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by Mandi
Rated: E · Essay · Experience · #1722375
This is an experienced compare and contrast of two high schools, for an English essay.
Palo Verde High School vs. Zillah High School

I’ve gone to two different schools in my life so far. One was called Palo Verde High School (PVHS) in the big city Las Vegas, Nevada, also known as Sin City. The other school is called Zillah High School (ZHS) in a small, little town called Zillah, in Washington State. Even though they are two different states and city/town, they still have some similarities. There were differences and similarities in the people – type and amount-, activities, curriculum, and size. If I had the choice between the schools, I would choose to attend Palo Verde, due to the schooling and different people there.

First of all, the amount and the type of people are akin and contrary. At Palo Verde, there were over 3,000 students; however, at Zillah High School, there are approximately 400 students. This is quite a difference when you compare how many students are in one class, or how many there are in the hall ways or at lunch. For example, at ZHS the largest classroom of kids I have would be around 20 students; however, at PVHS, my alpha homeroom was over 60 students, and every other class was around 30. The types of people are somewhat similar though. There are your typical jocks, preps (girly-girls/girly-boys), Emos, and Goths at both schools. At Palo Verde, there were quite a few friendly people, but they had a fair share of stuck-up people that thought they were so much better than everyone else, too. ZHS is the same, but not as many students; although, if there were more people, then there would be more like this. At ZHS, a lot of the people act the same, and some of the students look like twins – even if they aren’t -, but at PVHS, there were more girls and boys that acted the same, and looked like clones walking around, not just twins. For example, my first week at Palo Verde, I thought I had the same students in all of my classes because they all looked and acted so much alike. Later on during roll call, I figured out that they were different people, they just looked identical.

Second, there is a fair share of activities, at both high schools. At PVHS, there are an estimate of 55 clubs and organizations, and an estimate of 13 different sports. At ZHS, there is a surmise of 13 different clubs and organizations, and 10 different sports. Though ZHS only has around 13 clubs and organizations, like PVHS they have: FBLA, Science Club, and Drama Club. Also, they both have wrestling, basketball – boys and girls – football, baseball, track, etc. Additionally, both schools have lots of school spirit. For example, at both schools there is at least one spirit week – where you dress up -; however, at Palo Verde they also had it so every Friday you wear school colors – green, black, and silver. At Zillah, when there is a game that day, especially football, most students and staff will wear school colors – orange and black. Another thing is there are many students that join sports and/or clubs. Whether their reason for joining is for college, they want to, or because their parents make them, most students usually join at least one club/organization/sport. For example, I started to join DECA at Palo Verde, and there were at least 50 students just in that with the population of it increasing each meeting; however, I had to quit it because I thought I was going to have to move. Now at Zillah High School, I have joined FBLA and there were around 20 students in it, although, I heard there are more students that couldn’t make it to the meeting. Also, where ever you are at ZHS you will hear about students thinking about joining or are already in a club. Lastly, at both schools the dances are very popular, even if it is just a little one after school, or if it’s Sadie Hawkins. From what I heard the dances at Palo Verde were completely packed, though I would not know from experience because I never attended one. Also, I’ve heard that the dances at Zillah High School are pretty full, but not as big of percentage goes to them.

Thirdly, the curriculum has advantages at both schools, depending on what you would rather. At Palo Verde, you have more options for AP classes, honors, or electives; however, at Zillah High School, you have more classes each year. At PVHS, you get 6 credits each year, and at ZHS, you get 7.5. At both schools, whether it’s after, before, or during school, the choice is yours. The main difference as I mentioned, is that at PVHS there are honors classes for most of the core classes, and some of the higher core classes, like Biology 2, there were AP classes; nevertheless, Zillah has some college credit classes, and a limited amount of honors classes. Both of the math curriculum'sss are the same: pre-algebra, algebra 1, geometry, algebra 2 – at Palo Verde they have algebra 2 & trig as honors, I’m not that sure if Zillah has it or not -, pre- calculus, and calculus. For ZHS the science curriculum is different though. For example, I took integrated science in 8th grade in Las Vegas, then for 9th grade you went to Biology; furthermore, for Zillah, you take integrated science in 9th grade, and for 10th grade you go to Biology. Because of this, instead of chemistry like I was supposed to go to, I got put in integrated science, once again, and next year I will be in chemistry. Also, at ZHS, you begin taking your history classes your freshman year, but at PVHS, you start them your sophomore year. For example, this year at PVHS, I was supposed to take U.S. History and none last year. This year, however, at ZHS, I have to take civics, Washington State History, and U.S. History A & B, because I didn’t take any classes last year. Lastly, the electives are pretty different. Palo Verde obviously has lots of electives for you to take, due to so many students, including many different foreign languages, including French, Spanish, and German. At Zillah High School, there is only one foreign language, which is Spanish. Additionally, PVHS has more specific classes to take. For example, last year I took Drawing 1, which was a class if you enjoyed drawing specifically with graphite, and a little charcoal; however, they had your painting, ceramics, and general art classes too. At Zillah High School, there are a couple different art classes, but nothing that specific, they just combine all the different types of art together.

Lastly, the size was different, but closely related. Palo Verde’s campus for only the buildings, were at least 3 football fields long, 2 football fields wide, plus the huge swimming pool, CSN building, different sport fields, and the huge student parking area. The two football fields wide include only the portables, staff parking, and most of the buildings. The 3 football fields wide includes the bus parking, buildings, and a little of the soccer field behind the school. Even though there are so many students at PVHS, some of the smaller classrooms are the size of some of the regular/larger size classrooms at ZHS. ZHS is about 2 football fields long and 2 football fields wide. The two football fields long include the parking lot, school, science and weight rooms, and the football field. The two football fields wide include the agriculture building, lunch room, theater, and the main building. Also, both of the schools are two stories; however, PVHS has at least 12 different hall ways, and ZHS only has about two hall ways. They both also have a football field, and a quad, even though Zillah’s quad is only about half of the size Palo Verde’s quad is – not including PVHS’s senior quad. Furthermore, you can easily get lost at both high schools. For example, my first day at Palo Verde, I didn’t know where I was going and was lost most of the day, though after part of the day, you learn your way around pretty good; although, for the second semester it was my first time going to the portables, and I got lost trying to find the one I had. By the time I found it, I only had 30 seconds left of the break out of the 5 minutes. The first day I had at Zillah High School, I got lost more than I did at Palo Verde. I had to ask someone every period where my next class was. The difference was since Palo Verde was so gigantic with so many different classes and hall ways, they had each hall way numbered outside the hall way and they went by hundreds. For example, nine of the hall ways were the 200s, 300s, and 900s – there were three hall ways for each hundred. Most of the halls were also by classes, for example, the 900s were the science classes, which made it a lot easier to learn. At Zillah, the doors are labeled by numbers, and names. Some of the numbers you can’t read well, so all you have to do is know which teacher you have, so it makes it easier to learn that way, at least.

As you can tell, even though Palo Verde High School is very large, and is in the “biggest, little town”, there are still some similarities to the Zillah High School. Sure, Zillah is a tiny school that is about ΒΌ of the size of PVHS, but if you did the percentages of the students in clubs, organizations, sports, the amount of students per period per teacher, etc. you would come up close percentages. Like I mentioned earlier, everyone has their own opinion about where they would rather go to school, and I would rather Palo Verde.
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