Epic Kids, February 2022

Page 1

January 2020

Vol. 1 • No. 1

PAGE 9 PAGE 10

YOUNG LEADERS

Student Nia Ubom

Program gives voice to students to create more inclusive environments for learning

SCIENCE PROJECT

Color-changing flowers

FEBRUARY 2022

EPICKIDSAZ.COM EPICKIDSAZ.COM


Dear Future Kindergartner... (and parent!)

.

“The teachers meet the social, emotional and intellectual needs of my student. It is a great introduction to the reality of full day school but also fun for the students. Compare other districts to DVUSD, and you will see why parents choose DVUSD!” - Lindsay, DVUSD Parent

Deer Valley Kindergarten Preview Nights! March 1-3, 2022

For a Full List of Deer Valley’s Spring Preview Nights Dates & Times:

www.dvusd.org/kinderevents

2 | FEBRUARY 2022 | EPIC KIDS

EPICKIDSAZ.COM


CONNECT WITH Get In Touch:

2550 W. Union Hills Drive, Ste. 350-9433 Phoenix, AZ 85027

XTREME GYMNASTICS Ages 6 months - 16 years

Move

Learn

Beginner to Competitive Boys & Girls » Ages 3-12 years

888-313-7916

Submissions and suggestions: Press Releases: Submit press releases via email to hello@epickidsaz.com.

Events Calendar: Submit press releases or event listings including all details to hello@epickidsaz. com. The deadline for the March issue is March 1.

Advertising:

Contact the sales department by phone at 888-313-7916 or by email at advertising@egpublishing.com.

Where to Find Us:

Epic Kids is distributed each month directly into the backpacks of children in K-8 charter and private schools. You can also find us placed in racks where kids and their families are out and about. To see a full list of locations, visit our website.

Stay Connected:

facebook.com/EpicKidsAZ @epickidsaz

Staff:

Natasha & Brian Beal / Publishers Sondra Barr / Editor Shannon Carrillo / Production & Design Erica Odello / Ad Design

Notes:

Every effort is made to avoid errors, misspellings and omissions. If, however, an error comes to your attention, please accept our sincere apologies and notify us.

EPICKIDSAZ.COM This newspaper is recyclable, biodegradable and contains recycled materials. Copyright 2022. All rights reserved. No part of this publication can be printed or reproduced without the publication’s permission. EG Publishing assumes no responsibility for unsolicited material.

EPICKIDSAZ.COM

Excel

Risk FREE Trial »All Ages

Ninja Zone Ages 3 - 12 years

Energy into Ambition Ninjas develop lifelong skills like focus and confidence by learning Beginner-Competitive Boys & Girls to safely spin, roll, flip Ages 3-12 and kick through a combination of martial arts and gymnastics training. Risk Free Trial » All Ages

» Ages 3-12

day camps NEW Socially DistancedPreschool Curriculum Move-n-Learn with Ages 2.5 -Enhanced 5 years

Health and Sanitization

Health & fitness while having a blast!

Movement + Academics = Success! 14000 N. Hayden Rd #102, Scottsdale Full and Half Day (480) 596-3543 | xtremegymnastics.com Options

2 week unlimited free trial »limitations apply (480) 596-35 (480) 596-3543 • xtremegymnastics.com xtr 5821Scottsdale, N. 7 tsdale, 14000 N. Hayden Rd. #102, AZ AZ

EPIC KIDS | FEBRUARY 2022 | 3


H e a d li n e rs

Martial arts bring purpose and positivity to Scottsdale family.

S

iblings Jana, Hamza, and Yara ElGengaihy have found the practice of martial arts to be a positive force in their lives.

“My kids have always been focused and self driven. But doing martial arts definitely gave them the tools to help grow and polish these qualities,” says their mom Rasha Fahmy. “They learned how to set goals for themselves and work on steps into achieving these goals. It gave them a lot of confidence and self respect.”

control in their techniques and have their own unique ways of teaching.

What’s your martial arts goal? My main martial arts goal is to be able to defend myself and get myself out of trouble if I were to be put in a dangerous situation. I also would like to achieve my third degree black belt.

Epic Kids recently caught up with the trio to learn more about the benefits of their Taekwondo training.

What do you want to be when you grow up? Currently, I am mainly interested in writing and physics, so I could very well aim for a career in either of those areas. I also have a passion for art (drawing, painting, etc.).

Jana El-Gengaihy

Hamza El-Gengaihy

Age: 15

Age: 13

School: BASIS Scottsdale

School: BASIS Scottsdale

Grade: 9th

Grade: 8th

What do you like about martial arts? I like that it teaches me discipline, both physically and mentally. Through martial arts I learn valuable leadership skills that help me progress in life, while also learning how to defend myself.

What do you like about martial arts? I like the fact that it teaches me how to protect myself from a multitude of dangers. I also like that it teaches me how to discipline myself, so that I don’t use the stuff I learn for something negative.

What’s your favorite martial arts move? Side kick. It can easily generate a lot of power.

What’s your favorite martial arts move? The butterfly kick.

