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Why we love: The Fault in Our Stars

12 Jul

The fault in our stars” is a novel about love between two teenagers named Augustus Waters and Hazel Grace- but with a twist, the twist being they both suffer from cancer. It is not a typical story; even though the cancer is a big part of the story-line, the novel still manages to be humorous and uplifting despite the serious themes. “The fault in our stars” explores what it means to be alive and challenges the typical idea of a teenage romance.

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So why is “The fault in our stars” a New York Times bestseller?

When searching through different reviews on the novel, we found that most people had a strong attachment to the characters of Hazel and Augustus. One person wrote:

 

‘I felt that when I was reading it I was friends with Hazel and Gus, and that I was with them, sorting out their problems, helping them’.

Another reader, similarly wrote:

‘this book was the total opposite of some sappy love story because of how realistic it is.’

 

Their strong and witty personalities make it easy for readers to relate and connect to them. Hazel and Augustus bring a realistic element to the novel, unlike most other teenage love stories. John Green is able to write in the voice of a teenage girl to create a story that isn’t just a

.bout ‘ordinary teenagers with teenage problems’ but about an extraordinary teenager who faces something much more than the ‘average teenage problems’.

If we could describe the novel in one word, it would be ‘powerful’; another reader shared our feelings:

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‘I loved it because of how powerful it was. How everything in Hazel Grace’s life, she questioned, even if it was something as simple as ‘Why should a person only have breakfast food for breakfast?’

 

The book is able to raise questions that normally wouldn’t even cross our minds. In this sense Hazel is able to present ideas that go beyond the surface and make the reader think outside of the box.  Hazel tells her mum the her t-shirt does not have a pipe on it:

‘It’s a drawing of a pipe. Get it? All representations of a thing are inherently abstract. It’s very clever’

 

Even though The Fault in Our Stars is fiction, the struggles of Augustus and Hazel, are in fact a reality in some people’s lives. The novel has inspired many people around the world, here is an example of just one:

By Louisa Danquah & Steffi Maranan

What makes a good rolemodel?

28 Jan

We asked Reachout UK’s year 11’s – what is a role model to you?

INSPIRE – Living a successful life, inspire to succeed, positive, ambitious, good image, take pride in their lives, self confident, leads by example, unique, charismatic, good sense of humor, believe in your dreams, turn your life around

Be STRONG – disciplined, courageous, hard working, principles, know right from wrong, honest, know how to deal with problems, morals, does what they say, out spoken, not care if people have negative perceptions of you

SUPPORTIVE – Loyal, selfless, understanding, you can relate to them, respects others, kindness, helps without charge

My Friend Ahmed ” used to be a bad boy, bad footballer, but then he began to focus and now he plays for West Ham, Charlton & Fulham”

” Ahmed chose to focus on football, gave up gangs and became more quiet and focused.  He was close to being locked up and now he stops fights when he used to start them.”

” He had two sides and one was very angry but now he’s changing other people and no one judges him any more and i still see him every day!”

Ahmed is Dylan’s rolemodel and he along with Sam from ReachOut is helping Dylan keep his focus up at school and particularly Math, English and Sports

Thanks to ReachOut and you’re lovely mentors

WATCH role model / anti gang videos by IAM a Staying Safe group of amazing young people from Acland Burghley

What is a rolemodel?

Finally – here’s an amazing role model in my eyes..

What’s it like to join a leadership programme?

20 Oct

Read this blog from 22 year old Rowan for a first hand account

For six months prior to my current role, I volunteered with City Year full-time in a primary school. The level of responsibility was immense; the children would confide in us any problems that they would have. This was definitely an amazing experience for me.

To tell you a bit about myself, it was slightly over a year ago that I graduated from university with a degree in English. I left university extremely unfocussed and unsure of what my next step would be.

After a brief spell of experimentation with trying to gain entry into various job sectors, I quickly realised that it was a waste of time trying to pursue jobs that I had little or no interest or passion for. I decided to join City Year because I recognised that it would allow me to step into a world that was completely alien to me. I had never volunteered or worked with children before. The reason for my decision was that I thought the experience would allow me to uncover hidden depths in myself.

In those six months I learnt more than I could possibly have imagined as well as gaining some direction as to which way my life was heading.

In the schools, we had an active involvement in the playground as well as the running of activities throughout the day and after school.
What was really good about volunteering with City Year is that we had a huge amount of freedom as to the types of activities we could run as well as developing our own teaching methods to use.

The school allowed a colleague of mine and I to organise and run a listening exercise for a short period in the day. This was received well with the school and the children. We also developed and ran two concurrent after school art clubs, one for the younger children (5-7 years old) and one for the older children (5-11 years old).

When I was offered to return to City Year for an additional year, the decision was difficult for me because of the level of commitment that it would entail. However, I think that a part of me knew that I really did want to stay on after the amazing experience I had had the year before. I would hugely recommend volunteering with City Year to anyone who wants to develop themselves as a leader in our society, as well as acquiring some extremely valuable experience mentoring children.

Being a volunteer at City Year also has many other advantages, for example there are many opportunities to interact with our corporate sponsors at training sessions as well as various other functions. If you are interested in recruitment there are also many opportunities to get involved.

