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June-July 2013

Modern Classical Curriculum ALSO: Artist Draws on Strength to Cope with Loss

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Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

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John Hall Publisher Kevin Atwill Editor Adlen Robinson Director of Content Ryan Garmon Advertising Director Graphic Design Jeff Bucchino Josh Bugosh Contributing Writers Tim Keyser Crystal Ledford Jennifer Sami

Contents 8

Young Scholar


Stage Presence

Rising 10th-grader Jim Stewart discovers old-world learning.

North Forsyth High’s drama program unites young thespians.


The Right Ingredients

The culinary program at West Forsyth High stirs kitchen smarts.


Photography Amber Cloy Jim Dean Carrie Ann Sienkiewicz

At ease with classics - Page 8

YOUth Magazine

is published bimonthly by the Forsyth County News Co., 302 Veterans Memorial Boulevard, Cumming, GA 30040. Advertising rates and deadlines available upon request. Contact Ryan Garmon at (770) 205-8960 or Follow us online at:


Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

Banding Together

More musicians mean more music for South Forsyth High’s band.


Community ��������������������������������������������������������� 18


Arts ��������������������������������������������������������������������� 20


Entertainment ����������������������������������������������������� 28


Education ����������������������������������������������������������� 29


Technology ��������������������������������������������������������� 30

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Welcome to


elcome to our third issue of YOUth! We are all thoroughly enjoying getting to know the many amazing youth in our community and the organizations in which they are involved. Having lived here for 23 years, I like to think I am fairly up on what’s going on in the county. That said, I was surprised to learn about a school, St. John Bosco Academy, with which I was unfamiliar. Jim Stewart, a rising sophomore, is our “cover kid” for this issue, and just wait until you read about the classical education he and his fellow classmates are receiving. Meeting Otwell Middle School eighth-grader Kristian Fields was a real treat. An amazing young artist, Kristian has a special story about losing someone important in her life.

There are a couple of “foodie” pieces in this issue. The first explores the awesome culinary program at West Forsyth High, while the other shares fantastic recipes from two budding chefs in South Forsyth’s program. I tasted their cupcakes, and can attest to their deliciousness. We also have some new features in this issue of the magazine, so please let us know what you think! Best,

Adlen W. Robinson is an award-winning columnist and feature writer who has been a contributor to the Forsyth County News for more than a decade. Adlen has lived in Forsyth County with husband Paul for 23 years and they have four children. Author of “Home Matters: The Guide to Organizing Your Life and Home,” Adlen is also busy working on her first cookbook. E-mail her at

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Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

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an g n i h s i Rel nd a l a n i orig al n o ti a c edu ch a o r p p a


n any given day you may find 15-year old Jim Stewart outside practicing lacrosse or inside his home playing guitar. Look again, and you may find him studying Plato or Plutarch or tackling his first year of Latin. Stewart, who attended the same

private school from the time he was 3, made an important decision last year. He decided to transfer to St. John Bosco Academy, a hybrid school that emphasizes a classical

Jim Stewart, above, and his mother Skotti Frese, left, are actively involved at St. John Bosco Academy.

curriculum through the reading of ancient sources, as well as the study of Latin for four years. As a ninth-grader, Stewart studies ancient Greek history (Herodotus, Thucydides, Plutarch and Plato), as well as ancient Greek literature (Homer’s “The Illiad” and “The Odyssey,” and Aeschylus and Sophocles). “From an academic


Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

Tracy Blankenship, left, is co-director of the high school at St. John Bosco, where Skotti Frese, right, teaches, and Jim Stewart, at left, is a student.

standpoint, it was a huge shock,” Stewart said of the adjustment to a new school. “I was used to putting in not too much effort and making A’s. “All of a sudden, everything was different and I had a hard time grasping what was happening.” Stewart spends three days a week in the classroom and two days a week at home studying on his own. “You have to be really organized with your time,” he said. At St. John Bosco, there are no formal textbooks except for math and science. The students study from primary sources and then have lively classroom discussions about the content. Stewart’s mother, Skotti Frese, described the experience as positive. “The curriculum is rigorous and there is no busy work or time wasted,” she said. “They are not reading excerpts or a text book authors’ opinion, they are reading the actual text.” Frese, who teaches ancient Greek history to ninth-graders at the academy, has found teaching there to be refreshing after years in a traditional school setting. “When you teach 100 students a day, giving individual attention is almost impossible,” she said. “Here, I have 12 students I can focus on and give them my 100 percent.” After reading original texts, classroom discussions are spent relating the information to the modern world and even the student’s lives.

