I've submitted this on December 14th on the submission box of this assignment on moodle.
I've submitted this on December 14th on the submission box of this assignment on moodle.
Upon examining more into the pandemic of hunger and homelessness, I went out into the world, into the Science leadership environment, and on Facebook to ask people thought provoking questions about their awareness of world hunger and homelessness. Based on a survey of 54 people, 39% have claim that they have been homeless in one point of their lives. Also, 32% say that they know someone who eats only one meal a day.
Here is a link if you want to view my survey: https://docs.google.com/a/scienceleadership.org/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0Ajm4KyXhAiaYdFlVNzRyRldXaV85V3hDOXJqZmNrUkE#gid=0
Knowing that we live in the United States, I find that these statistics are slightly mind-boggling. The the United States has a GDP of approximately 15.3 trillion dollars which is the highest in the world, but yet out of 54 people, already 39% say that they were homeless and 32% claim they only eat one meal a day. If you put that on a grander scale, 672,000 are homeless in America currently and 6.7 million people suffer from food insecurity. Although the rate of homelessness has decreased, which is substantial progress, people are still going to bed each night hungry. Or they might not even have a bed.
An other major predicament is the amount of food we waste each year. I inquired in my survey if anyone has ever wasted food, and 81% said they did. According to The Charity Sub, the United States throws away 96 billion pounds of food each year. That is enough to feed the the whole state of New York, for three years! I believe our problem is that we have the resources to tackle this obstacle, but we just don’t know how to use them.
In my survey, I also questioned peoples’ opinion on whether or not they thought homelessness and hunger was an epidemic. More than 80% agreed and 91% of the people said that these conditions are common in their neighborhood.
I am seeking further advice from an organization, Bread for the World. Bread is a 501(c)4 Christian organization that presses our nation’s government to put an end to hunger in this country. I am corresponding two of their representatives, Jon Gromek, the Central Regional Organizer and Larry Hollar, the Senior Regional Organizer. Upon motioning through the interviewing process, they are away in Washington D.C. until Monday, January 21. You will hear from them in my final blog post with their response to these crucial affairs. But the Senior Regional Organizer has responded back to me with an urgent plea to call our Congress members to urge them to continue to fund programs that address hunger and poverty before the fiscal cliff negotiations are made soon. If you would like to participate here is a link for information on how to inform our congress: http://blog.bread.org/2012/12/act-now-congress-needs-to-hear-your-voice.html. Call Congressmen Bob Casey, Pat Toomey, and Chaka Fatah and tell them to pass a deal that includes protection to essential programs to hungry and poor people in the U.S. and around the world.
Here's a link to my bibliography: https://docs.google.com/a/scienceleadership.org/document/d/1va6NEzQioqza2fzxFDTiaYiKoWn-vnI50O0FopaOarY/edit
Hey everyone this is Isabella Blackwell. Welcome to my second post of my “You and the World” blog. If you didn’t read my first blog, check it out here. What I wanted to look deeper into & focus on for my 2nd blog post was how kids and parents deal with having special needs & attention. I decided to reach out and actually talk to a representative who works with these kids (& volunteers) to see what life is really like for people in that situation. I talked to someone named “John” from the Ronald McDonald House in Philadelphia.
Q: What exactly do you do?
A: I pretty much do whatever Linda (Director of Volunteers) tells me needs to be done. I help out with the kids, & make sure everything is in order.
Q: What types of support does the Ronald McDonald House provide for both the kids & parents?
A: Its a home away from home where generally, it puts the parents at ease knowing that they have a nice warm bed to go to at night while the children are in the hospital. It’s just a friendly environment for them to stay at, and not really have to worry about anything else.
Q: How do the kids cope with their environment at the hospital?
A: The kids cope with the environment very well actually. They don’t really see it as a place where they get better, more as where they go for a vacation. They think of it as just somewhere to have fun with the other kids that stay there.
Q: How do the parents deal with leaving their kids at the hospital?
