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Glows and Grows: S.A.D.

I had spent so much time researching about my issue which is social anxiety and even though this project is about to end, I still wanted to know more the issue but I wish I had more time to do it. I wish I found something about how people who has suffered from this issue got better. I wanted to read more personal experiences and understand more about how these people coped from this devastating issue. I feel like I know more about the symptoms and what social anxiety is but not about the people who suffered. I wanted to know more about real life experiences because it tells you what the issue really is like not just through what the internet think it is or what other people think it is.

Like I said above, I like knowing an issue through a person who actually experienced social anxiety in real life. So for my original research, I interviewed a very close friend of mine who suffered from social anxiety. I was pretty familiar with what she was sharing to me because of the research I have been doing. But, I wasn’t entirely informed about the treatment of this disorder. I learned from this friend of mine about one of the treatments of this disorder. She had to go through intense therapy for 4-5 months and that was new to me. My original research went pretty well and it helped me a lot for this project. I gathered a lot of information through this original research but I wish I interviewed a few more people rather than interviewing only one person so that I could have an even better understanding about this issue. I also wish that I just reached out to a couple people rather than reaching out to organizations and waiting for their responses that never came.

For my agent of change, I collaborated with Tk Saccoh and Jae Regino both a student from SLA. All of us agreed upon making a website and spreading awareness through a 7 second video called the "Tongue Twister Challenge". So, we made a website and made people do a very simple task to spread awareness for social anxiety. Here is our website if you would like to check it out and here is an explanation to the "Tongue Twister Task". I think that me and my partners had an impact we hoped for because people joined us to do the 7 second task and it just kept going when we did after school for only a day. I think that the impact we hoped for was successful even though we just started and our website was not promoted that much yet because people helped us support our project especially support the awareness to social anxiety. Also, but we will try to keep doing it and  let people know about it.

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A House Designed by Us the Person Submitting this and their Partner Who Should have Also Submitted This

Nombre: Asher Swartz Pareja: Tamir Harper

1st Floor/Piso Primero

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2nd Floor/Piso Segundo

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3rd Floor/Piso Tercer

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A note from the writers: This is a note on this. This is the description of our house. Most of it is adjectives. Anything you see underlined is what the actual rooms/furniture are. Below this is a list of the rooms in


Esta es una casa. Esta casa es maravillosa. ¡Es tan estupenda! Nosotros amamos esta casa muchísimo. Primero aunque, ubicación Nuestra casa está ubicada en el corazón de Atlanta. Situado justo enfrente de un gran parque. La comunidad cuenta con una piscina que se puede utilizar por un módico precio. Hay escuelas de alto rendimiento no muy lejos. ¡Aquí es! El piso primero:

Primero, tenemos el césped. Luego, el garaje para tres coches. Después de eso, las puertas principial. Luego, a la izquierda, el medio baño (con inodoro y lavabo) y a la derecho un clóset con dos puertas. ¡Luego, la sala grande! ¡Muy granda! ¡Súper grande! ¡Fantásticamente grande! Es grande. ¡Penúltimo, la cocina para el cocinero y niños y niñas! ¡Y finalmente, el comedor! El piso segundo:

Primero, el uno, el único, el enorme, el dormitorio principal! Viene con: el vestidor grande, dos lavabos, para él y ella, y la ducha y bañera. ¡Muy excelente, no! Después, dos dormitorios, con baños adjunto. Por último, la lavadero con mesa. El piso tercer:

Dos más dormitorios con baños (estos pueden convertirse en todo), una oficina grande y espacioso. ¡Y último, pero no menos importante, el sala de cine/juegos/diversión! La tiene pantalla de cine, mesa de ping pong, el baño, y algo más quiere. ¿Ah, mencioné la es grande, gigantesca? ¡La es!

¡Eso es la casa!¡ Gracias! Deseñado Por: Asher Swartz y Tamir Harper.

1st floor

  • Master doors

  • Open walk through

  • Large Living room

  • Half bathroom

  • Closet

  • 3 car garage

  • Chef Kitchen

  • Family dinning room

  • Large grass outdoor area

2nd floor

  • Large Master Bedroom

    • Walk in closet

    • His and Her sink

Shower and tub

  • 2 bedrooms with attached bathrooms

  • Laundry room with folding table

3rd floor

  • 2 bedrooms with attached bathrooms

  • large spacious office attached bathroom

  • Huge movie room with ping pong table attached bathroom

CopyofE1U8Q4HouseProject (1)
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On my first blog post I introduced the reader to the topic of feminism. I explained what it was and why it should be a common goal for everyone. On my previous blog post I showed trending hashtags and gave situations that show why gender equality is an issue, not necessarily by the law but in between people themselves.

I recently began a project to raise awareness about feminism via social media by using the hashtag #MoreThanADistractionSLA. I asked a group of girls to let me take pictures of them with labels representing feminism which can be viewed on the website I created linked in the hyper-linked text. I then asked all my friends, family, and anyone I came across to share the pictures or post a picture of their own with the hashtag I created.

I personally think this was a really good idea because our world currently revolves around internet and social media. That's why I believe social media is a very efficient way to make people aware of modern day issues and topics of interest.

I had a pretty good turn out for my project. The hashtag did not trend, but may more people of become aware of the topic of feminism. Many of my friends, family, and even strangers  made statuses, post, tweets, and posted pictures with the hashtag #MoreThanADistraction. I feel very confident that this hashtag will become more known as times goes on. I really enjoyed doing this project because I got  to work on something I'm passionate about, and I got to do it in a way that was fun and that everyone could participate in. Down below I will include some of the images from the Feminism Photo Shoot. The rest of the images can be viewed on the website I created.

