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You and the World: Agent of Change

Hello! As you know from my previous blogs, this is my 3rd blog for the You and the World Project. To refresh your memory, my name is Isabella and this is my agent of change blog, as well as my final blog post for this project. For my Agent of Change portion of this experience, I went and helped out with needy families at the Ronald McDonald House on Erie Ave. in Philadelphia. This made me feel great that I was able to help families and made me see what more to life there actually is.  

For my last part of my You and the World Project I baked cupcakes for the Ronald McDonald House. They need things like food, volunteers, and basically anything that could help out, so that’s what I did. When I went to give them the baked goods on April 27, 2013, they actually took the time to give me a tour of the house! I got to see where all the kids play & hang out and found out about more opportunities of ways someone my age can help. They informed me about Pull Tabs. Pull tabs are the little tabs on the top of soda cans that you pull to open the can. When you collect these tabs and give it to the R.M.H., they can get back money in return. When I found out about this, I automatically had to jump on the opportunity. Now, I’m also collecting pull tabs at school for the R.M.H. On May 9th, 2013, I presented a presentation all about my visit to the Ronald McDonald House. It informed my peers about the history, ideas, and main focus of the house.

My process was very long and hard. I had so many ideas of what I wanted to do and how much I wanted to do. My project was all over the place and I ran into many problems. The main problem was my age. You have to be 18 or older to do most of the volunteering at any hospital or place with children that needed help. I had to call many different people and places to see what was available for me to do. I also had to do a lot of research to see if any of what I wanted to do would benefit anyone. I wanted to do some much in so little time. But I realized that my project doesn’t have to stop here. I can do one thing at a time and keep doing it as long as I want to.

This whole project experience has had a HUGE impact on me. I now realize that this stuff is actually interesting. I used to think that volunteering and helping people was dumb and out of my league. At first, I didn’t even want to think about this project, and now I don’t want it to end. When you actually go and help people and you know it’s for a good cause it makes you feel amazing. It makes you feel like you’ve accomplished something great! (which you have!) Especially when you are in the moment, and actually going out into the real world. I am still researching and learning about my topic and wanting to do more with the Ronald McDonald House. I loved the feeling of helping out and knowing people would appreciate it. I felt and still feel like a leader. I took charge and made a change in something I believe in. I will take a lot from this project. It definitely made a change in my attitude and, I feel, made me a better person.

Click here for Blog #1

Click here for Blog #2

Annotated Bibliography

Below are some pictures that I took while I was at the Ronald McDonald House 1: cupcakes I baked, 2: what the letter I wrote said, 3: bear statue made of toys, 4: wall of names of the kids.

I also have my presentation along with my notes.

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Entry #3 — Agent of Change

In my last blog post, I talked about how technology is important in implementing music education. I conducted a survey to see what others' opinions are. However, since then, I have actually conducted my Agent of Change portion of the project. I wanted to get music technology into schools, but that turned out to be far too ambitious. I settled with holding a class to teach kids how to use music software to make music.

I wish I had put a little more planning into this portion of the project. About a week before I actually conducted the class, I finally made posters and got details finalized so I could get people to come. I made the poster and handed out probably 25 or so of them to people in the school. It was to be belt that Saturday at noon. I only got three 'maybe's out of the many people I told about the event; this worried me considerably. When Saturday came around, I was really worried.

In the end, nobody actually ended up coming; I had to teach my sister, instead of another student. I first showed her how to use Garageband; I showed her the interface and how to use 'Musical Typing' to create a simple melody. She then created a bass line, and learned how to change the instruments of a track. Then, I taught her how to record audio, and we clapped to the beat of her little song. She had a lot of fun with it. Overall, it was what I intended, but I was disappointed that nobody came.

[photos to come; my dad will not have access to the photos until the 16th]

I realized that to have any real impact, I would also need to present to my advisory. Over the rest of the weekend, I created a simple 'Prezi' presentation to show the advisory what my YATW project was about. I mostly used information from my previous blog posts. Overall, the presentation went well; it was well-received and people thought I presented it well.

Overall, I wish I had spent more time organizing the whole thing, as I had put a lot of it off until the last minute, which I feel bad about. I could have done much more than I did with this. This is an important issue for me, and I just didn't put enough effort into it.
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North Korea's Dictatorship: Blocked From the World (yatw blog post prt.3)

North Korea Poster

Hello, if you do not already know me my name is Ameer Holmes. For the third, and final post in my collection of blog posts, I created a video of me spreading awareness on the situation happening in North Korea. I went out one day in hopes to make light of the situation going on in North Korea. I decided to make a poster with the message “North•Korea; Be•Aware”, in hopes that the message would seep through. I placed the posters on cars and around local businesses. I had my mother record bits of the progress in order to document my process.


During my quest to raise awareness of the happenings in North Korea, I found that not many people knew what was going on inside the closed city that is called Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea. At first I wasn’t sure how I would portray a situation such as this so that people would care. To many Americans, North Korea is like some inanimate object, or a television placed in a box. North Korea is so distant and out of place that most Americans would find a topic on North Korea completely irrelevant. I just figured I had to make it more relevant, but the question was “how do I do it?”.  By creating posters and posting them around everyday businesses it would be possible to connect the world of casual Americans to the world of the most definitely real North Koreans. Calling attention to a little-known subject matter in a visual way could attract people’s attention and cause them to care because it is new information to them. They wouldn’t be seeing a simple 9th grade boy caring deeply about one situation in North Korea, they would be seeing the tragedy of the situation as it is, and that would make them care.


This project helped me become aware of others in a way that would make me think “this isn’t just about me”. This was happening. This was real, and people had to deal with it. I think this one project may have impacted people all over the world. I see myself as a leader, not a dictator, but a president. I feel as though I am the president governing this project, and when I step down from office someone will be there to take my place. I know I can still make a greater impact than I already have, because there is always room for improvement. I will always remember this project, and I will always remember North Korea. I learned that I can take action, that I can take responsibility, and that you can too. North•Korea Be•Aware

Click here if you can't see the  video above

Extra Hyperlinks
YATW Blog 2
YATW Blog 1

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It had been  while since I did my last blogs, so If you need a refresher, here they are: Blog #1 and Blog #2 The reason that it has been such a while is that I have been working on my Agent of Change section of my You and the World project. The Agent of Change section is after you have done research on your issue (hydraulic fracturing was mine if you need a reminder) and are ready to go out into the world, and use the research you have done to make your world a better place.

