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Say My Name, (Correctly, Please)

Will Roots Save the World?






Fall 2021

On the Cover En Portada

INFOrUS Class Mag INFOrUS is an independent educational project of Engaged Detroit Learners and My Class Mag, LLC in Michigan. The magazine publishes original work of students and curated open-licensed content to develop language proficiency, digital skills, and critical thinking. Image by

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Project Advisor Deborah Gaiefsky, My Class Mag, LLC Content Writers, Curators, and Designers Skye M. Jayden J. Grayce G. Some contributors have chosen to share their work anonymously for individual privacy reasons. Though individual names may not appear on each item within the publication, this Class Mag is the result of collaborative group effort! All content licensed under Creative Commons Licenses includes a CC symbol. Content without a CC symbol retains creator copyrights.

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This magazine is an educational project developed by learners of Engaged Detroit and My Class Mag, LLC. and

Proudly published in

Detroit, Michigan.

inclusion does not imply endorsement of My Class Mag, LLC. The views expressed in this magazine do not necessarily represent the views of Engaged Detroit, My Class Mag, magazine sponsors, or individual contributors. This publication provides a space to develop and practice opinions and skills; young learners deserve authentic opportunities, such as this, to assist in their learning without the expectation of perfection. This publication contains curated open content. Individual content licenses are noted. All material in in this edition is to the best


of our knowledge produced by learners, shared under indicated Creative Commons licensing, or is believed to constitute editorial or “fair use” as provided by the US Copyright Law.


Welcome to INFOrUS, a learning collaboration between Engaged Detroit learners and My Class Mag, LLC. INFOrUS comes from learners sharing information for us in a free print and digital magazine which can be used in communities. The group met virtually, once a week for 10 weeks to share, learn, and grow. This Class Mag reimagines what it means to #THINKsmall. We looked at how small acts with names - how we pronounce them, choose them, share them - can have big impact. Then we turned to thinking how to utilize small spaces in the environment through vertical farming and a focus on roots.

Woven throughout the course was a mindset around openness. We looked at elements of the Open Movement - a global force of people committed to the idea that the world is better when we share and work together - and samples of Open licensed content. We leveraged an open template to design the Class Mag, curated open content, and connected personal insights to produce a small project with big impact. I hope this project inspires curiosity in learners and educators alike to explore the Open Movement and Class Mags!

Deborah Gaiefsky My Class Mag, LLC

CREATE · CURATE · CONNECT Unlock the potential of Class Mags with your students! PD Trainings Workshops Virtual Courses

SkyLander By: Skye M. In fourth grade a new toy came out called “Skylanders.” Almost everyone had or wanted a Skylanders action figure. Skylanders action figures were getting so popular that everyone could hardly stop talking about them! A few weeks passed and the hype about the dragon-like action figures died down. Like any other day at school, you see new faces. A boy I hardly recognized walked up to me at lunch and just stared for a while. I was very confused why he wasn't saying anything to me; I thought I might have did something to make him mad. Later that day at recess, he came back up to me and explained that he was very nervous and just wanted to say hello. Still confused, I asked him what he was nervous about. He told me I had my very own toy that was named after me and that I was famous! Word got around fast and pretty soon my whole class started calling me Skylander. I absolutely hated the nickname Skylander, but it started to grow on me after a while and it was cool to have a nickname everyone knew me as.

Say My Name, Say My Name (Correctly, Please) “When you have a name like Aparna Nancherla or Maz Jobrani, you get used to people butchering it. These two comedians, who both come from immigrant families, talk to Code Switch editor Tasneem Raja about their "Starbucks names," all of the weird ways people mispronounce their names, and whether having a "difficult" name has impacted their careers.” NPR Episode description

Don’t Call Me Extinct Sidedoor Season 2 Parents just don't understand By: dj jazzy jeff & the fresh prince Bud, Not Buddy By: Christopher Paul Curtis

Can You Name #5WomenArtists?

The True Name of the Bear by is licensed under CC BY 2.5

Image by from Wikimedia Commons

Planted Detroit Vertical Farming, Biosecurity, and Controlled Environment Agriculture

“The presentation was very informative. I learned about a new style of farming called “Vertical Farming.” My mom supported the business by buying




microgreens and she loved them!” -Skye M.


n November 2, Planted Detroit shared an insightful presentation with us on new ways of agriculture that are addressing shortcomings of traditional farming while improving the quality and availability of greens in the community. Here are a few of our key takeaways: Don’t water plants directly on the leaves; pour water near the roots. Growing plants up instead of out allows for more growing in less space. Plants are like phones - once you unplug them they begin losing their power (nutrients). Support locally grown food!

“Will roots save the world?” by DW

Images by Stefan Keller from Pixabay (lower left); Image by Gordon Johnson from Pixabay (center right) Image by Stefan Keller from Pixabay (lower right)

Beth Hawkins

Award-winning National Correspondent covering education for @The74

This magazine is out in our community thanks to individual donors and businesses committed to the development of innovative educational projects. Love what you see? Consider running an ad or making a donation to fund more Class Mag projects to advance language learning and literacy for all!

Accelerating Education Innovation and Opportunity for Every Learner Learn more:

A NOTE from Engaged Detroit As an advocate for Choice, The work of assuring parents and caregiver have quality choices is my highest priority. Thank you to all of our local state and national partners who helped to bring quality options to our families. Every yes we received helped children understand that learning can be fun and expanding on their knowledge is even more so. Engaged Detroit started as a conversation in 2019 with my children as we planned to create and engage space where families decide who and how they engage with community partners. In 2020 The pandemic shifted this work to become a homeschool coop, lead and guided by the families we serve. We know that children are better off because their parents Practiced Choice influenced only by their desire for learning to be fun, new, inventive and transformative. If schools refuse to reimagine education, we will do it ourselves. After all it's what our ancestors have done for generations. Bernita B.


Homeschool Co-Op Advocacy Network School's in Session Learning is Everywhere What is Engaged Detroit?

Why Detroit Families?

✎ Engaged Detroit was created to ✎ Parents have been asked to “Give Us Time” by districts that have historically failed Black be a resource for Detroit parents Children. and caregivers who have made a choice to homeschool their ✎ The pandemic proved more disparities as children children. and families scrambled for access to quality tools to make virtual learning as effective as their ✎ Building community partnerships neighboring more affluent school district. with philanthropy, educational programs and community orgs ✎ Homeschooling was the best alternative, yet that connect families along their parents struggled with the thought of Taking pathway to successful Education Back Into Their Own Hands homeschooling.

Proving Community Partnerships Work

and a host of other community partners who supplied programming and tools for free for families Detroit families like most communities of color have waited for decades for education outcomes to change and we've chose to no longer wait. “If schools refuse to reimagine education we will do it ourselves.” Taking education into our own hands is the best decision we've ever made. As advocates for choice, we want parents to have the tools to make homeschooling what we needed it to be. Your generous donations will help us to expand our efforts to help more families who are choosing to homeschool. By giving parents the tools they need and coaching them to see the powerful assets they are in homeschooling as a co-op, our children are now thriving and exploring education everywhere, every day with passion.

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