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April 19 - May 2, 2014


Not My Kid assists youth with life’s toughest challenges BY LYNETTE CARRINGTON

Not My Kid has been promoting positive life choices by educating youth, families and communities about the consequences of destructive youth behaviors. Debbie and Steve Moak founded the local organization in 1999 after dealing with their son’s substance abuse challenges. Not My Kid, sometimes stylized “notMYkid,” is a well-rounded organization that focuses on six core areas of challenges—drug and alcohol abuse, bullying, unhealthy relationships, eating disorders, depression/self injury and Internet safety. “We’re primarily a local organization,” says Shane Watson, Not My Kid’s communications manager. “We do our inperson presentations locally throughout the state of Arizona. By the end of this school year we will be in about 300 schools. We have a national DVD program that organizations and schools outside of the state have purchased.” Schools reach out to the organization, or vice versa. “Sometimes schools are able to pay for the program themselves, some schools absolutely don’t have the budget for it,” Watson explains “We’ve managed to get grants from private donors and we’ve gotten grants from organizations like the Arizona Diamondbacks. They gave us a really generous $100,000 grant last year to fund

bullying prevention programs. It’s because of that grant that we’ve been able to get into more schools than ever before to do our anti-bullying presentation.” Chandler resident Anthony (last name withheld for safety purposes) is a 25-year-old amplified peer educator. He speaks to schools about his selfdestructive behaviors and how he learned to overcome his challenges. “I go to schools all over Arizona and I share my personal story with students so they can learn from some of the mistakes I made in my life on some very important topics,” Anthony says. “I give them resources and tools so they can make some positive life choices.” He moved around a lot as a youngster and went to 10 different schools. Anthony struggled and dealt with bullying issues, depression and suicide attempts. In college, he sought help for his problems and subsequently graduated with honors from ASU with a psychology degree. He encourages others to seek the help they need and that, indeed, it is OK to ask for help. “We are the only organization that has peer-to-peer education going on, so students feel much more comfortable with us there,” Anthony says. “When that happens, they are more likely to come up to us and share their personal stories.” With an open dialogue, Anthony is


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NOT MY KID: The Not My Kid staff, peer educators and TV personality Dr. Drew Pinsky, at center, right. Submitted photo

then able to direct children to get the help they need. Peer educators are not trained counselors. Instead, they are safe and understanding people who understand struggles. The annual Not My Kid fundraiser will take place at 6:30 p.m. Friday, April 25, at Virginia G. Piper Sports and Fitness Center in Phoenix. “A Taste of Discovery” event is presented by Discovery Land Company with 100 percent of proceeds benefiting Not My Kid’s prevention education programs. The evening will include dinner and drinks, a presentation from Not My Kid, an auction and a raffle. The raffle will include vacation packages to special destinations located in “owned” vacation communities that are not available to the general public.

The featured vacation packages include four nights at Baker’s Bay Golf and Ocean Club (Abaco, Bahamas), four nights at El Dorado Golf and Beach Club (Cabo San Lucas, Mexico), six nights at Gozzer Ranch Golf and Lake Club (Coeur d’Alene, Idaho), five nights at Makena Golf and Beach Club (Maui, Hawaii) and four nights at Yellowstone Club (Big Sky, Mont.). Raffle tickets are $50 or $100 for three and can be purchased online. Winner need not be present to win. For more information, call (602) 6520163 or visit Lynette Carrington is a freelancer for the San Tan Sun News. She can be reached at



April 19 - May 2, 2014

Schools recycling while earning prizes BY MEGHAN MCCOY

Two Chandler schools are participating in the Drink Pouch Brigade, a free recycling program from Capri Sun and eco-pioneer TerraCycle, earning money and points to win prizes. Navarette Elementary School Brigade Leader Tamara Garrison says she noticed an advertisement four years ago on a Capri Sun label about the recycling program. “I took an interest in it and approached the principal and school about it,” says Garrison, the parent of first- and fourthgrade students. “I was able to talk them into it and have been doing it ever since. It’s part of the culture of the school. It’s something that everyone knows and does. It seems to work for us.” Garrison explains it’s an easy way to get the school involved in recycling. She says she hopes to continue the program as long as her kids attend the school. Participating schools earn points from the drink pouches collected, which are shipped to TerraCycle. Two points per pouch are earned for shipments more than 5 pounds, which equals about 430 pouches. Three points per pouch are earned for shipments that are more than 58 pounds, which is about 5,000 pouches. Schools can join at any time; there is no deadline. Since signing up with TerraCycle in July 2010, Navarette has collected 107,681 drink pouches, which has a cash value of $2,026.50. It has earned 202,650 points. The school receives a check twice a year

from TerraCycle for its efforts. Although the amount varies, it goes straight to the PTO for items the school needs. Garrison says this year she is working with the librarian because the school is in need of books. “A lot of books that get checked out don’t last forever,” she says. “I am trying to find a specific area that we give the money to so this year they (students) can realize what the money has gone to.” Chandler Traditional Academy joined the program in September 2009 and collected 54,379 drink pouches for a cash value of $1,822.61 while it participated. It translates to 182,261 points. All of its money, too, went to the PTO. “It’s a great program, if you have student help,” says CTA Brigade Leader and PE teacher Kirk Plamondon. “Every Friday I would be here with a group of kiddos and they would help. We would be here for an hour.” Unfortunately, as the years went on, Plamondon says the students lost interest and he decided to stop collecting the drink pouches. “I wouldn’t mind continuing it if I had some dependable help,” he says. “If anyone is interested in collecting trash, it’s a great way to do it.” TerraCycle Public Relations Intern Erica Rodriguez says her organization decided to focus on schools because Capri Sun is geared toward children. “We like to involve as many schools as we can,” she says, which now involves