As an Agent of Change I sent a letter to President Obama. I printed up a poster sized letter, and had lots of my classmates sign it. I got 42 signatures on the letter, and am hoping it will draw the issue of fracking to the president's attention. At first my plan was to volunteer at a few river clean ups, but the one I was postponed and I could not attend. I then found about that Sierra Club had letters for people to sign, and then send in. My plan was to get as many people as possible to send in a letter. I realized that this way is not very accountable, so instead I printed a poster sized letter that had the same message, and got people to sign it. At first I had trouble getting attention from my school so that they would sign the letter. One day, I finally made an announcement about it and told people to come sign it at lunch. I received lots of signatures that day, and even had people requesting to sign it after lunch.

This project had affected me because I feel like I can make a change in my world. I can not say that this letter is going to win me a Nobel Prize, but I feel like I can express how I feel about an issue, and act on it. I even have an example of that. At my school next year we are going to face some major changes because the current proposed education budget next year will be cutting a lot of important, and essential things. I have participated one protest so far, and plant to join in others. I feel in some ways that I would not have had the confidence to attend these protest if this project had not shown me what a change people can make. I am not just talking about myself here, but also some of my other classmates who have done some really amazing things, and I have been honored to assist them with.

To see my annotated bibliography please click here.

To see Photos from my Agent of Change project please check out this Prezi.
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You and the World Blog 3 - Gay Marriage

Hello lovely being! My name is Anna Sugrue, and I am a freshman at Science Leadership Academy. Welcome to my third and final blog on gay rights and marriage equality! If you’re feeling a little lost, click these links to read my first blog and my second blog

This blog is the last portion of a year long English You and the World project. Along with our third blog, our class had to go into the world and become an Agent of Change for our issues.  Some people volunteered at dog shelters or soup kitchens, some did presentations to raise awareness, others raised money to help their cause. I decided to hold a rainbow themed bake sale to raise money for the Attic Youth Center. The Attic is an organization in Philadelphia that provides shelter, counseling, and a safe, open space for teenagers in the LGBTQ community. I held the bake sale on April 15th. The main attraction was my lovely homemade rainbow layer cake. It was a great success.

Photo 32

Originally, as I said in blog 2, I was going to craft and present a video about the definition of love. I realized though, after some careful considerations, that a presentation like the one I was planning would not make much of a difference in the minds of fellow SLA students. As I found in my polling, on a small percentage of the SLA students apposed gay rights, all on the basis of religion. Most of the people I presented to would agree with what I said, and I would not be able to convert the one’s that did not. My bake sale process went pretty darn well. I had tremendous support from my friends Dillon and Michaela with baking and selling. I encountered a few problems involving icing and cookies, but I was able to sell the cookies despite their icing-less-ness.

Experiencing the You and the World Project individually and as a class has been a wonderful whirlwind of a learning escapade. Over the course of all three blogs, I learned much more about a issue I’m passionate about. I watched youtube videos that inspired me and frustrated me, I felt hopeful and I knew there was so much more that needs to change. This class and this project encouraged me to act - to do something about it. To use my passion, my anger, and my hope to make a difference in the world.  A whole new realm of idea and opportunity was opened up to me, one I had never been encouraged to explore before. I have learned that I can make a difference, and I will.

I found the Attic Youth Center, a non-profit organization in Philadelphia that could always use support. Although I only raised $60, I feel like I impacted the life of someone discriminated against unfairly and unjustly. Just $25 provides a hot meal for 5 homeless LGBTQ teens who were disowned or kicked out of their homes because of their sexual or gender identity. $50 provides an LGBTQ youth at the Attic with a life coaching session to help apply for college, develop a resume, and get on track in school. If I combined the money I raised with the money raised by fellow activist Lindsey Jones, we could provide 10 Attic youth with a weekly support group to connect with other LGBTQ youth in a safe and caring environment. 

Here is a prezi presentation I made to help YOU make a rainbow cake like I did. I have a recipe along with pictures from my process and my bake sale. Enjoy!

​Here is a link to my bibliography. I hope you too are inspired to do something. Thanks for reading!
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You and The World: Hunger and Homelessness Tamira Bell

Today, over fifty million American families live in hunger. In addition, more than 600,000 people go to bed each night without anywhere to call home. In account of these astonishing statistics, I have decided to take on the epidemics of hunger and homelessness in the city of Philadelphia.

To make an impact in this world, I decided to volunteer at a ministry in my church, Deliverance Evangelistic Church. I volunteered every Sunday, for seven Sundays at the ministry called Helping Hands. In Helping Hands, members of the church feed the people who live in hunger, are homeless, or people who just are in need of encouragement, fellowship, and love. Some of the people who live in shelters would like to come to church, but they don’t want to miss their meal at their shelter. So the ministry steps in by providing them a cooked meal and transportation to return to the shelter.

I also tried to make an impact by creating 20 care packages for the homeless people in the ministry. Each package contained a bottle of lotion, a bottle or bar of soap, 5-6 cotton swabs, a few cotton balls, tissues, 2 peppermints, a few condiments, a gospel tract, and a personal letter from me.

On my first day, March 31, I started off by preparing the pastries and drinks in my church’s kitchen. Then as time went on, I got the opportunity to prepare the hot food on the plates. And finally, I got to serve the people. At first, I was going to partner with an organization called Bread for the World, but I decided that volunteering at Helping Hands would be more hands on. Volunteering in this ministry went along amicably because everyone in the ministry was willing to help me out and explain everything that I had to do. Although things went along well, I did face one obstacle. I felt that it wasn’t appropriate to take pictures of people who are homeless. But I resolved that matter by taking pictures of me creating the care packages.