Who do you look up to? I look up to my parents, who are both incredibly hard-working and intelligent. I look up to my Taekwondo instructors, because they demonstrate important 4 | FEBRUARY 2022 | EPIC KIDS

Who do you look up to? My parents because they both work so hard to make my life (and my siblings’ lives) the best it can possibly be, while making sure I end up being a good person.

What’s your martial arts goal? My martial arts goal is to earn a forms district champ title this tournament season. What do you want to be when you grow up? I want to be a doctor, or a person who can help people in any way I can.

Yara El-Gengaihy Age: 10 School: BASIS Scottsdale Grade: 5th What do you like about martial arts? I love that I learn how to protect people but I also have so much fun! Martial arts also teaches me self discipline. What’s your favorite martial arts move? Jump reverse hook kick. Who do you look up to? I look up to many people, but mostly my parents and instructors. My instructors help me learn self control, self discipline, honor, honesty, courtesy, and much more! My parents help lead me on the right path for my life and if it wasn’t for them, I wouldn’t be in martial arts. What’s your martial arts goal? To get my first degree black belt, I’m SO close! What do you want to be when you grow up? I want to be someone that can help people and animals! Whether I’m a vet, doctor, engineer, or anything! EPICKIDSAZ.COM


H e a d li n e rs

ROAD TRIPPING

Don’t leave home without these kid-approved travel essentials.

H

i! I’m Nicholas, your Epic Kids columnist. I’m a second grade CEO, and this month I’m writing about my favorite road trip finds for spring and summer vacations. 1. Travel toys My brothers and I like bringing toys on vacation, but my parents never have room for very big items. Some of our top picks for small travel toys include Kanoodle, Stickers by Number, and some sort of building toy (we like small Plus Plus blocks or Magnatoyds Magnetic Builders). 2. Blog! I might be young, but I love travel blogging. V-tech has a great “Kidi Cam” that doubles as a selfie stick and all-in-one editor. I do hotel tours of the properties we visit and snap photos during our adventures. My mom also likes us to keep a travel journal while we’re on the road, it’s a great way to track your daily activities.

3. Travel apps Tell your parents to download GyPSY Guide. The app is a narrated driving tour that uses your location to play stories and information about the areas you’re visiting. We used it throughout the Tetons/Yellowstone and learned so much about the area; we also recently used it in Maui and it told us a bunch of stories about our journey to Hana. 4. Map it out Whenever we go on long road trips through several states, my mom buys a paper map and lets us plot the trip with a highlighter. It’s super cool to learn about the routes we travel, and it also lets us help her look for signs and turnoffs. Now I have a map collection! Join me on my epic journeys via Instagram @creationsbynicholas and creationsbynicholas. com.

Nicholas with his two brothers and his mom on a family road trip.

EPICKIDSAZ.COM

FREE MUSIC LESSON Make your own happy notes! New group music lessons for kids are starting this January. East Valley: evyamahamusic.com North Phoenix: npyamahamusic.com (480) 926-4441

CLASSES INCLUDE Keyboard, Solfege, Singing, Movement, Ensemble, Reading & Music Appreciation

Yamaha Teachers have music degrees and are specially trained by Yamaha

EPIC KIDS | FEBRUARY 2022 | 5


Fit K i ds

KETTLEBELL CHALLENGE

By Linkan Marler

H

i, it’s Linkan back again with another Fit Kids monthly challenge. This month, we’re doing kettlebell swings and burpees. If you don’t remember how to do a burpee, refer to page 7 of the December issue of Epic Kids. First, a bit of history on what kettlebells are. They look like a cannonball with a handle, which is called the horn. Kettlebells originated in ancient Russia and were first used as a counter weight for purchasing goods at markets and from farms. Russian farmers realized that by swiping and pressing the kettlebells, they could increase their strength and endurance. Contests were held in villages and towns during festivals, fairs,

6 | FEBRUARY 2022 | EPIC KIDS

and circuses, and it became an official sport in 1958. How to Do a Kettlebell Swing First, place the kettlebell on the ground between your feet. Keep your feet a little wider than shoulder-width. Slightly bend your knees and bend at the waist while grabbing the handle with both hands. Keeping your back straight, neck neutral, shoulders back, and abs tight, hike the bell back like a football and then forcefully stand up by thrusting your hips forward. This is an explosive movement. Don’t lift the kettlebell with your arms. Let the force of your hips bring it up. Let the kettlebell swing back between your legs while keeping the same position in your back and neck.

Be careful not to swing a kettlebell around anyone, or anything breakable—that’s dangerous. Have a parent help you to make sure you’re doing them safely. Even better, suggest they do the challenge with you.

Linkan Marler is a 12-year-old fitness enthusiast.

Here’s the plan: 30 burpees 10 kettlebell swings 25 burpees 15 kettlebell swings 20 burpees 20 kettlebell swings 15 burpees 25 kettlebell swings 10 burpees 30 kettlebell swings 5 burpees 35 kettlebell swings The goal is to finish this challenge in 15 minutes. Trust me, the first time you do this it’s not going to be easy, but as you keep doing this and practicing, it’ll get easier. EPICKIDSAZ.COM


Gi vi ng B a c k

HELPING OTHERS

Claire Severs considers community service a family activity.