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‘A real community’ H

Odds and ends come together in drama family

Photos: Submitted

annah Manikowski has two families. The North Forsyth High School sophomore has her family at home and drama family at school. “There is just something about the atmosphere,” she said. “It’s so warm and welcoming. It’s like we take all of the odds and ends and everyone that doesn’t fit in somewhere else finds a home here ... they’re my family.”

It’s a feeling shared by most of the 250 kids who take drama classes during the day and it’s what makes the program so unique, according to department director Mary Hayes Ernst. “It’s a real community,” Ernst 10

Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

said. “I’ve taught in other places and I think this is really unusual here, the way we do have strong community support and everyone really views us as the center of what’s going on.” Drama students start their year off on the first day of school, performing the “First Day Play” eight times, so every student can watch. “It’s one of the most popular things,” Ernst said. “It really draws the whole community in and it’s usually something about getting the school year off right.” The play this year was a tongue-in-cheek production called “How to Succeed in High School Without Really Trying,” a parody of the Broadway production “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.” Students are gearing up for the 2013-14 school year’s first day play called “This is a Test.” The dedicated cast members will come in during the summer to rehearse so they’re ready in August. The drama program starts with a full slate of classes either on an acting or technical theatre track. There are also audition courses, like musical theater, giving students the chance to be in the school’s bigger productions that focus on

n e Op

No w

acting, singing and dancing. Students wrapped up the year with a recent performance of “Beauty and the Beast.” “We sold out three shows,” Ernst said. “And in the fall, we did a show called ‘Changing Minds ...’ which is like ‘High School Musical’ meets ‘Freaky Friday.’ We happened to win a national video contest on changing minds from a video we did.” In 2011, the program won best play at the Georgia Theatre Conference for their performance of “Brother Wolf.”

In 2012, students celebrated all things Celtic, along with their performance of “Brigadoon.” The department held a Celtic Festival, featuring Irish dancing and crafts, along with the musical. While Ernst, a certified Irish dancing teacher, said that was likely a one-time event, there are plans for next year to hold a World Festival, which will include Irish dancing along with a variety of other Cumming performances unique to countries across the world. “We really try to give them a wide variety of experiences,” Ernst said. In the coming year, students will perform another Disney musical, “The Little Mermaid,” as well as “Phantom Toll Booth Junior” and “All Shook Up.” LUS P They’ll also be performing an Ernst ✦ 156 foot water slide ✦ Lazy River original, “Seuss Produced,” for the second ✦ Children’s Splash Play Area year in a row. ✦ New Concession Stand The school is hoping to earn grant is Now Open! money so, like this year, “we can bring in August 10th - 31st May 25th - August 7th kindergarteners from all over the county Sat & Sun only: OPEN DAILY so they can see that during Read Across Sat: Two sessions Mon-Sat: Two sessions America day.” 10:00am-2:00pm/2:30pm-6:30pm 10:00am-2:00pm/2:30pm-6:30pm Having been in every show since she Sun: One session Sun: One session started at the school, Manikowski is in for 1:00pm-6:00pm 1:00pm-6:00pm a busy year. July 4th & Sept. 2 (Labor Day) “This is basically all I do,” she said. “We One session all share a passion ... there’s something 1:00pm-6:00pm in our lives that we are willing to totally Labor Day: Last day of the season devote ourselves to and I think people that are passionate about something 201 Aquatic Circle, Cumming, GA 30040 connect well with one another.” 770-781-1781 • -- Jennifer Sami

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Youth Magazine | June - July 2013


Learning to

Optimist oratorical contest hones skills


he Optimist International Oratorical Contest is a program designed to help students gain experience in public speaking while also offering an opportunity to compete for college scholarship money. Begun in 1928, it is the longest running program in Optimist International. Jan Norman, who has been involved with the program locally for 20 years, said nearly 5,000 students in Forsyth County wrote speeches about “Why My Voice is Important.” Indeed, Forsyth has the largest oratorical contest in any country covered by Optimist International. According to Norman, the students did a phenomenal job covering a variety of topics. The topics ranged from using their voice to protect human rights and standing up for personal convictions to carrying on traditions and discouraging bullying. “The students did such an amazing job with their speeches,” Norman said. “The speeches were humorous, personal, political and thoughtful.” 12

Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

Clockwise from top left: Sara Gerber, Aditya Bhave, Matthew Cunningham and Sarah Kale.