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PLAYGROUND: The schools participating in the TerraCycle Drink Pouch Brigade can win a playground made up of recycled Capri Sun pouches. Submitted photo

40,000 schools that have contributed 200 million pouches. About $4 million has been donated since the initiation of the Drink Pouch Brigade six years ago. With that achievement, Capri Sun has expanded its prizes to include a playground, park benches and recycling bins for the school or community. Rodriguez says the drink pouches are deemed not recyclable because they have aluminum in them. “We make products that people can buy,” she says. “The program that we are running now, the actual playgrounds are made from the drink pouches. The label stays, the brand stays, so it is all in the playground. You can see all the Capri drink pouches.” Garrison says she has received a few surprise boxes from TerraCycle such as 25 pencil cases made from Capri Sun drink pouches. Both of the schools are in the running

RECYCLE BIN: The schools participating in the TerraCycle Drink Pouch Brigade have an opportunity to win a recycle bin made up of recycled Capri Sun pouches. Submitted photo

to win the playground, park bench and recycling bins. Garrison says she waits until she receives three or four boxes of pouches before she ships them off. “With this new incentive program, if I wait to have so many boxes it’s more beneficial,” she says. To learn more, or to sign up for the program, visit Meghan McCoy is the Neighbors and Business section editor for the SanTan Sun News. She can be reached at meghan@


April 19 - May 2, 2014

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WEEK 2: JUNE 9-13, SPLISH SPLASH! Welcome to wettest week of summer, wear your swimsuit to get soaked! Splash pad, rubber duck races, and slip ’n slide are just some of the fun activities planned for this wildly wet-filled week! Come cool off and stay refreshed on the hottest days of summer. Carebear will have a bouncy water slide this week and we will be visited by the Chandler Fire Department to learn about water safety.

WEEK 3: JUNE 16-20, CAREBEAR COOKS Come enjoy the creativity of cooking. This class gives children the opportunity to enjoy a variety of cooking experiences as they create delicious snacks. Students will use cooking tools, learn about etiquette and nutrition, and learn how to make recipes and mix ingredients!

WEEK 4: JUNE 23-27, ANIMAL PLANET Join us for a week of animals adventures. Our Carebear explorers will learn about mammals, birds and reptiles. We will have a visit from the Reptile Guy who will bring his cool creatures.

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WEEK 6: JULY 7-11, A CAMPING WE WILL GO It's going to be a wonderful week in the wilderness! The children will enjoy reading tents, s’mores and games. During this week as well the children will get to learn about constellations, nature and even get to build a pretend campfire.

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April 19 - May 2, 2014


French students win first place at ASU’s Foreign Language Fair BY BETH LUCAS

The Avengers swept into Arizona State University—and something was different. They spoke French. They baked. And they were 10 French III students from Chandler-based Seton Catholic Preparatory. The creative take on Avengers movies, “We Forgot Pepper’s Birthday!,” won first place at ASU’s Foreign Language Fair. Students wrote, translated and performed the play entirely in French before competing against larger public schools. “My favorite part was putting it all together, being with my friends. We’re all so close in that class,” says Ana Falls, a junior from Chandler, who played “Hawkeye.” In the play, the Avengers whip up crème brulee after realizing they’d forgotten their friend’s big day. Students were judged on their memorization, pronunciation, fluidity, emotion and feeling. Seton’s French instructor, Robin Noudali, says languages have a big impact on students’ futures. “Studies have shown that students who take four years of the same foreign language score higher on the same ACT and SAT test than any other group of students,” she says. “It just helps them in so many different ways. The listening, the speaking, the reading that gives them other perspectives and helps their minds grow.” They’re also exposed to different cultures, she adds. “From a cultural aspect, we are so isolated in the United States, so far from Europe. We assume everything is like here,

FRENCH AVENGERS: Seton Catholic Prep High School French III students took first place in Arizona State University’s Foreign Language Fair. Shown here, from left to right, are the students who participated: Mariana Chacon, Gianna Bartolotta, Teresa McBryan, Genevieve Leach, Anna Price, Ana Falls, Lily-Catherine Arama, Maria Rojas, Alex Fernandez, Thibault Denamiel, Sabrina Wozny. Submitted photo

when it’s not.” The winning team also includes juniors Lily Arama, Teresa McBryan and freshman Thibault Denamiel of Phoenix; juniors Genevieve Leach and Sabrina Wozny of Gilbert; junior Anna Price of Tempe; junior Mariana Chicon of Mesa; and junior Alex Fernandez of Scottsdale. Many of the students were learning French as a third language, including Ana, who learned Spanish in elementary school. “I think it’s really important, you personally gain a new sense of the world,

when you learn a language. You also learn the culture,” Ana says. “You get to see the different things besides English and the American way. It’s really cool.” Planning to go into medicine and become a pediatrician, she adds that she wants to learn Latin next. Her classmates spent weeks creating the play and practicing, she says. Still, they were thrilled and surprised to take first place, after performing in a foreign language before a crowd. “We worked really hard on it,” Ana says.