Volunteering in this ministry has changed me. I have become more appreciative of the many blessings in my life. I noticed that I take for granted so many things that others struggle to obtain. When I was making the care packages, a lot of my materials were from around my house. Mainly all of the soap and lotion that I gave away were my unused Christmas presents. I noticed that a lot of the things in my house that are of no use could go to charity. Everyday, I am still learning about the world around of us. I only have begun to understand the many struggles that homeless and hungry people face each day. Also, I am still learning how to aide these conflicts in our society by volunteering or spreading awareness. In my journey of learning, it is best that I work with others because I would be very complicated trying to feed and service an amass of people all by myself.

This You and the World project has helped me discover another side of me. It has revealed the helping, hand-on version of me. I would have never thought that I would be working in a kitchen and service dozens of people a meal every sunday. But this project has given me that opportunity. And because I have fallen in love with doing this kind of community service, I will continue to work in the Helping Hands ministry.

Here is a video of my Agent of Change:
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Environmental Citizenship: Making a Change

The last two posts concerned the impending natural apocalypse we have brought on ourselves. Well, perhaps it isn’t all that dramatic quite yet. The short-sighted endeavors concerning the human race and natural resources at our disposal have created an unsustainable situation, which, if continued as such, will lead to a world unsupportive of human life. The danger, in the eyes of the author, lies not only in our vastly depleted resources, bloated population and crippled ecosystems. It is not simply the poisoned skies, polluted rivers and barren earth. No, the danger lies in our ignorance. As aforementioned, one cannot combat a problem if they know nothing of it. Children who are raised unaware of our environmental impact and the etiquette of an environmental citizen cannot grow to be the women and men leading the fight to ensure the specie’s continued survival. You cannot help but step on the ant you cannot see. 

So I made a decision. I have had the fortune of being raised in a family where the environment was always a primary concern. My father, a LEED certified sustainable architect, has always been absolute in his devotion to the environment, a trait he passed on to my sister and me. Because of this privilege, I decided to stop griping to the internet, go out into the world and impart some of my knowledge to someone who otherwise wouldn’t be so informed. At first, I reached out to one of the plethora of under-funded public elementary schools in my hometown of Philadelphia. Unfortunately, because of scheduling issues, I had to move my operations to an established and well-funded private elementary school. The impact though, was hopefully the same. 

I ended up teaching a series of mini-courses on environmental citizenship to a group of children from second through fifth grades. These grades seemed optimal because a second grader is mature enough to see and understand problems in the world, and a fifth grader is old enough to make a difference. In the classes we watched clips from documentaries, such as Anne Leonard’s polemical ode to sustainability The Story of Stuff, played games, did hands-on activities and creative pieces. The classes were intended to show students some of the things they can change in their own lives to minimize their negative impact on the planet. They learned how easy it can be to make a difference. 

These kids showed me a passion for their planet that I could not have expected. Their insights into our unsustainable lifestyles reminded me of why I even care about the environment. They reminded me that I am not fighting for myself. My generation will be long dead before the true consequences of our actions roll around, but not theirs. These kids will see the waters rise. They will see floods and droughts, gross overpopulation, starvation and disease, entire species vanishing. These children will see blizzards on the 4th of July, and heatwaves at christmas. All I want is to warn them. To prepare them. To allow them to change.

Environmentally yours, 
Leo Alexander Levy

past posts
a short film on the project
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YATW Blog 3

I did a power point presentation on my YATW issue and presented to my advisory. My presentation described what is affected by Global Warming and how it is caused. I worked on one slide each day for seven days. I believe that my presentation went well with explaining the topic. I didn't encounter any problems except on how many slides I should have and just had seven slides. This project hasn't really impacted me at all. I'm not sure how it has impacted the community around me. I see myself as someone who doesn't really participate in the community that much.

Click Here to see my sources
Click Here to see blog 1
Click Here to see blog 2
YATW Presentation
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Poverty in the US Blog #3

Poverty is a serious problem in this world. For my agent of change part of the project, I went to a Saint John Hospice on April 25th which is a soup kitchen.When I arrived there they gave me and my grandmother lunch. When 12 o’clock hit it was time to start serving food. Me and My grand mother helped setting up and giving out trays. About 300 - 500 men came through that line and it was about the saddest thing ever. Some of the men had so much pride that they didn’t even look me in the face. Some men wouldn’t say thank you and others wouldn’t even accept a tray from me. You’d be surprised at who was there. People who didn’t even look poor were there. One man who was in line patiently waiting to get his food suddenly fell out on the floor. People who work in the soup kitchen scrambled over as the man screamed I can’t breath. Some of the men didn’t even look homeless. As I talked to Brian (who made it possible for me to visit the soup kitchen) he said that many of these men are very intelligent but they just cant keep a job because they don't like being told what to do. Others had disabilities and other problems that kept them from getting a job. 

During the process I encountered a few problems. Before I emailed Saint John Hospice I emailed another place. I wasn’t able to volunteer there because I had to be 18 with or without an adult. I also had to make sure I wasn’t interfering with my grand mother’s schedule because she is back and forth with doctor’s appointments and taking care of my great grandfather. 

Volunteering at the soup kitchen has really had an impact on me. I realized I had so much to be thankful for. I am blessed to have what I have because things could be worse. For some of them that is their only meal everyday but they still keep a smile on their face. I also realized that things will always get better but you have to apply yourself. Some people think that homeless people are lazy bums who don’t want to do anything but the truth is things happen, some expected and some unexpected. Many of these men lost their jobs and everything went down hill. I will always remember that some people are less fortunate than others and it’s not right to make rude assumptions about them. We, as a community of Philadelphia are there for each other and there is always help when you need it. 

