Page 1

Shine n!

Spring 2006

Young Leaders Rising ď ˘

Read me!

h for


Don’t put off until tomorro w what you can do today.

Cover Art: Danial Hassan 8th Grade, Richard R. Green Central Park School

se ait you becau Many joys aw g at heart. you are youn

& service learning


. . .a newspaper of service

The Big Bad Joke Book

Once there was a girl who liked to play jokes on people.

by Lavender Baker

She played jokes everyday on people.

Then one boy realized that this girl was hurting everyone’s feelings.

She didn’t realize she was hurting people’s feelings.

So he thought that he should stop her, so he thought and thought. . . ?????????????????????

Whittier Student Leaders to Receive Minnesota Student Service Award Congratulations to the Whittier Student Leadership group for being chosen by the Minnesota Department of Education to receive the Minnesota Student Service Award as an exemplary example of high quality community service. The students won for their project, “Book and a Buck,” a program of MPS Community Education program. Whittier’s student leaders accepted their award at the 2006 Minnesota Youth Service Celebration at the Minnesota Department of Education in Roseville, Minnesota this May. The “Book and a Buck” project was a book drive for Ugandan children where donors were urged to donate a children’s book and $1 to cover shipping costs. The young leaders selected the project and were involved in every step of its planning and implementation. They produced their own marketing campaign—making posters and announcements and publicizing the drive. Student leaders also created 25 original storybooks of their own which will be shipped to Uganda along with 175 books collected in the drive. The books will be given to children orphaned by the effects of the Civil war in Uganda. Student leaders in the project are: Arnisha Adams

Then one day he told her a joke.

She cried and cried.

Precious Adams Marzouk Alassani Itzel Alvarado Lavender Baker Tre-cha Calloway Sandy Card Shakinah Hickbottom Kebu Johnson Lashawn Johnson Nefertiti-Isis Johnson Rose Kennedy Kayla Kenney Forest Lyon

But then she realized that her jokes were hurtful and she needed to stop.

So the next day she apologized to everyone.

Taira Newsome Claudia Smith Kimberly Vice Hannah Williams Isiah Williams Abdifatah Ismail Rosemary Nyuma Stacy Randolph Sowda-Suma Salad Robbea Smythe Antonio Williams Lead teacher: John Zimmerman

And everyone was happy.

About the Author: Lavender Baker, 5th grader at Whittier “Writing is a good outlet to express my feelings and not use my fists. It’s a good feeling helping kids in Uganda. This story came from things that happened in my true life.”

For more information on Whittier’s “Book and a Buck” project, contact Whittier Community Education at 612-668-4181 or visit for more information on the Books of Hope project. Community partners for this project were Camp Fire USA Minnesota Council and Intermedia Arts. A project of Minneapolis Public Schools 21st Century Community Learning Centers.

Genesis Perez

I n s id e :

Service Learning is a form of experiential learning whereby students apply content knowledge, critical thinking and good judgment to address genuine community needs.

What’s the HYPE about? pages 2-3

—Minnesota Department of Education

Winners of Everyday Leaders Essay Contest pages 4-8

Service is volunteerism that is done within a defined community, which could be a classroom, school, community, etc. It has no intentional tie to learning; the emphasis is strictly on service.

Stories of Service pages 9-17

—National Youth Leadership Council


his is our first issue of Shine On: Young Leaders Rising, aptly named by Everyday Leaders Afterschool 4th and 5th grade students from Andersen—Big Thanks: Antoinett, Jakaila, Xochitl, David, Thalia, Jhon, Jorge, DeStephano with the help of their leadership teacher, Sonja Jones. This newspaper is a celebration of youth voice. Shine On shares in the success of young people, those teaching the tools of leadership, and the value of service and service learning. Read through and revel in the beauty of the minds and actions of young people. Shine On is the beginning. This is the beginning of sharing and showing the leadership and stories of our young people in Minneapolis Public Schools both in day school and in after school activities. Next year, we will be back again featuring new sites and news on what’s happening in a world of service.

How To Make a Fleece Blanket page 11 Teacher’s Perspective as a Service Learning Winner page 18

Let us know what you think! Minneapolis Community Education Youth Development: 612-668-3822 or

Cover Artist: Danial Hassan is a 8th grade student who started photography when he was 11 years old. He attends Richard R. Green Central Park School.

Editor: Rebecca Dallinger Design & Layout: Kirsten Perry Copy Editors: Kevin Czmowski, Brenda Eccleston, Janine Freij, Colleen Sanders

Poetics from Nellie Stone page 19

Special Thanks: Leon Oman of Andersen Community Education and Janet George of Achieve!Minneapolis and to all the leaders and student contributors. You inspire us all!

Shine On | Spring 2006 |


What’s the H YPE about? “We are the H.Y.P.E council. H.Y.P.E stands for Helping Youth Promote Empowerment. What we will now do is introduce ourselves, where we are from, and how long we have been on the council.Then if you would introduce yourselves and then give a ten to fifteen minute presentation about what you are proposing, we can go through and do a sort of questions and answers kind of thing. Thank you.”


watch as Yuri and John make the introductions to the grantseeking groups doing their final interviewing. As a sophomore, I am a newcomer here at H.Y.P.E. The entire H.Y.P.E council— except Alex, Dylan, and I— are seniors leaving the council after this year for their own college plans or to pursue a life of their own. This year seems more like training to

me, which is what three of us have to remember for next year. At first it just sounded like a job that paid money and I needed the money so I decided I would join. Besides, it didn’t seem like that much work. I joined three of my fellow classmates so I didn’t feel so alone and weird at the first meeting. We all just sat in

The pay is good and the work is not that hard.You just have to be ready to read and laugh at what some people think really costs five hundred dollars. Generally, we look at grant proposals from companies, schools, and individuals applying for a grant that has something to do with giving to the children and students of the Minneapolis area. This could include after school programs, programs to clean up the school, or even programs to help students excel in their studies during regular school days. The first thing that I remember doing was sending out applications with what we are looking for and expect out of our applicants. Simple enough. Then the hard stuff was when we got all the grants proposals and reading through them looking for small details that might inspire a question inside our head to prepare for the day when we must interview these applicants. These proposals seemed to be the only reason why I had reading material over winter break. I read them

Making the grant decisions We walk in from Lake Street into the elevator to get to the sixth floor of the Lehmann Center. We are prepared for the first day of not-so-long-but-stilllong work where we interview the grant applicants, review and judge. Some applicants put us to sleep. This made our job easier and allowed us to all come to say no. The meetings themselves consisted of strong, bold, and different presentations and then a round of questions and answers that could hopefully be answered. Then we got started with presentations. It was scary saying who we were, all eyes on me, and then I realized the ones we are interviewing are more scared than us. It has to be intimidating. Here you dig up your confidence; you cannot just sit there. If you have a question or have something you disagree with, you will not influence the council if you don’t speak up. If you don’t speak up—the result could be something you do not like. Here you earn a voice. Here you really feel like you make a difference. This is the job

“It is here you earn a voice and here that you really feel like you make a difference. This is the job of the HYPE council.”

by Dannah Waukazo “I am a student at Patrick Henry High School hoping to overcome stereotypes. I am also a writer.”


| Shine On | Spring 2006

our own groups: Edison boys, Edison girls, the Henry kids, and then Washburn students together. Gradually we turned into friends. This seemed easy enough. The only person that you really had to worry about was Janine, the youth coordinator who is very much like our boss, yet an older version of us, just another member of the council. She seemed nice enough. What’s the job? The job is pretty straightforward. I do not know how anyone could find this job hard or dislike it. You get free food.

over in their entirety, not knowing that we only had to scan through them to get the basic feel.

of the H.Y.P.E council, yet only a few of the members seem to really ask questions while others just sat back and let the others do the work. To me it did

A favorite moment: What kept you coming? “Meeting new people from different schools and being involved.” —La Vaughn “The free food and cool people kept me coming back 4 more. The girls were cute.” —Jericho “I liked HYPE because of all the people I have met. It gives me a view of people & community” —Keshena

“Getting your point across in discussions”

— LaVaughn

“Deciding who gets the grant.”