Aniya Edited.jpgSam Edited.jpgMadison Edited.jpgJava & Alexa Edited.jpgMadison Sports Edited.jpgModel Group #1 Edited.jpg

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A Small Change Can Be Big

Since my last few blog post a lot has happened. Let me give you a refreshment on my last two blogs. So in my first blog post I talked about why I chose to do my project on pediatric cancer and the scary statistics that affect teens our age each day. In my second blog post I talked about my interview with a cancer patient.

Currently there is a full month dedicated to pediatric cancer awareness. It's September. In September of 2014 President Barack Obama proclaimed September, the month to honor and support those who have or have had cancer. The President also signed the Gabriella Miller Kids First Research Act earlier in 2014 that gives ten years for cancer research. I think this was a huge deal for everyone connected with pediatric cancer and in the medical field. I think it's a huge step in research, because it gives ten years of research that could potentially find a cure to a disease that has killed so many people over a long period of time. I think it also shows people who have untreatable cancer that they weren't forgotten about.

A really huge part of the pediatric cancer awareness is the Alex Lemonade Foundation. Alex was a girl from Manchester, Connecticut who was diagnosed with neuroblastoma just before she turned one years old. At the age of five Alex started a lemonade stand with her brother to raise money for children with cancer. Every year she and her family held an annual lemonade stand fundraiser. At the age of eight Alex sadly died at her home in Wynnewood, Pennsylvania with her family by her side. Since the opening of her stand the Alex Lemonade Stand Foundation has raised over 100 million dollars. I think this foundation shows people with cancer that they can do anything in life and too never give up. Alex never gave up and fought for other people even though she was struggling.

For my agent of change I decided to do care packages. This was not my first idea. My initial plan was to create cards for cancer patients and take them to the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). I was really looking forward to doing this but after a few phone calls and emails I was told I couldn't do that  due to CHOP's sanitation policy which was understandable. So with only a week left to turn this project in my teacher and I decided on a care package. At first I was hesitant about it because I didn't know how I was actually changing something, but with only a week left I went with it.

Who could I give this too? The first person to come to my head was Aliya, the girl I interview in my second blog. The other person was a senior at my school who I heard about but had not met named Matt.

This project called for a trip to the dollar store. Before the dollar store I googled several different images of care packages, in which they all looked similar. At the dollar store I bought about ten dollars worth of snacks and candy for both Aliya and Matt. I also bought a card so I could write them a letter to show that I care about them.
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Matt in the red shirt.

Unfortunately, I was unable to give the care package to Aliya but I will as soon as I'm able to, but I was able to give Matt his. It took me two days to find Matt, but during that time I was so anxious to see his reaction. When I handed Matt his care package which I wrapped with brown paper he was also very nervous. Matt was so nervous he got his friend to open the package. When his friend opened it Matt was so surprised and shocked, it was amazing. A few minutes later Matt sent me an email and thank me.

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I'm very excited my Agent of Change was successful. Doing this I learned that you should always expect the unexpected. When I went to do my interview I didn't think a girl with cancer would be in such great spirits. This project taught me to value life more and be grateful for what I have. I also learned that the small things you do can be a huge change for someone. I wish I could have reached out to a broader audience. I think there's so much more to do but things are going in the right direction.

You can view my annotated bibliography here!
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La Casa Ideal

Nuestra Casa Perfecta : Diseñado por Ajanae Mills y Arielle Moore y Shawn Durkin

Nuestra casa perfecta es en Filadelfia, PA y es una mansión. La casa es muy grande y fuera tiene un piscina, un patio trasero, un jardín, y una pista de tenis también. En el primer piso es la sala, la cocina, y la sala de juegos. La sala tiene un televisor, una sofá, y muchas ventanas para la luz del sol. Es muy bonita. En la cocina, tenemos nuevos electrodomésticos y encimeras de mármol. En la sala de juegos tenemos los nuevos juegos y consolas.  Hay baños en cada piso y hay dos baños en total.

En el segundo piso son dos cuartos. El primer cuarto es grande y tiene una cama del rey, un pupitre, pisos de madera, y una computadora. La cama es bien diseñada por profesionales y es muy elegante. En el segundo cuarto tiene un similar diseña pero con diferentes colores y patrones. Cada cuarto es muy grande y amueblado bien. Hay dos más baños en el segundo piso y un gimnasio. El gimnasio tiene una trotadora y otras suministradores para el mejor la sesión de entrenamiento. Finalmente, hay un garaje para los carros. Tenemos una lavadora y secadora para nuestra ropa. Con cada parte, nosotros encontramos nuestra casa.

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Project Description La Casa

Project Description La Casa

Por: Kobe and Alexa

¿Que entrevistaste?:


Alexa Lahr


  • city or suburbs


  • How many bedrooms would you want?


  • What is your favorite color?

light blue and negro

  • How many bathrooms would you want?

5 one for each room and one down stairs

  • If you could dedicate a room to one thing, what would it be for?

movie theater

  • Do you like television?

  • Do you like books?

  • How big do you want your bed to be?


  • How many cars do you want?

blue truck, challenger

  • Do you want a nice basement?

Yah club like

  • Do you want an office?

