Tuesday, September 27, 2016

The Construction of Adolescence

The vocabulary words that I either did not understand or thought were a large part of the reading were...
theoretical thinking
theoretical imagination
construction of adolescence
proximal development
meeting of the minds
interpsychological development
zone of proximal development
reciprocal transformation
applied developmentalists

When thinking about who coauthored my "story" I do not like about when I was young, mainly because when I was young I was just going with the flow and did not have to make important decisions. The moment when I started making important decisions is when I believe this coauthoring came into play. People from my past may have taking a part on this coauthoring only because what they have said or done resinated with me to influence my decisions now. If I were to pick one person that overall "coauthored" my life is my mom. I do not believe there was a teacher that influenced my life up until high school. My mom was and is a huge part of my life and my decision making throughout my younger life. My mom was my go to person for any problems that would arise and as I grew older I went to her less and less but she was always there. My mom is such a strong woman who has gone through so much including cutting off half her side of the family due to the fact that no one could own up to their own problems and blamed her and my family. She nor my family needed the stress so she thought this was the best option.

Once I got to my junior year of high school I met the teacher that "coauthored" my "story". I met Mr. Jason Marzini through a Digital Media class at Woonsocket Career and Technical school. Not only did Mr. Marzini advocate for me to go to Rwanda, Africa but he also had my back all throughout high school. I considered Marzini as one of my best friends because his classroom was not only a place of learning but a no judgement zone. Marzini always had my back since the day I started in his class even when people were putting more stress on me; he brought these people together and went straight to the source of the problem. He was like a second dad to me because of this.

Through this I have learned to advocate for myself no matter the situation. Also I can not let the "toxic" individuals control my life. I have learned these very important life lessons from these two people.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Are You Color Blind Or Color Brave?

I would just like to start off with saying how Mellody Hobson kept my attention throughout the presentation. She also brought attention to a sensitive topic in the most light hearted way possible, bringing in her own story. When Hobson stated that she was mistaken for kitchen help I was shocked, I am sure that she had several stories in which she was treated differently because of her race but this story is what hit the hardest. It is crazy how people can think that just because of her race that she is not a successful woman and that she is kitchen help. She spoke about invisibility as how America is color blind. Color blindness in America is when people ignore the fact that there are different races in America. America chooses to treat races as if they are not there, we choose to see people not as they are but how the bias wants us to treat them. Hobson wants us to be color brave, she recommends that we recognize all race, recognize the racism and try to do something to change a person's way of thinking in order to change this racism. 
As Hobson said we need to become "comfortable being uncomfortable" because we as a country need to accept others no matter their race. YIA is a place where youth can meet with peers and talk so no one feels the invisibility factor. I have felt the invisibility that Hobson talked about, not exactly in the same manner. Due to how long it takes me to come out of my shell, I feel invisible at the beginning of any relationship weather it is professional or not. Creating a safe space for children to express themselves is what YIA does.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

In A World Where Youth Hold The Power....

 How was your youth?

As a child I went through to catholic school from kindergarten through middle school. Once I hit high school I decided for myself to go to a public school, I had a better high school experience than some people and the transition did not affect me. When I looked around me in this big school that one grade was bigger than the previous school I came from it was a rough first day going from class to class not knowing much but that was the worst of my experience. I joined sports and made friends which made it even better. Overall, I had a decent high school experience but with such a huge school there was some students that did not have such an experience. I had family in the same school as I was, eventually I graduated and they did not. This is where I relate to the article In a World Where Youth Hold The Power.
That's me the day of graduation. (I had a major headache at graduation)
Photo: http://patch.com/rhode-island/woonsocket/villa-novan-grads-celebrate-four-years-of-hard-work