F

or Claire Severs, an eighthgrade student at Explorer Middle School, community service is a family affair. Actively volunteering with the National Charity League – Cactus Wren Chapter for the past year, Claire, her older sister, and her mother are involved in several community service projects and volunteer their time at Puppy Luv, Feed Our Starving Children, and Mom’s Pantry. “My family has instilled the value of giving back to the community since I was a small child. My mom talks to us about donating food and clothes for the holidays every year. She has always loved us and taught us about giving back to the community. Last year, we were fortunate to have friends extend an invitation to join the National Charity League - Cactus Wren Chapter,” says Claire. During her year of community service work and volunteering, Claire and her family have been able to work together while helping others in the community. “We have donated time helping out at the animal shelter Puppy Luv, which was a lot of fun with the dogs. We also helped out at Feed My Starving Children, which makes food packages for impoverished children overseas. My favorite was Mom’s Pantry, where we packaged food for families in need and homeless families.

EPICKIDSAZ.COM

Ages 6-14 years old Prescott, Arizona

Claire Severs volunteers her time at Puppy Luv, Feed Our Starving Children, and Mom’s Pantry. Some families came in for food while we were volunteering, and it makes me realize how lucky we are,” she says. If you want to get involved in community service but don’t know where to start, Claire’s advice is to volunteer in your community or just spread kindness. “There are a lot of organizations that appreciate our help, and you can volunteer with your friends and family,” she says. Claire enjoys friendly competition with her sister, especially when cooking and baking chocolate chip cookies for their family. Claire currently holds the family title of making the best scrambled eggs. After she completes high school and college, Claire aspires to have a career with NASA.

Camp Dates

SESSION 1: June 19 - 25 SESSION 2: June 26 - July 2 2-WEEK SESSION: June 19 - July 2

cool giveaway

Sign up for the Epic Kids eNewsletter by February 28 for a chance to win a family four pack to the LEGOLAND Discovery Center in Tempe. (a $120 value!) VISIT EPICKIDSAZ.COM TO SIGN UP! LIKE US ON FACEBOOK & INSTAGRAM @EpicKidsAZ

CONNECT WITH US EVERYWHERE

Share your photos, win cool prizes, and more! EPIC KIDS | FEBRUARY 2022 | 7


C a r e e r D ay

EQUESTRIAN

Justin Cowden trains horses to perform in the show ring. Horse trainer Justin Cowden started riding at a young age.

Justin showing at the Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show.

Justin Cowden

teach and train others to ride and care for horses. Profession: Arabian Show What type of training do Horse Trainer you need to do your job? Training horses is generally Age: 30 experienced based. Most What do you do for a successful people make their living? way through the industry I am a professional horse by learning from others trainer. I train Arabian and through apprenticeships and half-Arabian show horses assistant training positions. for a farm named Royal I started riding at a young Arabians LLC in Scottsdale. age and have ridden for I spend most of my time many years, practicing many riding and caring for horses hours a week to get more to make sure we perform experience. It takes a lot perfectly when we enter the of practice and constant competition arena. I also learning to be a horse trainer. 8 | FEBRUARY 2022 | EPIC KIDS

What’s your favorite part of your job? My favorite part of my job is being involved with horses from the time they are born all the way through to training them at the highest level for competition. They all have their own personalities and they are so much fun to get to know. What did you want to be when you were growing up? Horses have always been my passion, becoming a trainer was what I always wanted to do. I would spend

as much time around horses as I could and still do. What advice would you give to a kid who wants to have a similar career? Put yourself out there to take any opportunity to be around horses to learn about them. It is a very satisfying career that has so many rewarding aspects to it. One fun fact NOT about your job? My favorite pastime when not on a horse is wakeboarding or snowboarding. EPICKIDSAZ.COM


Gi vi ng B a c k

COMMUNITY PROJECT

Thirteen-year-old Ally Wodka aims to let senior citizens know they’re still valued.

E

ighth grader Ally Wodka used her creativity and networking skills to make her school community project a success. A student at Scottsdale’s Mountainside Middle School, Ally reached out to a local senior center to get approval to bring in care bags for their aging clientele. “I got the idea from homeless care bags,” says Ally. “Originally, I wanted to do this for the homeless, but thought to myself that there might be other people in need, so I decided that working with our seniors would be great. I decided to do research and found that more than 40 percent of seniors living in homes do not get visitors. I

wanted to make sure they felt like someone cares about them.” Ally reached out to her neighbors through social media to get suggestions and solicit donations for the senior care bags. “I posted on Nextdoor about the project and people were so nice! They all were asking about donations, as well as suggesting what could be in the bags,” says Ally. “I wasn’t surprised because I know how kind people can be. I’m glad my comment reached the right people!” Her post on Nextdoor elicited over 120 comments with suggestions to include items like fuzzy socks, hand lotion, tissues, stamped envelopes, and eye masks in the care bags. Along

with the suggestions and offers for donations were heartwarming notes of encouragement for Ally, like a comment from James that said: “Any suggestions that I had are mentioned here, but I felt I had to congratulate you and your effort. Most people my age think the youth of today are selfish and uncaring. Thanks for proving them wrong Ally!” As for what Ally hopes the care bags will accomplish, she says, “I hope that the seniors know that people are thinking about them, even if they do not get visitors. I want people to know the kindness in the world and how it can spread. I hope my efforts can inspire other people to do the same thing!”