Norman went on to note that the storytelling was engaging and the young speakers showed a deep understanding and knowledge of history. Some speeches, she said, were inspiring. South Forsyth High School student Sara Kale went on to compete at the state competition in Warner Robbins. Although she did not prevail there, she was one of the top five orators in Georgia. Norman said all of the participants should be proud of their efforts.

Begun in 1928, it is the longest running program in Optimist International. “I cannot stress how amazing these young people are,” she said. “Forsyth County has this exceptional program due to the diligent work of students, teachers and parents, as well as the interest and cooperation of the school administration and many of our civic leaders.” Forsyth is served by two Optimist

Clubs, a morning and evening one, which work together to sponsor the oratorical competition. Both the Sawnee-Cumming and Forsyth-Cumming clubs work together to ensure the contest is a success, said Norman, adding that they couldn’t do it without the partnerships of the United Way and Northside HospitalForsyth. “It is so exciting to see our students become college student body presidents, speakers at national conventions, working in the media, and even seeing them return to judge oratorical contests,” she said. The contest is open to all students 19 and younger. Fifth-graders compete separately from other students — their level is considered an important training ground for honing public speaking skills — and do not proceed past the county meets. From the county level, the top two girls and boys move to a multicounty competition. The winners there proceed to a North Georgia area level and perhaps onto state. -- Adlen W. Robinson

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The top two young female and male speakers in the local Optimist International Oratorical Contest advanced to the next level. * Girls: Sarah Kale of South Forsyth High and Sarah Gerber of Lambert. The alternate was Dani Madda of Pinecrest Academy * Boys: Matt Cunningham of South Forsyth and Aditya Bhave of Riverwatch Middle. The alternate was Arjun Karanam of Vickery Creek Middle Fifth-graders The winners in the Sawnee-Cumming Optimist Elementary School Contest. * Girls: First, Hannah Lucas of Dave’s Creek; runner-up, Brianna Ray of Kelly Mill; second runner-up, Julie Reneslacis of Whitlow * Boys: First, Grady Arant of Haw Creek; runner-up, Tyler Cook of Kelly Mill; second runner-up- Cooper Jordan of Silver City Elementary school The winners of the Forsyth-Cumming Optimist Elementary School Contest. * Girls: First, Sydney Cobb of Mashburn; runner-up, Lily Hansen of Big Creek; second runner-up, Lindsey Gerstner of Coal Mountain * Boys: First, Townsend White of Midway; runner-up, Jimmy Herbert of Mashburn; second runner-up, Allen Shrewsbury of Settles Bridge Source: Local Optimist clubs

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Youth Magazine | June - July 2013


Mia Kosko, right, and Sydney Doolittle, above

Young chefs whip up yummy cupcakes Photos: Amber Cloy


outh Forsyth High School seniors Sydney Doolittle and Mia Kosko showed off their culinary skills during the recent Flavors of Forsyth, where each showcased their original cupcake recipes. Mia’s cupcakes were a big hit with those who love banana bread with a light mocha frosting and a hint of ginger and honey. Sydney’s cupcakes wowed those who enjoy the combination of chocolate and peanut butter with a banana base. The students, who came up with their recipes based on flavors they love, were happy to share them. So if you missed trying them at Flavors, an annual fundraiser for the local United Way, you can make a batch in your own kitchen. A warning: these cupcakes have highly addictive qualities! -- Adlen W. Robinson


Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

Mia Kosko’s recipe

Cupcake procedure Mix Flour, baking soda, baking powder and Banana chai spiced cupcake with mocha salt in a bowl. Set aside. frosting and ginger honey glaze In another bowl, mix sugar and egg for 30 1 ¼-Cups cake flour seconds, mix in flaxseed. 1 ¼-Teaspoons baking powder Add in chai tea, vanilla and oil. Mix for 45 ½-Teaspoon baking soda seconds. ½-Teaspoon salt Alternating, mix in yogurt and flour. Mix in 1-Large egg cardamom. 1-Tablespoon of ground flaxseed+ 3 Smash the bananas until smooth, add to tablespoons water (egg replacement) mix and stir for 60 seconds or until well 3/4-Cup sugar mixed. 2- Tablespoons Chai tea leaves Yields: 1 dozen 1 1/2 -Teaspoons pure vanilla extract Frosting procedure: 1/2-Cup canola oil Mix cocoa powder and hot coffee with a ½ -Cup Vanilla Greek yogurt mixer. 2 Ripe bananas Add half of the sugar. Mix until blended. Add butter, and salt. Mocha frosting Scrape all sides of the bowl before adding 1/2-Cup unsweetened cocoa powder in the remaining sugar. 1/3-Cup strong, hot, brewed coffee Whip heavy cream and fold in the coffee 3-Cups confectioners’ sugar mixture until the flavour and consistency 1/3-Cup melted butter desired is reached 1/8-Teaspoon salt Glaze procedure: 2 cups heavy whipping cream Mix honey, ginger and sugar in a small Ginger honey glaze bowl. 3-Tablespoons honey If consistency is too thick add milk to thin. 1/8-Teaspoon ground ginger Once desired consistency is reached add 2/3-Cup confectioner’s sugar salt to balance out the sweetness. Milk for consistency Yields: ¼ cup 1/8-Teaspoon salt

Sydney Doolittle’s recipe

Fluffernutter chocolate banana cupcake Yields about 16 cupcakes Ingredients ½ cup butter 2 cups all purpose flour 1 ½ cup sugar 2 eggs 1 tsp. baking powder ¾ tsp. baking soda ½ tsp salt ½ tsp. vanilla extract 1 cup mashed bananas ¼ cup buttermilk Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Fill a cupcake tin with baking cups and grease heavily with nonstick spray. Cream butter and sugar together. Combine bananas, eggs, vanilla, and buttermilk in a separate bowl. Add to creamed butter mixture. Mix until blended. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add to mixer and blend on low until completely mixed. Don’t over mix. Fill baking cups about half way with batter. Place in oven and cook for 15-20 minutes. Allow cupcakes to cool after removing from the oven. Once completely cooled take a knife and cut out the center of the cupcake about one centimeter deep and an inch wide. Pipe chocolate ganache filling into the hole until completely filled. Pipe Fluffernutter frosting onto the top of the cupcake. Garnish with dry roasted peanuts. Fluffernutter frosting Ingredients ¾ cup creamy peanut butter 1 cup marshmallow crème 1/3 cup butter, softened ¼ cup powdered sugar ¼ cup milk Cream peanut butter, marshmallow cream, and butter in a mixer until completely mixed. Add powdered sugar in small increments until completely combined with peanut butter mixture. Slowly add milk while blending until icing turns a creamy consistency (may not require all of the milk). Chocolate ganache Ingredients ¾ cup semisweet chocolate ¼ cup heavy whipping crème In a double boiler melt chocolate until it is shiny. While stirring rapidly, slowly add the whipping crème until chocolate turns smooth.

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Classics cont’d fro m

pg. 9

I don’t c remind him heck up on him, or about upc oming test and paper s s. He is on his own. According to Frese, the time spent in independent study at home helps students gain valuable organizational skills. “It is so wonderful that students can practice the self-discipline study skills necessary to succeed in college.” Frese said her son is responsible for printing out his weekly lesson plans and figuring out how he will get it all done. “I don’t check up on him, or remind him about upcoming tests and papers,” she said. “He is on his own.” Both mother and son hope his studies will help distinguish him from the thousands of students who will one day apply to the best schools in the world, one of which he hopes to attend. “Right now, I think I want to go to Oxford University [in England],” Stewart said. “I am not exactly sure what I want to do yet, but at this point, that is where I hope to go.” And it’s exactly those type of aspirations that the officials at St. John Bosco hope to help fulfill. The school began when four families who were home schooling their children began teaching them in 16

Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

combined groups for certain studies. Vivian Ferrari, one of the founders, said they never set out to start a school. “We just kept growing and after a while, we Jim Stewart and his mother, Skotti Frese, are pleased with his realized we needed more transition to St. John Bosco Academy. space than each other’s homes,” said the mother of The group came up with the six children ages 4 to 25. academy, which combines “We all wanted a school that classroom instruction with studies offered a classical education, but at home. also a way for us to spend as much For the past four years, the time as possible as a family.” school has covered grades prekindergarten through eighth

“We all wanted a school that offered a classical education, but also a way for us to spend as much time as possible as a family.”

