CATCHING UP WITH THE
BANNING THE “N” WORD
DOES A NEW YEAR BRING A
STD FACTS & MYTHS
NEW YOU? SCHOOL
Are You A
TRUESTAR? WINTER 2011
A DAY IN
THE LIFE OF
TO THE 80s
THE REAL DIGGY
REAL TEENS REAL ISSUES STYLE TRENDS CELEBRITY INTERVIEWS HEALTH, NEWS, SPORTS AND MORE! check out www.truestaris.com
CONTENTS 6: CHIRAQ: VIOLENCE IN CHICAGO BY EMERALD WARR 7: HOMEMADE DRUGS BY JALYNN STUBBS 8: BANNING THE “N” WORD FROM YOUR VOCABULARY BY KENNEDY BANKS 9: DON’T LET SUPERSTITIONS TAKE OVER YOUR LIFE BY ALEXUS ANDERSON
10: DOES A NEW YEAR BRING A NEW YOU? BY KYIER REYNOLDS 11: SCHOOL PAPARAZZI BY DIAMOND BURTON 12: TWITTER VS INSTAGRAM BY JAYLAH ROBERTS-COLEMAN 13: IS ALL THIS TECHNOLOGY GOOD FOR US? BY JANELL MASON 14: TAP INTO YOUR INNER SWAG BY JANELL MASON
15-19 FASHION FOR SALE: WINTER 2012-2013
HOT OFF THE PRESS
20 & 21: SCREAM TOUR NEXT GENERATION PART TWO: OMG GIRLZ BY SYDNEY TENTON 22: JACOB LATIMORE MIX TAPE REVIEW BY AMBER FRY 23: DOES MUSIC HAVE AN EXPIRATION DATE? BY PHOENIX BARKER 24: MAEYA RYAN: THE VOICE BY AALIAYAH ROMER 25: TOP 10 SONGS MOVIES & TV SHOWS OF 2012 26: TOP 10 MUST READ BOOKS BY BROOKLYN CONLEY
27: BEING IN A HIGH SCHOOL ENVIRONMENT BY KELLY REYNOLDS 28: IS YOUR BOOKBAG WEIGHING YOU DOWN? BY BRIANNA DAVIS 29: IS BEING A NERD REALLY THAT BAD? BY BROOKLYN CONLEY
30: WINTER CROSSWORD PUZZLE 31: CURTIS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL POEMS 32: CURTIS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL & MORGAN PARK POEMS 33: MORGAN PARK POEM
DEEPER THAN SKIN
34: KIDS OVERCOMING SPEECH IMPEDIMENTS BY KAYLAH WRIGHT 35: IMAGE CASE STUDY BY SYDNEY TENTON 36: STD MYTHS VS FACTS BY AALIAYAH ROMER
37: LINDBLOM MILITARY BALL BY ALEXIS LEWIS 38: WOODSON MUSEUM OF SCIENCE & INDUSTRY BY KENNEDY BANKS 39: MORGAN PARK BEING IN TRUE STAR JR. BY KYLE TERRY PLEASE LET US KNOW YOUR THOUGHTS ON TRUE STAR JR. MAGAZINE CONTACT US: LETTERS TO TRUE STAR JR. 1130 SOUTH WABASH, SUITE 302 CHICAGO, IL 60605-2717 EMAIL TRUESTARJR@TRUESTARMAGAZINE.COM
EXECUTIVE DIRECTORS DEANNA MCLEARY & J. NA-TAE’ THOMPSON MANAGING EDITOR MARTI PARHAM EDITORIAL COORDINATORS MARTI PARHAM , KATHY CHANEY & VERONICA HARRISON WEB CONTENT & MARKETING MANAGER JOI MITCHELL WEB CONTENT ASSISTANT HENRY COLLINS ART DIRECTION DESIGN AND ILLUSTRATION ANGEL D’AMICO-BAUER PHOTO COORDINATOR DESHAUN ADAMS SPECIAL PROJECTS MANAGER DESHAUN ADAMS & PHILISTINE THOMPSON CELEBRITY BOOKER RANDY BONDS
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COVER PHOTO CREDIT: MEENO, COURTESY OF INTERSCOPE RECORDS
Morgan Park 7th Grade Roster Bottom Row (left to right): Davora Buchanan, Marcell Ellis, Brianna Davis, Janesa Beymuhammed, Janell Mason, Emerald Warr, Tyler Smith. Top Row: Kyier Reynolds , Brooklynraye Conley, Alexus Anderson, Triniti Maye, Jaylyn Scales, Phoenix Barker. Not Pictured: Arteja Benson, Corina Brown, Jaylyn Burnes-Scales, Tareef Coleman, Eric Davis, Keymani Davis, Khalyl Gaston, Jabrea Israel, Pierre Johnson, Davon Jones, Brandon London, Serron Pettis, Malik Sadler, Lauryn Smith, Asuntha Sutton, Kayla White, Darnell Williams
Morgan Park 8th Grade Roster Not pictured: Alania Alexander, Jalon Allen, Arianna Boyd, Laniece Carter, April Cruz, Alizah Fleming, Raven Grant, Samonhi Jackson, Darius Jones, Keiara King, Xavier Meyer, Po’et Muhammad, Brierre Nelson, Kaylee Schoop, Kyle Terry, Amber McKnight, Anthony Rucker, Anthony Waite, Ashley Brown, Elijah Garrett, Jetnya Simmons, John Peake, Josiah Henery, Kelly Reynolds, Kenneth Blue, Kordell Norfleet, Malik Rayfield, Michael O’Shea, Queen Simmons, Steven Henton
Woodson Roster Kennedy Banks, Ariel Woodfork, Kaylah Wright, Grant Palmer, Lauryn Wilson. Not pictured: Rachel Davis, Aaliyah Adams, Rakim Singleton, Arion Beverly, Jamal Brothers, Brianna Allen 4 TRUE STAR JR.