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You and the World: Agent of Change

For the final part of my You and the World project, I created a minute and a half long public service announcement on the problems of media manipulation and the dangers of user generated resources, topics I have been studying for seven months. I decided to create a public service announcement, which I have posted online, partly due to the irony of it being a user generated information piece, but mainly due to the ease at which I can spread the PSA. By using YouTube as the source, I can easily spread the PSA. Even though I am done this project, the video is out there, and it can be used to spread the message.

I was originally going to present the PSA to multiple class advisories, instead of just my own, and to my old school. However, when I contacted them, I didn’t get replies, so I decided to use the internet as an alternate way to spread the information.

This project has made me look at the world in a very slightly different way. I have seen how to take something, and see the good in it after seeing the bad in it. The project has, hopefully, educated all who have viewed my PSA. I was seeking a way to educate people. I have no real way of knowing if it did educate, but that was the goal. I now feel like someone who, given the chance, can make a difference. I have demonstrated to myself the ability to research and compact an idea into one source. This is something that can be applied to anything I decide to research, and I can apply this to multiple things, so it is good practice for future research and change.

For my previous blog, check here.

For my first blog, check here.

For my annotated bibliography, check here.

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YATW Blog #3: Agent of Change

Hello my name is Taylor Washington, I'm a freshman  currently enrolled at Science Leadership Academy. 

In my english 9 class I have been working on an year long project called "YATW" ( You And The World). This project has been designed to get us as students to get out in the world and make a change in any kind of way we felt necessary on a topic of our choice.

My topic is Teen Depression. This was the topic of my choice if you would like to view any of my recent blogs for my topic click here for blog #1 & click here  blog #2

The last part of the YATW project is to be an agent of change. For my agent of change part I decided to make a public service announcement and post on youtube Facebook and twitter. Also I wanted to get others opinions on what teen depression was exactly. For that reason I interviewed a few friends so I could get an outside view on things that wasn't just my opinion. My Youtube subscribers seemed to love it and it was very fun to sit and record my fellow peers as they expressed there feelings. Great conversations came out of this. Changing some peoples view on what teen depression is and how it can inter fear with your everyday life.

Studding and getting to know more about teen depression has impacted my personality in such a great way. I now think differently on the way that i treat people. I always try to keep a good attitude even when things are bad. And i believe this could be a start in minimizing the amount of teens that feel depressed and commit suicide/ has suicidal thoughts.



Dejanyia Johnson helping me for my interviews.

​Dejanyia Johnson & Stephanie Dyson 
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YATW Blog #3

Hi guys! I’m back again! This is the 3rd blog post for my You and the World Project for English and sadly the last one. Back in November I started this project with Pet Euthanasia in mind but in January, I changed my topic to Pit Bull Reputations. If you missed either of those blog posts click here for Blog One and here for Blog Two. Since this is the last blog post I will tell you how I wrapped my project up and what is next for you as the readers.

In the past few months I have been thinking about how I can change people’s views on Pit Bulls and if it will actually work. I realized that I probably won’t be able to change their minds but I can open their eyes a little bit more and maybe get to know Pit Bulls better. So with that epiphany I had the idea of making a documentary about Pit Bulls and people’s reactions to Pit Bulls. I was originally going to a park near my house and ask people around there what they thought and also interview some Pit Bull owners. But sadly I was not proactive enough and so I couldn’t quite fit all of that into my schedule. So instead I emailed some of my family members and asked some of my friends about how they think of Pit Bulls. I got some very biased answers but that was good. I also asked the dog park my family is a part of, to see if there were any Pit Bull owners who wanted to talk about their dog and how they feel about their reputations. Unfortunately, I only got a couple of responses about that and only one interview. So again, I turned to my friends for help! I had one friend, Michaela, who owns a Pit Bull and she immediately said of course! (You can check out her blog here.) Overall I got some great footage and I made a great little PSA/documentary about Pit Bulls. I showed it to my family and have made plans to show it to my advisory next Monday, the 20th of May.

My grandmother contributed to the documentary about how she really does not like Pit Bulls even though she has never met one face to face before. When I had the finished product, I showed it to her as well. She certainly felt different after I showed her the video. She was worried about her grandchildren near the Pit Bulls and when she saw a pitbull cuddle with a little girl, I think she changed her mind. I hope that people will watch my video and get to know Pit Bulls a little bit more rather than be scared of them and run away. I have learned to tune into Pit Bull related things, like a recent shooting of Pit Bulls because apparently they were running around without a leash. Because of this, I went to a Police Meeting and listened to what the police had to say about their shooting the dogs. It was a heated discussion between dog owners and the police officers.

So finally here is the video that I worked so hard on. Please pass on this message and show your family and friends. Thanks for staying with me throughout my long process and my 3 blog posts!

For my bibliography click here.

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YATW Blog #3 Agent of Change

As you know, animal Cruelty is one of the major issues in the world. It’s among homelessness, civil rights, and war. Since the beginning of my freshman year, I have dedicated longs hours on informing people on animal cruelty and how to prevent it. A couple of weeks ago , I paired up with two of my classmates and we actually helped out a local animal shelter here in Philly. 

    Cole Hinton, Sydne Hopkins Baker and I all collaborated in having 2 successful bakes sales. To prepare for the bake sales, we printed out many flyers and hung them all around SLA with the help of some SLA students ( Julian Chiti Makarechi , Ameer Holmes, Brandon Yam, Rosalie Ann Swana, Jiwon Choi, Michelle Friedman, Claudia Bonita, and Javier Peraza). The bake sales were held on Tuesdays, April 23 and 25 during Y band lunch on the 2nd floor in front of the office. Some of the goodies sold were slices of Ice Cream Cookie Pie, brownies, cookies, Hershey kiss pies, etc. We raised $80.56 for the PAWS Animal Shelter on 2&Arch in Philadelphia, Pa. Sydne and I rode down to PAWS to drop off our donations and to play with some of the animals. Unfortunately our partner Cole was unable to make that trip. When we arrived at PAWS, one of the employees told us that we raised enough to feed and house a dog or cat for one week. 