with

PRESCHOOL

ELEMENTARY K-5

MIDDLE SCHOOL 6-8

HIGH SCHOOL 9-12 1751 W Indian School Rd Phoenix AZ 85015 602-265-4707 phoenixchristian.org

Enrolling Now! Ally Wodka put together care bags for her local senior center. EPICKIDSAZ.COM

EPIC KIDS | FEBRUARY 2022 | 9


C o v e r s t o ry

YOUNG LEADERS

Eighth grader Kiara Vicario Nava and seventh grader Caden Young participate in the Creighton Kids Congress Program.

Program gives voice to students to create more inclusive environments for learning.

S

tudent voice is a necessary component to decision making in the Creighton School District. To help gather input, student representatives from each school within the district meet multiple times a year as part of the Creighton Kids Congress Program. Students provide input on a variety of topics from remote learning structures and formats, strategies to make learning more engaging, as well as teacher 10 | FEBRUARY 2022 | EPIC KIDS

professional development needs. These students are chosen for their outside-ofthe-box thinking, willingness to exchange ideas with peers, along with their ability to approach problems creatively. Recently, students gathered to take part in the Creighton Strategic Planning Process to help steer the creation of the next three to five years of district goals.

They discussed both adventurous learning and health and wellness. Students shared strong, positive perceptions about adventurous learning and its importance. They described adventurous learning in many ways, with one student stating that, "Adventurous learning means having opportunities to express your interests and explore topics and ideas that you are passionate about." EPICKIDSAZ.COM


They also advocated for more outside activities, group projects, more class competitions, and strategy based online learning. They also expressed a desire for more field trips to learn about different communities and learn in different environments and most importantly experiencing learning that they like and enjoy. The students also indicated that health and wellness continues to be a major need on campuses. They described their own experiences with social emotional learning and were able to describe events such as class circles, lessons on positive affirmations, and mindfulness as positive strategies. Students also shared strong prospective on scholarly discussions as well as open

distancing and ways to communicate vaccination opportunities with the community. One of their most significant recommendations was the modification of typical school schedules to one that allows families with multiple children to be able to eat lunch at the same time Creighton Kids Congress is gearing up to together. Although this sounds like a minor participate in a four-day in-depth training adjustment, the impact was substantial in for youth leaders. This will equip them creating a remote learning environment to serve as leaders on their campuses to in homes that was more conducive to the engage their teachers and peers to create needs of families. more inclusive environments for learning. The Creighton Kids Congress students The students also advised on the topic of are seen as leaders on their campuses COVID-19, providing input on strategies for and continue to develop into an essential effective school to home communication, component for gathering student voice at mitigation practices, strategies for physical the Creighton School District. and respectful communication between students and adults. Another idea shared was the implementation of peer-to-peer sharing of feelings and the older students on campus acting as role models for the younger students.

STUDENT PERSPECTIVE

Eighth grader Nia Ubom shares her thoughts on the Creighton Kids Congress Program. How long have you been involved in the Creighton Kids Congress Program? 2021-2022 School Year What do you hope to accomplish by your participation in the program? I hope that by me participating in the Creighton Kids Congress I can help provide equitable access to things like field trips, school activities, COVID mitigation, etc. I want everyone to feel like they have a voice in this district. As I speak with my fellow classmates,

Nia Ubom lays out goals for adventurous learning during the Creighton Strategic Planning Process. EPICKIDSAZ.COM

I update them on the things discussed in the Kids Congress meetings and encourage feedback. What skills are you developing by being engaged in the program? The Creighton Kids Congress has made me a better public speaker. I am more confident in my presentations and sharing my voice in front of a large audience. It has helped me articulate my thoughts and become a better leader. I feel empowered to share my ideas.

Through her participation in Creighton Kids Congress, Nia Ubom has developed confidence in sharing her opinions.

Creighton students meet with school leaders to discuss school initiatives.

Student representatives from each school within the Creighton district meet multiple times a year. EPIC KIDS | FEBRUARY 2022 | 11


B r a i n P lay

Sari on SCIENCE COLOR CHANGING FLOWERS Sari on Science combines science and flowers in a fun Valentine’s Day experiment.