MORGAN PARK ACADEMIC CENTER
LINDBLOM MATH AND SCIENCE ACADEMY
Linbloom Roster From Left to Right: Jaylah Roberts-Coleman, Aaliayah Romer, Sydney Tenton, Diamond Burton, Jalynn Stubbs, Amber Fry, Not pictured: Alexis Lewis
GRAPHIC DESIGN CONTRIBUTORS: CORLISS HIGH SCHOOL INSTRUCTOR : POLINA ZIONTS STUDENT ART DIRECTOR & TEACHING ASSISTANT : ANSHAUNTI HILLERY Raquel Bailey Tatiana Bowman Flecisha Brown Antonio Campbell Jariese Daniels
Dominique Ezell Devundray Hannah Shonta Harris Donovan Ingram Ebony Jamerson
Brandon Johnson Mariah Lacy Sakina Lemon Jaylin Lovinsky Michelle Mosley
Kayla Neal Robert Redus Howard Robinson Aaron Wallace TRUE STAR JR. 5
Chicago Gets A New Name:
“CHIRAQ” BY EMERALD WARR, MORGAN PARK DESIGN IN COLLABORATION WITH ANSHAUNTI HILLERY, WASHBURNE CULINARY INSTITUTE
hicago used to be known as a city in Illinois where people would say, “yes ma’am” and “no ma’am.” It used to be known as a place where people of all races shook hands and looked in each other’s eyes and smiled. It used to be a place where you could walk down the street without worrying about getting shot, kidnapped or even stuck up. But not anymore – welcome to “Chiraq.” What is Chiraq? It’s still Chicago, but because we had more deaths here than in Iraq, people have combined the two names to compare us to being in a warzone. People who live on the South Side of Chicago, anywhere from the 30s to the “Wild Hundreds,” live in the areas best known for having earned the new Chiraq nick name. Some of the victims of this violence include Heaven Sutton, 7, Joseph Briggs, 16, and Morgan Park’s Taylor Fitting, 16. 6 TRUE STAR JR.
The Huffington Post reported that our city had 100 more homicides than New York and 200 more than Los Angeles. Most of the violence is from gang banging. Because of this we don’t have to turn on the TV to see news about war in the Middle East. Chicago has its own.
“PEOPLE WHO LIVE ON THE SOUTH SIDE OF CHICAGO, ANYWHERE FROM THE 30’s TO THE “WILD HUNDREDS,” LIVE IN THE AREAS BEST KNOWN FOR HAVING EARNED THE NEW CHIRAQ NICK NAME.”
How Far Will Youth Go
TO GET HIGH? BY JALYNN STUBBS, LINDBLOM MATH AND SCIENCE ACADEMY
here is a new trend surfacing in the teen community – making homemade drugs. Teens today are using and abusing common items that make them high. Some kids may think using this stuff is harmless because they’re not real drugs, but it is just as harmful. Do teens really know the dangers of homemade drugs? Teens and young adults find many ways to get high. One common way is mixing over the counter cough syrup with other ingredients. They refer to this mixture as “lean.” This can cause hallucinations and the inability to concentrate. Another new way teens are getting high is by using bath salts. Teens say that bath
salts give them energy, but these things can also stop the heart and can also cause suicidal tendencies, which is the leading cause of death among teens nowadays. These homemade drugs are becoming very popular. Teens make these drugs because they can’t get hold of the real thing. They also believe that these homemade drugs are less severe than the real drugs. This is certainly not true. There have been recorded deaths of teens who have taken these homemade drugs. These are the extremes that teens and young adults go to in order to get high.
TRUE STAR JR. 7
Can We Stop Using
The “N” Word? BY KENNEDY BANKS, U. OF C. CHARTER-WOODSON
he word n**** is a scornful term given to black people based off skin color. The word itself was used as an adjective to give a name to black people, as early as the 17th century, and has strong offensive purpose behind it. It still remains as a racially offensive word in any form of language. Most African-Americans greet each other by using the “N” word. They might say “What up my n*****?” or “What’s good my n*****?” We say it without hesitation or the thought of how our ancestors were disrespected with this word. 8 TRUE STAR JR.
