Alameda middle schoolers visit Washington, D.C.

The column I write for the print Alameda Journal is up online. This week it’s about the teachers and Alameda middle school students (118 of them) who visited D.C. this past May, getting a week-long, hands-on civics lesson. As 14-year-old Lizzie Dietz told me, “I learned if I don’t do anything then the country might not move forward — but if everyone, not just me, participates then everything will turn out better in the long run.” The energy and optimism of the young teens I interviewed for the story was both inspiring and charming.

Past “Life on the Island” columns

July 1, 2008: Soaking up life on the Bay
June 24, 2008: Alamedans get back to basics to save environment
June 17, 2008: Fear can limit the joys of childhood
June 10, 2008: Never underestimate the power of one
June 3, 2008: Paying the price to have good schools
May 27, 2008: A civil rights issue in our time
May 20, 2008: What’s cooking in the hot weather?
May 12, 2008: When a man needs a cave
May 5, 2008: Enjoying that small-town feel
April 28, 2008: Support of tax teaches lesson
April 21, 2008: New garage can be a good habit
April 14, 2008: When the earth shakes, duck
April 7, 2008: Snails, ants, lice and light brown apple moths