I was fortunate to be able to graduate within the four year span. When reading the article there were a couple statements that really stuck to me. Nwando Ofokansi said it well when she stated in the article, "YIA is where you realize that youth have much more power than we're given credit for". At the end of my high school career during the college application process I was told to apply for CCRI because 'I had a better chance getting in there than my other choices'. This is where I completely agree with Nwando's statement if life was determined on test scores and classes we would all be not given enough credit for what we can actually do. I also agree with Giovanni's opinion on schools and teachers, "Schools don't seem to grasp this yet (leading with students rather than being the boss of students). Teachers tell you what to think and never actually ask what you need or encourage critical thinking". In school most of the time its either you agree with your teacher or you are wrong. Teachers need to provide a safe environment for students to speak their mind and have a creative environment.
The senior class started in August with about 350 graduates, 
when June came around only 276 actually graduated.
Article: http://read.uberflip.com/i/138248-the-valley-breeze-woonsocket-north-smithfield-6-20-13/9 
The Woonsocket High 2013 graduating class started out with about 350 students and by June dropped to 276 students graduating. There were many factors in this equation but if students were given the support needed for some to pass classes the graduating class may have been larger. Not everyone needs the extra support or will even accept it but having teachers available to help students learn the way they learn best would help some students feel more comfortable in class and in school. This is where the YIA model of notion (leading with..) could have been a helpful resource if it was available in other communities. 

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Youth Work Is...

Youth Work

Youth work is an educational practice

From the reading it suggests that we "educate students where they are at instead of using pre-determined learning outcomes and didactic teaching methods". Youth workers are supposed to make the youth feel comfortable in everything they do through education and daily life. Youth workers make a comfortable and creative environment for all youth so that the youth have optimal creativity and communication with others. There has been many occasions during my youth where there was not a creative environment which is why when I am working with youth I try to give them the most comfortable environment in order for them to feel themselves and be creative.

Youth work is a social practice

Social practice is focused around making youth comfortable with their social surroundings. Youth should be able to test their values, attitudes and behaviors in a social environment with other youth that are learning. Youth workers provide an appropriate social environment for the youth to 'test the waters' of their life. Youth workers expose youth to different groups or work through existing circumstances. At a young age I was exposed to different people from different backgrounds in school. There is more exposure now to many different people and ethnicity in school than when I was in school.

Youth workers actively challenge inequality and work towards social justice

We all know about anti-bullying this is the stand point that an youth worker should stand by. Every youth is equal no matter where they come from. Each youth deserves to be understood and empowered to fight against oppression in a respective manner. During my high school career I traveled to Rwanda, Africa on a mission trip but not only to give the less fortunate something but to also learn about their forgiveness process that each citizen had to go through when the genocide happened.

Young people choose to be involved

The key to teach the youth is to have them engaged in everything you do. One way to do this is to do make the environment around them youth friendly and to have a youth worker that is engaged in the setting. Youth workers should be engaged with the environment in order to help the youth feel comfortable. When the youth feels comfortable they will be able to bring out more of the previous youth work characteristics. I was the type that was always involved with peer activities while doing this I had friends who weren't so involved and I invited her to play and that helped her get involved with her peers.

Youth work seeks to strengthen the voice and influence of young people

When youth speak up they seem to be overlooked most of the time. Youth should not feel this way ever, youth works should make an environment where youth can speak their mind without having to feel suppressed. During youth development 250 we visited Central Falls, these youth were not afraid to speak their mind. Every youth in that group felt so deeply about their surroundings that they felt they could say and do what every they felt needed within a respectful manner.

Youth work is a welfare practice

Youth workers need to make the environment best for the youth, each voice needs to be heard. A youth worker should always want the best for the youth that come in their place of work. Youth workers use the welfare practice by keeping the stable and creative environment around them in order to keep them engaged. Each youth is different and each youth becomes creative in different environment so some youth might over come others and that is when the youth workers need to take control and change the activity slightly. When in school there were many instances where the classroom may have gotten out of hand and if the teacher were to have used the welfare practice I believe that the classroom environment would have been better for all students.

Youth work works with young people 'holistically'

When youth has a positive support system and positive influences they are known to do better overall. As a youth worker we are not only a teacher or a mentor but we are a positive influence on the youth around us. We must engage and support the youth around us so they can thrive and turn negative influences around. As a child I tried to help my peers become comfortable with the others. Sometimes this worked and sometimes it failed but I know I was a good support system for one of my friends that is still my friend to this day. 

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Who Am I? I Am...

Consciously living with a chronic illness since September 2015.
My Chronic Illness: Hypothyroidism

In a relationship with my boyfriend of almost three years.

A photography enthusiast.

The type to go to another country to help other people (Rwanda, Africa).
Hello, my name is Andrea Moyen. I am a student at Rhode Island College in the Youth Development Program and I am in my fourth and hopefully final year. I am an active person in my local athletic community. Over the summer of this year I mostly babysat two girls and I took two summer classes. When I am not in class I am either working, helping remodel my families home or I am doing homework.