Alexa Lahr es catorce años. Ella quiere a vive en un urbano localidad. En su casa ella podría cuatro dormitorios, cinco baños, y un dos coche garaje. En la garaje ella quiere dos coches: un azul 2015 Chevy Colorado y un negro 2015 Dodge Challenger. Un baño querer en cada dormitorio en la casa, incluyendo el sótano. Ella gusta viendo televisión y leer libros. Ella haría quería gusta dos dormitorios dedicato por una casa teatro y una oficina.


vista exterior:


cine en casa:


su habitación:


su cuarto de baño:


¡Esta casa es perfecta ella Alexa Lahr!  Ella amará la casa teatro es cómodos sofás y sillas es y hermosa TV de pantalla plana y un guapo vista de la ciudad de ella habitación.  Con una cama king size y para un día tranquilo en la cama una pantalla plana cena.  Para ella baño nosotros pintar es ella favorita el color azul es a guapa bañera.  Esto es sólo algunas de sus habitaciones de esta casa hermosa grande.

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SLA Ultimate Rocks the State Championship!

Congratulations to the Girls and Boys Ultimate Frisbee teams for their performance at the State Championships this weekend! The teams headed to Slippery Rock University on a midnight bus after the Senior Prom to compete at States. The Girls team placed third in the state behind seniors Nikki Adeli, Amani Bey, Amy Chen and Imani Holness. The boys finished 11th with 13 seniors on the roster -  KaBoni Bailey, Brian Birkmire, True Black, Kenyatta Bundy, Marcus Burrell, Teion Ensley-Ellerbe, Traevon Gray, Timmy Ingram, Alhaji Koita, Pierce Luck, Julian Makarechi, Chris Tran, and Richard Yoeun. 

Congratulations to both teams and to all the graduating seniors on an amazing SLA career! 
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Magnífica casa Diseñado por Tajnia y Syeda

Description: Esta casa moderna, situado en la Filadelfia, está perfectamente proporcionado para una familia. Fue diseñado por Syeda Kalim y Tajnia Hussain, mundo reconocidos arquitectos y diseñadores de interiores. Situado cerca del Schuylkill, los residentes serán capaces de despertar a los rumores de una nueva y fresca mañana. Cuando entras en la casa, subes un piso de madera, con juego de sofás son de color marrón, una TV, una mesa de café y grandes ventanales hacia el patio. El patio es el lugar perfecto para servir a los huéspedes y para descansar. Hablando de los huéspedes, hay un amplio dormitorio para descomprimir y tomar una siesta en la cama. Muy hogareño, se sentirán como si nunca salieron de su propia casa. En el primer piso también hay un aseo, además de otras salas como el garaje y un armario.

Pasar a la segunda planta, hay tres dormitorios - perfecto para una pareja y sus hijos. Uno de los dormitorios viene con una cuna junto a una cama, así que si es necesario, alguien podría acompañar al bebé. En el dormitorio principal, hay un baño completo, que es una ducha, lavabo e inodoro. Eso no es todo, hay una caminata en armario para llenar toda la ropa de moda. La habitación familiar, que es más grande que todas las habitaciones del segundo piso, viene con una TV, un sofá largo y tablas. Esta habitación es perfecta para jugar juegos de mesa, o simplemente para tener un maratón de películas.

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Lauren Thomas Q4 Art

The reason I create art is to express myself. Even though the art may not be something amazing or profound, it is something I am proud of and happy that I created. When I look at my art, I see myself being reflected. I enjoyed this quarter in art because I got to create things I wanted to create. I love painting and doodling so I tried to incorporate as much of that as possible. Doing the zentangle doodling is one of my favorite activities because hours can pass and you wouldn't be able to tell since you were in the zone. It helps me calm down and construct art that is messy yet structured. There is a theme around everything and having it be Disney related, but I love Disney and it reflects me and my personality. Going forward, I hope I continue to paint and doodle and create many pieces that make me proud of what I do. 
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Reflection on "You and the World Project"

I really enjoyed working on this project for English. There are many issues in this world that I follow casually (for example, talking about racism or gun control at the dinner table) and it felt good to “officially” research and delve deeper into one of those issues. Reproductive freedom (the topic I focused on) is a big mess of injustice, sexism, and many other things, and it is an incredibly frustrating thing to read about, especially as a young woman. All in all, though, I think my project went well. I was able to fully form concepts, ideas, and arguments about reproductive freedom that I would not have been able to articulate before we began, and I am much more well-read in the topic now. I am especially glad that we had to actually do something to help our issue, because before, I’d always complain but not actually act. The blog posts made it possible for me to reflect on my work along the way and give more thought to my project. I think that my blog posts were “glows” because they felt easy to write (in the way that I had so much to say), and I felt satisfied with my results. I think that my interview questions were also pretty strong (so much so that the woman with whom I was coordinating the interview said I was basically asking for a “program report”). Some “grows” were my timing with my interviewee, because there seemed to be lots of miscommunication there - I ended up having to turn in my blog post two and half weeks late.

For my research, I wish I’d read more about the technical aspects of who makes what decisions how. I know about the general way things work, but I don’t know, for example, who in Pennsylvania is the most powerful in terms of decisions or sending things to Congress. I wish I’d learned a bit more about how people my age can get involved (without a long internship) and help out my issue.

My original research went really well. I was able to speak to Adrienne Ralston, part of OIC of America. The program she is in goes around to schools and provides a sex-ed class for a semester. I interviewed her over the phone (she spent over an hour speaking to me!) and got lots of insight and information about my topic. I would not change anything about my original research. I do wish it had happened earlier, though, but that was not my fault.