— Ashley

“The grant discussions were hard because everyone — Ashley couldn’t get their points across.” “Arguing about which grants to fund.”

“I am a stubborn person and I like to have the grants I like get all the money but we all argue until there is a common vote.” — Keshena

not seem that it was a lack of questions needing to be answered but an abundance of boredom and wanting to get them out of there so we could discuss the grants. Although only few of the presentations made us feel this way, towards the end of the night I think the whole council just wanted it to be over for a while. Next, we have the meeting to share our questions. Then we come to a consensus about what we thought of the presentations. Then it is a question whether or not we should give them a partial grant (where they only receive some of the requested money), or a full grant (for all of the requested money). The real excitement happened when Yuri and Kasheena argued back and forth about one specific grant even though we had already moved on about four grants ago. Personalities clashed but it was what made the job interesting! The ideas were even stronger than the disagreements. It was what made this job so much fun. We all work equally hard reading the grants, but when it comes to having our voice being heard, well, you have to be louder than Yuri and be ready to have your opinion shot down anyway.

Can’t either of them read? Because that’s spelled right.

— Jericho

You probably spelled it.

standards then you did not deserve to be granted the money. This grant is straight garbage.

Being on the H.Y.P.E council for the first time this year has encouraged me for next year to make my presence known like Seniors Yuri, Jericho, John, and Kasheena have. It is hard to know where the council will stand next year and with whom we will be working. Whatever happens, we have to make the decision process intense as it was this year. We need you! Join the H.Y.P.E council. It is a new experience where you see how our government works voting for bills (like grants) and decides who gets money. It has shown me what it would be like if I were on something like a College admissions board- looking to accept people into school, or perhaps just another grant or foundation. Just be somewhere that requires your input. I encourage anyone in high school to join this council next year and help us build it up again. Yes, you read alot, but it is truly an easy read. We want your devoted and thoughtfully opinionated minds to help us. To request to join, email Janine Freij at 

What I have gathered is that the H.Y.P.E council looks for a well-rounded grant, a strong presentation and not being so naive Group Poem as to think we will fund A message to you a grant that only benWe’ll intimidate you efits four people.We did We will decide your fate not expect a lot, but we We’ll disagree with you do have standards that So don’t come unprepared are pretty straightforBe Aware ward and obvious. If you Come see what we have to offer could not meet those I dare.

Isn’t this a great grant?

A Day In the Life of HYPE: a drama

They spelled this wrong.

What was challenging sometimes?

The point I am trying to make is. . .

Should I tell her she has spinach in her teeth?

You know I’m hearin’ you, right?

He ain’t talkin’ to me.

Shine On | Spring 2006 |


t s e t n o C y a s s E s e o r e Everyday H M id d le sc h o o l w in n e rs

Danial Hassan


n Everyday Hero is someone who is just like you and me. It’s someone who is a role model, a leader, someone who makes a difference and teaches others to make differences, too. There are lots of people that have taught and influenced me like my family, friends, my teachers and neighbors. The person who has taught me to make a difference in my neighborhood, though, is Rina. She fits the description because she makes a difference in the neighborhood. She works for Youth Farm, a non-profit organization and summer youth program. Youth Farm, as a whole, teaches kids how to grow and cook healthy, organic and local food. We have markets on the weekends during the summer so we can sell locally grown organic vegetables to the community for low prices.

mentary at the Empty Bowls event. We had local potters make clay bowls and we cooked soup and chili. We sold the bowls and soup for $10 or whatever that person was able to pay.We talked about what we did and how we did it, then we showed the one hour documentary. To decide where the money went we put out boxes with the names of all the food shelves and organizations we visited. After they saw the movie, they put their tickets where they wanted their money to go. We split the money according

Empty Bowls is a group of the older kids in Youth Farm trying to spread the word about Food Power. Rina is in charge of Empty Bowls this summer.We made a documentary about Food Power. It is a film about how much food and hunger control people. We interviewed people who work and go to food shelves, people on the street and people at the Welfare Rights Committee. We taped and edited and then showed our docu-

to the percentage of votes in each box. The Empty Bowls event made a total of $3,200.

“She (Rina) guided us and taught us why it was important to tell the community about Hunger.”

The whole Empty Bowls project would not have happened without Rina. She guided us and taught us why it was important to tell the community about Hunger. She didn’t just tell us to sell the food—she told us why it was important to sell locally grown vegetables to the community. She is important to me because without her I wouldn’t have learned about how hard it is for some people just to survive. I think Rina is an everyday hero because she taught a whole group or kids how to make a difference in our neighborhood and we did. 

inner: 1st Prize W

n-Anleu Nora Knutso 8th Grade hool en Central Sc Richard R. Gre

Lead ers hip i s:

“ . . . a group of individuals taking actions in what they believe in. People making a movement before others.”

—LaVaughn, H.Y.P.E. Council

“One who comes up with their own opinions/ideas and uses them and shares them to inspire others.” —Dannah, H.Y. P.E. Council 4

| Shine On | Spring 2006

This is for You


will tell you—my everyday heroes are my mom and dad. This is for you both. First I will tell you why my mom is my Hero. My mom is a hero because she always asks me how my day was and never misses a day of asking that. If I tell her “splendid” she always asks me what I did. Like one day I told her I took the test she helped me to study for for three hours. I got an A+. My mom was happy. She always comforts me with stuff. She talks and listens to me. She also showed me how to respect myself and people around me so they respect me and other people. I learned to be a great leader to people so they could become leaders like me. I learned all the manners form my mom, like not to be rude to anybody and how to work hard. She told me to study to get somewhere in the future, to be somebody. Her proud “Her proud words for words for me are me are, ‘Never stop “Nunca pares de for your dreams,’ hacer tu sueno” or meaning never give in English “Never stop for your up and keep trying to dreams.”— meanreach your dreams.” ing never give up and keep trying to reach your dreams. My mother is always there for me. If I have a problem she would talk to me, help me with it and learn to solve it without arguments. She also told me to be thankful for my two wonderful parents, and not want to be somebody else or in another family. This is why my mom is my hero. I love her so much and I would do anything not to lose her.

My dad is also my Everyday Hero because he always cheers me up. He sometimes says,“You want to devour some scrumptious vanilla pecan ice cream?” I say yes or no sometimes. When I say, “No, and leave me alone,” he tickles me and cheers my melancholy up. That is helpful and entertaining for me. When I don’t laugh or want to be tickled he asks, “What’s the matter, princess?” “I have a friend that’s calling me two-faced.” “Ignore them. They are just jealous of your talent,” he tells me. I respect that, so I follow his advice. Then he asks me if I want some ice cream and I tell him “Yes” with a satisfied look. My dad is my hero. He takes care of my two younger brothers. One is 1 year old and always pulls my hair and rips my homework and absolutely doesn’t leave me alone for any peace. He always wants me to play with him. My dad has to tolerate him for 7 hours. My 7-year-old brother and I always have to walk to the bus stop, but that is what big 2nd Prize Winner: sisters do. I love my hero my dad. I’ll tell you a secret: he Karla Arredondo Pa yan lets me watch TV until 11pm 6th Grade sometimes. W. Ha

rry Davis Academy

My parents are my everyday heroes because they take care of me, nurture me, and show us that they love us. This is why they are my everyday heroes. 

My Mom, My Hero


y everyday hero is my mom. She is my heart…all the time. My mom teaches me how I could be a leader everyday. She told me that I should do the best I can do to help other people when they are in need. My mom told me that I shouldn’t get into anybody’s business. If they are my friend I help them get back friends. My friend’s mom goes to talk to my mom because they know I did a good thing for their children. She says, “That girl Sonja helped!” Mom gets proud of me. My mom teaches me how to be a good role model. She teaches me lessons in how to deal with my problems in a positive way and not have a “smart” attitude.