“But we were also really shocked, because there were so many other schools there. It was just so exciting that we actually won the competition, because we had such a small class. “French is a lot different, it’s such a pretty language,” she adds. “When you first learn how to speak it, it’s really hard because all pronunciation is different. Once you get used to it, it just rolls off your tongue, and when it all comes together it sounds really pretty. A key to learning a language is practicing, speaking out loud.” Mariana, a 16-year-old junior from Mesa, was thrilled as she became fluent in her third language—French. She also choreographed a final dance scene in the play. Mariana’s character was “Nick Fury,” the leader of the Avengers. “It was a pretty humorous play,” she adds – where the characters take turns with ideas on how to celebrate the character, Pepper’s, belated birthday. “My character wears an eye patch, and because we’re cooking crème brulee, I got egg in my one good eye—it was something kind of impromptu so it ended up being one of my favorite parts.” Her ultimate goal is also a career in medicine, as a pediatrician or nurse caring for children. She hopes that leads to a lifetime of traveling, and learning more about new cultures. “Speaking another language makes traveling a lot easier,” she says. “Just being able to communicate in different languages opens a lot of job opportunities. You just know the world a little better beyond where you live, and what you’re used to.” Alex, a 17-year-old junior from Scottsdale, used the opportunity to try out performance. “It was really fun to play (“Ironman”),” Fernandez says. “My character was kind of funny. I thought I was going to freak out because I’ve never done public performance before. I was surprised how comfortable I felt. It definitely boosted my confidence by just doing it.” He also plans to put his language skills into use, hoping to score a collegelevel architectural scholarship in France. “It let me get a taste of it, see if I liked it, and it made me more comfortable about performing in front of other people,” he says. “The fact that it was in French, made me more comfortable with the language overall.” French is Alex’s third language. Born in Mexico, he learned English as his second language after starting kindergarten. “It’s nice to be able to speak more than one language,” he adds. “And I just think it’s better for me in the future, maybe in getting jobs. And it is nice to be able to speak with other people.” Seton principal Patricia Collins put the students’ achievement in perspective: “Thousands of students from the Phoenix area, Tucson and as far away as Mohave County participated in the events. Congratulations to our impressive French III students and to their teacher.” Beth Lucas is a freelancer for the SanTan Sun News. She can be reached at


April 19 - May 2, 2014


New Vistas takes first in science and engineering fair New Vistas Center for Education in Chandler took top honors along with a 4-foot trophy for the Elementary School Division of the Arizona Science and Engineering fair held at the Arizona Science Center. Hundreds of public, charter and private schools competed. Fifth grader Neha Shakir took first place in the physics and astronomy category with her experiment entitled “A-Salting the Plants,” which analyzed the effect that varying degrees of salinity have on plant growth. Second-place winner in physics was Riaz Mowzoon-Mogharrabi whose project demonstrated “Electromagnetism and the Future of Transportation.” Sajni Patel placed second under the planetary and Earth sciences category for her project surrounding radioactivity in nature. In the environmental sciences category, Mahwish Quadri placed third for her experiment on how to effectively “Put Water to Work.” Utilizing mathematical sciences, Hannah Tsay successfully demonstrated that an algorithm—which appears often in the study of geometry, art and architecture— called the Golden Ratio can also be found within most music compositions. Fifth grader Katarina Fenner placed second in chemistry by proving that common food items can be preserved utilizing the same chemical compounds employed by ancient Egyptians in mummification.

WINNERS: New Vistas captures title “Top Science and Engineering School in Arizona”. Pictured left to right top row: Teachers Kim Peek and Stacey Trepanier, students, Mahwish Quadri and Riaz Mowzoon-Mogharrabi, Director Carol Elias, Cindy Venker, Director Dr. Eleanor Jordan. Bottom row: Students Hannah Tsay, Katarina Fenner, Sajni Patel, Neha Shakir. Submitted photo

“Science fairs are genuinely cross disciplinary,” states Kim Peet of the New Vistas science department. “Students learn to love science through hands-on science labs. The Science and Engineering Fair is one of the few competitions where students actually design their own learning experience. They have the satisfaction of employing the disciplines of critical thinking, time management, cohesive planning, as well as, integrating computer, math, vocabulary, reading and research skills.” The event is a culmination of school and regional fairs across the state involving thousands of science fair projects in numerous categories. Approximately 1,200 students survived the local competitions

to represent their schools at the Phoenix Convention Center. To be considered eligible for competition, students had to adhere to a rigid scientific protocol which is set at the international level. Dr. Sharon Kortman, vice president of the Arizona Science Center, presented two special awards on behalf of the Central Arizona Chapter of the Association for Women in Science to sixth graders Hannah Tsay and Mahwish Quadri for their extraordinary work in the sciences at the elementary school level. The Arizona Science and Engineering Fair competition is sponsored at the state and international levels by Intel, GoDaddy, SRP, ASU, Honeywell, Helios and Arizona Science and Technology Foundation.