Slave owners gave this name to AfricanAmericans to describe them and their skin color. But what’s funny is we don’t think about that word that way. We just think to say the word because it’s not disrespectful if you say it to another black person. We take offense if another race calls us the “N” word because then it’s just disrespectful. If a random person of a different race out of the blue called us that we would be pretty upset and not respect them in any way. What we don’t realize is we often, more than others, call each other by that disrespectful name.
It must stop!
SUPERSTITIONS Take Over Your Life BY ALEXUS ANDERSON, MORGAN PARK
ome say that believing in superstitions is a silly way to look at life. It sounds like people just find random things to believe in, like walking under a ladder will bring bad luck. Does that even sound relevant? It makes sense that people might logically fear walking under a ladder because something could fall on them, but some believe that by walking under a triangle shape they are tempting fate and may awaken evil spirits. Lots of people live by superstitions and some think they are completely nonsense. The ones who do believe may do so because it was something handed down to them. Your greatgrandmother could have lived by, “Don’t open
an umbrella inside because it will bring bad luck.” She probably taught your grandmother the same thing, who taught your mother, and now you go by this too. Superstitions are so widely believed, but the issue is not believing in them; it’s knowing what is or isn’t real. You don’t have to stop believing that if you open an umbrella in the house, you are going to get bad luck. Just don’t freak out if something unpleasant happens afterwards. You don’t have to stop believing that breaking a mirror brings you seven years of bad luck, but don’t stress and blame every bad thing on that one incident. Believe in superstitions if you want, just don’t let them take over your life. TRUE STAR JR. 9
Does A New Year Bring A New You? BY KYIER REYNOLDS, MORGAN PARK
t the beginning of every year people make one or more commitments to achieve a major goal over the next 365 days called a New Year’s resolution. The website statisticbrain.com reported that 45 percent of Americans make resolutions but only eight percent keep them. These commitments are usually done by grownups for some sort of self-improvement, but kids have been known to make resolutions too. Corey Alderson, a 7th- grader at Morgan Park High School Academic Center, had a couple of his own. “This year my resolution was to get better grades and become closer to my family.” When asked about his progress Alderson said, “It could be better, but I think I did a good job. I could have studied harder and did more family 10 TRUE STAR JR.
activities.” What’s Alderson’s resolution for next year? “To become the MVP of the Morgan Park Mustangs basketball team.” If you want to make your own resolutions for 2013 to improve who you are, try adding some of these things to your list: *Be a better person *Get in shape *Save money *Eat healthy *Do all your homework *Be a good friend *Spend more time with your family
HAVE A HAPPY NEW YEAR!
PAPARAZZI BY DIAMOND BURTON, LINDBLOM MATH AND SCIENCE ACADEMY
magine yourself in high school during class or at lunch, just being yourself, which makes some people think you are weird. You look up to see a phone in your face or somewhere nearby focused on you. CLICK! A picture of you has been wrongfully taken without your permission and perhaps posted later on a social networking site. The photographer: a school paparazzi.
After asking if she saw the camera focused on her for the picture, she said no and that she had no idea someone was taking the photo. This is actually illegal, and little do young people at school realize, it is not ethical to post a picture of someone on the Internet. The personal turmoil a young person experiences once these things are posted online is a serious consequence.
Kennedy Graves, a 9th-grader at Lindblom Math and Science Academy, had been in a similar situation regarding a high school paparazzi.
Like Graves, many young people are violated online due to the unfair taking of pictures during the school day. So, if you have a camera phone or photo taking device, don’t be a school paparazzi and take rude pictures for laughs. Someone, somewhere, could get hurt due to the click of a camera.
“Someone posted a picture of me and my friend matching pants on Instagram and a senior from previous years saw it and posted it to Twitter,” said Graves. She explained how the posted photo that was wrongfully taken of her was embarrassing.
TRUE STAR JR. 11
BY JAYLAH ROBERTS-COLEMAN, LINDBLOM MATH AND SCIENCE ACADEMY
ave you ever sat and thought about the differences between Twitter and Instagram? Many have compared the two in search of differences. They are both social networking sites but they have different purposes. Instagram is for photos and Twitter is like Facebook where you create posts and tweets saying anything you want. With Instagram you can take a photo and have a variety of effects that can be applied to the photo to enhance it. Then there is Twitter, the free place where you can say anything that you please and you can also post pictures. After conducting a poll at my school, I found that 56 percent (14/25 voters) of my peers said they liked Twitter better than Instagram, while the other 44 percent (11/25 voters) said they 12 TRUE STAR JR.
enjoyed Instagram more than Twitter. One of the voters for Twitter said they liked it better because you can make a tweet saying anything you want and never get in trouble for it. Another voter for Twitter said that they liked when they made tweets and others retweeted them, plus people that person follows can also see the tweets. On the opposite side, one of my voters for Instagram said she liked it better because she feels more comfortable taking pictures and enjoys when a lot of people like her photos. While another person said they liked Instagram better because Instagram can make you look good even on your worst day. Clearly, the two sites have blatant differences since many people prefer one over the other. So, which one do you prefer?