I think that my Agent of Change went well - I got more than the number of signatures I was hoping to get. I don’t know if the petition has been sent out yet, but it feels good to know that I made a change. I’m hoping that there will be some results from this petition, and I will try to check the website every now and then to see.

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In my last two blog posts, I introduced raders to my You and The World  and shared with readers my original research, which composed of creating a survey and interviewing a fellow classmate.  In both blog posts, I have explained that it is importing to bring awareness to America's broken mental health care system and stressed the impact of educating the youth about the breaches in the current system.  Because I did not want to be someone who preaches what they do not practice, I crafted a 3-step plan to bring awareness to this issue because I believe, as youth, we have the power to drive salient discussions that can engender effective results.

My 3 Step Plan consisted of two collaborations and 1 independent project.

  1. Bake Sale collaboration with Opoku Kwateng

  2. Presentation at The Franklin Institute

  3. Website collaboration with Jamina Regino and Jhazzelle Majurucon

Bake Sale

Opoku Kwateng and I held a bake sale on the 22nd of May during lunch to raise money for Autism Awareness.  When I first learned that his issue was autism awareness, I did not immediately think a collaboration would be likely due to the focus of one mental illness; however, I soon realized that dealing with specific types of mental illness is as important as dealing with a broader assessment of mental illnesses. Opoku approached me and proposed the idea of a bake sale and I ultimately agreed. We then took about two weeks to prepare and advertise our bake sale.

20150522_105010.jpgThe main attraction! Vanilla cake with the words "Autism Awareness" iced deliciously onto the surface.

20150522_105643.jpgInformational pamphlets were distributed to those who purchased items and even those who did not.

Screenshot 2015-05-26 at 7.15.03 PM.pngThrough our successful partnership, we donated $245 to the Autism Society Organization stationed in Mount Laurel, NJ

I believe the bake sale was indeed successful in bringing awareness because it reminded that mental illnesses exist and that it is impactful. Our bake sale also helped raise money for autism research, which will help bring awareness to this specific type of mental illness.

TFI Presentation:

The second part of my Agent of Change plan was to deliver a presentation at The Franklin Institute to my 9th grade peers. I thought this was an interesting setting because most presentations were held at school. In my presentation, I explained where I got my inspiration for bringing awareness to America's broken healthcare system and educated my grade about the detrimental impact the gaps in the system engender. I provided a few statistics, personal anecdotes, and quotes from credible sources to support my message. At the end, I explained that it is most important that we break the discussion stigma affiliated with mental illnesses and make those who are mentally challenged feel accepted and welcomed into society.

Highlights from presentation: uploading error

In the end, giving this presentation allowed me to educate my peers on something they may have not been aware about.

Step 3: Website

With the help of Jae and Jhazzelle, we created a website to inform people about social anxiety, another specific type of mental illness. We decided to create an alliance after we learned our issues centered around mental health.

Some screenshots from our website.Screenshot 2015-06-01 at 11.38.27 PM.png

Our website explored the definition of social anxiety, personal anxiety quotes, and raising awareness
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The special feature of our website was the tongue-twister challenge:

From website : "I will simply explain how you could raise awareness to Social Anxiety since I found this really cool website that will explain further the details to raising awareness for Social Anxiety. Some people may call it a "challenge", but this website calls it the #TongueTwisterTask. The #TongueTwisterTask is the idea to raise awareness to social anxiety because of the fact that people who suffer from this condition avoid social situations and public situations. It's as if their lives are an impossible tongue twister and the words in their minds are all tangled up.

How do I participate?

If you would like to participate, you make a short video of just yourself or with a friend or a family member doing a tongue twister three times fast.

When you are done doing this challenge, post the video on social media sites such as: facebook, instagram, twitter, etc. using the #TongueTwisterTask hashtag. But, wait! Don't forget to challenge two or more people to donate or post their video within 24 hours and send us a link to your post or your friends'. You could even send us more tongue twisters!

Here are some tongue twister ideas:

  • “She sells sea shells by the sea shore.”

  • “Red leather, yellow leather.”

  • “Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers.”

  • “He shot three free throws. He shot three free throws.”

  • “Lesser leather never weathered wetter weather better.”

  • “Pad kid poured curd pulled cod.”

  • “The sixth sick sheik’s sixth sheep’s sick.”

  • "How can a clam cram in a clean cream can?"

  • "Send toast to ten tense stout saints' ten tall tents."

  • "Sheena leads, Sheila needs."

  • "Can you can a can as a canner can can a can?"

  • "You cuss, I cuss, we all cuss, for asparagus!"

  • "Six sick hicks nick six slick bricks with picks and sticks."

  • "Timid talking turtles told Timmy to tell tommy to talk to Tally"

To see submissions out of 20+, visit our website :) or watch them in this folder, which we have compiled them.
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In conclusion, through this project, I learned that change is a unified effort due to the many collaborations I took part in. I also loved how this project allowed us to be active rather than passive. Instead of writing about how we would improve an issue, we actually went out in the world and did just that. I will always remember this project as a learning experience. I reached out to many organizations and people who were not in coordination with my plans, however I overcame these setbacks and focused on bringing awareness to the best of my capabilities. Ultimately, I am very proud of what I was able to achieve: 
A presentation at The Franklin Institute 
A bake sale and donation of $245 to Autism Awareness
A website educating youth 

If I could change anything in this project, it would be the time span. I feel like my project would have been done more justice if I had more time.
The mentally-ill should be loved and embraced! Not shunned!!! They could grow up to be very influential!
The picture below is a Tumblr post, showcasing the general fear society has about the mentally-ill through a google search. The backgroud picture is of writer, Virginia Wolf, who had bipolar disorder. 
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Before you start reading this blog post, make sure you check out my previous blog post. Blog post 1 was my introduction to my project on labeling women. Blog Post 2 was about the data and researched I gathered about some of the females in my school getting labels that don't describe them.