April 19 - May 2, 2014

Enjoy the West at Koli Equestrian Center BY LYNETTE CARRINGTON

Equine activities are no longer reserved for ranchers and those taking lessons. The sport has grown in popularity over the last few decades. Situated on the Gila River Indian Reservation, Koli Equestrian Center caters to all levels of riders on its 372,000 acres that boast herds of wild horses that traverse the landscape freely. “We have no ‘set’ trails,” explains Chuck Pablo, a member of the Pima tribe and general manager of the Koli Equestrian Center. “As long as we stay on our 1,000 acres we’re good.” Group trail rides are the biggest draw at Koli Equestrian Center. They are scheduled for 8 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. from Sept. 1 to May 31. Summer hours are June 1 through Aug. 31 and the rides occur daily at 7 a.m., 9:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. The 90-minute group rides are $65. “This is not the usual head-to-tail trail ride and riders are more spread out and can get to know one another,” says Pablo. Private trail rides are available, too. The 90-minute ride is $85. “Our rides are beautiful and people get to know our land and we always see the wild stallions during our rides,” Pablo notes. Wrangler and lead trail guide Sylvia Peters has been with the Koli Equestrian Center for more than four years. She knows the land and wild horses well. “We love Henry, the wild stallion,” Peters says. “He’s been out here for years; as long as anyone can remember. He comes right

A UNIQUE EXPERIENCE: Wrangler and lead trail guide Sylvia Peters and her horse, Sundance, enjoy leading riders out to experience the beauty and majesty of wild stallions. STSN photo by Lynette Carrington

ON THE TRAIL: Chuck Pablo manages the Koli Equestrian Center and leads trail rides. STSN photo by Lynette Carrington

up to the fence and thinks he’s part of the herd. The other horses will spread their hay around when they eat and Henry will get some. We like it when he visits.” Besides group and private rides, the margarita sunset ride is also growing in popularity. The one-hour ride is for those 21 and older. “The margarita sunset ride is a unique

teach children proper techniques in horse grooming, saddling and riding techniques. “It’s more for younger kids and beginners,” states Pablo. “But we have had kids that go through this program and then come back for brush-up lessons or just to ride with us.” Koli Equestrian Center hosts personalized birthday parties where kids

experience for adults,” Pablo explains. “The time varies slightly with the sun, but we head out and enjoy the beautiful sunset and when we get back, we have margaritas, chips and salsa.” Dinner rides are available, too, for all ages. The Koli Kids Club is a year-round equine education program designed to

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April 19 - May 2, 2014


Kids’ book Kajukenbo offering free drive underway self-defense seminar HEADING OUT: A group of riders gets ready to head out on a beautiful ride across the Gila River Indian Reservation. STSN photo by Lynette Carrington

can enjoy a hayride, a trail ride, riding in the large arena or playing cowboythemed games. Other parties and events are also a snap at Koli Equestrian Center. “We can customize just about any event,” Pablo notes. “We have a lot of room here. We just had 200 people for a wedding reception. We have a large patio and we can even take care of all the details of food service. We can serve anything from hamburgers and hot dogs to steak and chicken.” The center has arrangements for food service with neighboring hotels. “People love coming here to ride because it’s a different experience,” Pablo says. “It’s beautiful, it’s quiet and most of our guides are native and know the history, the culture and the land.” Koli Equestrian Center is located at 5594 Wild Horse Pass Blvd. Visit www. or call (602) 796-3495 for additional information. Reservations are required for all rides. Lynette Carrington is a freelancer for the San Tan Sun News. She can be reached at

Area residents are asked to help donate new or gently used books for a children’s book drive now through April 30, hosted by Cops ‘n’ Kids. Chandler drop-off sites include ICAN Positive Programs for Kids, 650 E. Morelos St.; Chandler Boys and Girls Clubs, 300 E. Chandler Blvd.; Chandler Christian Community Center, 345 S. California St.; Chandler CARE Center, 777 E. Galveston St.; or Chandler Unified School District Office, 1525 W. Frye Rd. Cops ‘n’ Kids is a new organization that aims to connect Chandler’s youth and community with the promise and joy of learning through literacy. Cops ‘n’ Kids plans to distribute thousands of books each year to area children. To learn more, visit www. or contact Roger Bonngard at (480) 223-3958 or

A free one-hour self-defense seminar for females 14 years and older is offered Saturday, May 3, by Kajukenbo AZ. The seminar covers a variety of useful techniques, including kicks, strikes, verbal techniques and defenses from front grabs, hair pulls, back grabs and arm grabs. Other upcoming free seminars will be held Aug. 16 and Nov. 1. Founded in 1947, Kajukenbo is a blend of five styles of martial arts: karate, judo, jiu-jitzu, kenpo and kung fu. Kaju’s free seminars were recently featured on “The List” on ABC Channel 15, during which studio owner and master instructor Sigung Kelly Corder demonstrated for host Donna Ruko the best tools for preventing or fighting off an attack in different settings. Kajukenbo AZ operates two Valley locations, 3978 E. Chandler Heights Rd., Gilbert, and 2602 W. Baseline Rd., Suite

1, Mesa, and will also visit the site of any business, organization or group to present a free self-defense seminar. To learn more, visit, email or call (480) 755-3008.

