The Black and White

Amplifying the voices of students across Montgomery County

This year, MCPS students have the opportunity to writing for The Amplifier, an MCPS-wide student-run magazine.

By Lexi Fleck

November 27, 2019

The Black & White, Common Sense, The Observer, Silver Chips — the list of MCPS high school newspapers are endless. While each one may be a part of MCPS, they’re all unique because they showcase student voices from respective schools.  Starting this year, the division between MCPS high scho...

Whitman students grow a passion for gardening

@henry_plants capitoned this photo on Instagram:

By Ella Adams

November 26, 2019

On a warm August afternoon, while many students are out at the pool enjoying their last days of summer, seniors Henry Haddon and Joe Ku are in their own home gardens, harvesting microgreens, tomatoes, shishito peppers, cucumbers and melons. Haddon and Ku love planting, weeding, harvesting — every part ...

‘Bird boy’: Cameron Darnell amasses Instagram following from bird photography

Senior Cameron Darnell has a passion for bird photography.

November 25, 2019

The flies were swarming, biting and buzzing, and the sun was beating down as midday struck. The swath of marsh that Cameron Darnell had called his home for the past two days smelled putrid. I have to get this picture, he told himself. Cameron waited patiently for any sign of life. Yet all he got in retu...

Students explore, share passions and interests through Whit-X lectures

Junior Heather Wang gives her lecture on the 1.5 generation during fifth period Nov. 22.

By James Marzolf-Miller

November 22, 2019

During fifth and sixth periods, the library transforms from a bustling hub to a quiet, reflective space for students to present on any and all topics — from philosopher Jean Baudrillard's remarks on capitalism to how the Flat Earth Society perceives the world.  Throughout November and December, six studen...

LGBTQ chorus belts out message of love and equality

The members of the 2018-2019 GenOUT chorus pose wearing their concert attire.

By Holly Adams

November 21, 2019

The spotlight glowed on a group of teenagers wearing all black — black slacks, black button-down shirts, black shoes. The only color came from their matching vibrant, rainbow neckties, perfectly coordinated with the colors of the LGBTQ pride flag. Family, friends and community members locked their ...

On the outside looking in

Reuben Stoll carries the ball upfield in a spring lacrosse game against Einstein.

By Reuben Stoll

November 21, 2019

March 1, I sat in my government class anxiously waiting for the end of the day. When the clock struck 2:30 p.m., I was bouncing with excitement like every other Whitman lacrosse player. It was the first day of the season. I walked to the locker room, then to the field, visualizing the games to come, ...

Pulling back the curtain

Senior Kate Wayman sings

By Eva Levy

November 19, 2019

This year’s musical, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, is a drama that takes place in Paris in 1482. The story begins when the protagonist, Quasimodo — whose uncle hides him away from society because of his physical appearance — leaves the sanctuary of Notre Dame’s bell towers and spend a day in ...

In a pickle? The Bethesda Central Farmers Market has the produce you need

Chocolate displayed on a table at Chocotenango. Chocotenango chocolate is made entirely from scratch with beans from a small organic cocoa farmer in the Dominican Republic.

By Emily London

November 17, 2019

Every Sunday morning, junior Julia Walsh leaves her house and drives to Bethesda Elementary School, armed with a reusable tote bag and enough cash to buy all the fresh produce and baked goods she could dream of at the Bethesda Central Farm Market. A morning mix of productivity and relaxation is exactly what ...

“Soft-spoken and caring”: Michelle Quackenbush retires after 30 years of teaching

Former Russian and English teacher Michelle Quackenbush reads a humorous Russian story. Quackenbush retired this September to take care of her terminally ill aunt. She fell in love with the Russian language in high school; she took the class on a whim to complete the language requirement, she said.

By Afsoon Movahed

November 16, 2019

Russian teacher Michelle Quackenbush may be soft-spoken in the classroom, but that doesn’t mean her passions are muted. To her students, she’s a beacon of the saying, “Do What You Love.” She’s inspired students across two continents to find their own passions, no matter how unconventional...

Arts students pursue real-life experience in New York City, Los Angeles, during gap years

Ben Wolstein ('19) deferred a year from Columbia University to play trumpet and piano in New York City jazz clubs. This year, he wants to

By Bella Brody

November 12, 2019

Ben Wolstein (‘19) loves playing the trumpet — so much so that he’s decided to play every night at different “jam sessions” in one of the greatest music hubs in the world: New York City. Wolstein, who played trumpet in Whitman’s Wind Ensemble during high school, is taking a gap year before he atte...

From cosmetology to construction, vocational high schools teach career-readiness

At Thomas Edison High School, students have the opportunity to pursue a vocational education, including learning about the construction field.

By Gabe Schaner

November 6, 2019

Walter Johnson junior Eliot Eisen’s feet dangled out of a window, 45 feet in the air. Surrounding him was the frame of a house — a house he, along with the construction cluster at Thomas Edison High School, was building. Though unusual for most schools, building during class is a typical scene for st...

Livia Mckee draws on personal experience to release eight original songs

This photo serves as Mckee's album cover for her album

By Sarah Tong

November 5, 2019

When junior Livia McKee was only five years old, she would put on full concert-style productions and sing in front of her entire family just for fun. She would throw on crazy Halloween costumes, grab her mic and belt out her favorite Taylor Swift songs.  “I really like writing music and I like pe...