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April  11

Wanted: Junior Picassos

Yardschool_children Kids have four days left to register for a cool outdoor art contest.  The Montclair Art Museum is looking for artists (grades 2-8) to get out and paint a picture of Spring on store windows around town.  MAM provides paint and brushes; painters will get a 24"x36” window space. Grand prize is a two week session at the Yard School of Art at the museum. Pick up a registration form at the Museum, and send in by April 14.   

MAM is also looking for businesses who would like to have their windows decorated. This event is scheduled for Saturday, May 6. For information: 973-746-5555 x259

April 11, 2006 in Those Crazy Kids | Permalink | Comments (7)

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March  17

They're Baa-aack!


Remember last year's controversial tsunami-cookie-sending Brownie troop whose humanitarian gesture rocked Baristaville? The girls of Troop 239 are on-site tomorrow at Lackawanna Plaza, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. selling their last cases of Samoas, Do-Si-Dos, Thins Mints, and ...can you name the rest?

Last year, the cookies never made it to the Tsunami survivors, instead the troop sent money to the Red Cross. This year's profits will go to local charities.  Any other girl scouts holding a booth sale this weekend, feel free to post here.

March 17, 2006 in Those Crazy Kids | Permalink | Comments (12)

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March   4

Good With Their Hands


Here's an extracurricular that not everyone will have on their college application. From the Star Ledger, Bloomfield kids are stacking the odds in their favor...

For the past few months sport stacking, a race to see how fast pupils can manipulate the plastic cups, has been a teacher- and parent-sanctioned obsession for the fourth-graders in Bloomfield's Demarest School. Yesterday's weekly relay gave them a chance to show off their skill. The school is one of a growing number around the world using sport -- or cup -- stacking to improve hand-eye coordination, concentration and logic.

"When they first told me about it I said if you are going to spend $250 on cups, buy me some books. Now I love everything about it," said Karen Magliacano as she watched her pupils crawl, run and slide across the gym floor.

If you want to learn how to speed stack, click here. Or watch the video above. And does anyone else see this evolving into some kind of strange drinking game down the road...

March 4, 2006 in Those Crazy Kids | Permalink | Comments (2)

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February  24

The Kids Are Alright

CafeThe Bloomfield Avenue Café and Stage,  opened about four years ago, really rounds out the club scene in Montclair.  This one favors a culture of spunky punky music/ambiance/dance  for teens and twenty  somethings. Nothing like Diva Lounge or the soon to open Red Cheetah, also on Bloomfield Avenue.  No way.  Ed Beeson, of  North Jersey Media Group calls it "one of New Jersey's most popular venues for underground punk and hardcore music." It’s a no dress, no drugs, no drink(alcohol), sweat-and-scream-til-ya-drop kind of place. 

"It's like a godsend to have this in our town," said Jeffrey Knoblauch, 19, of Montclair. With it, the local punk scene has a space to call home. Without it, the scene would drift from basement to basement, from rented hall to rented hall. It would encounter those who don't understand its sound, its look, it thrashing dance, its appeal.

I't's grungy, it's steamy. And the more unbearably hot it is inside, the cooler you are for withstanding it.  And the music – touring bands with names like Our Dying Souls,  Death Metal, Through the Eyes of the Dead, and (my favorite) Despised Icon (death imagery is so over-rated) are drawing in SRO crowds of kids.  And if you can get in, you better stay in – it’s a full night comittment – until 11 p.m.  Because if you want out (some fresh air, maybe?) read the sign: BY ORDER OF MONTCLAIR POLICE: NO RE-ENTRY.  It’s the town’s way of keeping loitering to a minimum, and keeping all the sweaty, body slamming, song screaming, soda drinking kids under raps...Wonder if they do birthday parties?

February 24, 2006 in Those Crazy Kids | Permalink | Comments (20)

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February  14

Sex Games

Ok, so far we've covered gay marriage, Valentine's Day disasters, and gas-producing chocolate. We're having so much fun, why not introduce another twist on the old Feb. 14 theme: sexually-transmitted disease? Oops, we mean, STD games.

We hear that the book used for sex ed in Glen Ridge High School is basically just pro-abstinence. But those forward-thinking educators aren't sticking with the text. This is what passes for dinner conversation these days if you have teenagers.

Child One: So we played this game, the teacher puts a little bit of honey on somebody's hand and everybody walks around and shakes hands, and pretty soon, everybody's got honey on their hands, and so we learn that's how disease spreads. Of course if you wear rubber gloves, you don't get honey on your hands.

Child Two: We played a game like that too! The teacher has an Oreo cookie. She kind of breathes on it, then passes it around to everyone in the class, and everybody breathes their germs on it, and when it finally comes back, she says, "Who wants to eat this cookie?" Nobody wants to. Then she takes another Oreo, which nobody has breathed on, and she puts both cookies behind her back. Then she takes both cookies and puts them in front of her. "Anybody want to eat either of these cookies?" The point is you can't tell which one has the germs.