Speech, language seminar for educators Parents and teachers are invited to a presentation on speech and language milestones in child development 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday, April 30, at the East Valley JCC, 908 N. Alma School Rd., Chandler. Certified speech and language

pathologist Hannah Barbaras will speak about the importance of communication skill development in child development, types of materials that can be used with children at different stages and red flags to be aware of. A question-and-answer session will follow the presentation.

Educators will receive one hour of continuing education credit in the form of a certificate. For more information or to register, contact ECE Director Pam Morris at (480) 897-0588 or


April 19 - May 2, 2014



SPORTING CHANCE: Girls ages 5 to 14 are invited to join the Hamilton Huskies Girls Lacrosse Club for a free lacrosse clinic at 11 a.m. Saturday, April 19, or 12 p.m. Saturday, April 26, at the Hamilton High School practice football field, at the corner of Arizona and Ocotillo roads in Chandler. Participants will learn about the fast-growing sport, which combines elements of soccer, hockey and basketball. The clinic will be followed by the opportunity to watch junior varsity and varsity games. The Hamilton Huskies were the winners of last year’s Arizona Girls Lacrosse Junior Varsity State Championship. Submitted photo

YOUTH CHRONICLES Patric Cao of Chandler is one of 86 students nationwide chosen for the 2014 Jack Kent Cooke Foundation College Scholarship Program. Each Scholar may receive up to $30,000 per year for four years of study at an accredited college or university. The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation is a private, independent foundation dedicated to advancing the education of exceptionally promising students with financial need. Bryan Crane of Chandler earned a Bachelor of Arts in kinesiology of Whitworth University in Spokane, Wash. Trevor Knotts of Chandler is the winner of the 2014 Future Checking Scholarship award from Western State Bank. Trevor attends Grand Canyon University in Phoenix. Audrey Nissly, Julia Prellberg, Lindsey Rather and Kaitlyn Wright, all of Chandler, are on the fall 2013 academic Dean’s List at Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, Calif. To qualify, students must achieve a 3.5 or better grade point average for the semester. Vamsi Krishna Varra of Chandler on the fall 2013 Dean’s List at Washington University in St. Louis, Mo. To qualify, students must earn a semester grade point average

of 3.6 or above and be enrolled in at least 12 graded units. Vamsi is enrolled in the university’s School of Engineering and Applied Science. Legacy Traditional School District, the largest K-8 charter school district in Arizona, has been awarded a districtwide accreditation from AdvancED, the world’s largest educational community. Legacy Traditional joins just 13 other school systems in the state to be fully accredited. Frank Narducci of Chandler Unified School District was recently honored for his dedication to education with the Educator’s Achievement Award by the Si Se Puede Foundation. Teachers honored as Educators of the Year were Vidal Mejia, Chandler High; Norma Meza, Galveston Elementary; Dr. Ascencion Alexander, San Marcos Elementary; Kathy Mejia, San Tan Junior High; Kim Bratcher, Galveston Elementary; Yvette Rosales, Hartford Elementary; Lourdes Galindo, Frye Elementary; and Jean Schloeman, Chandler-Gilbert Community College. All honorees were recognized at an awards recognition and benefit dinner held recently at the Crowne Plaza San Marcos Resort in downtown Chandler.


Kids: Win $15 gift card from Changing Hands Bookstore Students who either live in Chandler, Gilbert, Queen Creek or surrounding areas or who attend area schools can win $15 gift cards from Changing Hands Bookstore, thanks to a partnership between the bookseller and the SanTan Sun News. This ongoing, monthly promotion awards a $15 Changing Hands gift card to every youth whose article, story, poem, essay, editorial, book review, photo or illustration is chosen to be printed in the SanTan Sun Kids Opportunity section, while supplies last. The Kids Opportunity section is printed in the Youth Section of the first paper of the month, each month. The best news is that even though only

one to three submissions are printed per month, all good submissions are held in a file to be printed in future issues. So if an entry doesn’t win this month, it could win next month—or even the month after that. To enter, visit, click on Youth and then on Student Writer Permission Slip to download a submission-permission slip. Complete the form and have a parent sign it so the paper has permission to print the entry and the author or artist’s byline. Then, email the submission-permission slip and writing or artwork to news@ as a Word file, if writing, or JPEG, if art, or pasted into the email.