“She taught me strategies to do my best work and to keep my grades up.” She told me that I should be conforming to a high standard. My mom taught me that if I wanted to be anything, I had to put my mind to it. Someday I might have kids and I would like to show them how to be a good role model so if they wanted to, they could be just like me with a positive attitude. My mom taught me to be myself and not who I think I should be. She said I should be a respectful and smart. She said I should use the manners that I was taught and to be a beautiful young lady and know a child’s place.

When I grow up, I would like to be a lawyer, but in order to be a lawyer, I have to have respectfulness in everything I do and think. She taught me more strategies to do my best work and to keep my grades up.

3rd Prize Winner: Sonja Flemons 6th Grade W. Harry Davis Academ y

She taught me how I can be respectful at what I do when I go to college to learn how to be a good lawyer and learn more about it. My mom is my hero because she learned how to cook from her mom and then taught my brother and sister. She cooks all sorts of things like omelets, spaghetti, fried chicken, and lemon meringue pie. Now I am being taught how to cook. I have sisters and she taught both of them how to be successful. She told them not to drop out of school and that they need to go to college to become successful at what they want to be. Now my sisters are 26 and 24 and they did the same thing my mom told them that they should do. I also have a brother who goes to Henry High School. My mom is helping him fill out a job application. Now she tells me how to be successful just like my brother and sisters. My mom is my everyday leader. She taught me everything. My mom works at Cub Foods. She is very successful. 

Shine On | Spring 2006 |


t s e t n o C y a s s E s e o r e Everyday H ers n

4th & 5th Grade Category Win


y everyday Hero IS my grandmother be inspires me for the great things she does. I believe that cause I have been with her since I was born. no one can ever find someone like my grandma because In fact, my grandmother is a very important there aren’t that many people like her in the world. If there person to me. She has taught me many good things. She were, the world would be a better place. She is special, taught me to be the best I can be. My grandma unique and helpful. She always likes “She is the taught me to be very helpful to people. She to help people. She is honest and has best person I is very encouraging and an open heart. She treats everyone have ever seen helpful. My grandmother the same way. In my opinion, it is very in the whole helps out every person she hard to find this in one person. I am 1st Prize Winner: sees that need help. She is very proud of my grandmother and I universe.” the best person I have ever am also thanking her for everything Farhiya Ali, seen in the whole universe. she has taught me. I learned how to 5th Grade I always look up to her so I can be just help others from her. Lyndale School like her. My grandma picks up everyFor example, my neighbor has two little kids Nina and thing she sees. For example plastic Nancy and they come over sometimes. I help them with papers, soda cans and bottles at home their homework. Nina and Nancy are twins and they are and public places like sidewalks. She both in 1st grade.  is a very caring person who likes to help others every time. I usually learn something from my grandma everyday. My grandma is so intelligent. She


y everyday leader is our community by raking leaves for people that are sick my mom. My mom is my or old. My mom also helps people that are homeless. She 2 Prize Winner: hero because when I was gives them money so they don’t starve or she might buy Dunio Dhimbil, was little, my mom used to tell me how clothes for them in winter. My mom helps me do my chores 5th Grade to take care of our community. She and she buys me warm clothes for winter, too. My mom told me to respect other people and helps me do science because she is good at it. Lyndale School to not fight or say bad words to my elders or friends or even to people Whenever I am sick, my mom home-schools me. That is all around me. My mom always told how I get smarter and smarter everyday. My mom teaches me lots of things, like how to be polite to people. She says I me to help am to treat other people how I want people if “My mom never gives up to be treated. My mom never gives they have on me. I can’t remember up on me. I can’t remember a day problems. She makes me coma day when she wasn’t when she wasn’t there for me. The fortable when I get hurt or frightthere for me.” number one reason why I love my ened wherever I go. My mom mom is because she cares about helps me with my homework if me and I care about her. If my mom I don’t understand it. My mom protects me from people I and I don’t clean, she will say:“We have to clean or we will don’t know that might hurt me. live in a dirty house.” I love my mom and she loves me. I’ll My mom is not the only hero I have. We have heroes all do anything in the world to make my mom happy. I chose around us, like the mailman, or our teachers. A hero can my mom because she is so valuable to me. My family is be anyone you admire. My mom does not let me stay up my biggest hero.  late because she cares about my eyesight. My mom helps nd


| Shine On | Spring 2006

Heroes: Mom and Dad


he people that helped me the most and taught In my parents time, it was diffilcult for them in their childme are my mom and dad. Since I was five, mom hood because there was no money to buy toys, food or taught me how to be safe, how to make friends and something like a bicycle but they didn’t look at it like that how to be helpful. She taught me how to believe in myself. because they played with their animals for example the When I was three years old, my dad came to America so dog and cat or the chickens. They lived on farms. My grampa and my grandma still live on the then my mom took care of me. Then my dad went back to Mexico and “Since I was five, mom farm with my uncles. My mom says that when she was fifteen years old, taught me English. Then we came to taught me how to be she started to work at a restaurant America. My dad taught me how to safe, how to make because her conversate in English. My mom and friends and family didn’t dad taught me multiplication, divihow to be helpful. have money. sion, adding and subtracting. When TIE She taught me how My dad says I was in first grade, my mom and dad 3rd Prize Winners: to believe in myself.” that they helped me with my reading, writDorian Manuel-Rueda, didn’t have ing, math and subtraction. My mom 5th Grade helped me in Spanish and my dad helped me in English. money, too. He started to work like Hans Christian Andersen School When I was in second grade, my mom and dad helped me my mom in the same restaurant and do my homework and my multiplication. When I was in so they met each other.  third grade, my mom and dad helped me with multiplication. But now I am in fifth grade, so my mom and dad help me by giving me homework at home.

My Family—My Heroes


he people who helped me the most are my mom, dad, and brother because they have been cleaning up the neighborhood. They want to make it a safe place. Like if you let the garbage pile up people won’t want to be there. My brother told me to be a nice little girl. So all of my teachers and my family members are telling me to do my best cleaning up my neighborhood. If I see something like a empty carton of milk, I put it in a bag and throw it away in the garbage can. I learned that because my family was trying to clean up. I kept saying, “It is just going to make “My family is people talk and say, important to me ‘That’s Dumb.’”

and took them to a place where you could exchange cans for dollars. They gave us a lot.

Some people came by our house and I was upstairs and I could hear what they said from the window. They said to my parents, “Oh, your house is so neat and clean! We wish that you could help us with ours.” My parents said thank you. Then we decided to help. It took us two weeks to clean up their yard. I gave it a try—I just felt like I was doing the right thing.

Another reason why they are important to me is they are always helping me with my problems with my homework and like with what I want to be when I grow up. We all saw each other grow up. In November, I got student of the month. They all came to see me. It made me happy to know they loved me. My Mom and Dad are good examples. They have good manners. They treat you how you want to be treated and how to respect always.

because they are my blood. . . If one of them got lost, I would say I want to die. I could not live without any of them.”

Then my whole family went looking around for houses to see if we could clean up their yards and sidewalks. People said yes. The people offered us money but we didn’t want to want to leave them poor. They understood why we said we could not accept the money. We collected cans along the way from house to house

Xochitl Martinez 4th Grade Hans Christian Andersen School

My family is important to me because they are my blood. When they get sick or tired I want to get sick and tired instead of them. If one of them got lost I would say I want to die. I could not live without any of them.

My brother is my hero also. When he sees me he takes care of me— he says “ Hey are you alright and when I am sick he says “Oh sister, I wish you were well.” He helps me to get better. He has seen me get real sick and need to get to the hospital. He knew what to do he called my dad. I am thankful for this beautiful family. I could not live without them. That is the end of my essay. Have a good day, every day and love your families always. 