For my Agent of Change part, I have overcome a few obstacles and one of them being rejection. What I actually had in mind for my Agent of Change part is volunteering at either these two animal shelters: PAWS and the PSPCA. However when I applied for the volunteer application form I was rejected because I was not of age. The PSPCA required all of their volunteer to be at least 16 and PAWS required that you must be 18 or older but I’m just 15 so I had to come up with a different plan of action. I thought to myself “how could I impact animals if I couldn’t volunteer?”, but then this idea popped into my head that I could raise money for them to provided a home from them outside of the shelter. 


 By doing this project I learned some many wonderful things about my self, one is I’m not afraid to go all out for a bake sale. But besides that, I learned that my heart is truly with the animals and I will do anything even if I could just impacted one animal. My work efforts for helpings these poor animals will not discontinue, I plan to go farther to impact more animals. I just found another animal shelter through a friend named Operation Ava on Spring Garden, it’s mainly a dog shelter created by three young girls with a passion to love animals. In a couple of weeks I will start volunteering there and i’m greatly consider volunteering there for my ILP next year. So to all the people who helped me and as well as my collaborators and all of you who have followed my ever since blog #1, I greatly thank you for all you help to makes animals lives better. Remember, STAND AGAINST ANIMAL CRUELTY! 

Here is a video of our process through our Agent of Change.

Click here for my Annotative Bibliography 

​Also if you are looking for an animal(s) to provided a home, click here for a list if you are looking to foster and here if you are looking to adopt from PAWS. 
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YATW Blog #3

Hi guys! I’m back again! This is the 3rd blog post for my You and the World Project for English and sadly the last one. Back in November I started this project with Pet Euthanasia in mind but in January, I changed my topic to Pit Bull Reputations. If you missed either of those blog posts click here for Blog One and here for Blog Two. Since this is the last blog post I will tell you how I wrapped my project up and what is next for you as the readers.

In the past few months I have been thinking about how I can change people’s views on Pit Bulls and if it will actually work. I realized that I probably won’t be able to change their minds but I can open their eyes a little bit more and maybe get to know Pit Bulls better. So with that epiphany I had the idea of making a documentary about Pit Bulls and people’s reactions to Pit Bulls. I was originally going to a park near my house and ask people around there what they thought and also interview some Pit Bull owners. But sadly I was not proactive enough and so I couldn’t quite fit all of that into my schedule. So instead I emailed some of my family members and asked some of my friends about how they think of Pit Bulls. I got some very biased answers but that was good. I also asked the dog park my family is a part of, to see if there were any Pit Bull owners who wanted to talk about their dog and how they feel about their reputations. Unfortunately, I only got a couple of responses about that and only one interview. So again, I turned to my friends for help! I had one friend, Michaela, who owns a Pit Bull and she immediately said of course! (You can check out her blog here.) Overall I got some great footage and I made a great little PSA/documentary about Pit Bulls. I showed it to my family and have made plans to show it to my advisory next Monday, the 20th of May.

My grandmother contributed to the documentary about how she really does not like Pit Bulls even though she has never met one face to face before. When I had the finished product, I showed it to her as well. She certainly felt different after I showed her the video. She was worried about her grandchildren near the Pit Bulls and when she saw a pitbull cuddle with a little girl, I think she changed her mind. I hope that people will watch my video and get to know Pit Bulls a little bit more rather than be scared of them and run away. I have learned to tune into Pit Bull related things, like a recent shooting of Pit Bulls because apparently they were running around without a leash. Because of this, I went to a Police Meeting and listened to what the police had to say about their shooting the dogs. It was a heated discussion between dog owners and the police officers.

So finally here is the video that I worked so hard on. Please pass on this message and show your family and friends. Thanks for staying with me throughout my long process and my 3 blog posts!

For my bibliography click here.

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I'm a Agent of Change

Agent of Change

A You and The World Project

Hey Guys!! So I’m back with my final YOu and The World Blog. This time I don’t want to depress you with sad animals or facts about how people kill animals for fun. I definitely don’t want to type this long as ever blog about the things I do in class so I’m going to keep it simple. And I’m going to add a little something extra for you the reader.

My first plans for my You and The World project didn’t start off the way I wanted them to. Originally the plan was that I would  go volunteer at a animal shelter near my middle school. My spanish teacher took us there for our Need and Deed project and it was the perfect little shelter. Things happened and I could not go that specific shelter. So I talked to my classmates who have the same topic as me and they said it would be a great idea to collaborate together and make one big project and individually talk about our experiences. On April 23rd 2013 Y band lunch Tiarra, Cole and I had a bake sale to raise money for Paws a no kill animal shelter. The bake sale was a lot of fun. We raised about $27 dollars for Paws, but that was just the beginning April 26th 2013 Y and X lunch band all three us had another bake sale which was the biggest success I’ve seen in the history of back sales. During those two bands we raised about $53-$54 which led to a total of about $81 raised for Paws. I’m glad we did a bake sale it was a lot of fun selling goodies to people. Especially when Tiarra makes her famous ice cream cookie cake that sold out so fast, I mean I blinked and the whole cake was gone. Cole also brought in some brownies and you can never go wrong with them. One thing I did learned is that once Tiarra has a goal she sets her mind to it. She wanted to sell everything so what does she do. She walks around selling the last little bit of everything, nothing could stop that child. The video of Soledad and Stephanie shows what happens after the bake sale finished. We were simply just acting silly and having fun.

(One of the many posters spreading the word about our bake sale)

(Yushhhhhh Angelo got his cake)

(Our lovely english teacher)

(More happy customers)

The next step to our Agent of change is to go to Paws and just play with the animals. On May 3rd 2013 after report card conferences Tiara and I went to Paws to deliver the money. We took a mini field trip to Old City Philadelphia where Paws is located. It was a lot of walking and a long bus ride. Sadly Cole was unable to join us but he was with us in spirit. We went in and gave the workers our money. They were really surprised that a group of teenagers gave money in for a good cause. With the money we raised we feed/housed a rescued dog for a week. It may not seem a lot but it’s saving a life. The workers also took our picture and posted it to their Facebook page. The comments were touching. The people said they are proud of our school and the work we did to save the animals.