Register for CYF Chandler youth ages 6 to 15 still have time to register for Chandler Youth Football at its final registration session for the new season, to be held from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, April 26, at Tumbleweed Recreation Center, 745 E. Germann Rd., Chandler. Serving the community for more than 39 years, Chandler Youth Football is committed to providing high-level football instruction while emphasizing sportsmanship, teamwork and academic excellence. To learn more, visit www. or call (480) 840-4142.

April 19 - May 2, 2014


Chandler preschool enrolling An informational open house for prospective students, featuring games, crafts and more, will be held from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, May 1, at Carebear Preschool’s Fulton Ranch location in Chandler. Registration is being accepted for the upcoming school year. The Carebear school day begins at 8 a.m. and concludes at 2:45 p.m. Additionally, Carebear offers new extended hours before and after school from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. This program is open to current preschool students as well as school-age children, where they can receive help with homework and enjoy a variety of activities. Each classroom is equipped with a Promethean board and the latest technology. Carebear Preschool has two Chandler locations, at 244 W. Chandler Heights Rd. in Fulton Ranch and 1075 E. Riggs Rd., Suite 4. Carebear Preschool is celebrating its 13th year in Chandler. To learn more, visit or call (480) 802-0058.



April 19 - May 2, 2014

CHANDLER UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT May 26: Memorial Day holiday; no school May 28: High school graduation; last day of school; fourth quarter ends May 29: Teacher inservice workday; no school

Carlson Champions Calendar April 21: Family Food Night, 5 p.m.-7 p.m., Chick-fil-A at Gilbert and Germann roads April 25: Spring Carnival, 5 p.m.-9 p.m., $15 at the door —Lora Robinson

CTA-Independence Hawks Spring Fling – All families are invited to join CTA for its eighth annual Spring Fling event from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, April 25. Tickets and wristbands will be for sale that evening; payment can be made by cash and credit cards at the event. Food trucks on site will offer a variety of food; all food and dessert vendors offer a percentage of their sales back to the school. Payment for silent auction, art auction and spirit wear items can be made by cash, check, or credit card. Parents are also encouraged to sign up to help with class booths or one of the many extra volunteer positions. See the PTO website for more information. Field Days – The Field Day schedule

is as follows: kindergarten, first grade and Childers, Epstein and Lundgren, Wednesday, April 30; third and fourth grades and Bro and Vaughan, Thursday, May 1; and fifth and sixth grades, Friday, May 2. Volunteers are needed to assist with this event on one, two or all three days. If available to help out, email Coach Robin at Schamber.Robin@ Summer school – CTA families can consider signing their students up for summer school for review of Spalding over the summer. Registration is available online at Page/1093. The session runs June 4 through June 25. Award winners – Congrats to CTA’s AAA Award winners Coach Robin, a source of motivation and encouragement for students and staff; parent volunteer and firefighter Lanna Leonard, who never hesitates to jump in and assist in the classroom and at school events; and sixth-grade student Keaton Racz, who shows outstanding citizenship to students and staff at all times. They received their awards recently at Chandler Center for the Arts. Save the dates – The 2014-15 school year begins July 21. Check out district dates for early release, intersession and more for the upcoming school year at —Wendi Olson

Haley Tigers

Book Fair, a buy-one get-one-free sale, will run April 21 through April 28. Haley students read 80,368 minutes during the recent Read-a-Thon week celebrating Read Across America. Kudos – Haley won the award for most participation for the second consecutive year at the Hershey’s Track and Field meet held recently at Chandler High School.

Hancock Heat Welcome kindies – Families may come in and register their children for the 2014-15 school year; documents needed for registration include the child’s birth certificate, immunization records and proof of address. Tax credits – Donations for 2014 can be given any time. Up to $400 can be donated to Hancock for credit on 2014 taxes for the full amount. Thanks to the Hancock families who have already contributed. —Andrea Dickson

Hull Heroes

STAR TEACHER: Amy Miller, resource teacher at Haley Elementary, is the recipient of the Jesse Parker Legacy Award. Each year the Coach Jesse Parker Legacy Foundation selects a local educator or coach who demonstrates the same qualities that Coach Parker displayed in the classroom and on the sidelines. Miller was honored for her ability to embrace challenges of a teacher of autistic students and make a difference in others’ lives through hard work and compassion for her students. Submitted photo

Book Fair – The Spring Scholastic

—Stephanie Vatistas

May days – Staff and Teacher Appreciation Week, the week of May 5, is a great opportunity to show appreciation for the wonderful Hull Elementary staff and teachers. Also, the last reading incentive store for this school year will be in May. Students with Eagle Bucks in the bank will get the opportunity to spend all the money in May to make purchases at the special PTO-sponsored Reading Incentive Store. Muffins for Moms – Moms are invited to come in with their Hull students from 7:30 a.m. to 8:15 a.m. Friday, May 9, to enjoy muffins, juice, milk and coffee before school. High honors – Jane D. Hull Elementary has been named A+ School of Excellence by the Arizona Education Foundation. Thanks due – Thanks to the Hull PTO, faculty, staff and teachers for a