A: The parents deal with leaving their kids at the hospital feeling fine. They know that their child is getting better.
Q: When you volunteer, what do you think that high school students like me take away from it most?
A: They probably take away the fact that they can play with the other kids. They learn that kids who have cancer or whatever the disease they have is aren’t really different than them, but the same in many ways.
Q: Do the volunteers actually get to talk to the kids and their families?
A: The volunteers do get to talk to the kids and parents, but there are some guidelines they have to follow. They aren’t allowed to pick up a child at all. So they are allowed to talk to them, but they can’t get on a very friendly basis because it would turn into a liability issue.
I took a lot out of this phone conversation. It made me think about how patients and just regular students live the same. They all have goals, & like to do the same things. Just like our parents are supportive of our goals, the parents of these patients are the same about their child’s growth and recovery. Overall, I enjoyed learning more about the different ways people live.
In my previous blog post I gave a general sense of where human trafficking takes place in the U.S. Also I gave some statistics. The difference between the last blog post and this one is I went out and did original research. My research was an interview about a book. This book is about human trafficking. Even though the book is about countries across the world it still fit in with the topic. On top of the interview I did more research on human trafficking in the United States.
The interview went as follows:
Q: What is your position within The Regional Environmental Centre for Central Asia?
A: Manager of Education for Sustainable Development Programme
Q: What inspired you to enter the field of environmental education?
A: My own education and the level of pollution of my country and in my city.
Q: What is the status of environmental education in Central Asia? How widespread is it, and how is it incorporated into standard education?
A: You will find more information at the CAREC web-site: www.carecnet.org
Q: At what age is environmental education introduced into standard education in Kazakhstan?
A: We have a mandatory course “Ecology & Sustainable Development” in Kazakhstan for bachelors of all specialties [majors] of all Kazakh universities.
Q: How does CAREC approach environmental education, and what individual issues are considered most important to teach to students?
A: You will find more information at the CAREC web-site: www.carecnet.org
Q: Do you believe the world as a whole can benefit from widespread environmental education?
A: I do believe. I do not have any other choice, otherwise I should leave my job!
Unfortunately, Ms. Shakirova was leaving for vacation at the time of writing this, but kindly took a moment to give her opinion. Despite the brief nature of the interview, Tatiana’s passion for environmental education, and the personal nature of her cause resonates after reading her responses. Pollution and climate change should be a personal matter to all of us. Every one of us can see the pollution that litters our grounds, darkens our skies and infects our waters. We can feel the erratic and dangerous weather changes. And so what do we do? According to Tatiana and the CAREC website, we spread the word. Apart from the mandatory Ecology & Sustainable Development course Tatiana mentioned, CAREC has organized educational lectures and courses for government officials from all over the central asian region, as well as many other programs for students. These are patterns we in the U.S. should be following. Unfortunately we’re are far from widespread mandatory environmental education. Courses stateside remain optional, obscure and poorly funded, but more on that next time.
In my previous blog post, I talked about how music education is important in schools and how music technology can facilitate it. It was based on research I did online and my own opinions. However, since then, I have done my own individual research, in the form of a survey. In that survey, I found that, out of the 53 responses, most of the respondents were male. That made sense, as my dad sent this out to some musicians and an illustrator group, most of whom were male. In addition, most respondents were either 13-18 years old or 41-50 years old. This was expected, too, as I sent this out to fellow students, and most of my dad's friends were around his age and in their forties. As expected, most respondents were from the United States, but surprisingly, people responded from Germany to England and even Singapore! Also, an unexpected number of people with graduate degrees responded.
However, that part was relatively unimportant. The important parts were the questions about music education. Most respondents or their children were involved in a local school district, which was relatively unexpected but probably would be easily explainable when you look at the fact that children are included in the question. A surprising number of respondents played a musical instrument, which may have been skewed. When respondents were asked how important music was to them, 79% put an 8, 9, or 10, showing that most thought it was important. However, even more thought education was important, as 96% put an 8, 9, or 10 when asked how important education was to them. However, when asked about music education as a whole, the results were a bit more spread out. There were a good number of 5, 6, and 7s (28%). That shows that music and education were both important to people, but music education as a whole less so. Then, when asked about donations, people responded with everything from "No." to "$200".