At the end Tiarra and I got to play with some of the cats. We could not play with the dogs because we have to be older but we enjoyed the cat time. As a pet owner myself it was sad to see that these cats don’t have a good home. I read some of the papers that talked about the cats life some of them were dropped off but one cat had a sad story about animal abuse. In my second You and The World Blog I talked about the many forms of animals abuse and how animal abuse and how in some occasions child abuse are related.

I have to say that was a really depressing blog, seeing what people do to animals is just horrific, but it’s good to educate others so we can put a stop to all the hate and abuse.

Overall this was an awesome experience. It was just smooth sailing. The only problems I can think off was technical. I didn’t have enough space to take pictures so only Tiarra had them all. Another problem was transportation. Oh boy did we have to wait for ever to take a bus to Paws. BUT we did not let that stop us from completing our mission. My Agent of Change does not stop here. I want to try out a new place called Operation Ava. Another shelter like Paws but you can interacts with cats and dogs. For my ILP next year I want to work with a puppy gym that rehabilitate animals who were hurt or had surgery.  I also want to have more bake sales maye start fundraisers around my neighborhood. The mayor thing is to spread the word. Paws and your local ASPCA are always appreciative if you simply donate a blanket or some animal food. If you don’t want to adopt you can always be a foster parent. For those who don’t know foster parent is like being a temporary mom for a kid or an animal. Foster parents can end up adopting if they get really attached or when the animal does get adopted they go home with their new family and say good bye to the foster parent. But adoption is always the best way if you want to adopt an animal you can call your own you can contact me and I can give you information or you can visit Paws website even your local ASPCA center.

Now like I said at the beginning of my blog I do have something fun at the end just say thanks for taking time to read my blog. The ASPCA has a kids website that have weird/kinda funny animal clips and games you can play that involve animals. Click here to access the website

Click here for my sources alphabetized and all that fancy stuff ;)

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Agent Of Change: You and the World, Naomi

Hi again it is me Naomi. For the past month or so that I haven’t written it was because I was busy at work being an Agent of Change. This part of the YATW project revolved around giving back and letting other people know why you thought this was important and how they could help  make an impact.


The way I made my impact was by giving a presentation to my advisory about Teen Health. The presentation itself was a keynote and then I had two short activities for them to do that would help them self reflect on their eating habits. If you would like to see the slide deck click here.  I think the message really went through, in terms of everyone realizing that you can still eat all the foods you and still be healthy as long as you stay proportionate.

The reason I gave the presentation to my advisory was because there are a lot of athletes in my advisory and I think that they are some of the most body image aware teens out there. I understand that they always have pressure to be the best and a lot of the time it has to do with their body weight. I assume most professional athletes know the difference between being healthy and being the tabloids idea of healthy. I think it is important for others to know this aswell. To see the slide deck photos click here. 

While giving my presentation, I did an activity. The activity I did was having my advisees fill out two things. One was a chart that if you would like to see click here. I gave each person in my advisory one and had them fill out where in the rubric they stood and from there what they should be eating on a regular basis. The second paper I gave them was a chart to see it click here. This chart had to do with the choices they are making. The decisions like exercise, snack choices and meal choices. I thought this was important for them to see about themselves because it should help them keep healthy and that is all you can ask of someone.

This also helped me learn about the people in my advisory and how they see themselves. It was hard to try to explain this activity without it making it sound like I thought they themselves were fat, which was obviously the opposite of what I was trying to do.
This wraps up my You And The World project. I would really like to continue making this issue known and helping people of this issue. I also hope that you as a reader of this blog will help me, whether it is on your sports team, in your class or even your family. This is an issue that is very close to me because I was told many times that my body type was not good enough for the activities that I was participating in. I chose to not listen because I knew that I was staying healthy and I was meant to be exactly the way I was. I hope after embarking on this ride with me you also know that as long as you stay healthy you are perfect just the way you are.

Thank you for reading,


To see my bibliography click here.

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Food Desert: Part 3

             Throughout the month of April I volunteered with several local organizations working on projects to address the problem of food deserts and the lack of availability of wholesome food at affordable prices in inner city neighborhoods.  This is why for my final blog I will focus on local efforts to eliminate food deserts and how Philadelphia is taking a stand to help those in need.  In my previous blog posts I have mentioned a couple of these solutions, but now I have a better idea of what kind of programs are available out there and the energies people are directing to solving this problem.

            When I first started looking for organizations to get involved with I did not know the myriad ways a diverse group of people and small organizations were working to improve Philadelphia. For my first project I worked on setting up a community garden in the back of a small church in North Philly neighborhood where food availability is a chronic problem.  This church’s garden worked in conjunction with a soup kitchen that the church also ran - as soon as the vegetables that the church group grew could be harvested, they would bring this produce to the soup kitchen to help supply the poorer citizens of neighborhood with healthy foods. This all took place in a derelict lot. Even though there was only a small amount of space, using raised planter beds and contamination-free soil, we were able to make use of all the land that we had at our disposal to grow wholesome food.

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I also volunteered at Fair Food Farmstand, which is a stand where local farmers can sell their produce, dairy products, and meat.  Fair Food Farmstand sells food grown within a 150-mile radius and, even though their food is not inexpensive, they find ways to make it affordable for the customers who rely on their products.  I am specifically talking about their “double dollar” program, which is when people who meet certain eligibility requirements, can buy a certain amount of food, while in addition, they are able to get the same amount of food free. They also contribute to food banks, which I mentioned in my previous blog posts.
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​​  Of course, this is only scratching at the surface of the problem, but it is a good beginning.  There are many other ways to get rid of food deserts.  It is definitely a cause worth getting involved in.