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Youth successful Read-a-Thon, and to faculty, staff, students and parents for working hard for AIMS and SAT-10 testing. Calendar April 25: AIMS Dance Party April 29: Battle of the Books April 30: Reading Incentive Program calendar due back May 2: Field Day May 5-9: Staff and Teacher Appreciation Week May 9: Muffins for Moms —Lalitha Krishnan

Tarwater Toros Save the dates – Tarwater’s final Restaurant Night of the year is from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 22, at Barro’s; both dine-in and carry-out orders benefit the school. Book Battle – The final school Battle of the Books was held recently. The team of Gabby Kay, Chloe Owens and Lily Tantillo came in third; Audrey Johnson, Tatum McMillan and Max Poole earned second place; and Ben Darnell, Yusef Houssni and Ryan Potts took first, and will compete in the District Semifinals Tuesday April 29. Congrats to all the students. Kindie class notes – Every kindergarten student gets his or her own caterpillar for the science study of life cycles. Students will observe the stages and report findings in science journals. Students also recently enjoyed a fieldtrip to Butterfly Wonderland, thanks to tax credit donations. The Kindergarten Promotion Program will be held at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, May 22.

HELPING HANDS: The fourth- and fifth-grade Toro Ambassadors, students who volunteer service hours in the community, recently celebrated the wrap of another giving year. Mrs. Tarwater herself came to thank the community service group for volunteering, and gave every child a hug on the way out. Submitted photo

Language learning – Tarwater will offer a Kindergarten Mandarin Immersion program for the 2014-15 school year. Contact Tarwater for more information at (480) 883-4300 or visit the school website. —JoAnne Cawley

CTA-Goodman Gators Field Days – Jesse Perez Field Days will be held April 22 through April 24. Students are required to wear uniforms and requested to wear shoes, preferably sneakers, that are okay to get wet and possibly muddy. Students should also wear sunscreen and a hat or cap, and bring a water bottle. Donations of water balloons are also appreciated. Parent volunteers are also needed; sign up with a teacher to assist.

April 19 - May 2, 2014

Calendar April 22: PTO meeting, 3:15 p.m., Media Center; Jesse Perez Field Day, kindergarten: 8:45 a.m.-10:15 a.m., first and second grades: 12:30 p.m.-2:30 p.m. April 23: Jesse Perez Field Day, third and fourth grades: 12:25 p.m.-2:25 p.m. April 24: Jesse Perez Field Day, fifth and sixth grades: 12:25 p.m.-2:25 p.m. April 25: Grail Theatre performance of “Robin Hood,” kindergarten through second grades: 9:30 a.m., third through sixth grades: 12:30 p.m., Multipurpose Room; Volunteer Luncheon, 10:30 a.m.12:30 p.m., Media Center April 28: Flag ceremony presented by sixth grade, 8 a.m., Amphitheater May 2: Progress reports sent home; fourth-grade fieldtrip to Grand Canyon, 4:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m. —Kathie Butters

Knox Knights Shopping online – Knox families are encouraged to shop on Amazon for Mother’s Day this year. Remember to click through to Amazon from the Knox PTO website at to earn for Knox; shop from Thursday, April 24, to Sunday, April 27, to compound the percentage earned through accumulated sales. Award winner – Congrats to KGA fifthgrade teacher Jennifer Nusbaum for being chosen by her peers as a CUSD Triple A award winner. Ms. Nusbaum was recognized, along with other deserving faculty, staff, students and volunteers at


Chandler Center for the Arts. Thanks due – At its last meeting, Knox PTO recognized all the PTO event volunteers, art board, committee chairs, room parents and fundraiser coordinators with special gifts. It was great to have future Principal Lynn Weed as part of the celebration. Big winners – Knox students scored big at AZSEF 2014. Award winners included Alexandra Wilhelm, second place, Environmental Science; Sachit Swaminathan, second place, Medicine and Health Sciences; Ryan Cvijanovich, Burke Peterson and Xavier Valdez, second place, Plant Sciences; and Dillen Ngo and Jacob Conklin, third place, Mathematical Sciences. Bryn Creek and Kennedy Jones were awarded a $300 Sustainability award from the ASU Walton School of Sustainability for their Earth and Planetary Sciences project. Winning moves – The Knox chess team won first place recently in the K-3 Champs division and second place in the K-6 U600 division; there were individual winners as well. Mind odyssey – Congrats to all the Knox Odyssey of the Mind team members who worked hard and competed recently. Driver’s Test Division I and Stackable Structure Division I both placed sixth. Calendar May 2: Field Day, morning volunteers needed May 5-9: Teacher Appreciation Week May 6: PTO meeting May 9: Muffins for Moms —Jacqueline Bartrim