Shine On | Spring 2006 |


Everyday Heroes Essay Contest High School Category My Hero Heather Vang, 11th Grade North High School


rowing up in California was the worst I’ve lived. I was young and didn’t understand life. My mom and dad always had problems, no one was ever there to tame my siblings and I, so we were rebellious. One day, we all had to pack up and move to Minnesota and that’s when life was real in my eyes. I grew up with problems always in my head and I never knew there can be happiness. I talk and think liked a selfish person until someone came in my life and gave me the knowledge of life I never thought of. In me I was a great person but outside I wasn’t. She was that person that made me see that. So then, I knew that she was my hero. The most heroic person in my life is Nina Song. She is my aunt, now 23 years olf and is a small woman. She lived like all of us teenagers, experienced our pain and suffocation. She is a very strong and courageous lady. I’ve always looked up to her when I first met her. She was like all of us teenagers, experienced our pain and suffocations. She is a very strong lady. I’ve always looked up to her. She was not like no other. Except she was not known to the world for her powerful words she gave me and can give that world. She taught me many things that now I live

according to. I believe one day as she gets older and writes her heart and words of wisdom down it’ll be very popular book. She talks and thinks like no other I can think of. She is a heroic person that can help anyone live life. She taught me to be me and stand my ground. She taught me to not fall when people try to push me down. She taught me what to say and what not to say. Through all my situations I live my life strongly and courageously because of her. I used to hate her words but now that I’m grown it is very true in my eyes. She lived like a balance where she puts herself in others’ shoes and she would know what to and not to say. That made her very likeable around others because she never made anyone feel bad. I now live my life as a balance too. That make me get along with everyone and I feel better because of it. I’ll always remember her saying,” Though life isn’t perfect as long as you don’t make it worse to feel worsening inside.” She also always says,“Never talk too high of yourself because you can be as bad as anyone. You are like anyone out there. We all have our own talents. Everyone was created equally and for that we should live accordingly to it.” Although she moved away, her words and the Bible words that I live by each day has helped me much in life. Though life is tough and tougher each day I feel a bit of relief because of those heroic words. 

What we left behind I remember sitting on the roof of my house And watching the yellow sunset I remember bird’s songs Like two rivers coming together. The beautiful mountains Wide as the pacific ocean, My mother’s bread Smooth as a knife, Soft as a sponge, white as snow. The sandy smell of wind when it rained, My goat’s fur, Smooth and soft like a sleeping blanket. Touching the waves of the sea, Like putting my hand on smooth butter And rubbing it on my face. The white clothes Worn by my best friend’s father on Fridays. Fermented camel’s milk That made me vomit. Christmas when all my family prayed. Bluebirds flying rose to rose Sleeping on my mother’s hand While she combed my hair. By Wellstone students, Period 4 Creative writing

8 | Shine On | Spring 2006

The smell of “cuud” As my mother fired it For the weekend. The smell of garlic, evaporating. My father, like a lion, Scaring me when I refused to sleep. The rough rock that scratched my hand. The jasmine air Before the rain came. My teacher’s garden of roses. I remember eating goat meat, so sweet, Cooked in our rice everyday. I remember trucks full of sad people Moving out of my home country Because of war I heard so many kinds of guns Destroying… I remember my country’s flag Waving in the air, Like the sea breeze telling me goodbye. Teacher: Nancy Runchey

tier violence prevention officer, and Eric Carlson, an MCAD student familiar with mural painting. We completed the mural on the last day of class, and it is now on the wall in the lunchroom, where all of the Whittier students are able to see it every day. Sarah Kennon and Jenny Lock, two City of Lakes AmeriCorps members, facilitated this class.Whittier is a 21st Century Community Community Education Learning Center. “I liked painting the mural and learning about the police officer, and I liked that Ms. Kolu told us what she helped do in the community. I learned about the community and learned about violence and what you should do to help.”—Adriana, 5th Grade “I like Community Club because we helped our community.”—Kebu, 5th Grade “I liked painting the mural.”— Levi, 4th Grade

Whittier Community Club


ommunity Club Was an after school project for eight 4th and 5th grade students at Whittier International Elementary School. We met for an hour and a half every Wednesday for ten weeks during the winter term. The class featured leadership skills taught through the LeadPeace curriculum. The students wrote letters to their heroes, created peace prizes for school staff, and made posters about their rights and responsibilities.

Above: Armando, Kimberly, Kieran, & Sandy hard at work on the peace mural. Right: Adriana & her peace award.

After voting on several choices, the kids chose a theme of violence in the Whittier neighborhood for their project and they decided to paint a peace mural for the school. We brought in three speakers to educate the students about violence in the area and about painting a mural; Ms. Kolu from the Whittier Neighborhood Restorative Justice Program, Officer Jennifer Waisenen, the Whit-

What is LeadPeace? LeadPeace is a leadership-builidng curriculum that utilizes anti-bullying lessons, PeaceJam international, Points of Light (formerly called PYLI) in creating tomorrow’s peacemakers through service learning.

Pratt Food Drive and Beyond blocks away from the school. They began with a walking field to see the food shelf and then developed a communications plan (posters, flyers, and classroom presentations) to involve the entire school in collecting food. Each day for two weeks they counted the items, and the final day weighed the food before all particiapted in transporting the food. Below are a few thoughts by our Everyday Leader students at Pratt. “We organized a food drive” said Coco. “We made posters the their pride in ow sh rs de and fliers telling about it and we did presentations y Lea tions. Pratt Everyda h drive dona ug ro th d te llec in people’s classrooms. The food was collected in food they co a box in peoples’rooms.” “We counted the food Written by Pratt Students every day until December 16 and then we weighed it. It weighed 324 lbs.” explained Andrew.“After we he P ratt 4 th and 5 th grade weighed it we took it to a food shelf in backpacks Everyday Leaders program (17 students) and on sleds.” “We helped at least 13 families!” decided to sponsor a food drive in DecemAudrey says. ber for the Care and Share Food Shelf that is three

“I feel extremely good about what we accomplished. I mean we fed families.” said Andrew. “We have done some good in the world.” Luke said. “I feel like I accomplished something that helped a lot of people and that is more than I have done before. I leaned how you can help any community.” said Audrey. “We are all helpers. If I didn’t have a lot of food I would need someone to help me like we did. I would love to help out in another thing like this.” said Coco. “I feel glad that I could help other people. We changed the city just by helping,” said Ellee. 


Shine On | Spring 2006 |


Nellie Stone Johnson Mural Project


or us, the best part was being able to express our feelings in artwork,” said Chaia and Shakila, Nellie Stone Johnson th 8 graders. The mural project started in November and was worked on twice a day throughout the year and completed in May. The best part of doing the mural “is getting to paint and being able to work together.” Said PaWou. “The hardest part was painting and drawing our pictures into sketches,” comments Ashya. The mural will hang in the halls of Nellie Stone. This project is a collaboration with Nellie Stone Johnson including art teacher Mr.William Slack and Pam Russ of Hennepin County Village Social Services. Thank you to the 8th grade students: Ashya, Chaia, Egee, PaNhia, Shakila, Mee, and Pa Woua. 

Nellie Stone photos by Egee

Top righ t: Ashya a dd mural. B ottom rig s some detail to th ht: Chaia e color to c lay reate mo re texture s darker .

Dowling Books for Uganda Hale Hale Helpers


ale Helpers is an after school Community Education program work ing to help with school issues. Students, teachers and school staff come together to create solutions regarding school issues and concerns. Students will be planting a native Wild Flower garden and some trees with a local high school Eagle Scout who wanted to partner in the work.

Left: Dowling 5th grade student Jessica makes a poetry book for Uganda; Below: An excerpt from Jessica’s book of poetry.