In my research, some of the things that have been done to raise awareness to my issue of labeling women included: customized T-shirts and a twitter page. The best way I thought would bring awareness to the issue of labeling women was to make T-shirts, and not just any T-shirts. The shirts had labels that certain students had chosen, and underneath the label there was the real definition of the word chosen. Following that, the hashtag: #disablelabels was written above the Twitter Page: @disablelabels. The whole point of it was to prove that you can't let labels define who people are. Most of the labels are used incorrectly.

Images: This is a picture of two students ( Alexa Lahr & Elias Sell) wearing T-shirts with the labels they had chosen to represent.

My opinion on making shirts and creating a Twitter page, is that I feel it's a great way to get the topic noticed. After all, most of the shirts that students had purchased the shirts (for $3.00) chose the bright colors. For example, neon pink, white, and even lime green. The goal of that was to catch someone's eyes (which it did). While my agent of change was going on, I realized that it caught people's eyes, but there had to be a lot of explaining to do when you have the label ¨whore¨ or ¨bitch¨ in big black letters written across your shirt.Even though a lot of people were in on this project, I achieved educating a lot of people about labeling women based off their physical features and/or personality.

Take a look at that shirt on the image above. A lot of people assumed that a human who has a skinny body is anorexic. They are wrong! That is just one of many examples of how people use words against others without knowing the real definition.

Image on the left: (Kara Lazorko & Kara Heenan)

I have change happen so far, because people are now educated on the real definitions of these labels mainly given to women. Doing this project, I felt very passionate about it, and I had a lot of hope that those who agree that labeling women is wrong, would support the project. I learned that not everyone is going to understand what I was doing for my project, but it never hurts to take a few minutes to explain it to them. Overall, the one thing I could have done better was managing my time better. Nothing is still left for others and I to make a change, but just make sure to continue to spread the word.

Check out my annotated bibliography
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unchain the Voice Blog Post 3

​For my  Agent Of Change , I did a presentation for 7th and 8th graders at Cornerstone Christian Academy. I spent lots of time preparing  for the presentation . I made sure that I included everything from my first blog post, to research .. to real life applications , and activities. I believed my Agent Of Change was great and fit my topic to the best of abilities because it the message was specifically targeted towards them . Also  i got two differnt outcomes from the grades. The 8th graders had more a narrow range that the negative term snitvhing was actually a term they used against each other to get them not to speak . Whe i had a potion for them to share out they laughed at some one's experience. So it just  shows how  un educated they were about the topic. I believe the 7th graders did a much greater job with it than 8th grade. I wish i would of done 6 grade too because it seemed like the younger the grade the more input they had and more of an open mind to the topic . I think as i did in my research and interviews that experience can corrupt the mind. It also helps get influeced by other people . The younger the mind the more vunerable it is to information .  My project was on the difference of snitching and speaking out . A lot of kids do not know what it is because they are uneducated on the topic but no one will teach tme because it seems irrelavent in the communities but it is very relavent because what happens is people are teaching kids not to tell the truth and not to speak up . So the brain becomes more corrupt when it does not know which way to go . 

I did not know these things before my final presentation at my old school . I only had a narrow way of thinking . I actually just did research on the computer but no website will hit exactly the root of the problem is . there is no website that describes how this topic tears friends, families, and communities apart. It is time to act now before it corrupts society as a whole . 

I liked my topic very much . It was very important to me because of personal experience and it was very unique but   there were other topics I would want to hit on even though this one was very interesting . i fi had picked another topic, I think that i could of made a bigger impact. This was a big impact but not as big as i wanted it to be . If I had to do this project all over again , I would do a different topic and make sure all my check points were in on time . I would also take many of the pictures on my phone so I would not have to wait or miss pictures because people forgot or did not do as I asked for the pictures. i belive it came out well though as a Semi- organized piroject. I do not think I will continue my  being an agent in this topic but maybe another , one that i could stick to or maybe not one but many. I will be an agent of change forever.

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Social Anxiety and Depression

Sydney Montgomery

Mrs. Giknis

English 1

For my You and the World project I wanted to raise awareness about Anxiety and Depression. In the beginning  I had it all planned out and knew exactly what I wanted to do. This was until I realized that what I had planned to do was entirely too much for what little time we had. This project was one of the most stressful things I have ever done. With this being something I am really passionate about I am very disappointed with how the entire project turned out. I was originally going to interview one kid from every grade and make a small documentary until people started backing out and I had to forget about the whole idea. I had my heart set on this documentary and all my ideas just came crashing down before my eyes. I then decided to do a survey and send it out the whole entire school. After I sent out the survey, I waited four days and did not get a single response. Time quickly started running out and I had to find a new idea. I then e-mailed individual kids and luckily got responses. For my Agent of Change, I finally decided to take pictures of people who answered the survey and take picture of them with a description underneath each photo about the teens have suffered with anxiety and or depression and how it has affected them. I’m still very far behind on my project even though I have my idea ready to go. At this point I have lost all motivation for this project. Even though I like my idea, it’s not something I’m very proud of. I feel I could have done so much better with getting the word across. The whole point of my original idea was so that it would be something someone couldn’t miss. Hopefully when I hang the pictures people actually take the time out of their day stop and read.