Is all this
TECHNOLOGY Good For Us? BY JANELL MASON, MORGAN PARK
am pretty sure your parents or grandparents have said they had to go to the library to do research for a paper using books or had to pick up the morning newspaper for the latest news. Technology has changed all this. Now we simply go to the Internet for those same things. Our parents today use technology to pay bills online, buy tickets and even clothes. Do we really need technology for all this or is it making us lazy?
There are, however, many pros to technology; like being able to email your teacher to ask a question about something you don’t understand. The website scienceray.com reports that “technology is by no means detrimental to our society here in the United States, civilization throughout the world, or to the greater humanity of the human race; instead, it is vital to its survival.”
The answer to that is yes, a con to technology is that we are lazy. No one wants to work for anything anymore. We are used to getting things super fast now thanks to computers. Say you have a question about something. Who do you turn to? Google! In seconds you have your answer. If you had to wait longer than a minute you may not be happy.
Kids do need technology, but we use it for the wrong things, like social networking or playing games. Just think, if we dedicated that same amount of time and energy spent online to something more important we may be able to make good use of this modern day technology after all.
TRUE STAR JR. 13
Tap Into Your
BY JANELL MANSON, MORGAN PARK
as anyone ever told you “You need to update your style so that you have swag?” They’re crazy, because you already have swag by being you. Swag isn’t about the things you have, it’s how you show confidence in the way you carry yourself. The Internet, magazines and TV shows will tell you that you have to have some sort of social network, that you need to wear the same clothes that celebrities wear, and that you have to have an iPhone with a cute case. Having these things don’t instantly give you swag, even though many people think they do. To show your swag you have to believe in yourself. That’s being confident; and to be that you first have to find your flaws and make them 14 TRUE STAR JR.
shine. It’s normal to feel like you lack something because remember, no one is perfect. Trying to be perfect is what’s going to stop you from accomplishing your goals. There is a quote by Oscar Wilde that says, “Be yourself because everyone else is already taken.” In other words, don’t strive to be someone you’re not. Make your own style and accept who you are as a person. Stay determined because with that you can do whatever you put your mind to. Ignore people who make you feel like they are better than you because you don’t have what they have or do what they do. Just keep being yourself and your inner swag will shine for everyone to see.
Nerdy FASHION SUSPENDERS FOR SMART GUYS!
Hair Diamond Beach Stylist Brittany D. Beach Make-up Chaka Washington Location Little Black Pearl
SKIRTS ON SCHOOL DAYS!
PARTY LIKE A ROCK STAR
RIPPED JEANS AND SPIKED JEWELRY
CHILLIN FOR THE WEEKEND
BUTTON DOWN ON A FRIDAY NIGHT!
COLOR BLOCKING DIVAS!
PRETTY AND PROFESSIONAL!
TRUE STAR JR. 19
HOT OFF THE PRESS
Scream Tour Next Generation Part Two:
The OMG Girlz BY SYDNEY TENTON, LINDBLOM MATH AND SCIENCE ACADEMY
eptember 8, 2012 was a very busy day for all who were involved or participated in the Scream Tour. This year, the tour consisted of Diggy, who headlined, the OMG Girlz, Jawan Harris, ABDC’s Jungle Boogie, TK N Cash, and a recently signed artist of YMCMB who goes by the name of Torion Sellers. True Star Jr. caught up with the OMG Girlz to see what’s in store for them. The day’s events started off with a forum town hall meeting at Chicago State University. The theme of the forum was “What is a Leader?”
Star: “Our music and style in clothing has also changed.” Babydoll: “Yeah, we like to progress in each song instead of each album.” TSJ: “Snippets of ‘Lover Boy’ have been released on Tumblr and the feedback is great. How does it feel?” Star: “Well, it wasn’t supposed to be released yet, but somehow it got leaked, and it feels good.” Beauty: “It feels great and we’re glad the fans love it.”
Throughout the forum, 12 points were elaborated on that were relative to being a leader: a leader leads; a leader is respectful; a leader is trustworthy; a leader values family; a leader is healthy; a leader is a visionary; a leader dreams big; a leader communicates; a leader cares; a leader shares; a leader serves; and a leader is successful.
TSJ: “Has an album title been chosen? When is it set to release?” Babydoll: “The album is self-titled as Officially Miss Guided.” Beauty: “It was set to come out on October 2nd, but we had to push it back because we’re still working on it. It should be out in December or January.”