There were two respondents, however, that provided a counter to what I was saying. Both said that using technology should be second to learning a traditional instrument. To tell the truth, I disagree. There are a few reasons for this. The first is because of schools' budgets. A piano can cost anywhere from $4900 to over $10,000; however, twenty cheap MIDI keyboards and a group license to a piece of music software can cost anything from $780 (Garageband), $1800 (Ableton Live) and $2600 (Logic Pro). As you can see, it's usually cheaper. In addition, space can be an issue; small MIDI keyboards usually take up two square feet each, but a guitar takes up a much larger space. Finally, they can be easier to teach with, as each kid can have an affordable "mini-piano" which can make any sound you like, instead of one large piano which students would have to take turns using.
Over the next month or two, I am going to be contacting the school district, asking them about my plan, and contacting companies like Ableton to ask them about discounts. Hopefully I can somehow set something up to bring music education and technology into schools, however slowly this may take. I plan to start in schools that I know will benefit from this, like my former school, Cook-Wissahickon Elementary. They already have a music program starting up, and integrating this technology into the program would be beneficial to it. From there, I'd like to expand the program into other schools across the city. I won't be finished by the time the next blog post rolls around, but I sure will have gotten it started!
As said before in my previous post, my name is Ava and I am a teenage girl from Science Leadership Academy striving to make a difference in the world of animals. I believe anyone can make a difference, no matter how small of a voice they start out with, and that’s what I’m hoping I can do through this project... Make a difference.
With the start of a new year, there’s a new hope for animals across America. 2012 was an increasingly better year for the animals, and there have been many adoptions. Many shelters and organizations helped in the time of need when animals yearned for care during the stressful event of Hurricane Sandy.
Hurricane Sandy was a devastating time for both humans and animals alike. Although according to the ASPCA, there were 129 happy pets that were reconnected with their owners.
In addition to the good news, an article published in December of last year talked about how more and more shelters are becoming no-kill. When a shelter becomes no-kill, they need to have a large amount of help in the process because it’s very difficult to have a successful shelter that doesn’t euthanize animals. In one shelter alone there can be hundreds of volunteers. Volunteers work at the shelter to help take care of the animals, but they do not get paid. Much of the success of the no-kill shelters is because of the wonderful volunteers who devote time out of their personal lives to go out and help the cuddly creatures!
Through a recent survey I created, I asked several simple questions. Almost 70 people filled out the survey! I wanted to know if people had ever adopted a pet from a shelter, if they believed that animals deserved better care in shelters, and if they had ever been to a shelter. Most of the results surprised me. I didn’t expect as many people to say that they had adopted an animal before. It also surprised me that almost half of the people that filled out the survey had never been to an animal shelter.
I believe that through this survey, I have learned that it would be in my best interest to educate more people about the shelters along with encouraging them to take a brief tour of one.
Through the research I’ve recently done, I think that my opinion is not as biased. Although I do believe that many shelters have terrible conditions, my opinion has shifted and I now reassuringly know that there are many people out there who do care about the animals and are willing to do almost anything to help them.
I’ve started volunteering at an animal shelter, and so far, the experience has been amazing! Every week I go to the shelter and walk the dogs there. It’s a great feeling to get to know some of the dog’s personalities, but also a little sad to see them go if they get adopted. I know it’s better for them that they have a home, so I’m glad to see them leave for a better life. Below is the logo of the animal shelter I volunteer at.
For another section to this project, I plan on collecting old towels. Shelters use towels for many things, and when they wear down, the shelter needs new ones. Collecting towels would benefit the animals there, and the shelter would have one less thing to take care of.
We are their voice. Let us be heard.To view my first post, please click here.
