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Our readers write from Central High School in Omaha, Nebraska

About my names
by Celia

            My name is Celia.  It means sky in English.  My grandfather chose this name because my mother is called the same name.  My second name is Carmen.  It means song.  My grandmother chose this name because her mother is called this.  My third name means bear in English. My father chose this name because it is his last name.  My last name means cross.  My mother chose this name because it is her last name.

            In my culture a child's name is chosen by the grandparents, parents and family members.  A wife will sometimes change her last name to be the same as her husband's last name and will put the word 'de' next to the last name of the husband to show she is married to him.  

            If I have a son someday I will name him Brayon because I like this name. If I have a daughter I will name her Rosechely because it is the name of my mother and grandmother.  



This is who I am
by Carlos

I am from America and Mexico

I am from pizza and enchiladas

I am from hamburgers and tacos

I am from mustangs and trucks

with white on the outside and red on the inside

I am from playing with cousins and playing soccer

I am from blue baseball hats and the necklace of Our Lady that my mom gave to me

I am from America and Mexico


This is who I am
by Mon

I am from a landlocked country

Playing in  hills and forests

I am from rivers and ponds

Where I go to swim and wash the clothes

I am from the mountainous country

Foreigners go to climb and visit

I am from a peaceful country

Where Gautama Buddha was born

I am from school

Where students wear uniforms

and get hit with sticks for punishment

I am from a small country

I can smell flowers, grasses

and lots of fruit

I am from a musical country

People love music and we can

find lots of singers

I am from a natural country

Where are trees, flowers rivers and mountains.

I am from Nepal


This is who I am
by Halima

I am from Kenya across  the ocean

I am from the river that flows with mountain water

I am from west to east with lovely places and sunshine outside

I am from between the lands of Kenya and America

I am from a beautiful culture and many different people who live there

I am from a country where they don't have freedom

My heroes of my life are  my grandmother, aunt, and mother

They mean to me a lot of things

I remember the clothes my aunt brought for me when I came to America

My neighborhood that is in my mind

My friends who used to play

When I was young we used to play in the mud

I miss my aunts who still live in my home country

I wish they could come here soon

I miss my Dad who is still in Kenya.

I am from the mountains that flow with water

The sunshine in the sky that makes the clouds beautiful red

I am from a sunshine place

that keeps my heart with love



Our readers write from the Pacoima Skills Center in Pacoima, California

Guatemala, the land of eternal spring
by Carina Chacon Rodas

            If you think of nature and trees, you should think about Guatemala. Most of the country is divided into two major regions. The first region is the highlands where the mountains are located, and the second one is the Pacific Coast south of the mountains.

            Although Spanish is the official language, it is not universally spoken. Twenty-one Mayan languages and Garifuna are spoken as well.

            In regard to culture and the arts, many libraries and museums have an extensive collection of Mayan artifacts. Also, many indigenous artists combine pre-colonial art with modern art to produce amazing handicrafts. In addition, the country has produced two great Nobel Prize winners: Miguel Angel Asturias, who won the prize for literature, and Rigoberta Menchu, who won the Peace Prize for fighting the oppression of her fellow indigenous people. In music, the Marimba is the national instrument, and the national anthem of Guatemala is considered one of the most beautiful in the world. Believe me, you will be impressed by its its wonderful landscapes and the friendly people in all regions. Come and visit my country.

Sinaloa, México
by Carlos Ramirez

            Sinaloa is not only one of the 31 states of Mexico, it's the place where I was born. Sinaloa is known for its landscapes, its colonial places and its rich agriculture. This is not the largest state of Mexico, but it has much to enjoy.
            One of the main areas is the plains, where tomatoes, corn, potatoes, wheat and sugar cane are grown. Cattle, poultry and hogs are raised here for exportation and internal use. Going deep into the wilderness of Sinaloa, you have to be careful because some species of deer, wildcats, badgers, wild boar, coyotes, and tlacuaches are found and it's important to preserve them.
            The coast is also important in many ways. It provides its beautiful weather and beaches which are visited by outsiders from around the world. Mangoes and cotton are grown here on the coast. Some species of shrimp, tuna, sea bass, sardines, and marlin are fished here. Also shrimp and some other kinds of fish are farmed in this area.
      The capital of Sinaloa is Culiacan where banda music and corridos are played wherever you go. You have to get used to this loud traditional music, but not everything is corridos in Sinaloa. If you are lucky enough,  you may see and enjoy a version of an ancient Mesoamerican ball game called "Ulama". In conclusion, visiting Sinaloa will be easy if you are a Spanish speaking person because in the whole state, Spanish is spoken, so there is no excuse not to visit this beautiful place.