After the forum, at the Arie Crown Theatre, True Star Jr. met up with the OMG Girlz for yet another interview just an hour before the last show of the tour.
TSJ: “What’s your rehearsal schedule like?” Beauty: “Uh, it really depends on what’s going on.” Star: “It depends on the day. Sometimes it’s eight
True Star Jr.: “The last time we spoke was in April. What has changed since then?” Babydoll: “A lot!” Beauty: “Our fan base has grown. There are more people at our shows.” 20 TRUE STAR JR.
hours and sometimes it’s three. Like if we’re doing a show then it’s three.” TSJ: “When you’re away on tour, what do you miss the most?” All of them: “Family, siblings, and grandparents.”
PHOTO CREDIT: MEENO, COURTESY OF INTERSCOPE RECORDS
Beauty: “My mom and Babydoll’s mom are on tour with us. Tiny is in and out. So I guess we mostly miss siblings and grandparents.” TSJ: “When you get home, what’s the first thing do you?” Babydoll: “Workout! Workout! Not sitting! Stay active!” TSJ: “What has the Scream Tour energy been like?” Beauty & Star: “Amazing!” Babydoll: “Lots of screaming! It’s been a screaming tour!” TSJ: “What city showed the most love?” Beauty: “Baltimore.”
Babydoll: “Detroit showed a lot of love yesterday.” Beauty: “But we always have a good time when we come to Chicago.” TSJ: “What is your craziest fan experience?” Babydoll: “In Baltimore, I opened the tour bus door and all the fans hands were in the way. I told them to move their hands before I close the door on them [laughs]. But I love the fans.” TSJ: “What’s planned for next year?” Babydoll: “Award shows & lots of awards!” Beauty: “Magazine covers and merchandise like hair dye and polish. And we want to do some acting.” TRUE STAR JR. 21
BY AMBER FRY, LINDBLOM MATH AND SCIENCE ACADEMY
acob Latimore has done his best with his new mixtape “This Is Me.” It truly is a reflection of good music – no, make that great music. He teamed up with his friends Diggy, the OMG Girlz, Alix Lapri and others for this wonderful masterpiece. You can tell that he put his blood, sweat and tears into this work of art. A person can listen to it from beginning to end without wanting to stop. Saying that his remixes to “Clique” by Big Sean and “Two Reasons” by Trey Songz is amazing is an understatement. The mixtape is absolutely his style; the title “This Is Me” fits it perfectly. Make sure you go cop this one right here for Jacob. 22 TRUE STAR JR.
Does Music Have An Expiration Date? BY PHOENIX BARKER, MORGAN PARK
ou and a group of friends are singing a new hit song. Months later someone is singing the same song then you hear, “That’s old!” or “Nobody sings that anymore.” You think the same thing and wonder to yourself, “Does music really expire?” Many people do believe that a song has an expiration date. Cameron Callendar, an 8thgrader at CICS Prairie (Chicago International Charter School), is one of them. “Yes, I think music expires because when you sing a song eventually it gets boring and goes away,” said Callendar.
“Most songs go out of style because people play them too much. They get boring after awhile when ‘everyone’ is talking about them.” While many songs end up being one-hit wonders that are soon forgotten, some tunes have managed to stay around forever. These are what people considered “classics.” A classic is something judged over a period of time to be of the highest quality or most outstanding of its kind. The next time a certain song speaks to you, feel free sing it. It shouldn’t matter if it’s old, new or even a classic, just as long as it makes you happy.
Samuel Hentz, a junior at Morgan Park High School, agrees with the expiration date theory. TRUE STAR JR. 23
BY AALIAYAH ROMER, LINDBLOM MATH AND SCIENCE ACADEMY
he is the 11-year-old girl with the booming voice who has won local talent competitions, is destined toward stardom and according to her mother, would be appearing in her first headline performance. If her rehearsal was an indicator, Maeya Ryan would receive rave reviews from her “Music Experience” concert. The heavens even seemed to be saying good luck that day, as a November thunderstorm spilled over the city with liquid sunshine. This was surely a sign that joy would spread amongst the concert-goers as they listened to a young girl with a gigantic voice. Maeya’s mother, Ina, was hurried that day but beamed proudly as she recounted her daughter’s journey to this moment just hours before show time. According to mom, Maeya knew at age 7 that she wanted to be a singer. She had a mature sound that would garner applause from family 24 TRUE STAR JR.
and friends. Maeya loved entertaining and pleaded with her mom to let her give singing a try. It took some convincing from her young daughter before Ina took the reigns in search of a vocal coach. Even through Maeya’s persistence, finding a vocal coach willing to take on the young prodigy was a more difficult task than they had both imagined. It was not for lack of talent, but youth was not in Maeya’s favor. Coaches were unwilling to work with her because they feared she might have irreparable vocal chord damage. It took sometime before that voice could receive professional training. The rest, as they say, is history. Ina said that although this was Maeya’s first performance as the headliner, she had previously portrayed Mahalia Jackson during another concert. Maeya also opened recently for rapper Yung Star. The two performers paired up to sing the JayZ and Alicia Keys hit “Empire State of Mind.”