Food Desert: Part 2

Food Desert: Part 1


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The War on Terror: Afghanistan

Joseff Filamor

May 11, 2013

Blog Post #3

Hello everybody, as most of you know my name is Joseff Filamor. I am a Freshmen at Science Leadership Academy and for my You and the World project I am focusing of the war in Afghanistan. If you have not already seen my previous blog posts, I focused on what affects a warrior when he goes into war, and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.  My brother; Guz Filamor served in Afghanistan for two years and is the reason I chose to research Afghanistan in the first place. For my third and final blog post, my brother agreed to an interview.  

I recorded the conversation and I wrote it out here for you all to read:

Me: What made you want to join in a military lifestyle?

Guz: Well back in the day, our Pops was pretty hardcore when it came to what we were gonna become in life. He thought the only way to become a full man was to become one through pain and humility.

Me: Did you ever want to join?

Guz: A big part of me did not want to do it at all, but I did not really have a choice.

Me: Are you went through with it?

Guz: I can tell you this, it didn’t leave me a better man. In fact it made me worse considering I had to watch men die in front of me. Although, it did make me appreciate life a lot more. I come home to my family knowing I am blessed to be there to see them.

Me: Did it impact you in anyway?

Guz: Yes it really did, I had a brief case of PTSD and I am still going to therapy to get remove it from my mind.

Me: Anything advice to kids today in hope of joining the military lifestyle?

Guz: Keep your mind straight and have a good reason to join. Do it for your family and country, not for yourself.

I had never asked my brother about Afghanistan or what it was like, but it is interesting seeing what it is like from his point of view.

I am beyond glad that I was able to do the You and the World project on Afghanistan. Ever since my father first told me about my brother being in it, I have always had an open mind for it.

This had definitely been one of the best and favorite projects, thanks Ms Dunn and Guz for helping me all the way through.  

Click HERE to see my bibliography.
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Childhood Cancer: Fighting for a Cure

As my You and the World Project comes to an end, my agent of change was all about volunteering for the amazing foundations that help children all around the world fight childhood cancer every day. There are so many foundations that I have talked about previously in my other blog posts (1 and 2), but I have decided to focus on volunteering for Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation. I attended two of many wonderful benefits that this foundation holds, a softball benefit and a Christmas party. The softball benefit took place earlier in the year, and included many men and women starting their own softball team in memory of someone they lost from cancer and competing against the other teams in order to raise money for Alex. The Christmas party took place in the beginning of December, which was a huge party for all of the families that are a part of Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation who have beat cancer or are in remission. These children and their siblings have a day to themselves of arts and crafts, games, food, and presents from Santa. Being able to experience these benefits has really shown me how much this foundation does for children fighting cancer. 

My process for the agent of change part of this project was mainly influenced by my aunt and uncle who helped me schedule the benefits I would be able to attend to. When a benefit was coming up I would go a day before to my aunt’s house to help everyone prepare for the benefit, things like preparing posters or decorations and wrapping Christmas presents. The following morning we would all drive to the benefit location to set up and spend the day there until the benefit attended. After, everyone helped out in cleaning up. The only problems that occurred during this process were some small issues with just changing around the benefits I could attend. Alex Lemonade Stand Foundation hold so many amazing benefits that I planned to attend, but as things came up during the year we had to narrow it down to a few, but it was easily fixed. 

This project has definitely made a huge impact on me. These two benefits helped so many children and families and I can’t wait for my next benefit in three weeks. Just hearing about this foundation makes you want to help and do what you can do, but nothing compares to the inspiration you feel after attending one of the benefits and just seeing how happy the kids are, how appreciative the families are, and how many kind people come out to help. Attending these benefits can definitely turn anyone into a better collaborator because that is all that takes place during these types of things. Everyone is collaborating to make the kids happy, help the families cope, and come up with different ideas and benefits to raise money and awareness for childhood cancer. 

The following is a link to my bibliography
team theresa n kids
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Blog post #3: Agent of Change, YATW Cole Hinton

Hello. My name is Cole Hinton. For my You And The World project, I did animal cruelty as my topic in the world. For those who didn't see my previous blog posts, click here for blog post #1 or here for blog post #2. In this blog post, I will be telling you about my agent of change part of this amazing journey how we left an impact on others around us.

What I chose to do for my agent of change piece of this project, was to have a fundraiser to raise money. The money raised was given to Paws, a non-profit, no kill animal shelter located on 100 N. 2nd Street Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19106. Tiarra, Sydne, and I worked on a bake sale to raise the money for paws.The bake sale was held Tuesday, April 26 and Thursday, April 25. The bake sale was a good bake sale and we got many good comments about it and it was non-stop with students coming around one after another. We raised over $80 dollars all together after the 2 days. That was a good feeling that so many people came to the bake sale to help us with our project. I was unable to tag along with Tiarra and Sydne when they went to Paws and gave them the money but, I heard it was fun and the money was appreciated

My process of this project to me was good. My first intentions of doing this agent of change was going to an animal shelter and help out them and work with the animals but none accepted my offers. I then thought of having a box where people could put money in themselves but I thought I should do a hands on and easy way to do this. Thus, came the bake sale. 

This whole experience had a great impact on me and I think I did the same with some of my peers on this issue in the world. I learned so much during this experience and how I can be a positive role model and save a innocent animal's life.

blog post 2

Below are pictures from the bake sale and when Tiarra and Sydne went to Paws.
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William Derry: You and the World Blog post #3

  For my third you and the world blog post we had to do our agent of change portion of the project and I wrote a letter to the Pennsylvania Department of Welfare. My you and the world topic is the financial aid system. I wanted to learn more about what they do and I wanted to know how I could help to make a difference in the department.  

For my second You and the World blog post I talked about the survey that I made and how much I learned from the results of the survey. Furthermore I learned new facts about the financial aid system. Click here to see my second You and the World blog post. For my first You and the World blog post I introduced my topic and I wrote about the numbers behind the financial aid system. Furthermore I gave my reasoning behind choosing the topic that I did. Click here to see my You and the World blog post number two.        