“Hale Helpers is fun because we get to help our school. It is important to help because you make whatever you are helping a better place.” — Jessica, 3rd grade “I joined because I think that it’s important to help the teachers and environment. We got to shelve books, paint signs and help each others classes. I had fun that is why I’m going next time.” —Cici, 3rd grade “It is fun because you get to help people in the community by planting flowers and cleaning tables in the art room. You help shelve books in the library and I got to play games with some really cool kindergartners. That is why I love Hale Helpers.” —Wren, 3rd grade “I joined because I help anyways after school with Meg. I think that it is nice and fun to help teachers and help the school.” —Natalie, 4th grade


| Shine On | Spring 2006

How to Make Fleece Blankets You will need: 


2 pieces of fleece

2 4-inch by 4-inch cardboard squares with 1 inch marks measured to cut fleece ties 

some friends This project will take 1520 minutes to complete depending upon how big a blanket you are making and how much talking you are doing with friends. General sizes for fabric buying: Twin Bed: 2 yards Toddlers size: 1½ yards Crib size: 1 1/4 yards

How this came into being:

Hieu Hoang Nguyen

Fleece Blankets is a project of Minneapolis Community Education 21st Century Learning Center at Northeast Middle School. The Leadership group met in February 2005 to discuss future service projects. One of the students, Sara, mentioned that she was making “tie blankets” for family members. She offered to teach others how to make them. Youth decided they wanted to donate the blankets to young children and families such as teen mothers at Family Learning Child Care Center in North Minneapolis. Since this project has come into fruition, the group has donated many blankets. Students have also led training sessions with small and large community groups and for Community Education staff so more sites can have replicable ideas.


The fleece blanket photos were taken by Eva Serbus, 6th grader at Northeast Middle School.

“ I like taking pictures because it is fun to do and is something that has always been easy for me.”



Spread out the 2 pieces of fleece on top of each other on a large surface (the floor works good too!)

Cut off the selvedge and make a clean, straight edge of fleece.



Take the 4x4 cardboard square and use as a template to cut a 4-inch square out of each corner.

Use the inch marks on the square to cut 1-inch strips along each side of the blanket.

5 Tie the 1-inch strips together along each side of the blanket.

Your demonstrators are:


Susan Vang, 8th grader at Northeast Middle school “ I like donating the blankets because I am helping out.” Shou Vang, 9th grader at Patrick Henry High School “ It is fun and at the end it is nice knowing that this blanket is going to a good cause.”

Tah Dah!

You now have a finished blanket!

Shine On | Spring 2006 |


Lake Harriet Upper PeaceJam


e are a group of 4th g ra d e r s i n t e a c h e r Carla Christen’s class. We read the childhood story of Alfred Nobel from the Peace Jam Curriculum and how he came to create the Noble Peace Prize. We brainstormed the characteristics of a peaceful person, like studying the Dalai Lama of Tibet—who is a Nobel Peace prize winner. Next we chose someone who we felt were peace makers in our lives. We then made peace badges for the peaceful people we chose— plus one for ourselves—using a badge machine. After this, we wrote essays giving 4 reasons why we chose the person for the award. We designed

Who is Alfred Nobel? Alfred Nobel was a Swedish inventor who invented dynamite. Out of the money he earned he created the Nobel prizes for people who help make the world a better place in chemistry, medicine, economics, literature and peace. The awards are announced on October 10th every year. What is PeaceJam? PeaceJam juniors is a curriculum that introduces young students (Grades 1-5) to the lives and work of Nobel Peace Laureates in an age-appropriate, standards-based format. It is designed to compliment such existing curricula as Character Education, Conflict Resolution, Service Learning, Citizenship, and Multicultural Education. Visit to learn more.

an invitation for people to attend the Peace Prize Ceremony held on March 27th in our classroom. At the peace prize ceremony, we read our essays and presented our Peace Prize badges and the essay to our peacekeepers. Here are some of our essays: My peaceful person is my dad By Annaleah, 4th grade, Lake Harriet Upper Here are the four reasons why. 1.Whenever me and my sister are fighting, he always solves them in a peaceful way without violence.

Peace By Lucy ,4th grade, Lake Harriet Upper My grandpa Al is a peaceful person. I have four reasons why I think that. First of all, he is always willing to do what you want to do. Secondly, he never yells and is a quiet person. I like that. Next of all, his face is calm, his eyes are a light blue, and his wrinkles are very calming. Lastly, I think my grandpa is very special and fun to be around and he is very understanding. My grandpa is great.

Above left: a sample of th e peace badg were awarde es that d to peaceful people; belo Harriet Upp w: Lake er student R uby Trusch her peace es reads from say at the M arch 27th Pea ceremony. ce Prize

2. He is against war in Iraq so people will not fight and kill each other. 3. He is very nice to animals like my cat. He feeds her everyday. Some other animals are a baby bird he found in our basement. He gave it a little box and some bird seed and he let it free when it was safe. 4. He helps people feel better, like when I was sick or failed a test or something he would tell me a joke and make me feel better. These are the 4 reasons why my dad is my special peaceful person.

Intergenerational Volunteer Program The Interviewing Project


or more than 6 years, Intergenerational Volunteers have had a chance to reflect on their lives with the help of Kirsten Parker’s 3rd grade classroom at Pillsbury Math/Science/Technology School in Northeast Minneapolis. The “Interviewing Project” is a chance for students and older adults to exchange information and learn about each other’s lives. This spring, 6 Intergenerational Volunteers, all over the age of 55, sat down with the 3rd graders and were asked questions such as: What jobs did your parents do? Did you have any pets growing up? When was your first date? Where have you traveled? What is the best part of being a Senior Citizen? After the interviews were complete, the students worked hard making books about each volunteer’s life. They wrote the text for the books and also drew pictures to illustrate them. Finally, the students presented each book to their volunteer as a celebration of older adults and the contributions they make in all of our lives! For more information on the Interviewing project or the MPS Intergenerational Volunteer program, please call (612) 668-3885. 


| Shine On | Spring 2006

 bove Left: Intergenerational Volunteer Clyde Brinker and Pillsbury A students Erik Sorbel, Wynonna Brown and Samson Kirscht. Above Right: a page from Clyde Brinker’s interview book by Erik, Wynonna and Samson.

Folwell The Leaders Coffee Shop


he Leaders Coffee Shop is run by Community Education’s 21st Century Learning Center Leaders/Lideres group. 5 of the 13 students in this group attended a 2-hour coffee making training. They were then certified to make coffee! These 5 students show up for their once a week shift at 8:30 am. This is one hour before school starts! They make coffee, grind beans, make espresso drinks, take orders, collect money and keep track of our earnings. They will also decide how to spend the money they make. The Leaders Coffee Shop has been a fun way for these students to learn job skills and even a little bit about business. We would like to thank our Leaders/Liederes for always doing quality work and for the commitment that they have made, and kept! Thank you Leaders!

Coffee Talk: An interview with Leaders Coffee Shop staff by Jenny Pilon, Service Learning Coordinator


he Leaders Coffee Shop has been great! Like any great coffee shop, we have our regulars and our quirky staff. This morning, I got to sit down with two of our regular staff members, Catherine Aganmayo and Joe Goff, to do an interview.

What is it like working in the coffee shop? Catherine: “It’s really fun!” Joe: “It keeps us busy and gives us something to do in the mornings.”

Catherine: “It also teaches us to get up early and go to work.”

Catherine: “Ya, and it’s better than watching TV in the mornings.”

Joe: “And about responsibility.”

What is the best part of working in the coffee shop?”

Joe: “I don’t do that.” Catherine: “Oh, I do!”

Joe: “Knowing how to make coffee and rush around in the mornings!”

What have you learned so far?

Catherine: “Getting to hang out and work with Jenny!”

Catherine: “It teaches us what it’s like to have a job.”

Jenny: “Oh, you’re just saying that!”

Joe: “I was going to say that! We have learned how to make coffee, and what the difference is between all those coffee drinks.”