Jae Regino                 Jhazzelle Majarucon

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Glowing And Growing: Changing Domestic Violence One Nail at a Time

For my research, I found many reliable sources which gave me guidance during this project. I found numerous statistics and images, yet the only thing I wish I could have included are real life incidents. This is incredibly challenging to find, seeing as not many people are comfortable or in a safe enough environment to speak out about their personal experiences. I feel like it would have added another level of depth and feeling when thinking about domestic violence. I want to know more about how people get away with abusing and how they initiate the violence.

For my original research, I got to talk to a representative from the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence(NCADV). It was so amazing to talk to someone who’s job was centered around ending domestic abuse and I gained a lot of knowledge after speaking with them. I would have contacted them sooner though, because I got no luck at any other organization and would have reached out to the NCADV first!

My agent of change achieved my goal somewhat, but my hashtag I created didn’t get as many responses as I would have liked, but many people did paint their nails and drew X’s on their fingers. I’m not sure if it really had a value to everyone, because it was supposed to raise awareness and spark an interest in the participants to learn more about domestic violence. As I have stated in the past, education and speaking out about this sort of “hidden” issue is what will help us to come together and try and stop allowing this violence to continue in our communities. I hope it actually did accomplish raising awareness and proved to be more than just nail polish, and proved to make a difference, one coat at a time.

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Living Like an Impossible Tongue Twister...

I have conducted a lot of research about Social anxiety for my first two blog posts. In my first blog, I researched about what exactly social anxiety is, what social is like in other people's lives, how to cope with it, and the treatment. For my second blog post, I educated myself more about this issue and talked about it in this second blog but I also interviewed a friend of mine who suffered from social anxiety. I asked her questions such as how social anxiety affected her life and her responses were similar to the people who have social anxiety as well. I was surprised by how social anxiety not only affected her life but it also affected the real her. For my agent of change, I have decided to partner up with Jae Regino and TK Saccoh because not only did we use a similar issue but I believe that we all work very well as a group and it would help all of us in the last part of the project since we all have a good insight about this issue.

Currently, my partners and I are working on our website to educate the public about social anxiety. The point of this website is to also help the people who suffer from it with the help they need or an advice from us and we will respond to whatever they intend to share with us. After working on this website, we will share it on social medias and spread the word to other people about this. Our site is not a site where people just browse information but they could leave comments or share their stories. If you want to make a change in the society you could either donate or do a simple task both on this website. This task is called the "Tongue Twister Task". This is basically like a challenge where everyone are welcome to participate in. In order to participate, you make a video of yourself or whoever you're with and do a tongue twister and say it for three times. After doing the task, you nominate 2 or more people to do the same thing and to post it on social media such as: instagram, twitter, facebook, etc.

In the paragraph above this, I talked about this website where the "Tongue Twister Task" is located at. Like I said above, this task is an awareness to social anxiety. People with this condition avoid public and social situations and it's as if their lives are an impossible tongue twister. I am glad that we thought of doing the website and the tongue twister task for the agent of change because this will not only educate people about this big issue but it will also help people who suffer from social anxiety. My partners and I are pursuing the website and the tongue twister task for our agent of change. We started asking other people to do the task and it has been successful so far.

First, we asked one person if he could do the task while we videotape him. After he does the tongue twister he begins nominating a person and the person who was nominated nominates another person and it just keeps going… That is how the change started. At first, I felt uneasy about doing this project because the amount of things that we were supposed to do was intimidating but now that I know pretty much what I want to do, I feel comfortable in doing this project and I enjoy doing this very much even if it takes a lot of time and effort. What I learned about myself is that I tend to enjoy big projects as long as they involve other people not just the lessons we learn in class. What I learned about others is that they will support what you do just as long as it is for an important cause.

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These are the people who participated in the "Twister Task Challenge" and here is a link if you want to see them.

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This is the home page of our website with the quote from this website said by Thomas A. Richards,Ph. D., a psychologist and a director.

I feel like I could've done my research for my agent of change earlier because this part needs a lot of research and consumes time. Me and my partners still need to ask more people to join this awareness and the people who were nominated to do the task needs to record themselves. We just basically want this awareness to spread and let people know about social anxiety and after doing this awareness hopefully people learned something out of this project my partners and I did.

Here is my annotated bibliography!

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Public Speaking: Social Anxiety Change & Awareness

In my first blog, I conduct research online about social anxiety and discussed what I’ve gathered/learned from it. Then, I conducted research on my own concerning people that suffered from social anxiety disorder in my second blog. The society we currently live in is made by and for neurotypicals. Neurotypical means “neurologically typical,” referring to those who do not suffer or have not experienced any mental trauma or disorders. Deciding to make a change in society about social anxiety and/or public speaking has always been a goal for me. Currently, I’m working with Jhazzelle Majarucon and TK Saccoh for our Agent of Change. I’ve decided to form a team with them because I believe that we’ve never worked on anything school related. I want to be able to create a bond between us that not only involves friendship, but also work.