Songs of 2012 Something to Dance For - Zendaya Coleman Girls Talkin’ Bout - Mindless Behavior Mrs. Right - Mindless Behavior Let It Shine - Coco Jones You Come First - Jacob Latimore Don’t Judge Me – Chris Brown Swimming Pools – Kendrick Lamar Rock Me – One Direction Diamonds - Rihanna Camera - Drake
Movies of 2012 Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days Sparkle Step Up 3 Hunger Games Let It Shine Twilight The Avengers Wreck It Ralph The Dark Night Rising Madea’s Witness Protection
TV Shows of 2012 Glee A.N.T. Farm Good Luck Charlie Figure It Out T.I. and Tiny: The Family Hustle Adventure Time Make It or Break It The Cleveland Show Sponge Bob Once Upon A Time
TRUE STAR JR. 25
“Must Read” Books BY BROOKLYN CONLEY, MORGAN PARK
The Hunger Games Series (Suzanne Collins) The Twilight Saga (Stephenie Meyer) Harry Potter Series (J. K. Rowling) Divergent (Veronica Roth) Akata Witch (Nnedi Okorafor) Dork Diaries (Rachel Renee Russell) Wake Trilogy (Lisa McMann) Percy Jackson & the Olympians (Rick Riordan) Monster (Walter Dean Myers) Diary of a Wimpy Kid Series (Jeff Kinney)
26 TRUE STAR JR.
Being in A High School
ENVIRONMENT BY KELLY REYNOLDS, MORGAN PARK
ou walk around with a high school ID, but you’re still in grammar school. That’s how it is at seven high schools in the Chicago Public School system, including Lane Tech, Kenwood, Linblom and Morgan Park. At Morgan Park, we take high school level classes in which we are able to receive credits toward high school, and we also get to experience high school at a young age. Yes, you do get exposed to a lot of technology – the latest social websites and drama – as well as trends, attitudes and personalities like you’ve
never seen. But, you also get exposed to the positive things of being in high school, such as hanging out with older people. You may not be included in their out-of-school activities, but at school they make you feel like you’re their little brother or sister. It could also be considered bad if you hang out with older people and decide to do the wrong thing. In this unique environment you have to use your knowledge and wisdom to think about the consequences – good or bad.
TRUE STAR JR. 27
Is Your Bookbag
Weighing You Down? BY BRIANNA DAVIS, MORGAN PARK HIGH SCHOOL
oes your back ever ache when carrying your bookbag? If this question relates to you then you need to read this article. Carrying a bookbag that is too heavy can lead to muscle soreness and strained ligaments. That can cause discomfort from the shoulders to the lower back. Kids around the age of 11 that weigh around 80 pounds should not be carrying a bookbag heavier than 12 pounds, according to the website Chiro. org. Because children heal fast, there is no solid evidence that carrying too much weight can cause serious back problems. However, experts suggest that you make an appointment with your doctor if you have back pain that lasts for more than three days. Krishawnn Washington, a 14-year-old from Danville High School, admits to carrying a heavy bookbag every day. “The weight of my bag sometimes hurts my back,” says Washington. Besides books some of the things she carries include her gym clothes, an extra pair of shoes and a notebook she says she doesn’t always need. These extra items contribute to unwanted weight. To lighten her load Washington could use a rolling bookbag with wheels or leave the unnecessary items at home. To keep from taking home so many books she should also try to do as much homework as possible while still at school. You may be less likely to have back pain if you carry your bookbag the right way. Wear the bag with both straps firmly around the shoulders. This way the weight in your bookbag is balanced evenly. Finally, adjust the straps so that they are tight and the bag rests above your waist line as much as possible. 28 TRUE STAR JR.
Is Being A Nerd Really That Bad? BY BROOKLYN CONLEY, MORGAN PARK
any people attend school with the desire to want to be one of the “cool” kids. But what’s wrong with being a nerd? Quite a few nerds grow up to be some of the most successful people in life. Chances are that brainiacs like Bill Gates, who co-created Microsoft, and the late Steve Jobs, who co-founded Apple Computers, were considered by some people to be two of the biggest nerds of all time. Growing up these guys may have been joked about by their peers often, but in the end they were the ones laughing all the way to the bank. People that are usually put into the “nerd” category are looked as boring, weird, ugly and out of style with no social skills. These
same people are also usually the ones who have good attendance, good grades and turn in their homework on time. Why should that be looked at as weird? Isn’t that what everybody is supposed to do? Just because someone may think and act different than you or even enjoy things that you might not, doesn’t mean that he or she is any less than you are. It just means that you’re different people with different interests. You never know, a time may come when you need that guy or girl you’ve labeled a nerd. If you’re lucky they may even let you work for them someday. TRUE STAR JR. 29