Lucy Laney “Cup Full of Leaders” Folwell students Joe (above) and Samantha (below) show off their coffee-making talents at the Leaders Coffee Shop at Folwell.


he Lucy Laney 21st Century Community Education Learning Center’s “Cup Full of Leaders” group has also decided to go into the coffee business. In partnership with The Bean Scene coffee shop, students are learning the ins and outs of making a great cup of coffee and how to run a business. “Cup Full of Leaders” honed their new skills at the last Community Education staff workshop December 20th, where three students served coffee at the potluck breakfast. Youth are taking action—learning new skills, working together and preparing themselves for the future. For more information, call (612) 668-2223.

“I feel the first time I was kind of nervous when I started. Now I feel comfortable. What we do in leadership is have meetings, fun and do the coffee shop and more. We make lots of money in a week like $30 to $55 dollars and we serve people. It is —Hue fun to do.” “We created this to make money and how business it going to be like and hard it will be. Every single morning, we sell coffee and hot chocolate.”

“Leadership started one day with 6 students. Mr. Xiong told us about the leadership program. In our program, we cooperated in a lot of activities and started a new corporation in our school.” —Jiccarra

“During leadership we sold hot chocolate and made $87 and we went to leadership camp and made blankets for women who don’t have money to buy blankets for their babies.” —Diamonique

“In leadership we talk and make decisions together and in the end we are all friends. The coffee shop is very fun and keeps us together. Leadership has helped me to listen more and get involved in more stuff in my community and school. My favorite activity in Everyday — Eric Leaders is the coffee shop.”

“By the 2nd week we were already running our own business. I think this experience helped me more as a leader.” —Ashley

Shine On | Spring 2006 |


Anthony Middle School Minnesota Agriculture

Fun Facts about Cows by Ethan Oscarson & Ahmed Hassan  Cows weigh about 1,500 pounds. If you wonder why they weigh so much it is because they eat 100 lbs. a day— 700 lbs. a week. Humans average 4 lbs. a day.


bout 125 6 th grade Students at Anthony Middle School in teacher Paul Sommers’ Social Studies class have researched food choices made by people throughout Minnesota (from the 1850s to present) and have compared and contrasted their food choices today. Areas emphasized included large and small scale, ethnic and local agricultural. This spring, students are learning about the growing process (planting, fertilizing and composting). They also learned about food processing and transportation,agribusiness vs. f am i ly farming and organic vs. non-organic foods, advertising and food industry and fast food and how it connects to obesity issues. Whew! This service learning project was done winter and spring of 2006 as part of a grant from Achieve!Mpls.

THE FIELD TRIPS—March 16th By Ethan Oscarson I am a 6th grader at Anthony Middle School. My history teacher, Mr. Sommers, had 4 field trips about food and Minnesota Agriculture. I went on the one about farms. We went to two different dairy farms. The first farm, Cedar Summit, was organic. They had 160 cows and made ice cream and yogurt right there. They said the difference between an organic and non-organic farm is that on an organic farm

Poem By Jenna Birkeli I went to the farm one day I saw tons and tons of hay. The cows all lined up to give milk black and white fur was as smooth as silk they lay in the sand fans go cold The cows would never want to get sold as I see black and white polka dots on them. I think what color dots would look like on them Cows, calves, chickens, cats, and rodents in the field How can they fit all those animals on that field?


| Shine On | Spring 2006

 A cow gives milk after it is pregnant.  All cows are girls.

Above: Students visit the Wedge Co-op on Lyndale Avenue. Left: Sean, Anthony and Ibrahim learn about cows at Wolfcreek Dairy.

they did not spray any chemicals on the food to feed the cows. The other Dairy farm, Wolfcreek, was not organic. They do use chemicals. That farm had 450 cows and shipped their milk out to be bottled instead of making products right there. Both farms had machines that milked the cows. On the machine were these four funnel things that had vacuum power that sucked the milk out.

 Kinds of cows: brown and white ones are Hershey cows and black and white are Holsteins.  Cows sleep while standing up.  A baby cow is called a calf.  Cows make more milk when they are cold. PS: “In this field trip I learned a lot of stuff that I never learned. This is the first field trip that I went on that I learned lots of stuff.” —Ahmed Hassan

By Caleb Webster 6th grade Anthony Middle School I went to the food stores. First we went to the Wedge Coop. We learned about organic and conventional food. I learned that they wash food and then clean out the sink between each wash of conventional and organic food. I also learned that if you keep a chicken in a cage it gets stressed and makes the egg white. But if you want it to be organic they let the chicken run around and make the egg an organic color. Then we went to Rainbow foods and learned there are soft, medium and hard tooth brushes. Then I learned how meat was put into packages. First they take the huge hunk of meat then they cut it with a sharp blade. Then people put them on trays and put in on a machine. First if goes in and then it gets the package on. Then it gets stamped and it is ready to go. Then we went to the woods and learned how maple sugar is made. First they drill into the tree and then hammer a little pipe into the tree and in like 5 to 10 hours it is ready to be put in a bucket. They put the maple juice into a pot and boil it and let the water dissolve and finally it is ready. But you can put it on a pan and fry it. Then just stir it around and it is maple sugar.

le trees w to tap map ho n ar le ts ny studen aple sugar. Above: Antho e n making m gi be d ait for a tast an p to get sa and Brodin w c ri E , eb al C Below: Nate, dlake. sugar at Woo le ap m al re of

Marcy Open Poetry Slam

Changing Delaney Thompson, 8th Grade Homeless times, motherly crimes, and pointless fines.


hat does Onomatopia mean? Don’t know? Well, the answer is on this page somewhere. The big question is: what does it have to do with service learning? At Marcy Open (140+) middle school students have been taking their voices and poetics beyond paper and bringing it to community and to stage. In November, 3 students Ryan Colbert, Erin Keefe, and Luke Darger represented the Marcy Slam Residency with slam mentors teacher Sara Dotty, Sha’ Cage and e.g. bailey at the Fall School Board conference at the Minneapolis Convention Center asking conference participants to listen and participate in writing a group poem entitled “We are the Bridge.” Working with teacher Sara Dotty and the Minnesota Spoken Word Association at Marcy Open, 140+ middle-school students have learned the power of their words in the community. They have studied the form, written the words, and performed to an audience in class. A smaller group of 10 has taken it to the stage and are involved in the afterschool Slam League. The Minnesota Spoken Word Association was founded by spoken word artists to serve as a resource and service organization for the spoken word community in Minnesota and beyond, it has worked to help build the spoken word community and to elevate the art form through its mission, programming, and education programs on the tradition. For more information, call 612-288-9491.

The time you left and hardly made it home Stolen bikes, family fights and “I wish I may, I wish I mights.” I always thought about what you did when you were alone. Common colds, wax molds, pretending to be old I remember all the times we spent together Driveway lights, alcoholic nights, and still being alright. 8th Grade, hael Voller, ic M d an n Alec Nordi dwiches.” eir poem “San read from th

I really knew they wouldn’t last forever. Staying strong, waiting too long, & always being wrong. They took me from your home.

Sandwiches By Alec Nordin and Michael Voller, 8th Grade I love sandwiches, especially ones with ham They taste so good you’ll think it’s a scam Sandwiches, they taste so sweet They’re the food I love to eat I love ’em from Milio’s all the way to Subway I munch on them sandwiches everyday Stack’em high but hold the mayo Taste so good make you say, “AYO! AYO!” Sandwiches, you always want more Sandwiches, make your taste buds soar If it tastes good enough you’ll hit the floor And you’ll never wanna walk out the door The green team loves sandwiches something fierce They taste so good, they put us in tears Sandwiches, you know you want some They feel so great in your tum-tum

Police cars. Behind bars and feeling so far. Everything felt single tones. Walking miles, talking long whiles and soon waiting smiles. I didn’t want to stay Mall meeting, secret keeping and those hopeful feelings He finally saved me from that horrible place Living with nothing. Thoughts so flustering and small family Clustering I began reinventing myself Losing connections, government elections and starting Corrections I took my old memories with you off my shelf I started anew & it’s totally different life without you. Composer of “Changing,” Delaney Tho mpson, 8th G rade.