My previous research had gathered much needed information about those who need help and others who have those close to them suffer from social anxiety disorder. I reasoned with my group that we could create a change in the community through the Internet. We used the Internet at our disposal because of the fact that a lot of people use it everyday in a sense where they communicate through social media. Some people may be more comfortable sharing their stories in the Internet anonymously.

Our main goal to end social anxiety is to get people to speak up about their stories and situations. Many people are uncomfortable with sharing their information, but that’s alright. It’s a part of the process, and we understand. Although, even if they did tell us their stories, we wouldn’t just read it and try to deem it as a loss cause. My team and I would actually help them by communicating online because we want people to feel accepted in society. The society we live in isn’t just for neurotypicals, everyone can live in harmony even though they’ve faced problems in their lives.

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Figures 1 & 2: Here is the home page of our website. It links to our blog posts and information we’ve gathered about social anxiety.

Raising awareness and helping educate those who don’t know much about social anxiety disorder is a part of our Agent of Change as well. Not only do we want people to contribute by telling us about their stories, but we also want them to participate in the #ToungeTwisterTask. This challenge is created for those who want to raise awareness in social anxiety, which affects 1 in 8 people. By participating, people can make a change, using the hashtag and posting it on their social media networks. The idea is that people who suffer from these conditions avoid social and public situations. Their lives are compared to a tongue twister, confusing and hard to get out of the way. Participants in the challenge can post a short video of themselves reciting tongue twisters, and/or they can donate to the cause by the Andrew Kukes Foundation for Social Anxiety.

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Figures 3 & 4: This is the part of our website that includes the pages where you could share your own story of social anxiety. Or, to raise awareness for social anxiety by reciting a tongue twister.

So far, we've gathered several people (teachers, students, family members, etc.) to do the #TongueTwisterTask, and video taped them. We compiled them in a folder.

Click here to view my sources.

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Funding Philly

Making the Change to Schools

Blog 1  is all my initial research.  I found most of my sources during this time, and layed out all the basic information I could find on school funding, for example why we are missing funds, and I touched on how the more money spent on each student has a big impact on the quality of their education, and in turn how well they do,

In Blog 2 I found out why Philly schools have less money then other school districts even though they are smaller.  Also, I interviewed Mr. Lehmann, and asked him about how a lack of funding has affected our school, and what changes he thinks should be made.  

Right now, I am creating a poster to spread awareness about the current plan of the school district, to get rid of school nurses, like nurse Kelly who is our school nurse today.  Students already need more medical attention, and throwing in someone who we won’t even manage is not the way to go.  My poster tells people what to do to spread awareness, as well as gives a very small summary on some the key points on my topic, which is the problem with school funding.   


Before I found out about the recent events going on with school nurses, I was trying to get in contact with an already established organization, so I would not have to start from scratch.  If I had contacted multiple organization, and gave myself more time, I might have been able to get a hold of one, and do some work there.   However, I am really enjoying the poster idea a lot more than I would have, if I had worked with an organization, and probably just done boring paperwork, and not feel as accomplished.  Now, with my posters, I can make a change in my own school, by putting them up all around.  I am glad we did this project, because it’s one of the onlt things we have done all year that will truly affect anything beyond the information learned in the project.  It gave us a lot of freedom, and we get to see our work accomplish something hopefully.  

Annotated Bibliography



Christian McCormac

Ms. Giknis

English (X Band)

29, May 2015

As you can tell from my first and second blog post my topic is airport security. Specifically how Airport security guards abuse their power. My first blog post showed that I feel strongly about this topic because whenever I personally go through a scanner I feel as though my privacy is being invaded. For my second blog post I found a former airport security guard and asked him to answer some questions I had. After he answered my questions I learned that some airport security guards also believe that by doing there job they are invading the personal space of others. This led me to decide to make posters for my agent of change. These posters were simple and educated the public on the topic of how airport security guards have too much power.

As I was researching my topic I found numerous websites like this one that informed the general public on how airport security guards have too much power.This showed me that my topic was a major problem yet for some reason it isn't talked about a lot. After I realized this I decided that making flyers would be the best form of action to take.

As I was passing out the flyers some people started talking to me about how they don't enjoy going through scanners because ¨they leave little to the imagination¨. When I thought about this comment I realized the main problem. The airport security guard that I interviewed did not like doing his job. Therefore it is possible that the source of the problem if not airport security guards but the actual government. After further research I learned that the TSA is the one that comes up with these rules and regulations. They are the ones that come up with these rules and regulations that lead to people feeling as though there personal space has been invaded.

Throughout the timeframe in which I have been doing this project I feel like I have done a good job of educating the public on airport security. At first I thought that when I was passing out the flyers people would simply just throw them away, but after I had that small discussion with the man I realized that I'm not the only one that feels so strongly about this topic. Although I have not made a world changing effect on the world, I feel like I have successfully educated the general public on the general difference between safety and harassment. I feel like I have paved a good road for me to do something along these lines for my capstone.

Here is my annotated bibliography.
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Screens and teens glows and grows

​So for my project one thing that was awesome in the research was that I was able to find so much information and cites that were about my topic.  What that meant was that I had more cites to source and to summarize in my annotated bibliography.  I had a lot of fun collecting the information in my annotated bibliography because I am really interested in my topic how screens affect teens mainly because I myself am a teen.  I want to know more about gorilla glass and how it's made and how is it the strongest glass.  Also I wish I had found how phones and cameras were made because since I am a video and photographer I am interested in that.