Finally something I was good at I thought to myself, the mile run. It was mid October the air was crisp and the leaves were beginning to fall. Not too cold and not to hot, perfect. Fourth grade me thought I was the best of everything so I was pumped. All 27 of us lined up on the middle school track, we began to run and each lap we finished we got a popsicle stick and after we got our 4th we were finished. I was the fastest girl in the class with a time of 8 minutes and 22 seconds. I was so happy with myself, I felt like I had to prove something to everyone since I was still considered “the new girl”.
After everyone was finished all of the boys congratulated me and gave me a high-five. As we were walking back to the school me and my classmate Rod started a conversation.
“What sports do you play?” Rod asked.
“Soccer” I responded. I was scared that he was going to ask what team he played for next, Ohhh there it is..
“What team do you play for?” Rod asked. He had a look on his face that showed he was really interested in knowing.
“Sadly, none right now, since my family and I just moved here a few months ago, but I’m really hoping to get one one soon.” I replied.
“Family?” he asked looking a bit confused.
“Yes, family” I said, What was he talking about? This is why I don’t like meeting new people! I thought to myself again.
“Why do you say family with the AAAA sound like “Amber” and not like “Apple” Rod asked.
“I have no idea, thats just how I grew up...”
I didn’t really have an explanation for him since I grew up talking like this. He speeded up ahead of me and as he was walking farther and farther away I heard him keep repeating the way I said family over again until he was so far ahead that it faded. I was afraid that people would make fun of me because they said 1 single, 6 letter word differently then me. What was the big deal I asked myself over and over in my head. That night when I got home I told my mom what happened. She grew up in Michigan so when she moved to Philly she had many of these encounters. Me and my sister began to ask her how she said certain things.
“Mom how do you say soda?” my sister and I said in sync.
“Pop” my mom answered. She was a little annoyed because we always asked her this and then laughed.
“Why do you call it that? Its so weird and annoying. What happens when you first moved here and needed to order a drink?” We asked.
She stopped answering us because there was nothing else she could say except for thats how she learned and how she grew up. In the short story, “Hunger of Memory”, Richard Rodriguez explains what happened the first time he heard his name pronounced in English. “The nun said, in a friendly but oddly impersonal voice, ‘Boys and girls this is Richard Rodriguez.’ The nun didn’t say his name like anyone he had heard before, she said it the American way, which he was not used to. Richard didn’t seem upset or mad that she said his name like this, it was more of a cultural shock, something he wasn’t used to.
When we hear something that may or may not be the way you know it, our immediate reaction is to judge, and ask them about it. Though, in reality nobody says everything the same as anyone else.
Since my first blog post,"You and the World" Teen Depression, I have found out that more teenagers are depressed than I thought. The statistics have sown outstanding numbers. On this site the numbers are plain and simple and that is only in the girls! Some of the things that they mention on the page are that the number of female that are depressed triples from the age 12 to 15. At 16 it still increases by almost a whole percentage. Then when the girls at different went to get help with their depression there was an ten percent difference between the girls that were 12 and the girls at the age of 17. I also found out that it takes about a month to get an appointment for help with your depression. Then when you are prescribed with depression meds it takes another month for them to work or even have any effect on you. I learned that many teens know many others or are those others that have gone through some form of depression. Most doing things such as cutting.
For the most part, I talk just like those around me, never really had a language barrier. My friends accept the way I talk and so do I, but my parents seem to have another outlook on it.
"Hey mommy, can I have some of your juice?"
"Are you forgetting something?"
"Mom, can I PLEASE have some of your juice?"
"It's not can, it's may." she replies.
"Mom, MAY I PLEASE have some of your juice?"
"There we go."
They do not speak the most proper grammar and have their slang on certain words, but it's nothing in comparison to how I speak.
"Old Slang" is what they like to call it. Because my slang is actually present day and not from the '70's, it's "not acceptable" . I didn't grow up in their time and that's what they fail to realize. Anything I say that is slang or a word that may not be found in the Webster's dictionary is "foolish" or "sounds stupid" but it's just how I talk.