Sandwiches, they taste so good You know we’re eatin’ great in our neighborhood From subs to grinders, grinders to subs I love all sandwiches, even Turkey Clubs Sandwiches I love to munch I always go with them in my lunch.


eM director of th mentor and am sl , et ts po uc e.g. bailey, ociation cond en Word Ass . am sl inesota Spok in classroom m students in a

What is a slam? A slam is a competition between poets who are scored on their original poetics and performance by judges randomly selected from the audience.

I am a Lover By Sara Warsame, 7th Grade I am a lover I am a lover of life I am a lover Love—that’s right A lover of many ways A lover of sweet days I am a lover … a lover of many ways.

Onomatopoeia: A figure of speech in which words are used to imitate sounds like: Hiss, Zing, pop and splash.

Shine On | Spring 2006 |


Afrocentric Educational Academy Leadership through Service Learning Two student groups created PowerPoint presentations—one on media affects, the other on violence— and presented them at regular school meetings and assemblies at Afrocentric. The whole school was involved. They discussed, thought of new solutions and ideas for the Afrocentric school community. For National Youth Service Day, April 21-23, the groups exhibited their presentations at North High School’s Health Fair. In addition, both groups presented their PowerPoint presentations in the State competition for Family, Career, Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) where they placed GOLD in their categories—sadly, they did not make it to the National FCCLA competition. The State competition had over 1,500 youth—so to place gold was an amazing accomplishment! But what PRIDE!

Violence, Violence Everywhere

Violence Violence is the use of force in a way that harms a person or property. Some types of violence cause killings, abuse, and beatings. Gossip One type of violence is gossiping. Gossip is emotional violence. Gossiping leads to violence, such as bullying, name calling teasing and physical abuse. Gossiping is made up of lies, lies and nothing but lies! Gossiping starts rumors, arguments, fights and sometimes suicide. Why Gossip? People think that gossip is more interesting than people’s real lives. But it really isn’t because is hurts and it makes people feel uncomfortable. Bullying A bully is an individual who tends to torment others, either through verbal harassment and/or physical assaults or through more subtle methods of coercion.

Teasing Teasing is when one person is ing fun of another person.


Teasing hurts inside and out It makes people feel embarrassed and insecure about themselves. How to ignore teasing One way to ignore teasing is to not be around the bully when the bully is around their friends. Another way is to give complements to the bully or to tell them to just leave you alone. Planning Process Our concerns are violence in school. We can reduce school violence by telling people to stop violence, influence people to do the right thing, and be more concerned about violence. We can set a goal by relating violence to our everyday lives. 8th grade students should set a goal by showing and telling 6th and 7th grade students to be kind, concerned, and helpful to their fellow peers.

By Ahmed, Sanford


How do you stop bullying? Some of the ways you can stop people from bullying is walking away, telling a teacher, ignoring what the bully says, and tell your parent.

| Shine On | Spring 2006

Form a Plan/Act/Follow Up How can we form a plan? The 8th graders can demonstrate, show, and practice good behavior everyday, and in the process the 6th and 7th graders can see how to be leaders. How can we put this in action? During Monday morning assemblies we talked about our research and had a school discussion on it.

Tattle or Tell Tommy tattled to the teacher, “Tom Tickled Tony!” Teacher told Tommy, “Don’t Tattle! Tell me when they are tackling!” —Alex, Shay, Marrissa and Sam R. 6th Grade, Anthony School


tudents were asked to show the difference between Tattle or Tell in a tongue twister competition. After working in small groups they performed their art. The class was then asked to vote on which group did the best twister. This was the winning group.

“Crybaby” by Daneng, Seward Montessori

From the PowerPoint presentation by Taylor Reed, Brandy Tate and Kolandria Metcalf

By Claudia, 5th Grade Jefferson School

Keewaydin The Action Club

“I learned about how to help people. Also when you have ideas you can actually make them into reality with the help of the Action Club. And a leader is when you can be independent —Ihonie, 5th grade and lead yourself.”

Action Club responses to what they have learned: “. . .I can help out. To be a leader means that if your friend or someone is making a bad choice don’t go along with them. Make a good choice and not be a follower.” —Carrie, 5th Grade “You should help even though you weren’t asked. As a leader you should not be a follower. Also it means that you can be independent.” —Xia, 5th Grade “It means to be a leader person that gives a great example for kids that are younger than you.” —Kaitlin, 5th Grade “. . . about Natural disasters and to listen.” —Ashley, 4th Grade

Notes of Katrina and Natural disasters By Xia, 5th Grade ational Youth resident of N P , er ei Club m ls ie s with Action Dr. James K (NYLC) talk il date nc up ou an C d p isiana an Leadershi ou L to t si vi t his . students abou e relief effort an ic rr hu e on th

“I learned you should take care of other people.” —Jamal, 4th Grade

“I’ve learned that lots of people in the world are not as fortunate as us.” —Bailey, 4th Grade

“I learned that if you clowned you would be out and your always are being watched and you get more responsible.” —Bennie, 5th Grade

“Helping people is worth it. Doing work —Clifford, 5th Grade for others is easy.”

“. . .How to be a community helper in little —Myra, 4th grade and big ways.”

All About Action Club

How many projects are done each year?

he Action Club started in the fall of 2005. The idea for the group was the brainchild of a grandmother who has two grandchildren attending Keewaydin School. She along with a group of community education folks wrote a grant proposal to the Nokomis East Neighborhood Association to fund staffing for the group. The school would provide the space and the PTA would provide money for supplies for the group.

This is the first year that the group has been in operation. Our first unofficial project was a coin harvest for the victims of Hurricane Katrina. Students raised over $300 in a two week period. During the rest of the year, the group has made over 100 decorated holiday sacks for “Meals on Wheels”; made 1,000 greeting cards for Volunteers of America’s “Baskets of Joy” project (to be given to elderly people); made over 75 hand-tied, child- sized fleece blankets for St. Anne’s Place, The Crisis Nursery, and Fairview University Hospital Children’s Unit; collected 1,001 pounds of food and paper products for the Minnehaha Food Shelf, and much more.

What kinds of activities does the Action Club do?

What kinds of students usually join the group? Do they work well together?

The group was organized to do service learning projects for the school and community. The group has gotten ideas for projects by doing a community needs assessment. From the assessment, students came up with ideas for projects and a couple of organizations approached the group with requests for assistance. Students interviewed members of the Nokomis East Neighborhood Association to find out about the needs of the neighborhood. They also had an opportunity to interview Dr. James Kielsmeier, President of the National Youth Leadership Council. He shared his insights and artifacts from his recent trip to the Hurricane Katrina disaster area.

Membership to the group was opened to all fourth and fifth graders. The group has a membership of forty students. Students have worked well together. All students have gone through activities that emphasize leadership and team building. They have been given leadership opportunities within the group and a chance to lead projects. Three of the older students from the group were interested in applying for mini grants (called H.Y.P.E.) offered by Community Education youth development department. One student received a grant for $250 to lead the card making project for the Volunteers of America. She was responsible for deciding what designs the cards would have, who would help her with set up, and making the cards.