W

hen you give a flower a drink of water, where does the water go? My daughter and I recently investigated this very question, and thought it would be a fun way to combine science while making some custom colored flowers for Valentine’s Day. Here’s what you need: • 1 dozen white flowers (carnations work really well) • Water • Vase • 4 glasses or larger cups • Knife/box cutter • Food coloring (multiple colors)

+

5. Place one non-split flower in each cup of colored water, too. Leave the rest of your flowers in the plain water as a control. 6. Leave all flowers to sit for two to five days and make observations along the way! This is a good Directions: chance to make some predictions: 1. With an adult’s help, trim your what will happen to the flowers in flowers to a workable length, and colored water? Will the colors mix? ensure they are trimmed at an angle. Which colors will you see in the Keep all your flowers in plain water flowers first? until you are ready for the next step. 2. Together with your adult, use the What’s Happening? knife to split three of the flowers What did you notice about the straight down the center. Return to flowers? Did any of your predictions water for now. come true? Take a look at the leaves, 3. Fill four glasses with water and up too—what do you notice? There’s to 20 drops of food coloring. Each some very cool science happening glass should have a different color here. Flowers “drink” water almost of water. like you would drink water through 4. Line up the cups next to each other a straw. The flowers take up water and, using your split-stem flowers, through thin tubes called xylem in a place flowers straddling the cups process called capillary action. As so one side of stem is in one color, water evaporates from the leaves and petals of the flower (known as one side is in another.

12 | FEBRUARY 2022 | EPIC KIDS

= transpiration) and creates a low pressure system, more water is drawn up through the tubes because water molecules like to stick together (this is called cohesion). The dye in the water travels up the tubes, too, but doesn’t evaporate, so it remains in the leaves and petals. Splitting the stems allows us to see how the tubes are dispersed in the flower stem, and where they end. Try splitting your flower stem into thirds or swapping colors of dye after a few days. What happens then? Happy experimenting! Sari Custer is a lifelong science junkie, and the Chief of Science and Curiosity at Arizona Science Center. In addition to serving as the public spokeswoman for the Science Center, Sari is also host of the video series, Sari on Science which fosters excitement about science for viewers of all ages.

EPICKIDSAZ.COM


H e a d li n e rs

RENAISSANCE FESTIVAL TICKET WINNERS

529 College Planning Tips By Dale L. Shafer, CFP®, APMA®, amount of college CDFA® savings are Financial Advisor more likely to here are various types of attend and graduate accounts for college savings, college. Some considerations including 529, Coverdell ESA, for investing include type of IRAs, UTMAs, Brokerage accounts, account, tax benefits, enrollment etc., and each offers different tax in state or private university, and and contribution options. Choosing the potential for scholarships and the best strategy for your family will grants. Additional information and be an ongoing part of our financial resources for the Arizona 529 plan planning for this phase of your can be found at az529.gov/. child's life. Need help? Call us at (602) 923529 College Savings Plan are very 9800 for your complimentary popular because many states initial consultation. We would be offer tax incentives and credits honored to be of service. for annual contributions. As an The views expressed here reflect the views of Dale L. CFP®, AMPA®, CDFA® as of January 20, 2022. example, the state of Arizona offers Shafer, These views may change as market or other conditions Actual investments or investment decisions a tax deduction of up to $4,000 per change. made by Ameriprise Financial and its affiliates, whether child (Married Filing Jointly) for 529 for its own account or on behalf of clients, will not necessarily reflect the views expressed. This information plan contributions. is not intended to provide investment advice and does not account for individual investor circumstances. Contributions to 529 plans can Investment decisions should always be made based on an investor's specific financial needs, objectives, goals, be invested to grow tax deferred, time horizon and risk tolerance. Past performance does not guarantee future results and no forecast should be and withdrawals are tax-free considered a guarantee either. Clients should carefully consider the investment objectives, risks, charges, and when funds are used for qualified expenses associated with a 529 Plan before investing. education expenses. While 529 More information regarding a particular 529 Plan is available in the issuer’s official statement, which may be plans are commonly owned by obtained from an Ameriprise financial advisor. Investors parents and grandparents, anyone should read the 529 Plan’s official statement carefully before investing. can contribute on behalf of the products are not insured by the FDIC, NCUA child – potentially a great gift idea Investment or any federal agency, are not deposits or obligations of, or guaranteed by any financial institution, and involve for birthdays and other special investment risks including possible loss of principal and occasions. fluctuation in value. Investment advisory products and services are made You canthe start saving a 529 Putting needs of clientstofirst is the plan approach I available believe in. I’ll work with you to find Services, LLC, through Ameriprise Financial a registered investment adviser. Ameriprise Financial the as rightlittle financial to help you plan for your unique goals. And together, we’ll with as solutions $25. Studies have Services, LLC. Member FINRA and SIPC. © 2022 track your progress over time, adjusting your plan along the way to help get you where Ameriprise Financial, Inc. All rights reserved. shown children with even a small

T

you want to go.

Renee A. Hanson CFP®, CEP®, CDFA®, CFS®, ChFC®, APMA® Private Wealth Advisor

Congratulations to the Moreno Family. Mom Michelle signed up for the Epic Kids newsletter to win four Renaissance Festival tickets. Here’s hoping they make wonderful family memories at this year’s Ren Fest! EPICKIDSAZ.COM

602.923.9800 7010 E. Chauncey Ln Ste 200 Phoenix, AZ 85054 renee.a.hanson@ampf.com affinitywealthadvisor.com

Affinity Wealth Advisory Group A private wealth advisory practice of Ameriprise Financial Services, LLC

Ameriprise Financial Services, LLC. Member FINRA and SIPC.