In the original research it was quite tricky to get a hold of Jeff Adams the google guy who if I really needed him to give me the information I could have gone over to his house because he lives a few blocks away from me so I could have walked.  But he responded within the deadline but barely so if I were to do it again I would ask a lot earlier to give him time to respond and give me time to possibly go to his house.  When I did get a hold of him he gave me a lot of valuable information that only a google employee would know such as whether they get breaks from their screens to optimize work time the answer yes.    

The Agent Of Change went well in my mind so far it hasn't gotten many views only views from me however when something goes on youtube it is there forever so there is no saying when one person sees it then shares it and other people see and who knows I could get internet famous but that probably won't happen, and I am happy with 4 or 5 views.  If other people do see it I hope they learn about the problems I adress in the video and don't just watch it cause they can.  I hope to make more videos like that to raise awareness of social problems.

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Drug brochure

For the ¨You and the world¨ project, My issue around the world is drug abuse around the United States.  For my agent of change , I made a brochure for teachers and students at Science Leadership Academy. The brochure consisted of facts about drugs and tips you should take if someone around you, or maybe even you are experiencing an addiction to drugs. Other than my brochure, there are many rehab centers near your neighborhood  who are looking for people who are addicted to drug, so they can get help as soon as possible. In my last two blog post, I talked about how the United States as a whole is affected by drugs and how us as citizens should take awareness of this major issue.

My opinion on drugs abuse is that I think that it is unfair that when the topic of drug abuse comes up, people first thought is adults. I feel as though older generations needs to pay more attention to teens who are a risk of becoming addicted to drugs. Today, the rate of teens who are using drugs have increased insanely because older generations are not paying any attention to their children and young people. I feel as though there needs to be a drug programs just for teens because if a teen is in a room with all adults it creates an uncomfortable environment. Me being a teen, I know that I would feel more comfortable with people who have things in common with me. Although there are websites on the internet about steps to take on what to do if your are experiencing addiction, We need something to do after we finish all these complicated steps. We need something that teens can rely on.

So far during this ¨You and the world¨, I have talked to my friends about using drugs on the daily. Also, I became more aware of how many people are using drugs, tobacco, or even alcohol in my neighborhood.  In addition, I have also tried to persuade a few friends of mind to stop using drugs, Some tended to get upset, but I don't mean to make them upset; I want them to know what they are doing to their bodies and the people around them.  Here's a link to my brochure if you or anyone around you are affected by drugs.

This rough photo above is a preview on of my drug brochure. If you or someone near you is experiencing drug abuse and addiction please use this information here above.  You may also find a few inside Ms. Giorgio's room or with the school counselor. If you live in or near the area of southwest, they have them inside the SouthWest Police Athletic League on 58th and Elmwood.


Magnífica casa Diseñado por Tajnia y Syeda

Nuestra casa es una casa de dos pisos en la ciudad de Filadelfia, que es moderno y muy grande. Tiene un interior sencillo que contiene tres dormitorios, una sala de estar, comedor, cocina, garaje, almacén, una habitación, tres baños, habitación familiar/biblioteca y patio. Es en la ciudad con muchas ventanas para disfrutar de la vista. Dentro de las paredes están pintadas de colores vibrantes y ligeros, con suelos de baldosas. Algunas de las habitaciones son sencillas y modernas y las habitaciones y el patio trasero son muy elegantes. Es una casa muy grande que es muy amplia, con muchas ventajas para disfrutar.

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"Hands Up!, Guns Downs!"

With this sustained journey in finishing up my You and the World Project, I am closing this portion of the project on what I wanted to do for my Agent of Change piece. With doing my recent blog post, I did my own research and learned things about certain parts in Philadelphia that I did not know even existed which is why in my first blog post I was just so new to the project. But from then, it’s been a whole different spin on the information I now know. With thinking about doing my Agent of Change, I wanted to find a way for people to recognize the horrifying murders in Philadelphia caused by guns. With putting a little more depth into this project, recently today there was a march on Woodcrest Avenue in Philadelphia. The people were marching and singing. They held a sign saying “Taking Action To End Gun Violence” and marched on the site where a man was gunned down and killed in a robbery.  What they wanted people to take from this march was to use the gun related murder to stop other losses. How are we as the city of Philadelphia going to stop the shootings in our very own streets? With observing all of resources and space I had, I thought that it would be helpful to make SLA aware of this serious situation. With the help of my friend Ella who has a similar project as mine, we made an infographic  to show different statistics and facts about gun violence with teens and Philadelphia. We printed about 50 posters with this reliable information and put them all around SLA.

This is a picture of one the posters on a wall placed around the school!

With making an end to this project, I have learned a lot about gun violence and all of the shootings that happen in Philadelphia. After knowing  about a situation that triggers my mind, I am happy I was able to make a small contribution to this problem. This is something that I can relate to personally and many others can too. I hope people can see and take away from this project the collective need for us to gun violence..  I hope people will stop and take the time to read the posters and be aware of what is going on in the city they live in. This is nothing to be played around with. Everyone deserves to be safe and feel comfortable in the area they live in. After doing this project, I know that I can make my voice heard and help to be one of many advocates needed to end gun violence. I would love to do more outside of this project to gain other people’s attention to go along with me to say no to guns. But overall, I was happy to do this project and what I accomplished. I think this is something that everyone that everyone can see as a problem in our city . It is my hope that we will put our hands up together on this issue so that people will put their guns down. So I close this to say, do you want to live in Philadelphia or KIlladelphia?

For my annotated bibliography, click here!