CREATED BY MORGAN PARK 7TH-GRADE CLASS DESIGNED BY EBONY JAMERSON, CORLISS HIGH SCHOOL
30 TRUE STAR JR.
I Am BY ALKIALYA PAYNE CURTIS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL I am lonely and misunderstood I wonder why no one understands me I hear my mom’s voice I see her when I close my eyes I am lonely and misunderstood I try to tell them I feel lonely I care for them all I am lonely and misunderstood
Making a Poem BY MICHAEL CRYSTAL CURTIS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
I worry if they know I am sad when they don’t say anything I understand you have to work I am lonely and misunderstood
To make a poem, I’ll tell you this, It’s not as easy as catching a fish. You can’t throw out a line with a worm, At the top and expect fish to come doing back flips.
I say “I have to talk to you” I dream you would listen I hope you now understand I am Alkialya Amaya Lasha Payne
To make a poem, I’ll tell you more, You can’t walk around pacing the floor. When the going gets tough don’t walk out the door, Think a little more, go straight to the core. To make a poem, I’ll tell you one last thing, It’s not always about what you can bring, Because when it comes from your heart That’s what makes a poem great. TRUE STAR JR. 31
What The Lord Told Me!!! BY JOVANNA JONES CURTIS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL Roses are red, violets are blue I took some time off to write this poem for you Just so you know my poem is going to be about the ups and downs the Lord put me through I must say that they were not easy like the time I had to get my grades up in school, I couldn’t believe I had a D in math. The sadness made me feel like a clown and when I think about it, I would always read things saying the Lord don’t put you through a tough time. I can believe it but then I can’t because I’m only a kid that can make things right, or am I? My Lord said, “Baby sit down and think, you can get caught up and that effects how you think Jovanna.” And now that I know I have a B in math, just to let you know, Thank you Lord, I now know what to do for sure.
The Radio BY RAVEN GRANT MORGAN PARK The radio taught me to not have no worries. The radio taught me that there is more to life than just living And looking at the leaves on trees turn colors. The radio taught me being different is okay And I don’t need to stray away from the feeling I have for you. So I will never have to stray away from the feelings I have for you.
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How Much Hurt Is There BY RAVEN GRANT MORGAN PARK The pain the hurt in Your chest heartbroken your Sad noone loves you the One thing you can’t escape The lonely voice in your Head whispering those very Mean things to you about Yourself. When you look in The mirror you don’t see yourself You see what that voice tells you To see every girls has a time Where she doesn’t feel good enough Or pretty enough. Don’t be the one out of those many. #LoveSome #TrustNone
The Feeling of You BY RAVEN GRANT MORGAN PARK It’s hard not to like you When you do the things You do everyone has to fall in Love at one time of their life They have to But I know she likes you I know she does cause If she didn’t she wouldn’t Be on you like I want to Thinking thinking I just Keep thinking of your smile The way your lips look when They curve around your perfect teeth I think about you every night can’t Barely eat or sleep I can’t even Eat or sleep
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DEEPER THAN SKIN
Kids Overcoming Speech Impediments BY KAYLAH WRIGHT, U. OF C. –WOODSON
ometimes when you’re talking to your friends, do you ever notice that everyone doesn’t sound the same? Ever notice how the same words said by one person don’t sound the same as the ones said by the next person? Ever notice that people have trouble saying some words? If so, you may be listening to someone with a speech impediment. Speech impediments are a type of communication disorder where normal speech is disrupted. This consists of stuttering and lisps, to name a few. Disorders like these can be treated by speech therapy, but others may require medical attention. 34 TRUE STAR JR.
The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association lists three types of speech impediments in children. One causes children to have a tough time pronouncing sounds; one causes a disruption in the flow of talking – like stuttering; and the last causes children to switch the volume of their voice involuntarily. Speech therapy can help children talk in a more relaxed way and can also help build up self-esteem. Once they’re able to feel more comfortable after therapy, some children begin to enjoy speaking more with their friends. They no longer feel different or feel they’ll be talked about because they sound different.
Image Case Study: How Does Style Impact How People Treat You? BY SYDNEY TENTON, LINDBLOM MATH AND SCIENCE ACADEMY
hat’s looks got to do with it? In today’s society, looks mean a lot when it comes to how you’re treated. If you don’t have a certain look then you probably won’t get a high level of respect from some people – mainly those who worry about looking their best to impress. I was sent to do a case study where I “let myself go.” I didn’t dress how I normally would, I didn’t wear makeup, and if my hair got crazy, I had to let it be. My mission: to monitor how my peers treated me based off my fashion image. I can honestly say many people treated me the same. However, is this always the case? Granted, some people do not base their relationships with others off how they look. However, this is normally the case with first impressions. Especially since we go off what we see until we actually sit down and get to
know the person. After that process, things may change, depending on the person who is doing the judging. JK Allen, author of “Please Don’t Believe the Hype…LOOKS REALLY DO MATTER” on hustlersnotebook.com, says, “Most of the time we initiate relationships because of physical attraction first…the deal is later sealed (or not) by emotional connection…When we see a person for the first time, we size them up without thought. We automatically associate their appearance, the way they carry themselves, how they speak, etc…” In most cases people do judge you by your appearance as a first impression. It doesn’t make one a bad person, simply because it’s a natural instinct. However, judging a book by its cover isn’t always the answer. TRUE STAR JR. 35
“ANYONE YOUNG, OLD, RICH, POOR CAN GET AN STD. IT IS A MATTER OF FAILING TO PROTECT YOURSELF.”