EPIC KIDS | FEBRUARY 2022 | 13


B r a i n P lay

Book Club THE HOUND OF ROWAN

THREE MORE BOOKS TO TRY

AUTHOR: Henry H. Neff

HOLE IN THE WALL

GENRE: Middle Grade Fantasy

AUTHOR: Tevin Hansen

AGES: 9+

AGES: 9 - 12

RATING: A A A A A

SYNOPSIS: A story about a cynical boy who

SYNOPSIS: Max McDaniels lives a quiet life in the suburbs of Chicago, until the

day he stumbles upon a mysterious Celtic tapestry. Many strange people are interested in Max and his tapestry. His discovery leads him to Rowan Academy, a secret school where great things await him. But dark things are waiting, too. When Max learns that priceless artworks and gifted children are disappearing, he finds himself in the crossfire of an ancient struggle between good and evil. To survive, he’ll have to rely on a network of agents and mystics, the genius of his roommate, and the frightening power awakening within him.

MY FAVORITE QUOTE FROM THIS BOOK: “Incomplete data leads to incomplete

conclusions.”

goes through a hole in the basement wall and into another world, but it’s a world that is actually his own imagination.

KINDNESS IS MY SUPERPOWER AUTHOR: Alicia Ortego AGES: 3 - 7

MY FAVORITE THING ABOUT THIS BOOK WAS: I loved the magical school,

which set the tone throughout the book. The whole story felt whimsical and transported me right into Rowan Academy.

MY FAVORITE CHARACTER IN THIS BOOK WAS: I love Max, of course! He is the

perfect main character––witty, smart, and courageous.

FANS OF THIS BOOK MAY ALSO LIKE: Fablehaven by Brandon Mull, The

Unwanteds by Lisa McMann, and The Story Thieves by James Riley

Avery, 15, is an avid reader and book reviewer. When not reading, you can find her playing volleyball, hanging out with friends, or with one of her pets! Follow her on Instagram and TikTok at @readbyfin.

14 | FEBRUARY 2022 | EPIC KIDS

SYNOPSIS: A charming story with peaceful rhymes and colorful illustrations that emphasize it’s okay to make a mistake.

SPECTACULAR STORIES FOR CURIOUS KIDS AUTHOR: Jesse Sullivan AGES: 6 - 12 SYNOPSIS: One hundred captivating tales from history and scientific wonders specifically curated and written for young readers. EPICKIDSAZ.COM


E a ts

GRILLING UP BIG TIME FAVORITES Joe’s Farm Grill serves up delicious bites and a hometown feel.

By Gretchen Pahia estled in the far East Valley is a delicious spot for the entire family to enjoy. If you haven’t gotten the chance to check out what’s happening out at Agritopia—and Joe’s Farm Grill—you’re definitely missing out. The entire area is like a scene out of a movie, with tree lined streets, miles of greenery and wide-open land, and tons of play areas for kids of all ages. Joe’s Farm Grill is focused on quality food done well. The meals are full of some of the best ingredients around, sourced locally when possible, including some from the nearby Farm at Agritopia. While not everything on the menu is locally sourced, the flavors and amazing dishes certainly stand on their own. Joe’s Farm Grill is open for breakfast seven days a week, starting off a delicious day on the right foot. You can start your day at 7:30 a.m. at the grill, with some yummy waffles or pancakes. There are also several egg dish options like omelets, scrambles, and more. The kids' breakfast menu includes pancakes and bacon, French toast and bacon, and scrambled eggs and bacon. If breakfast isn’t your thing or if you're looking for a great family spot for lunch and dinner, Joe’s delivers. Appetizer choices include crispy Brussel sprouts, corn fritters, onion rings, and others. Then, there are a number of other op-

N

tions including an ahi tuna sandwich with spicy wasabi mayo and coleslaw, a pork tenderloin sandwich with onion, pickles, and a special sauce, waffles and chicken, which features Belgian waffles topped with hand-breaded chicken tenders with a maple honey mustard sauce, Carolina blue dog, which includes BBQ pulled pork, crumbled blue cheese, slaw dressing, and so much more. Of course, there are hamburger and cheeseburger options, full BBQ meat plates, and a fried shrimp plate that comes with two sides of your choice. There’s even pan pizza on the menu, so there’s something on the menu for even the pickiest eaters. The lunch and dinner kids' menu has many options including a side of choice with any of the following main dishes: cheeseburger, pork sandwich, grilled cheese, chicken tenders, and corn dog bites. If you have a sweet tooth, be sure to check out one of the thick milkshakes in flavors like dark chocolate, real vanilla bean, mocha, fresh strawberry, butter pecan, and a seasonal option that changes quite often. There are also a few amazingly delicious cheesecake options from plain to fresh strawberry and chocolate caramel turtle. Come hungry. Leave satisfied. Open daily at 7:30 a.m., Joe’s Farm Grill serves breakfast until 11 a.m. Then from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., the lunch and dinner menu is served. There is seating both indoors and outside throughout the property.