grade. It added the ninth grade this past school year and has an enrollment of 140 students. Next year, plans call for adding 10th and 11th grades, leading up to a senior class the following year. Tracy Blankenship, who serves as co-director of the high school, said it has grown so much due to the demand in the community. “Our teachers use the Socratic method when teaching students,” she

ith his dog, w Jim Stewart w an.” om w “bearded

ord for uli,” the Latin w ho is named “L

explained. “We offer a classical curriculum and have high expectations.” Blankenship stressed that families who choose St. John Bosco are looking for an excellent education that also allows for more quality family time. She’ll get no argument from Frese, who said it has been an amazing journey watching her son grow and mature over the past year. -- Adlen W. Robinson


On the Net

For more information, visit Youth Magazine | June - July 2013


Ministering to Group stays active at Cumming First UMC Right: Scott Sienkiewicz, director of student ministries at CFUMC


here are many dynamic youth groups in Forsyth County, and the one at Cumming First United Methodist Church certainly makes the list. Scott Sienkiewicz, director of student ministries since June 2012, said he has been in student ministry for more than 10 years. According to Sienkiewicz, the church has about 80 students in their middle and high school programs, and features six different offerings. They

range from Bible studies and Sunday school to mission trips and special events. The Sunday night youth program begins at 5 p.m. and offers students time to “hang out” with friends and enjoy a meal. They then divide into groups and discuss what the Bible has to say about topics relevant to youth and for sharing their faith with others. “Our goal of the program is that students have a deeper relationship with Jesus when they leave our doors than when they entered them,”

Left to right Naomi Chance, Taylor Frennea and Cassie Kobetich


Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

Sienkiewicz said. The Sunday night program will continue throughout the summer and there will also be various outings, including Braves games and a trip to Six Flags. In addition, a group of youth is going on a mission trip to Ecuador, where members will work with an orphanage. Other students will be traveling to a rural area along the TennesseeKentucky border to help repair and build homes for those in need.

Sienkiewicz said they also plan to help the local community in several ways, including packaging food for area children in need. Clearly passionate about his role, Sienkiewicz said he hopes to guide the students in their faith in the same way he experienced growing up in his home church, Bright Star United Methodist in Douglasville.

“Our goal of the program is that students have a deeper relationship with Jesus when they leave our doors than when they entered them” - Scott Sienkiewicz


“The middle and high school years are some of the most formative years that we go through,” Sienkiewicz said. “I feel my place is to serve as a guidepost to the students and continually point them to the truth of scripture. “In a culture where truth has become what you want it to be, youth need a place that isn’t apologetic about what they stand for.” -- Adlen W. Robinson

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Jacob Riggs, worship leader Photos: Carrie Ann Sienkiewicz Youth Magazine | June - July 2013



s t re ngth A student uses art to overcome grief


P h o to s: C a rr

ie A n n S ie n

k ie w ic z

ll artists express themselves through their love of art. creations and many likely would say that their “One day Kristian was having a rough day dealing art defines them. with her loss … I opened up and told her my mom For Kristian Fields, an eighth-grader at Otwell died when I was only 15 years old,” Mayaab said. Middle School, art is not only a way to express “Of course, there is never a good time to lose a herself but also to deal with the many obstacles she’s parent. But when you are young and in the middle of encountered in her young life. those already difficult years, it is really tough.” When she was in the sixth grade, tragedy struck her Having someone to talk to and help foster and family. Her father, Michael, who was in the U.S. Army, encourage her art, helped Fields. passed away following a massive heart attack. “I have a really good support system,” she said. “My Fields, who was close to her dad, was devastated. mom is awesome and teachers and friends have been Adjusting to middle there for me.” school and dealing Last year with the sudden loss she entered the was challenging, to say “Reflections” the least. contest, whose Artistic since she theme was was a young child, it “Coming Home.” seemed only natural Her intricate for her to turn to art as charcoal drawing a way to deal with the featured her grief. looking out the Then, she got to window at an know her art teacher, image of a military Ashley Mayaab. The man, her father. two quickly discovered “It is meant they had more in to show my Kristian Fields, right, was encouraged to pursue art by Otwell Middle common than just a anticipation for him School teacher Ashley Mayaab.


Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

coming home. But of course, I know he won’t be,” she said. “I miss him so much.” Fields’ artwork won first at the school level and second at county. Mayaab said all of her students have talent, but some are truly gifted. “Kristian is special,” Mayaab said. “She has the ability to work with so many different mediums. She has a very design-oriented brain.” Fields particularly enjoys drawing and working with regular and water color pencils. “Kristian is truly a child prodigy,” Mayabb said. “She is always thinking outside the box and she doesn’t mind tackling difficult subject matter.” Mayabb went on to praise her student’s versatility. “She has the ability to go from realistic to fantasy in the snap of a finger, and she is always willing to help other students.” -- Adlen W. Robinson


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Youth Magazine | June - July 2013


Photos: Amber Cloy


he culinary program at West Forsyth High School just completed its fifth year and shows no signs of slowing down, especially with powerhouse chef Dee Smith at the helm. One of five people who piloted the original culinary program in Georgia, Smith knows her way around a kitchen full of students. On a recent afternoon, Smith told her students they had 20 minutes to assemble a green bean casserole. In addition to the “regular” ingredients, however, they needed to decide on a few mystery ones that could help set their dish apart from others. Students were divided into groups in the kitchen classroom, where they brainstormed, prepped, cooked and then cleaned up. This particular group was a beginning culinary class. By the time they are seniors Smith’s goal is for them to use only a few recipes, instead relying on their learned ability of how to prepare dishes. “In here I am teaching the basics, from sanitation to knife skills and beyond,” Smith said. “It is so important because this is really the fast-food generation, many of whom have grown up not knowing the basics of cooking.” Alexis Carter, a sophomore who has always liked cooking, said she has gained so much from the class. “I have really enjoyed learning so many different


Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

Alphonso Tollette, top, and Alexis Carter, bottom, are part of the West Forsyth High culinary program.

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the second year of the program, and have placed in the top four in the state every year, winning the state title in culinary management last year,” she said. The culinary program was also one of five schools in Georgia named to the Hospitality Hot 100 by the National Center for Hospitality Studies. One thing’s certain, with such a strong culinary program and such a charismatic leader, West likely will continue its winning ways and producing many budding chefs and students who want a career in the food industry.

techniques and also trying many new things,” she said. “My dad is a really good cook and does a lot of the cooking at our house, and I really like helping him using -- Adlen W. Robinson skills I learn in class.” According to Carter, learning to cook encourages her to try new dishes. Her group decided to add Velveeta and garlic powder as their mystery ingredients to the green bean casserole. After all of the casseroles were finished baking, each team brought Chef Smith a sample for ® judging. “I grade on taste, texture and appearance,” she explained. “I really encourage them to taste each other’s dishes so they can really see how ingredients affect the overall flavor.” As the students came forward with their samples, they explained what they had added to enhance the casserole. One young chef admitted he had not tasted his dish, drawing a quick response from Smith. “Chefs never serve something they have not tasted,” she said. The camaraderie in the class was obvious and Smith took her time tasting each sample, offering constructive criticism. Sometimes her humor came into play. Eyeing one sample, she exclaimed *in store only “this looks dangerous.” A taste, a pause and then “not bad.” open thursdAy & fridAy 9-5 sAturdAy 10-4 At the end of the judging, the 1230 sAmples industriAl dr. (suite 200) casserole that tasted like “Thanksgiving” (off ronald reagan 2 miles nor th was declared the winner. Surprisingly, of the Avenue) the mystery additive was dried thyme. 678-208-6348 Though students enjoy the culinary classes at West, Smith said they also love to match their skills against other programs. “We have competed in the HEFG Official partner of the UGA Alumni Association Georgia Culinary Championships since

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Youth Magazine | June - July 2013


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hether it’s a halftime show or concert performances, students in the South Forsyth High School band know how to make beautiful music together. Director Paul Clark said the program has seen continuous growth over the past few years. When Lambert High opened in 2009, many of the students who had attended South were redistricted to the new school, taking some of the band students there. “We’ve been growing since the split that happened with Lambert, which kind of cut us right in half,” Clark said. But since then, he noted, the program has been expanding by “about 20 to 30 percent each year.” He said the 2013-14 school year likely will be one of the best in the program’s history. “We have about 75 new members coming in and that’s probably our 24

Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

Growth energizes SF band program largest recruiting class since I’ve been here and this is my 12th year.” About 130 students will be in the fall marching band, up from 99 during the 2012 season. Clark said the 2013 halftime show will be all about developing a plan and staying with it to meet a goal. “It’s called ‘Blueprints’ and basically we’re going to build a house on the field,” said Clark, noting the music is from the movie “Life of a House.” “It’s like having a plan and sticking to it. It’s more about building a house, but intertwined in there is the belief of having a plan and working hard to accomplish your dreams.” Besides the marching band, Clark

said 150 students will participate in the program’s concert bands. “We’ll have three concert bands that are divided up by level,” he said. “We’ve had two up to this point and we’re excited about having three.” The concert bands typically feature about 50 students. “Last year we had about 60 to 65 in each and we grew until now we’re able to hit that 150 mark to have the three groups.” According to Clark, the band program helps students in many ways. “The ability to use both sides of their brain and apply not only the analytical side but also the creative side, that really helps them in all

aspects of their academic studies,” he said. “They can find ways to connect the dots in creative ways that maybe aren’t necessarily textbook ways but are more nontraditional ways of solving a problem … so they excel at a much higher rate.” He said the discipline and work ethic of band students also carries over. Since a band performance sounds bad if even one or two notes are missed, he said, the students develop an almost perfectionist attitude toward all things in their lives. “We have to have 100 percent every single time, so they take that lesson and apply it to everything they do.” --Crystal Ledford

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Youth Magazine | June - July 2013



How to find the proper shoes


Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

here are plenty of options out there when searching for the perfect athletic shoe. So many, in fact, it can be confusing. And parents don’t want to provide the wrong shoe for their young athletes, runners in particular. Since the average runner impacts the ground with about three times his or her body weight, it’s especially important to have the right shoe. Growing bones can’t handle the stress that those of adults can. While the task of finding the right shoe may seem daunting, experts say it doesn’t have to be. Greg Patterson with Gotta Run Kids, a local group that trains young runners, said he always encourages parents to go to a running store and let their child have a consultation to determine the best shoe for them. “They have machines that you can stand on and see how your foot is aligned and what your gait is when you run,” he said. “So they can tell you what shoe you need to run in.” Caroline Bradley, a physical therapist with Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, agreed. “If they’re going to be running a lot, they should go and have a consultation with a store that specializes in running shoes,” she said. For kids that aren’t going to be doing much running, she said, “just jogging around the store a bit” in their shoes should be good enough. Bradley and Patterson said younger children, such as those in elementary school, probably don’t need shoes that are as specialized as middle and high school students. “For third-, fourth-, fifth-graders, I

don’t think the brand or type of shoe really matters that much, so long as it is a running shoe,” Patterson said. “I do tell them to see a specialist, but not to spend $150 on a pair of shoes when they can get away with spending $50.” As kids get older and heavier, finding a shoe that is a good fit for whatever type of physical activity they’re pursuing becomes more important. “When you start running cross country, you’ve got to have a shoe with a little more support,” Patterson said. “You can’t get one shoe that does a job for running on the roads and the trails.” Bradley noted that basics such as proper shoe size are always important. “Probably the most important thing is that the shoes are comfortable,” she said. “We usually recommend trying them on in the late afternoon or evening because the feet tend to swell during the day, especially in the summer when it’s hot.” In addition, she said kids should always try on prospective shoes with whatever socks they’ll be wearing for their activity, and parents should ensure they have plenty of room in the “toe box.” That’s the front and top of the foot at the widest point. “You want to make sure they’re not being squeezed there and there’s a little bit of space in front of the big toe,” Bradley said. She said children who run a lot should probably have two pairs of shoes and alternate them from workout to workout. Also, shoes should be replaced with new ones about every six months or “500 miles” of running. According to Patterson, any doubts can be addressed by those running shoe specialists. “It’s important to go to your running stores because they know what they’re doing,” he said. -- Crystal Ledford


Growing together and depending on each other.