February 14, 2006 in Those Crazy Kids | Permalink | Comments (36)

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September  16

Future Post Reporters

Ahhh...to be back at a school newspaper. In the Caldwells, kids fought for their right to talk sex and won. From today's Star Ledger...

Two articles about teen sexual attitudes and experiences will be published in the James Caldwell High School newspaper next month, after an agreement was reached between the school district and the American Civil Liberties Union.

Students from the staff of the high school newspaper, The Caldron, fought their principal's decision in April not to allow an article titled "Let's Talk About Sex" and a second story about sexual myths to be published in the school newspaper.

The school did score some editing privileges, namely getting students to remove some of the more graphic terminology from the articles.

Among the changes drafted in the settlement is that students will take out the phrases "oral sex" and "pulling out" and clarify the number of students that were interviewed for the articles.

However, she said the school board will consider drafting rules to govern student publications, but does not want them to be so stringent that it inhibits good journalism.

And just so we're clear kids -- Ann Landers always said you can get pregnant even if someone "pulls out." Sadly, that's where I got my sex ed from; perhaps the Caldwell kids will learn better. Because we all know where heavy necking and petting leads to...

September 16, 2005 in Those Crazy Kids | Permalink | Comments (10)

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September  14

Gotta Dance!

Chicks dig guys who can dance. It's a fact. We've just learned that Sharon Miller Academy for Performing Arts is finally offering hip-hop classes for younger boys (ages 5-7). Only a few have signed up (my loose-limbed boy soon to be among the other trailblazers), but we'd like to see the class fill out and get funky. If you're interested in signing up and ensuring that your son, whether he's got a natural groove or two left feet, will go on to be a chick magnet for years to come, it's Tuesdays from 4:30 to 5:30.   

September 14, 2005 in Those Crazy Kids | Permalink | Comments (8)

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August  24

The Glen Ridge Diaries

The not-so-secret lives of Glen Ridge students detailed in online journals makes news again in the Star Ledger.

"Students are posting personal information and pictures which clearly show these students involved in various inappropriate and occasionally illegal activities," the letter signed by the Glen Ridge schools' administrative team said. "There are many references to alcohol and drug use, as well as strong sexual content."

Daniel Fishbein, who as school superintendent signed off on a letter to parents on the dangers of online journals, or blogs, has reaffirmed the need for the mailing.

"Hopefully, other districts will do the same," Fishbein said at Monday night's school-board meeting.

The letter also said the detailed web journals open the children to unwanted contacts from internet predators.

Remember being a kid and being afraid to keep a journal for fear your parents would read it and discover what you were actually doing? Maybe that was just me. Meanwhile, the letter recommends more parental oversight. From anonymous e-mails directing us to some of the more picture-heavy journals, we're guessing that train left the station already.

August 24, 2005 in Those Crazy Kids | Permalink | Comments (16)

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August  16

Glen Ridge Schools Discover Student Blogging

(...and don't like it.)

Sad Parents of Glen Ridge high school students got a letter from "the Administrative Team" this past week, warning of the dangers of those proliferating teenage myspace and xanga sites. The letter warns, "Students are posting personal information and pictures which clearly show these students involved in various inappropriate and occasionally illegal activities. There are many references to alcohol and drug use, as well as, strong sexual content." The letter also warns that personal information and pictures make teens "potential targets" for predators, and suggest parents place the home computer "in a public area in your house."

Happy Actually, it sounds a lot like teenagers being teenagers. And we daresay computers are not nearly as potentially dangerous as that modern contraption known as the car. We'd also bet that Holden Caufield, if he were a real teenager today rather than a fictional character in 1951, would have a live journal to work out his take on life. Here's what he might say....

when i was at the mall, i learned a very important and valuable lesson. if you're a dude and your at the mall with a female, the best thing to do is to just find a chair and wait. cuz if you actually walk around with them, its just a pain in the ass and it is much worse. so yea then i took a nappy at home and went to work and it was kind of hot and stuff. so when i got done i went to the pool and cooled off and whatnot.

or this...

Maybe it's just me I'm thinking that I totally over-react about the little shit. I can't help feeling jealous about stuff thats going on but I really do feel bad about getting so worked up and pissed off over stupid things, especially when most of the time it's just to test me to see how mad i'll actually get. i just need to become more trusting and understanding. i honestly understand why it's been so hard to put with me lately. constantly i've felt like i'm in some kind of competition or some kind of fight to top and i'm trying to make sure that i'm the guy going the farthest and doing anything for the number one spot. maybe if i just acted normal and wasn't such a jealous person things would come alot easier. i guess what i really mean to say is that, i'm sorry. for everything. i can imagine that i'd probably hate myself this summer too.

Just some local kid, hanging out in Glen Ridge ... and (do we really have to point this out to educators?) writing in his spare time.

August 16, 2005 in Those Crazy Kids | Permalink | Comments (39)

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August  13

Breaking Boards

If you see some fierce kids in action at Brookdale Park today, they're from Glen Ridge Taekwon-do. The school is holding its first annual picnic, which will include a board breaking demonstration at 1:45 for all to see.

August 13, 2005 in Those Crazy Kids | Permalink | Comments (1)

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