Bacon burger

Dark chocolate milkshake

Ahi tuna sandwich

JOE'S FARM GRILL (480) 563-4745 • 3000 E. Ray Rd., Gilbert • joesfarmgrill.com EPICKIDSAZ.COM

EPIC KIDS | FEBRUARY 2022 | 15


just ffo or fun B r a i n P lay

JOKES AND FUN FACTS FOR THE ENTIRE FAMILY.

1 What runs but

February fluctuates between having 28 and 29 days per year. The 29th day only occurs every four years during leap years.

cannot walk, has a mouth but no teeth, and a bed that cannot sleep.

People weigh less on the equator than at the North or South Pole. The body itself doesn’t change, rather the force of gravity and other forces change as you approach the poles.

A human loses about a million skin cells per 24 hours.

2

The name of February comes from the Latin word “februum” which means purification.

What do you call a sleeping bull?

3

Why can’t you ever trust atoms?

A cat has 32 muscles in each ear, compared to a human's six muscles each. These muscles give cats a keen sense of hearing. A cat can rotate its ears independently 180 degrees, and turn in the direction of sound 10 times faster than those of the best watchdog. 1. A river. 2. A bulldozer. 3. Because they make up everything.

make us chuckle!

Email a joke or far out fact, along with your first name, age, and the school you attend, to hello@epickidsaz.com 16 | FEBRUARY 2022 | EPIC KIDS

EPICKIDSAZ.COM


B r a i n P lay

from our readers

What’s an alligator in a vest called? Sasha, 7, Valley Christian

Why did the chocolate chip cookie go to the doctor?

NORTHERN ARIZONA

Jeremy, 11, All Saints’ Episcopal Day School

1. An investigator. 2. He felt crumby.

VALENTINE'S VALENTINE'SDAY DAY WORD WORDSEARCH SEARCH

7 DAY, 6-NIGHT GETAWAY!

This overnight Camp offers lots of activities; Horseback Riding, Kayaking, Arts & Crafts, Shelter Building, Archery, Hiking, Campfire and S’mores, Capture the Flag, Skit Night, Astronomy, and so much more! Includes: Lodging, Meals, R/T Chartered Bus from Ahwatukee to Camp and from Camp to Ahwatukee, Camp T-shirt, and memories for a lifetime!

Circle words inin the Circle words thepuzzle puzzlebelow below

B B L L OO VV EE PP OO LL OO S S BB AA CC UU PP II WWCC UU L L WW CC LL KK B B A A S S EE UU EE HH EE L L NN WW NN RR DD EE NN OODD E E T T OO CC AA RR CC Y Y E E I I CC AA RR DD K K UU T T NN VV CC TT RR P P I I NN EE AA RR RR OO love love sweet sweet like like EPICKIDSAZ.COM

arrow arrow bow bow candy candy

care care friend friend card card

TT DD FF RR II EE NN DD W W

valentine valentine heart heart cupid cupid

IMPORTANT INFO CAMPERS AGES: 7 – 15 EARLY BIRD REGISTRATION (Ends March 31): $750 (Regular Price $800) WHERE: 4860 Mormon Lake Rd, Mormon Lake, AZ 86038 (just 23 miles SE of Flagstaff) Week 1: June 12 - 18 Week 2: June 19 - 25 Week 3: June 26 - July 2 Week 4: July 3 - 9 Week 5: July 10 - 16

| | | | |

Ages 13 – 15 - Teen Week Ages 7 - 12 Ages 7 - 12 Ages 7 - 12 Ages 7 – 12 - Catholic Week

WANT TO BE A CAMP COUNSELOR?

Join us June 5-11 for the 7 day, 6-night counselor training for teens ages 15-17. You will learn to work with kids ages 7-15 and will learn counselor skills including CPR, Team building and Leadership activities, have an opportunity to earn Community Service Hours and much more! The cost of the training is $225. If selected, Counselors in Training will be asked to return as Counselors for the camper weeks to put their skills into action at no additional cost!

Register today at: www.SJYCAZ.com or email : admin@SJYCAZ.com 480-449-0848 EPIC KIDS | FEBRUARY 2022 | 17


What's Happening

February 2022

ARIZONA RENAISSANCE FESTIVAL WHEN: Through April 3 WHERE:12601 E. US Highway 60, Gold Canyon WHAT: Travel back in time to the 16th century at the 34th Annual Arizona Renaissance Festival. Families will experience a medieval amusement park, a 16-stage theater, a 50-acre circus, an arts and crafts fair, a jousting tournament, and more. Mingle with more than 2,000 costumed characters, eat a giant roasted turkey leg, take part in games of chance and skill, cheer on your favorite knight, and browse more than 200 artisan shops. INFO: arizona.renfestinfo.com