Myths vs Facts BY AALIAYAH ROMER, LINDBLOM MATH AND SCIENCE ACADEMY STDS, OR SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASES, ARE ILLNESSES SPREAD THROUGH AN EXCHANGE OF BODILY FLUIDS. WHILE MANY OF US KNOW WHAT THEY ARE, SOMETIMES WE ARE UNDEREDUCATED WHEN IT COMES TO PREVENTION AND TRANSMISSION.
Myth: You cannot contract an STD through kissing. Fact: You in fact can catch an STD through kissing, though the risk of contracting HIV is low. It may be possible if a person has cuts or scrapes on the inside of their mouths. Myth: Only poor people or “trashy people” can get STDs. Fact: Anyone young, old, rich, poor can get an STD. It is a matter of failing to protect yourself. Myth: Chlorine will kill an STD. 36 TRUE STAR JR.
Fact: This isn’t true. Chlorine is not a disinfectant; therefore it will not kill any STD viruses or bacteria. Myth: Birth Control Pills prevent STDs. Fact: This is also inaccurate. The pill prevents pregnancy not STDs. Myth: STDs can be cured. Fact: STDs cannot be cured. There are antibiotics to help clear up some like Gonorrhea and Chlamydia. More serious STDs like HIV cannot be treated, though there are medications to help slow the disease.
Lindblom’s Military Ball BY ALEXIS LEWIS, LINDBLOM MATH AND SCIENCE ACADEMY
ver wondered about becoming a part of JROTC? Think it’s just a military based program? Well, it’s not. JROTC is a program that helps build your level of leadership. One of the main things you learn is how you should respect the flag and the national anthem. Also, you are taught how to continue your leadership skills outside of JROTC uniform. Once, you complete your duties in JROTC, you are rewarded with a military ball. I went to clarify a few things about the military ball with Sergeant Dan Lawson, head of JROTC at Lindblom Math and Science Academy.
TSJ: When do military balls occur? Sgt.: Annually, at the end of the school year. TSJ: What is the purpose of a military ball? Sgt.: To show recognition and celebrate the hard work of those in JROTC. TSJ: What is the attire for a military ball?
True Star Jr: What is a military ball?
Sgt.: The young men are required to wear their JROTC uniforms; however, the girls are allowed to dress up.
Sergeant: A well organized celebration based on military protocol. It includes an award ceremony for the different ranks in JROTC, a cake cutting, a dance, and a dinner.
So, if you ever thought JROTC was just a punishment of hard work, just remember it helps build your level of leadership and at the end of the year you are rewarded with a military ball. TRUE STAR JR. 37
The Museum of Science and Industry BY KENNEDY BANKS (PHOTOS BY FELICIA OWENS)
he University of Chicago-Carter G. Woodson recently visited the Museum of Science and Industry. For some of us it had been quite a while since our last visit to MSI, and for others, it was surprisingly their first time.
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The True Star Jr. EXPERIENCE BY KYLE TERRY, MORGAN PARK
Lights. Camera. Action! True Star Jr. is one of the most inspiring academic opportunities that allows kids to express themselves through writing, photography, graphic design and modeling. This may open doors to new ideas and hobbies. True Star was founded by DeAnna McLeary and Na-Tae’ Thompson in 2004. It started out as a four-page newsletter with a journalism program and 17 students. Since then True Star has grown to more than seven programs with more than 150 students and many instructors. Collectively, the team produces more than one quarterly publication as well as teen events in the Chicagoland area for youths ages 12 to 18. Being in True Star Jr. has motivated us to put 110 percent into our work. We were eager to start
the program and when it started we jumped right in. We discussed what our goals were and how we’d like to contribute to the magazine. We then quickly moved on to the “big picture,” the stories. Everyone had a chance to participate and we gave great ideas. We then learned about a photo shoot and we were very excited about it. But, before the photo shoot happened, Trig, the photography instructor, came in and explained how to use the camera and how to be confident about taking pictures. Our experience in True Star Jr. has been great. Thanks for allowing us to be part of it. And a very special thanks to Assistant Principal Remy Washington and Adrienne Hanes, Academic Center Director, for adding True Star Jr. to our class schedule. TRUE STAR JR. 39
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True Star Junior Winter 2012