The Wardell Warriors
The Wardell Warriors are all from Room 18 at Lexington Middle School in the Cajon Valley School District. Mrs. Sharon Wardell has created a vision for Room 18 as a place where students know that they shoud "Take care of ourselves, Take care of each other, Take care of this place."
They Wardell Warriors all come from difference places but in Room 18 they have become friends. They are; Juan Tello-Meza & Jocelyn Torres from Mexico, Akuar Yamus from Sudan, and Amjed Alshaeli, Noiel Yacob, Yousif Yilmaz & Gorgess Darraj from Iraq.
Founder and CEO of Code to the Future who expounds on the idea that including computer programming in the curriculum of youth as young as Kindergarten in all schools is a matter of social justice.
Andros Navarro lives with a large family in El Cajon, Ca and attends Cajon Valley Middle School.
Dion Valerdi is a 7th grader at Hillsdale Middle School. He has been practicing cardistry and magic for over 2 years. Dion enjoys making videos of cardistry with his class and friends. He teaches cardistry on his YouTube channel, Semivivo Cardistry. He is inspired by his uncle, Ricardo Valerdi, who also gave a talk for TEDxTuscon called "The Science of Baseball" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sAMahX5hIgU
As Qualcomm Staffing Director, Ed is involved with hiring thousands of workers. Ironic, because as a child, he wondered if employers would hire him because he was so bad at math. His weakness in math was highlighted on report cards and overshadowed his strengths.
Years later, now working in HR, he collaborated to start a career coaching practice to help employees manage their careers by discovering their unique strengths, interests and values. The program is called career explorations and has served more than 10K employees.
That program lead to another at Qualcomm focused on workforce development. It would adapt the adult career exploration curriculum and assessment to help middle school and high school youth explore their own strengths, interests, values and careers.
This TEDx highlights Ed’s journey and ideas being deployed to provide self-exploration and career exploration for youth and adults.
Hilda is the captain of YALLA's Girls Under 12 team, and has been with YALLA's girls program since its inception three years ago. Before the girls program gained momentum, Hilda was the only girl to show up to practice, inspiring other girls to play with her determination and heart. Originally from Iraq, Hilda moved to the US with her family in 2009. She dreams to be a professional soccer player and heart surgeon when she grows up. Yes, she wants to do both things at the same time.
This speaks more about Kevin Honeycutt than his bio: "Many of our teachers even though they have great hearts their minds are still in the 1980's traditional ways of teaching and they need to get over this way of thinking...What truly surprised me is when you spoke is how many of our "difficult" teachers were truly engaged in what you had to say. Surprisingly, these "difficult" teachers changed their sessions because you inspired them! ... Plus, talking to our student body about where you can from and what you now are would inspire our poverty stricken population! They need to hear life isn't over just because you're in treatment. It would make such a difference in their lives. You definitely have a gift of speaking to the soul and we'd be honored to have you at our school. Thanks again for always inspiring and never stop what you are doing."
Macie Venn is a second generation student of the Cajon Valley School District. She lives with her family in El Cajon, Ca.
Tedx Bio for Mike Serban
A year and a half ago, when Mr. Serban joined the Naranca team, the educational professionals came together with a common purpose to improve student behavior with a dual focus on character and rigorous academics. A speaker came to Naranca and inspired the team to include in this focus the idea of teaching students how to be successful based on focusing on first what they love, turning that love into a goal and that goal in to an actionable step by step plan. From this inspirational talk, the Success Project was born.
Mr. Michael Serban currently serves as the principal of Naranca Elementary School in The Cajon Valley Union School District. He brings 17 years of successful experience to education and to his team of dedicated teaching professionals. Naranca Elementary School is a Title I school with an amazingly diverse student population, which adds to the richness of the community as a whole.
Michael Yousif displayed such enthusiasm during the Hour of Code that he was awarded a scholarship for winter Code Camp held by Code to the Future.. He then begged his teacher, Mrs. Vicki Jones who appears on stage with him, to teach coding to his 3rd grade class at W.D. Hall in the Cajon Valley School District. He is a 10 year old from Iraq living in El Cajon, Ca with his family of five.
Mrs. Vicki Jones began teaching 12 years ago after a career in banking. She is passionate about making a difference in student's lives through teaching. Though not at digital native, she became an avid learner so that she could be an effective guide in preparing students to be competitive in their college and career futures. She notes how fun it was to apply her expertise with teaching alongside Michael's enthusiasm to be a great team in teaching her 3rd graders to code. She is fluent in Spanish and grew up in Pasadena as the oldest and only girl in a family of four.
Mooj Muneer was born in Iraq. She lives in El Cajon with her parents and 2 siblings and attends Cajon Valley Middle School. At home she enjoys exercising, playing and reading. Her parents tell us that she is very sensitive and loving with her family. She was inspired to share her personal experience in Iraq to help other youth who have been in the same situations.
Mouj Basim was born in Baghdad, Iraq and lives in El Cajon, Ca with her parents and two siblings and attend Cajon Valley Middle School. At home she enjoys drawing, cooking, hairstyling and designing clothes. Her mother tells us that she was a very quiet baby that never gave her a hard time. She is loved for her sweet and beautiful nature. The story of Malala Yousafzai inspired her talk.
Ms. Smarty Plants
Ms. Smarty Plants educates students and adults in the Southern California area to save water and the environment. She empowers kids to develop new ways to save the environment.
Rayna Houston was born in San Diego, Ca, lives in El Cajon, Ca with her parents and three siblings and attends Cajon Valley Middle School. At home she enjoys karate, reading and cooking. Her family says that she is very caring and supportive of others.
I was born in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico. My nuclear family is formed by my two parents, my two siblings, and I. I am the middle one. From kindergarten to second grade I studied in Necali Centro Educativo, a bilingual, private school in Monterrey, Mexico. When I was about to begin the third grade, my mom decided to move to the United States. There, we would improve our English for at least one year and have the experience to live in a multi-cultural place. Actually, we have already lived here for two wonderful years and my parents are planning to stay here for one more year while I study at Avocado Elementary School. At the same time I have had the amazing opportunity to be in extra classes such as ice skating, gymnastics, and a soccer team. I hope that my last year here in California would be as phenomenal as the others.
Savar attends Cajon Valley Middle School in El Cajon, Ca. He likes to take MIT classes online at home and he says he studies, 'ALOT!'.
Sherbl Madalo and his family escaped a war moved to San Diego a few years ago. He has played competitive soccer for several years and loves being part of a team. Loves playing chess, being a student, and enjoys being a good friend to the people in his life.