ATTACK OF THE BLOODSUCKERS; THE BEASTIES THAT BITE YOU…AND WHY WHEN: Through May 8 WHERE: Arizona Science Center, 600 E. Washington St., Phoenix WHAT: Explore the science of what's biting you in Arizona Science Center's latest skin-crawling exhibition: Attack of the Bloodsuckers! Examine the what, why, when, and how of 18 | FEBRUARY 2022 | EPIC KIDS

mosquitoes, fleas, ticks, leeches, and other parasites. Learn why bloodsuckers are important to the ecosystem, and how to keep them out of your system. INFO: azscience.org THE VERY HUNGRY CATERPILLAR SHOW WHEN: Feb. 12 - March 13 WHERE: Herberger Theater Center, Stage West, 222 E. Monroe St., Phoenix WHAT: The critically acclaimed production of The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show created by Jonathan Rockefeller features a menagerie of 75 lovable puppets. The production faithfully adapts four stories by author/illustrator Eric Carle: Brown Bear, Brown Bear, 10 Little Rubber Ducks, The Very Busy Spider and of course, the star of the show—The Very Hungry Caterpillar. INFO: herbergertheater.org/events/the-very-hungry-caterpillarshow/

DISNEY PRINCESS - THE CONCERT WHEN: Feb. 12 WHERE: Orpheum Theater, 203 W. Adams St., Phoenix WHAT: Join a quartet of Disney's strongest, best-loved characters for this extra-special production! Disney Princess: The Concert sees four incredible female performers join forces to share songs and stories from their time as Disney Princess. There'll be some of Disney's incredible music, enchanting animation, and a peek behind-the-scenes too. INFO: phoenix-theater.com EPICKIDSAZ.COM


AHOY THERE, MATEYS! WHEN: Feb. 25 - April 10 WHERE: LEGOLAND Discovery Center, 5000 S. Arizona Mills Cir., Suite 135, Tempe WHAT: Are ye ready for a treasure hunt? Sail in for the all-new Pirates AHOY event! During this limited-time event, you can join the pirate crew and take the ultimate pirate challenge through scavenger hunts to find buried treasure, dance parties, team LEGO® builds, and more! INFO: legolanddiscoverycenter.com/arizona/whats-inside/ events/pirates-ahoy/

BABY SHARK LIVE 2022 WHEN: Feb. 17 - 18 WHERE: Mesa Arts Center, 1 E. Main St., Mesa WHAT: Take an adventure into the sea with Baby Shark as he joins up with his friend Pinkfong to sing and dance through some of your favorite new and classic songs! Baby Shark Live! is a state of the art enchanting kids spectacular. INFO: mesaartscenter.com SCOTTSDALE ARABIAN HORSE SHOW WHEN: FEB. 17 - 27 WHERE: WestWorld, 16601 N. Pima Rd., Scottsdale WHAT: The largest event of its kind in the world, the Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show is held at WestWorld and attracts hundreds of thousands of spectators. In addition to exciting competitions, educational seminars, family focused events, and an international cuisine court, the event features more than 300 vendor booths. INFO: scottsdaleshow.com JUSTIN BIEBER JUSTICE TOUR WHEN: Feb. 22 WHERE: Gila River Arena, 9400 W. Maryland Ave., Glendale WHAT: Justin Bieber: Justice World Tour 2022, formerly the Changes Tour and World Tour 2021 is the upcoming fourth concert tour by Justin Bieber, in promotions of Changes and Justice. The tour was set to begin on May 14, 2020, but the tour was postponed amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic INFO: gilariverarena.com/events/detail/justin_bieber_ justiceworldtour EPICKIDSAZ.COM

On Deck: March

69TH ANNUAL RODEO SCOTTSDALE WHEN: March 10 - 13 WHERE: WestWorld, 16601 N. Pima Rd., Scottsdale WHAT: Also known as the Parada Del Sol Rodeo, this PRCAsanctioned rodeo event in the West’s Most Western Town is four days long each year. Events include saddle bronc, tie down roping, barrel racing, steer wrestling, breakaway roping, and more. INFO: rodeoscottsdale.com ENCHANTED UNICORN FESTIVAL WHEN: March 13 WHERE: Singh Meadows, 1490 E. Weber Dr., Tempe WHAT: You’ll be welcomed with fairy wands, goodie bags, and smiles, along with options for face painting, balloons, hairdos, unicorn rides, professional mini photos with the unicorn, boutique shopping, and a farmers market at the Enchanted Unicorn Festival. INFO: https://bit.ly/3rzJpXG EPIC KIDS | FEBRUARY 2022 | 19


Now Enrolling

K-8 STUDENTS Creighton School District is enrolling K-8 students for the 2021-2022 school year! Some of the specialty programs Creighton offers are:

NOW HIRING Creighton School District is seeking staff members who share our belief of inspiring students to become adventurous thinkers, collaborative learners, and kind-hearted leaders.

Dual Language Spanish Immersion Arts Integration Coding and Robotics

Visit us to learn more at www.CreightonSchools.org

Apply online today at www.CreightonSchools.org 2702 E. Flower St. Phx, AZ 85016 (602) 381-6000 See what fun we’re having at:

2702 E Flower St., Phoenix, AZ 85016 602-381-6000 | www.CreightonSchools.org

@CreightonElementarySchoolDistrict