I never grew up speaking the best english because as a child they never corrected me. They waited until I was older and already comfortable with how I spoke to address what they believe is a problem. I see it as them trying to change me . I mean, I talk to a point where it's understandable to practically anyone. Can't that just be enough?
Besides my parents never correcting me, I also went to predominantly black schools in West Philly. With that being said, it can only get so proper. These schools "attempted" to force proper english upon me with english/grammar classes yet they spoke around us (students) with the least bit of properness. It seems as if I grew up being taught that properness in language was only there to impress, and doesn’t have to be present every conversation. Even currently in high school, properness is seen in essays that I write. I guess that it’s understandable since I’m gonna have to write formal papers in the future such as resumés. But it isn’t forced to make me talk like I’m going to the White House or dinner with an ambassador all the time.
Around my friends, I don't care to impress and that's why when it comes to language, I don't care as to how proper I sound. To us , slang is like “future english”. So many words that were once addressed as slang are now in the dictionary. As slang spreads pass neighborhoods and gets a definite definition, it is capable of becoming a word in the Oxford or Webster dictionary .
Even the slang that parents do not seem to approve of may not be in an well known dictionary there has been a dictionary created just for slang and the terms that are being used in this day and age. It called Urban Dictionary (online dictionary). Slang may not be respected by those who are older but the younger generation has been raised around all of the slang and will rarely listen to the proper way that they are suppose to speak because it may not sound correct.
"Nigga, pass me that jawn next to ya. Nah, not that, the apple juice, dumb ass."
Any and everything can and will be said. It's just how I act around them. I'm comfortable enough with them to hear me talk freely without putting a load of thought into the wording of the statement rather than the content.
Parents don’t accept the slang we use because in some ways they may find it disrespectful to talk to people with some of the things that we use with the people in our generation. Most parents were brought up with knowing how to speak proper and not being allowed to use profanity or many slang terms with the people that they were around or anyone at all. Parents really may have a problem with the slang and profanity because it can make the person using it look bad as well as it may make their family look bad, because people would think that at home the child using this slang and profanity wasn’t taught the proper way to speak to people at home and may have little or no home training. Parents also may not like the slang and profanity that children use in this day and age because it doesn’t make sense and they may have no clue on it means and wouldn’t know if it is a good or bad term. Also parents don’t like it because if you get to used to something you will use it at all times and parents want their children to talk to adults with respect . If they are always using profanity and slang then they may forget to try and use the proper and respectful language that they were taught to talk to an adult, and if an adult feels disrespected then they may want to take it out on the parent and start an argument due to the way that the child talked to them.
I understand my mom’s concern for my language, but majority of my language isn’t even profanity, more so just slang. Of course I know how to code switch between my slang and my proper language, but I don’t understand why my language is expected to be “perfect” at all times. Around my parents, I expect to be comfortable enough to express myself without a chain on my thoughts, not letting me use certain words that aren’t even near profanity.
“You’re not going to make it out in this world talking like that,” they said.
My language is what molded me into who I am today and I’m proud of it if I say so myself. They act as if I’m not going to achieve anything in life just because of my slang, even though I have control over it . Slang surrounds everyone, everywhere and my parents seem to think that it is only me who uses it. I will be successful, no matter what my language is, because my language is me . If my parents can't change my language, then they might as well accept it .
Hello, and welcome to the 2nd edition of my “You in the World” blog. Just incase you didn’t read my first blog(Blog#1), let me recap. The worldly issue I am focusing on is the issue of adoption. It is my belief that there are too many good kids out there that need a home. Yet they are being denied those homes, because they do not met a certain criteria. Because they do not fit into whats cool now days. I think it is always cool to make a child's life better. For this blog I went out into the world and decide to interview someone who has had the pleasure of giving a child a new home.