An interview with Vice Principal Mary Noble


City: New Orleans State: Mississippi Devastation/really bad Condemned/torn apart Unable to fix Declaration/say something Strongly and cleanly Pleas/Cry for help Signs/a picture that shows Response/Answering or applying Rush to rebuild casinos Rush to donate clothes Organized help

How do you think the kids made a difference in the community? The biggest lesson the students have learned this year is that they can make a difference, and they know they can share what they have learned with others. How is the group structured? The group meets once a week on Mondays from 3:30-5:15 pm with teachers Mr. Grissam and Mrs. Darsey. The first half hour we meet is dedicated to working on homework or learning a skill. This is also the time we have our guest speakers. Students take notes in a journal. The next hour is usually spent working on service projects. The group is split into two parts. One group will usually work on some activities from the Leadership Curriculum and the other half works on the service project. Halfway through, the groups are switched and each half works on the part of the project or activity that is taking place. Students have been very excited about the projects and sometimes it’s hard to get the groups to want to switch. What are the plans for next year? Our plans for next year are to expand the group to two days a week. We plan on seeking additional funding from other sources besides Nokomis East Neighborhood Association. We would love to get additional sponsorship. We hope to do some of the same projects that we have done this year, but it will depend on what the needs of the community are next year.

Maggie Foucault, South High Senior contributed to this article.

Shine On | Spring 2006 |


Andersen Open Teacher Recognized for Outstanding Contributions to Service Learning


th grade teacher S a n t i B ro m l ey o f A n d e r s e n S c h o o l w a s a w a rd e d the “Outstanding Contributions to Service learning Award” in the category of Practice at the 2006 Minnesota Youth Service Celebration. The Practice Award recognizes an individual who uses service learning as a teaching methodology in his/her school, organization, or community. This award is sponsored by the Minnesota Department of Education. 


Good websites for information on Service Learning: National Youth Leadership Council: PeaceJam International:

Santi’s acceptance speech May 12, 2006 Dear Distinguished Award Recipients, Guests, Presenters, and the Department of Education, I apologize profusely for not being present to receive the most significant award of my professional career,as I am on a college field trip at St. Olaf today. Service learning is truly my passion, so getting an award for what I love to do is extremely humbling. I want to thank the Minnesota Department of Education for taking the time today to recognize service learning as a valuable tool for teaching our students. My dream is that all teachers can find ways to integrate this strategy across curriculums and grades in every single classroom. It is crucial for the improvement of our world that people discover fulfillment through giving, instead of always asking,“What do I get?” It is imperative that educators continue to nurture activists and contributing citizens to our world through teaching what that means—by taking action. Service learning can help our students achieve Minnesota standards and there are concrete ways we can measure our students’ progress. We, as educators, can not use the excuse that students have too many tests, and there is no time for me to teach for the tests and in addition implement service learning. We can still have high and clear expectations, teach to the standards, while simultaneously teaching students to help contribute to the world. Through teamwork, patience, creativity, organization, and compassion we can integrate this into our curriculum. Service learning experiences have lasting impacts on a person’s life, while a standardized test is an insignificant blip in the heartbeats of our lives. Let’s keep spreading the word, waving the flag, and carrying the torch for service learning one student, one educator, one class, one school, and one community at a time.

National Service-Learning Clearinghouse:

Thanks so much for this amazing honor. Congratulations to all of you for the tremendous work you are doing and will continue to do in service learning!

Center for Democracy and Citizenship, Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs, U of MN:

Santi Bromley, 5th grade teacher Andersen Open, Minneapolis Public Schools

Leadership is: “. . .helping people improve themselves, their lives and their community.”

“To be a leader, you have to give a positive influence to your community.” —Julian, 6th Grade, Folwell

“Helping others because you care and for no other reason, just because you care.” — Jorge, 4th Grade, Andersen

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Jhon Loja-Niola,4th Grade, Andersen

—Jhon ,4th Grade, Andersen


Perfect World We have to do something to make this a perfect world. Children need to eat, sleep and drink like we do. Not starve, die, for no reason. We can make this a beautiful season. Everybody would have a home clothes, cars, and enough money to put food on the table every day. We have to do something to make this a perfect world. Children need to eat, sleep and drink like we do. Not starve, die, for no reason. We can make this a beautiful season. We need to take care of each other to make this our little perfect world. I will love to live in a perfect world. I will be beautiful.

The air would be fresh. The birds would be flying across my head. There would be no violence. There would be schools with respectful children and teachers. All the children would pass their classes. Moms and Dads will be proud. There would be no poor people. Everybody would have a house. Everybody would have a job. No selling drugs. Everybody would be happy in the perfect world. So we can all rest.


Poetry written by Passion, Danyel, Khadija, Dajalae and Monique, 8th grade students at Nellie Stone Johnson.

I’m thankful…

We need to help because…

I’m thankful for my Mom because I love her.

It’s not fair to the kids who don’t have no parents.

I am thankful for my family because we stick together.

We need to help because one day we are going to need some help.

I’m thankful for my family and what they do for me.

Because everybody should be treated the same get the same that why we need to help.

I’m thankful for having a roof over my head and food to eat because some kids can’t even eat or they don’t have a home or family and if I could I would help them.

We need to help because we are all they have. Just picture if that was you out there.

I’m thankful for my life and everything I have because even though I don’t have as much as some kids I have more than some kids and I’m thankful for God being in my life.

Giving is… I get something everyday in return for what I gave… Giving is nice. Giving is right. Sometimes it’s telling you you’re living right. Giving is to share. Giving is about love. Giving is about being kind to one another.

Giving is to care about people; being there for one another when they need help. Giving is to do something. Giving is about caring about your community and what you want to be in life. Giving is like what Nellie Stone Johnson girls did when we put food into bags for the hungry and we made 4,500 meals.

Mentors: Pam Russ and Richard Spratt of Village Social Services, Hennepin County; U of MN P.R.C. Research Center PYLI team facilitators Debra Stone, Glynis Shea, and Jamie Winne; Cameran Darrett, Ed Irwin and Ayolanda Evans of Kwaanza Community Church.


Shine On | Spring 2006 |


Leadership is:

We are the leaders The everyday leaders We are the peacemakers The everyday peacemakers We do good to help our neighborhood!

Love Encourage Achievement Dreams Everyone Respectful Supportive

—Shayla, 5th Grade, Jefferson School

Jhon Loja-Niola,4th Grade, Andersen

Jefferson 4th and 5th grade Everyday Leaders afterschool class Mentor: Kim Snyder

“. . . stepping up and taking responsibility for your actions.” —Antoinett , 5th Grade, Andersen

“. . . a group of people that try to make things better. It’s a way to make a difference in lives and the world. Leadership is change, making people proud of who they are, and what they do.” —Jakaila,6th Grade, Andersen

“Being a leader is choosing your words carefully, being respectful of others.” —Thaila, 4th Grade, Andersen

“Leadership is everyday. Eating, drinking and sleeping, Leadership is even when no one is looking. Leadership is never judging others, but to accept people for who they are.”

“Leadership is very important to me, because as Class Vice—David, 5th Grade, Andersen President, I want to help teach and educate people to be more caring and loving. To show “Bravery, courage, friendship.” them the difference between — Ritchie, 6 grade, Folwell right and wrong. To teach them to give more of themselves to others that are in need.” “Leadership is taking a step in —Xochitl, 4th Grade, Andersen something you can’t do yet to get better and know right from “Leadership means friendship.” wrong. Be a leader!” th

—Ryan, 6th Grade, Folwell


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—Biranna, 6th Grade, Folwell

“Leaders have to have pride in mind, body and soul.” —Mark, 6th Grade, Folwell

“Leadership is not telling people what to do, but helping them do it with hard work and dedication. Leadership is making the right decision and staying on task. A leader always stays ahead of the game and is always prepared for anything. Leaders are always supporting others.” —DeStephano, 4th Grade, Andersen

“I think Leadership is working together without arguing and we just get along.” —Toniyetta, 8th Grade, Nellie Stone

“Leadership is being able to make decisions but also to take advice to be a team player and be a leaders and remember: in order to lead, we must first learn to follow.” —Stefan, 8th Grade, Nellie Stone

Shine On! Young Leaders Rising  

Spring 2006 Issue

Shine On! Young Leaders Rising  

Spring 2006 Issue