(wow) Words Of Wonders Level 840 Answers – For the Spring 2020 student writing competition, we invited students to participate in the JA! article Alicia Garza: How to Prepare for 2020 by Kate Werning. Alicia Garza, co-founder of #BlackLivesMatter, offered this advice: “Clarity in the chaos can help us find direction when everything around us seems unstable.” Many things can keep students up at night or make them anxious. Students wrote about what their wildest dreams could accomplish for themselves or for this country, and the steps they would take to make that vision a reality.
Out of hundreds of essays submitted, these seven were chosen as winners. Be sure to read the author’s responses to the winning essays and the literary gems that caught our attention.
(wow) Words Of Wonders Level 840 Answers
In the Irresistible podcast, you’ll hear four students read their winning essays. Get ready to be inspired! Thanks to writer, founder and director of Irresistible, Kate Werning, for sharing these powerful stories.
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I’ve never really looked at long-term goals for myself, as Alicia Garza suggests at YES! article How to Prepare for 2020 by Kate Werning. In addition to my goal of achieving Eagle Scout before I turn 18, I aim to live one day at a time. I’m 13 years old, so shouldn’t I be a kid? Isn’t planning goals and planning for the future done by adults? To be honest, when I read the article and heard what it was about, I held back like a clam. Sharing dreams about how I can make a positive difference in the world makes me uncomfortable. Why should I be criticized like this, especially in high school? While I would like to see improvements to mitigate the effects of climate change and wealth inequality, I cannot imagine the impact on these issues now.
It made me wonder why I didn’t think more about my ability to influence the future in a way that made things possible. What made me narrow my eyes and start looking down instead of seeing my potential? I thought I couldn’t change the world if I could barely influence myself. If you’re always working hard to fit into the world by other people’s standards, how do you have time to dream about your possibilities? It made me ask, “When did I let this box contain me?” When I realized that I was not taken for myself.
When I was young, I had a huge personality that was incredible. I was a giant, eternal engine, throwing questions, longing for answers, always moving. However, after years of schooling, my personality disappeared and the bike followed. Going from storm to summer breeze, my engine could barely push the paper. Why did this happen? I lowered my voice so I wouldn’t be heard that I was being too loud. I turned off the engine so I wouldn’t be told to stop. I spoke less so that I would not be constantly asked to stop talking and not interrupted.
After spending so much energy trying to shrink my personality, I barely had time to look up and think about what I wanted to do. How can I raise my eyes again and see the world? I believe this assignment has given me the opportunity to do just that. As I unfold the past, loosen the ladder, and remember the moments that calmed and restrained me, stole my voice and seized my engine, I am determined to recreate what I lost. I am slowly rebuilding my engine into an impenetrable hurricane that will break out of the box that has bound me. My opinion will not be hidden from others.
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When I lift my head, I start with small things and familiar spaces. For me, they work with things that directly concern me, like school and things I like to do outside of school. My father and I will build a forge in our yard to do blacksmithing together. I will continue to improve my archery skills. I dust the pipe and give myself a chance to hit the high notes. I want to become a Life Scout to take one step closer to being an Eagle Scout. By keeping my head up and moving forward with a plan, I no longer need to be the kid who has it all figured out.
By becoming a better me now, at the age of thirteen, I will be a better person who can perhaps influence climate change and build a fairer wealth distribution system when I am older.
Theo Cooksey, an eighth-grader from Lynnwood, Washington, is an avid reader and video gamer. Theo plays the euphonium and trumpet and is an expert on the Star Wars movies and music. During the COVID-19 quarantine, he learns to bake and builds a blacksmith shop.
Maybe we were trees once. Rainforests of friendly monsters scratching the sky, communicating and reaching for the sun. Perhaps the roots stretched where we couldn’t see them, connecting and spreading across the world like telephone lines across our continent. But somehow, even though the earth stayed warm and rain fell on our land, we evolved from trees to flowers. Flowers are lonely in our own empty fields, roots too short to reach anything.
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In a high school of over 1,000 students, I notice how we pass each other on the street, in the hallway, happy when our eyes meet for a moment, when our hearts touch. We are isolated. While I hope for a world where no one goes hungry, where there is no violence, where rivers breathe cold, pure life, and wild creatures run through lush green forests, I hope above all for a world where we can communicate. A world where America’s youth don’t have to think about whether it’s better to live in the light or commit suicide in the dark.
My wildest dream for this nation is for people to reach out to those who are suffering, to America’s youth, whose second leading cause of death is suicide. Not so long ago, I was approached by a friend who was trying to end his life by suicide; she locked herself in a bathroom filled with poisonous gas, waiting for her breath to soften and fade like a candle in the wind. We were always distant, but she decided to share her secret with me because she had no one else to share it with.
According to the Jason Foundation, 3,069 high school students in the United States attempt suicide every day. Of this group, four out of five have clear signs of depression. Why do so many signals, like drug use, sleep deprivation, or severe mood swings, go undetected? The answer is isolation. People are so separated from each other that the chances of being discovered are almost impossible. Although many try to attribute teen suicide to pressures to succeed both academically and socially, overcoming these obstacles may be easier than it seems. It is easier if students have someone to support them in a difficult moment.
Many teenagers who commit suicide belong to healthy families and are surrounded by friends, but feel unable to share their problems with them. They fear that it will be a burden to those they care about, and so they remain silent. Teenagers allow themselves to collect dangerous secrets like drops of water in a jar. One day this jar reaches its capacity, trouble overcomes them, and they themselves give up. Kate Werning has YES! In How to Prepare for 2020, Alicia Garza explains that “Clarity in chaos can help us find direction when everything around us seems unstable.” My dream is for our society to teach struggling teenagers to find that clarity so that we can help them grow on the path to success.
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In today’s society, there are many people who shame others for attempting suicide. They consider them restless and accuse them of being too weak to cope with life’s challenges. To fight suicide, I will do the opposite. I will contact my colleagues and cheer them up. I will try to comfort those who need comfort. For in an ever-changing world of dire dangers and darkness, we are to be trees with roots bound together in harmonious peace. We must support each other in the new decade by stepping out of the shadows into the sun.
Kyra Walter is a sophomore at Mamaroneck High School in New York City. Kira writes for the school newspaper and plays on the varsity tennis team. She has enjoyed studying classical piano since the age of five, and volunteers at the American Legion in her spare time. When she grows up, Kyra hopes to pursue her passion for writing.
“You sound like a white girl.” “Now you’re an American kid.” “Wow, you actually speak very good English.” – Did you live in a tree?
As a Ghanaian immigrant living in the US, I have heard it all. The statements of my own relatives back home and the friends I have brought to this strange land serve as reminders that there really is no