Q. Did you always want to adopt?A. No, it was never my intention to adopt. My adoption became necessary because my mother in law had a foster child who only knew my husband’s family since he was 3 months old. He reached age 5 and the state insisted we adopt or he would be removed from the home. This would have been tragic for all because he only knew our ‘family’ as his family.
Q.Why did you decide to adopt?
A. There was a great desire to help a child and keep a small person safe from harm and a more disruptive situation. It also satisfied the need to help the family stay together.
Q.How did the child a just to living in a new place?
A. He suffered separation anxiety and was later diagnosed with ADHD and depression. We placed him in intense therapy and began to homeschool him from age 7 to 12.
Q. How did your family adjust to the new person in the house?
A. My family had to relearn their relationship to our new family member. My daughter now had a brother that was once considered her uncle. My husband had a son that was once called his brother. The adopted child now had a mom he only met three times before I agreed to be his mom.
Q.Did you have to make any changes to your daily home life to accommodate the child's?
A. Yes, I became a homeschooling parent. I made sure our home was a sensitive loving place for him to adjust even better. We went very quickly from having one toddler to having a school age child with developmental delays and various personal needs.
Q.Were there any problems that arose during the adoption process?
A. Yes. The state, his custodian for 7 months, was very demanding for us to abide by their rules as foster parents. We were limited as to the decisions we made while he was in our home under foster care.
Q.Most people who adopt say that the child ends up teaching them something, do you agree? If so, what did your child teach you?
A. I do agree. The bonds that grew from the adoption became just as strong as having given birth to the child. How that child got to the family was no longer the issue. How we would move forward as a family was our focus.
Q. What would you say the best thing about adopting was?
A. A child was given a second chance at having a prosperous life.
Q. When do you feel the child stopped being an outsider, and started being part of the family?
A. He became more acquainted with our family after about 5 months. He really needed to test limits and get accustom to our home life structure.
Q. Would you adopt again?
A. Yes, I would, if it means saving a young life, most certainly.
Q. What advice would you give to anyone thinking about adopting?
A. I would suggest that you do your research on the special needs that foster children and adoptive children may have. It is important to keep an open mind and heart.
“I’m sorry, what?”
“I said I’m done my homework...”
“What? I’m sorry, I don’t understand.”
“....I’m finished with my homework.” I grumble as I realize he’s only pretending not tohear me so that I’ll use correct grammar. Let this paint a picture of how I have been taught the English language growing up. My English is proper, which entails correct grammar, not much slang, and a rather advanced vocabulary for a guy my age. Yes, I talk sarcastically improper and use tons of slang when I’m being casual or weird with my friends, but that is on purpose and aside from my actual persona. Growing up, my parents helped me learn proper grammar and what difficult words meant by simply educating me on proper English on a consistent basis as I learned the language. They didn’t stop at having me know how to communicate with words and speak basic English, they felt that since proper English was a part of their identity, that they should raise me with the same characteristic. Aside from how they wanted to raise me, I do agree with them that proper English is a good thing to be educated on.
What I have noticed with myself is that I am aware of the history of the words I use, and instead of finding myself numb to what I’m saying, I am aware of what I’m saying, but I treat the word very casually and with no undertone of hate, (which painfully, is still arguable that I have become numb to what I’m saying). However, I do refrain from using words that stem from hatred and are still commonly used to talk down on someone or something. I do not treat these words casually, because they are words that severely damage the identity and emotions of individuals. Through being exposed to all different forms of speaking and slang, I have developed my own boundaries in terms of what is casual speaking and what is offensive.
I have noticed with myself that whenever I am approached by a certain form of speaking, I quickly conform and talk like they talk. I do this because if the speaker hears me speaking how they speak, they will be more open about themselves because they will feel comfortable talking the way they do. I don’t really ever look down on people based on how they speak (unless they’re being extremely offensive.) However, because of all this, I’ve learned that a speaker’s language does not always affect their own identity, but can affect the identities of others. All in all, instead of making fun of someone’s language because I don’t know how to relate to it, I respect people for how they speak. I like when people know they like to talk, and I respect that because I can relate to it myself.