My process was much different than I excepted. My first idea for my agent of change portion of my blog post was to go volunteer at the Pennsylvania department of welfare but I was not able to make that happen so my next idea was to send a letter and to find out more about it and to find out how I could make a difference in the department. I believe that I did not find out as much information as I wanted but I did learn some things. The one big problem that I had was not being able to volunteer at the Pennsylvania department of welfare and the way I fixed that problem was by sending a letter to the Pennsylvania department of welfare and finding out more information.

I believe this project has taught me to never give up on something. At some points of my process I did not know what I was going to do but then I came up with the idea of sending the letter the Pennsylvania department of welfare. I believe that this project has made a difference in my community. The reason being is now that the letter has been sent to the Pennsylvania department of welfare they now know that people do appreciate what they do and are willing to help. I see myself as a leader but I also see myself as someone who can definitely learn more. I do not know everything I want to know about the Pennsylvania department of welfare and I would love to learn more about the department. I will take many things from this project. One thing that I will take from this project is my new learning of Pennsylvania department of welfare and all that I have learned from doing this project. I have also learned a bunch about myself. When I started this project I did not know what I would learn about Pennsylvania department of welfare but at the end of this process I was very pleased and I knew much more about the department at the end of this process.   

Click here to view a video of my process  

Click here for bibliography

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"We Have Hands, Let's Use Them!" Stephanie Dyson for You and the World

Hello all! This is my third, and final blog on SLATE about my YATW (You and the World) Project! (click on all the images to enlarge them)

A bit of background:

In Ms. Dunn’s 9th grade English class at SLA, we are called to find a topic that interests us and, throughout the year, gradually become agents of change. My topic was Art in Philadelphia and I wanted to highlight what we have to offer as an artistic city. You can find my first and second blogs on SLATE (the SLA blog).

Though my process was simple and straightforward, it is still in the works, and I think it highlights the vast importance of technology in this day and age.
(above, Philadelphia's 30th Street Station)

In School

On April 28, I created a google form comprised of questions that everyone can answer about art and artists and the meaning of both. On April 30, I did about seven interviews of my peers. I tried to choose students of all grades, but only a certain number of people showed up for their interview. Nevertheless, this amount of people was perfect for my work. The questions were short, sweet, and simple. However, a few of my peers were avid interviewees and gave me lengthy, thoughtful answers. The questions were:

1. What is Philadelphia known for?

2. What is art? Does it have to be seen?

3. Who are artists?

4. Should artists band together to make this city beautiful

Below is a video of the interviews with a bit of commentary, please watch!

As young artists in the city of Philadelphia, we see art around us all of the time. Everywhere we go, art is intentionally or unintentionally on display. Not everything is beautiful and not everything is aesthetically pleasing, but art is still very alive in our city. For children that go to public schools, this ‘call to arms’ is louder than ever with the proposed budget cuts ahead. Over these past couple weeks, I have never been so passionate with my education as I am now. On May 7, I participated in my very first protest- one against these terrifying budget cuts, walking out of my school building with a massive crowd of fellow students and down to 440 N. Broad Street to protest with sincerity on the steps outside of the Philadelphia School District Headquarters. (Full story) . In a few weeks, my dreams of starting a beautification club will come to light. I’ve spoken to our principal, Chris Lehmann about painting the school and we’ll be doing just that in a week or so with a project titled "We Have Hands, Let's Use Them!" This is the first installment of many projects and mural-esque paintings we'll be doing that focuses on the budget cuts and why education is so important to us. Much thanks to all who’ve volunteered and helped me with this portion of my project!

Outside School

When it comes to art, my main medium is photography. When I leave high school, I’m going to college for photography- I want to make it my life. My friends and family are such big supporters of mine and a very close friend of the family has given me the job of Event Photographer for her dance company’s recital. I’m extremely excited that on June 9th, I’ll have my first big photogig of the year ( Dance Journey’s 2012 performance photos )

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​(above, the young ladies of Dance Journey dancing bollywood style during last year's Open House)

Not only am I photographing for events, I’ve started a tumblr blog just for my photography called “Aestheticia” pronounced as-the-tish-uh, not so much as a psuedonym, but as an idea. I want to turn Aestheticia into a movement. I want to be a stle of photography that truly encourages photographers to beautify real-time, and to make life aesthetically pleasing. Throughout March and April, I went on many photography expeditions with my friends and by myself. There were times when we found ourselves in neighborhoods we weren’t even sure of, and times where we felt right at home. This You and the World project has helped me branch out; In the first week of my blog (April 27th was the starting date), I gained 35 followers. My pictures have circulated the interwebs and I now have upwards of 300 followers (the screenshot below was taken on May 10th) and have sold four prints of my photography to three friends and a photography enthusiast in Virginia! I also went to two arts-type festivals (Mt. Airy Day, PIFA- Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts) and plan to go many more over the summer starting with ArtScape (The nations largest free arts festival!) in Baltimore during July and ending with the Brave New Voices Festival in Chicago in the beginning of August.

(below is a photo of a piece during 2012's ArtScape when I went with a friend for the very first time)
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​(above: 1. a best friend of mine on a photography expedition with me in March; 2. my blog's home page; 3. 296 followers by May 10th! I'm ecstatic!)

I find this to be a tremendous achievement as many of the pictures that circulate on tumblr are all of places like New York and Paris and Italy, unbeknownst to the rest of the world that very few of the people reblogging these pictures have ever been these places and that Philadelphia is beautiful. I want to help get our city to the point where it’s not “New York’s Unsuccessful Little Brother” anymore. This is our city; it’s big, it’s vast, it’s beautiful, it’s hidden. We need to get ourselves out there- I want to do that with my photography.

On this blog, I will also create a page specifically for our beautification club titled “The Aestheticians.” When our very first project is done, I’ll post on all of my social networking sites about it. Pictures and footage will most definitely be on

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I want to thank everyone who’s kept up with my project these past months! It is crucial that we get the word out there about artists and the beauty in our city! Please visit for my photography and please, please, please do ALL that you can to be informed about the School District’s 2013-14 Fiscal Year and the budget cuts we are likely to undergo. More information can be found at:

*All of the photography in this blog post is mine, please do not steal any images. Thanks!


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