Linden McKinley Talent Show

The excitement is bouncing off the walls of our new school. The whispers of children practicing their acts while they pretend to work on in-class assignments. The proud statements of the school as they welcome us with open arms to create a positive view of the school. The encouraging cheers from classmates as the students admit they are performing in our Talent Show.

This is an event you cannot miss.

On Thursday, February 9th at 6 pm, Linden-McKinley STEM Academy located on 1320 Duxberry Ave, Columbus, OH, 43211.  We will be hosting a Talent Show showcasing our 7th, 8th and 9th graders. Lights to decorations, ushers to stage crew, judges to emcees to singers, dancers, and actors, the kids are huge part of everything. Our event will also be showcasing a bit of talent from our Corps. The event will be held in the Cafeteria of the high school.

We hope you are able to join us!



By: Melissa Santiago

 Week 1 in schools: check.  I’m officially in love with Weinland Park Elementary and its entire student body.  From the clingy kindergarteners to the attitude-infused fifth graders, every day I walk through the halls I become more attached. My absolute favorite part of each day though is clearly recess. You might think it’s because I get a break from the frustrations of tutoring or because it’s just plain fun, but there’s a lot more to it than that.

BOOP. That’s the sound of the recess bell in case you were wondering.   If you didn’t recognize it, that’s probably because you’re about my age or older and when you were in school the bell was an actual bell that rang and not an electronic beeping noise over an intercom…but anyway, I digress. This week I went to recess 19 times (yes, 19 times) and these are some of my observations.

Recess is a time for crying…because you got stung by a bee, because your best friend was talking about you behind your back, because you fell off the monkey bars, or because you have to sit on the wall and watch everybody else play in recess since you didn’t turn in your math homework…again.

Recess is for bending rules…because how can you say no to a first grader who’s begging you to throw them the ball but doesn’t have a corner in four square?

Recess is for laughing…because Miss Patrice leads “get loose”, a famous City Year icebreaker, to save a City Year from a tickle attack, because you’re the victim of that tickle attack, or because you’re the one doing the tickling…

Looking at the basketball courts will tell you that it’s the boys’ territory, unless you reveal to them you went to college with Michael Jordan (and conveniently left out the 30 year time gap).

The monkey bars are for literally and figuratively being lifted up by friends. And for hanging upside down by tiny legs and having conversations, defying some gravitational laws and never falling down.  Lets not forget making new friends, especially ones who speak your first language, and especially when less than a handful of other students in the entire school speak that language or share your culture.

Recess’s grassy field is for doing backflips or arguing with 6 year olds over whether or not girls should be allowed to play in the NFL.  It’s for using kickball to unite the entire class of fifth graders who were calling each other names one minute and cheering for each other the next.  It is also for seeing a different side of people- the student who led a revolt against the substitute teacher in reading this morning now leads his classmates in a strategic kickball play.

As soon as recess starts I have at least 10 little arms pulling me in different directions, several different voices vying for my attention on all parts of the playground.  I’ve realized that no matter how much I complain to my team about how exhausting it is to do recess thrice in a day, I wouldn’t have it any other way.  19 recesses has shown me that my impact on the students outside of the classroom is just as important as how I impact them inside the classroom.   What happens at recess doesn’t stay at recess, but reveals more about a kid than an entire day in the classroom with him or her.  I can honestly say I’m looking forward to the hundreds more recess bells I’ll hear this year and getting to know every student through the events that follow each bell.

Shoe Me

By: Christine Olding

Upon starting City Year, I was unsure exactly how I would adapt to wearing khakis, Timberlands, a City Year polo or button down and a black belt. However, once I put on that uniform, something within me felt different. It may sound trite and cliché, but it is the truth. To better explain exactly my feelings, I feel it is only fair to allow someone else explain it, someone who could explain it better than me, my Timberlands.

The freshly cut grass sticks to me as I walk down the rough sidewalks. The sounds of buses and cars can be heard as I make my way to my final destination. I shuffle along and finally enter the door way, Hamilton STEM Academy is my new home. I briskly pace through the halls and the loud voices of children can be heard from all directions.  I make my way back outside and see my friend, Steve’s Timberlands neatly laced on the same ground as me. We chat for a bit about how excited each of us is to finally be there. The first group of kids can be seen off in the distance.  Now is my time to shine, I thought.  A group of rowdy children approached me, a few angry, a few smiling, each with something to bring to the school.  Hugs could be felt as they saw the familiarity that lied within my brown leather casing.  To be honest, I was worried how well I’d fit in here, but upon hearing, “City Year is back!” I knew I would be just fine.  My day flew by me. Filled with questions of past Corps Members and why I looked like a man,” Why are you wearing man boots?”, allowed my owner and I to get a better feel for what exactly was ahead for us this year.  I learned a lot that first day.  How quickly people can become attached and how needed I truly was in this school.  After day two,  I was worn and torn with clear scuff marks covering the majority of my body.  I had already accumulated dozens of stories from what children had told us and what they had said,  some were funny and some were sad. I learned a few valuable lessons too,  for instance, hula hoops are never a good idea at recess. Who would’ve thought they could be so dangerous? I also learned to stay on the purple line and to be silent in the halls. We packed up our bag and headed out the doors for the weekend. Our first week was complete. Though I may look out of place and I sure do weigh a lot, I am a staple in the lives of the children that roam these halls.

I hope that my Timberland’s conveyed the life we lead for the past week. Though, I was hesitant at first when I put on those iconic brown boots, I now know that without them, City Year and I would not be the same.