Youth Magazine | June - July 2013



ummertime’s almost here and so are your parents’ favorite bands. There will still be a bunch of current Billboard chart toppers on tour too, but this seems to be the season for reliving the 1980s and ’90s. Take, for example, Billy Idol, who will perform June 11 at the Tabernacle. The British rocker was huge in the ’80s, and is exactly what you’d expect to hear playing at your mom’s high school reunion. But perhaps the biggest success in pop music then was New Kids on the Block. These kids were everywhere — dolls, lunch boxes, posters, bed sheets. But their brand of bubblegum pop and ridiculous merchandise line not only made them the richest entertainers in the country, but launched the rise of “boy bands” in the 1990s. New Kids are responsible for the later success of *NSYNC, the Backstreet Boys and 98 Degrees. Following last year’s successful NKOTBSB tour, short for both New Kids and Backstreet Boys, New Kids keeps it

going, this time recruiting 98 Degrees members and Boyz II Men. They will perform June 20 at Philips Arena. Of course, the very next day at Philips, you can introduce your folks to the newest generation of boy bands when One Direction performs. Who you may not know, however, are Beartooth, Allstar Weekend, Goldfinger, The Used and Young London. These bands, and dozens of others will be at my favorite outdoor concert of the year, the Warped Tour, July 25 at Lakewood Amphitheatre. -- Jennifer Sami


Jennifer Sami writes a weekly entertainment column for the Forsyth County News. In each edition of YOUth, she’ll alert readers to upcoming concerts and events in the metro Atlanta area. Contact her at (770) 205-8975 or jsami@

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Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

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Wwisdom ord : pho·bi·a  

Nothing to fear here

Montessori Kids Academy 3034 Old Atlanta Road Cumming, GA 30041 678-208-0774 Montessori Kids Academy provides a carefully prepared environment and excellent teachers to lay a strong educational background for your child.

Cultivating the Desire to Grow

Noun, /ˈfōbēə/

An extreme or irrational fear of or aversion to something: “he had a phobia about being under water” or “a phobia of germs.” Synonyms: fear


he word phobia is Greek, so technically whatever word you are describing, both parts should be Greek. Over the years, however, since so many medical words are Latin, this has not always been the case. Even when both words were not Greek, they became acceptable anyway. Typically phobias are categorized this way: * Social phobias: These involve fear of other people or social situations. * Specific phobias: The fear of a single specific thing that triggers panic, such as spiders, snakes or heights. * Agoraphobia: The general fear of leaving home or a “safe” place. Doing so can cause a panic attack or severe anxiety. There are so many phobias, but here are some pretty crazy ones you may not know about: * Acousticophobia: Fear of noise * Agrizoophobia: Fear of wild animals * Arithmophobia: Fear of numbers * Bibliophobia: Fear of books * Coulrophobia: Fear of clowns * Dentophobia: Fear of dentists * Disposophobia: Fear of throwing things away * Ideophobia: Fear of ideas * Peladophobia: Fear of bald people * Phobophobia: Fear of phobias -- Adlen W. Robinson


• Montessori certified and college educated teachers • Year round program • Traditional Montessori student focused curriculum • Constructivist Model of educating • SACS/CASI accredited • Members of the American Montessori Society • Low student and teacher ratio • Two music rooms and a learning kitchen • Indoor café and spacious library • Watch Me Grow camera technology in the classrooms • Computer technology in classrooms • Spanish, Chinese, art, cooking, yoga, and music lessons included in tuition • Offering Pre-Primary classes (18 months-3 years), Primary classes (ages 3-6) and Elementary classes (1st-6th grade)

Now accepting applications for 2013-2014 school year. Youth Magazine | June - July 2013



Internet forever is

Avoid sharing too much via social media


ith the increasing use of smartphones and tablets, people of all generations interact with each other using a variety of social media tools. When using apps such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Google+, etc., people should configure the privacy settings to attempt to keep the material they post private. Even with privacy settings enabled, however, the safest assumption is that anything posted on the Internet can be viewed by anyone else. A person may post a status update or upload a picture with the intention of sharing it only with friends, but any of those trusted friends can take a screenshot of the post and share it with others outside of the group. Once an image is posted and shared publically, it’s nearly impossible to remove it. This is also true with text messaging, considering a screenshot of a private text message can easily be forwarded to others or posted online. Many students believe these are concerns that affect only people in the professional world, but employers often use social media as a method of evaluating job candidates. It’s a good idea to think of posting to social media as compiling a digital portfolio that builds throughout life. Employers also have been known to ask applicants to log into their social media pages during interviews, as well as ask questions directly related to their activity online.


Youth Magazine | June - July 2013

Some states have proposed legislation related to online privacy issues of employees, but the best practice is for people to share online only that information they don’t mind the entire world viewing.

In essence, think before posting.


--- Tim Keyser Tim Keyser is an instructional technology specialist for the Forsyth County school system.


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Youth Magazine | June - July 2013


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