COMMUNITY EVENT FOR CHANDLER RESIDENTS From Dr. Chamberlain’s Desktop: ver the last year, you may have noticed a Chamberlain Orthodontics car Dr. Thomas Chamberlain wrapped with our logo driving around town. My staff and I have enjoyed the car and used it for various office events. On the back of the car it has an invitation that reads, “Win me!” Over the last few months, I have been asked several questions like, “How are you able to give a car away?” and “Why are giving a car away?” It is a little shocking, I guess, when you see an Orthodontist, with a growing practice, giving away a new car to a lucky patient. Such odds of winning would make anyone in Vegas jealous to the core. However, the pure intent of a car giveaway is to show gratitude for our


amazing patients. I truly believe we have the most devoted and loyal patients in our community! I want to show them it's an honor that we are able to have a positive influence in their families by making their smiles healthy and beautiful. Mark your calendars and come have dinner with us! We’re inviting patients, their families, friends, neighbors and basically the whole community, to a huge appreciation dinner and movie at Tumbleweed park, Saturday, April 26th at 6:30 p.m. Come watch as we give away a car to a lucky winner from our referral contest. We’re also giving away many door prizes throughout the night. You could win a new beats headphones, movie tickets, gym bags, gym memberships, car washes, car care kits, gift certificates and too many other prizes to mention. So you don't want to miss this! Afterwards, relax on your blankets or lawn chairs and watch “Frozen” under the stars on our giant outdoor movie screen. We’re looking forward to seeing you there!

You Could Win A Car! FREE APPRECIATION DINNER & MOVIE AT TUMBLEWEED PARK Sat., April 26 at 6:30 p.m. Come watch as we give away a car to a lucky winner from our referral contest. We’re also giving away door prizes throughout the night. You could win: beats headphones, movie tickets, gym bags or memberships, car washes, car care kits, gift certificates and too many other prizes to mention!

480-448-2474 Dr. Thomas Chamberlain Mon. 7 a.m. - 4 p.m. • Tues. & Wed. 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. • Thurs. 7 a.m. - 4 p.m. • Fri. 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.


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April 19 - May 2, 2014

Teens embrace creativity to make positive changes BY TAMARA KRAUS

It started with a locket, three girls and a dream to buy a car. In their Chandler neighborhood, 9-year-old Madison Butcher and her younger sister, Tatum, sat on Origami Owl founder Bella Weems’ living room floor creating bows, jewelry and eventually the “living lockets� that would lead to Bella’s direct sales company, which she began in 2010 at the age of 14. This year, the company is expected to top $250 million in revenue. At the time, Madison, known as Madi, had no idea their hobby would eventually be named one of Forbes. com’s “10 Companies Crushing it in Art & Fashion.� The million-dollar idea sells charms placed inside a locket, which are offered at home parties, or “jewelry bars,� by independent sellers called “designers.� For some, there may have been concerns about starting a company at a young age, but, Madi says, the girls decided to “go for it.� In 2012, Bella asked Madi and her mom, Tami, to be the first mom and daughter team for Origami Owl to represent the company’s focus on family. Now they are the highest-ranked mom and daughter duo, with 7,500 designers—and approximately 150 new recruits each week—under them.

They call themselves Team Believe. Tatum, now 12, joined their team this year thanks to the company’s updated policy allowing children her age to be a part of the positive power of selling. The most rewarding part of direct sales for Madi? Watching children change their self-perception. Low self-confidence. Fear of public speaking. Poor time management. Those are just a few areas Madi has seen reversed through Origami Owl. For her, speaking in front of a crowd is no longer a challenge. It’s an opportunity. Women tell her, “You’re an inspiration to me and my daughter.� “Usually I’m saying that to somebody else older than me and the fact that older women are coming up to me and telling me that I’m an inspiration for them, it’s just really empowering and makes me want to do whatever I can to help be a force for good,� Madi explains. One of those women is a family friend and one of Team Believe’s designers, Vicki Zangl. Her Origami Owl journey began about a year and a half ago, when she hosted a jewelry bar with Team Believe. After seeing Madi interact with customers to create lockets, place orders and calculate receipts, she wanted to be part of a company providing children with personal and financial security.

But she had to wait three months to join, due to the hypergrowth of the company. At times, this was a lot to handle for a young company. But Tami reminds her daughters of Origami Owl’s core values during overwhelming points: “Operate by the Golden Rule.� From traveling to regional meetings, jewelry bars and more, Tami has had to revive Madi’s entrepreneurial spirit when she missed out on social events with friends. But when she remembers she is a 16-year-old entrepreneur and inspiration to both girls and women, it’s easy to get motivated again. A junior at Perry High School, Madi balances softball, honors Spanish and the Big Buddies program with adult duties. Taxes, money management and now a car payment, thanks to her recent Volkswagen purchase, are just a few of the responsibilities she has since making her own money with Origami Owl.

But that doesn’t mean she has had to sacrifice the fun of her teen years. One of her childhood dreams came true this year when she met Raven SymonĂŠ, of Disney’s “That’s So Raven,â€? while selling at Childhelp’s “Fashion Through the Agesâ€? gala in Scottsdale. Madi and her mom represented Origami Owl along with Bella’s family to help support abuse prevention and treatment programs. While she does have a dream of being a cosmetologist after high school, she will always sell Origami Owl. “I just get all these opportunities that I would never get in school, and I’m just so proud to say that I’m a part of a business that is still in infancy and still growing so big,â€? Madi says. Since starting Origami Owl, she has gained a car, 7,500 designers and counting, and security through Team Believe. She is a force for good. Tamara Kraus is a student at ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. She can be reached at

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