This year we will be having a mid-year volunteer intake to coincide with our move into a school in Tottenham. For more information phone 02070142680 or email: londonrecruitment@cityyear.org.uk

To find out more about other leadership schemes read more here

The Only way is Birmingham… ‘Course.

13 Jul

Howdy!

Long time, no blog. Sorry about that, I’ve been busy (as always).

Between launching my alternative radio show, completing my first year at Cambridge and trying to kick-start my career in journalism, I’ve been busy with Lucy trying to nab a bit of funding for a really cool project.

We want to make a film that is so bad, it’s actually brilliant. Why? Well, to help show you what not to do when you take that huge step and make your first film.

Lucy, Adam (from Brickwall Films) and I took a lil’ trip to Birmingham. We were wowed by the modern take on vintage interior of an old converted church and the taste of halloumi Meze but were dismayed by the general greyness and industrial mood of the city (to be expected as I suppose as historically Brummy’s an indusrtial town). We came close to death by Adam’s driving (well kinda) and made it home, with mochas and flakes in hand. All of this for your delight, peeps!

So in any case, watch this space and get excited!

I’m off but remember: Keep it real, keep it raw and always keep it togther;

Siana, Over and out

*Salutes*

x

Check out what one of our Young Creatives is getting up to!

4 Apr

 

Howdy!

So here at YH! We have a bunch of young Londoners with a MAHOOSIVE amount of talent.

Take a look at our Music Editor/ girl about the Town’s blogs here on WordPress and show her some love!

–  http://thefashionmonsterbabyblog.wordpress.com/2011/04/04/some-wisdom-for-you/

–  http://sianabangura.wordpress.com/

http://siana1609.wordpress.com/

Fashion, making it in Journalism, and a general blog all about life as a Young Londoner, balancing the big and the small.

If you’ve got Twitter, follow her! @Sianaargh_Bizzl

And don’t forget to ‘like’ YH! On Facebook and follow us on Twitter, too!

So for now,

Ev’nin’!

*salutes*

X

Ps: look out for ‘Young and Brilliant’ …it’s coming hard and it;s coming fast! Watch this space *winks*

So I came across something VERY interesting…

30 Mar

Hey there,

So my mother pretty much banned me from my laptop for a day (for my own good) as I now seem to live and breath this thing. Whilst I had no interweb, I had to go out and find myself something to do (I mean I should be revising for my preliminary exams, which will be at the end of April but I just can’t bring myself to really kickass and get to grindin’… but anyway…). Whilst out, I stumbled across the latest initiative to get we, the British people out and active: The Outdoor Gym as brought to you by the Outdoor Gym Company. The idea is that basic elements of the gym are placed in strategic parks across London. So far, I hear that Burgess park, as well as my nearby Southwark Park, has been hit – and I am sure there are many dotted around the capital.

So anyway it seems that, despite the equipment being quite simple and perhaps not working you as hard as you should be, local people are taking advantage of this unique opportunity to get some free exercise in the great outdoors. I pumped some iron for an hour and enjoyed the blossoming flowers in Southwark park – which makes a change from the stuffy room at my indoor gym/s.

It was really nice to see mothers with their children strollers; the elderly; and those who look like they’d never even heard of the notion of ‘exercise’ , all coming together and getting a bit sweaty.

We all know that childhood obesity/ obesity in general is a growing problem in Britain. We are hot on the sluggish trail of America and *THAT* really is something to worry about. Plenty of people, although not morbidly obese, are being considered ‘clinically obese’ which means that they’re BMI is over the healthy average of about 24/25.

Even if you are not traditionally on the heavier side, it’s good to get fit. I am sure well have a couple of friends who are really slim but eat like horses! Trust me, if they are not keeping active, they’re bodies are screaming on the inside. Women usually have a higher percentage ratio of fat to muscle than men, which is why we should work even harder to get rid of unwanted jiggle.

I myself am struggling with my journey towards my GOAL of obtaining formidable bombshell Rihanna thighs – and the rest of her body to go with it *sighs*

But even if we don’t wanna aim *that* high, it’s time to get out there and enjoy the sunshine! Work up a healthy sweat…it’ll make that cheeky chocolate cake or the fries you had for dinner not be *so* bad for you. A balance diet, drinking plenty of water and doing enough exercise (at least 30 minutes 5 times a week) will improve the health of your skin, teeth, hair and nails, as well as your figure and fitness.

Anyhoo, I’m gonna love you and leave you. I’m quite hungry and the chocolate cake in the fridge is rather tempting… *scrunches face* *remembers those Rihanna thighs and stomach*

It’s Siana, Over and Out

*Salutes*

Ps: In my quest to get those legs, and in aid of the new project YH will be launching, tune in next week and watch me get my ass whooped by a Kick-boxing champ who is going places… Watch This Space, Team!

XxxX

Morning! Morning!

25 Mar

Howdy Y’all,

Check out my Flickr account: http://www.flickr.com/

leave comments and let me know what you think!

Much love!

*salutes*

Siana. Over and out.