basics to Mrs. McGrew's 7th grade for their chemistry lesson/lab.  The 7th graders also performed flame tests after they mastered lighting the Bunsen burner.

Team Building

Anatomy students in Ms. O'Toole's class perform team building activities to start off the year.