Browsing articles in "Kids’ Panel"

Julia is Enchanted by ‘La La Land’

Feb 1, 2017   //   by Julia   //   Age 16-19, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on Julia is Enchanted by ‘La La Land’

La La Land is a movie musical made for dreamers. It’s here to inspire, and put a whimsical smile on your face. With its old fashioned musical feel it’s a movie spectacular that left me mesmerized. As a big fan of movie musicals such as Grease, Singing in the Rain and Across the Universe I knew going into this film that it would be right up my alley. Trust me when I say I am not exaggerating my words that this movie truly took my breath way.  A movie like this only comes once in awhile and is a treasure to see in theatres.

The movie follows the story of  Mia (Emma Stone) and Sebastian (Ryan Gosling), their relationship to each other, and reaching their goals out in the land of dreams, Los Angeles. Both of our protagonists have their own dreams, Mia, an actress, wants to be a star and, Sebastian, a jazz musician,  wishes to open his own club. The movie follows them as they both try and fail and succeed their way through this fantastical tale.

Though both characters have different dreams I think most people would be able to relate to their stories for the simple fact that we all have tried to reach our eventual goals that we have clung to all our lives. It’s the strive to do what we love and to reach that. It’s the thing that our heart has desired to do since we were young. And I think that anyone watching this movie would notice that and be able to relate to it. I certainly felt that way. I came out of the theatre feeling refreshed and inspired to get back on track with achieving my dream. So if you’re a believer, or you just love musicals then I would recommend you go, spend an evening being taken away by this wonderfully stunning film. It awakens the dreamer in us all.


Ava Joy Reviews ‘Trolls’

Jan 25, 2017   //   by Ava Joy   //   Age 4-8, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on Ava Joy Reviews ‘Trolls’

She wants to tell you about the movie Trolls, but she won’t reveal the ending!


Emanuel Reads Up on Training Dragons

Jan 11, 2017   //   by Emanuel   //   Age 4-8, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on Emanuel Reads Up on Training Dragons

I love How to Train Your Dragon because it is very funny and cool. The main character is a boy named Hiccup. He has a dragon named Toothless who is very annoying and also very small. Hiccup is very smart and he is the heir to the Viking tribe, the Hairy Hooligans. Hiccup has a friend named Fishlegs who does not know how to swim and is afraid of the dark. Hiccup also has another friend named Camacazi who is super talented. One of her talents is being funny while she is battling. She distracts her opponents by talking a lot and making fun of them. After she battled another Viking named Norbert the Nutjob, she said to him “practice Norbert, that’s what you need.’’

I like the How to Train Your Dragon books because of the adventures that Hiccup goes on. His adventures are complex and weird. One of the adventures that Hiccup went on was going to recover the treasure of his grandfather, Grimbeard the Gastly. The treasure was protected by dragons named Skullions who could not see but had good scent. The treasure was booby-trapped with a scent that attracted the Skullions and Hiccup just escaped. All of this exciting and complex action is why I like How To Train Your Dragon SO Much!


Kris Passes the Time with ‘Color Switch’

Jan 4, 2017   //   by Kris   //   Age 9-15, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on Kris Passes the Time with ‘Color Switch’

Color Switch is an app by Fortafy Games. It’s an addictive game in which you tap to move a ball through a variety of obstacles. The colour of the ball must match the colour of the obstacle otherwise you will have to start the level again. There are bunches of different balls to collect and different game modes to play. You can collect stars when playing different levels. The stars collected can then be used to buy unique balls. The game design changes according to the holidays/seasons.

It’s a great app to waste time by playing endless mode or the plethora of levels in all very distinct game modes. Color Switch is a challenging game that requires your attention and quick reflexes.

It’s hard to lose interest because new modes are constantly being added, and the game style changes too. The layout is colourful and bright, which is eye-catching. The game can become frustrating and tedious, however, since you only have one chance to complete the level, causing you to play the same level over and over. That is, unless you decide to watch an ad to skip a level or to get an extra life, but the extra life option only works if you’re near the end of the level. There’s also a lot of ads on the game, which is quite tiresome.

In conclusion, Color Switch is a very entertaining free game that doesn’t require wi-fi and can be enjoyed by all ages. It’s annoying when you struggle to beat a level and a wave of ads barrage you. Nonetheless, it’s a great time waster and has a colourful appearance.



Noah Raves About Truancy

Dec 28, 2016   //   by Noah   //   Age 9-15, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on Noah Raves About Truancy

The Truancy series, written by Isamu Fukui when he was a 15-year-old high school student, is an extremely well-written and suspenseful dystopian series. Set in an experimental city divided into 58 different sectors and ruled by forces that value education, a group of schoolchildren, known as the Truants, wants to fight back.

Truancy by Isamu Fukui book coverIn the first book, Truancy, a boy named Tack is living the life of a schoolboy. Dealing with surprise tests and harsh learning ways, Tack is getting frustrated with the system. When he finds a school dropout his own age, alone in abandoned sector 19, Tack sees his life begin to change. Training under the boy, Umasi, Tack learns to fight with both words and swords. But when he witnesses the death of his sister by a Truant, Tack is devastated and wants to seek revenge.

After finding his way to one of the many Truant hideouts in the city, Tack is accepted into the rebel group. Gradually rising up the ranks, he eventually battles the leader of the Truancy for the chief role. He subsequently changes his name to Tackan and starts to realize exactly how hard the life of a leader can be.

The second book, Truancy Origins, shows us the early years of the two brothers, Umasi, the boy from sector 19, and Zyid, the future leader of the Truancy. In this book, we learn how Umasi and Zyid’s paths begin to separate.

The final book, Truancy City, brings us back to the city when Tackan is the leader of the Truants. The city’s long want of taking down the Truants might just have a new secret weapon – a boy, trained by Umasi, who is an amazing fighter and has few weaknesses. In a final all-out battle between the Truants and the general population of the city, the overarching leader of all of the experimental cities steps in, using her own troops to help maintain order. Attempting to evade the Government, the Truants try to seek refuge by leaving the city.

The series ends with a stunning conclusion at the top of the tallest building in the city, a 108-floor tower that overlooks all 58 sectors. The amazing ending shows that not all forces are what they seem to be.

This is a very well-written book with a lot of action, suspense and mystery. The character development is superb, and it is a very captivating series. It is fictionalized, yet provides a somewhat scary foreshadowing to what the future could hold.

Overall, I give this book 5/5 stars.


Solange Flips for ‘The Next Step’

Dec 21, 2016   //   by Solange   //   Age 4-8, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on Solange Flips for ‘The Next Step’

Solange loves The Next Step. In this video you’ll find out why!


The Toy That Never Gets Old: James Shares His Love for the Rubik’s Cube

Dec 14, 2016   //   by James   //   Age 9-15, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on The Toy That Never Gets Old: James Shares His Love for the Rubik’s Cube

The classic Rubik’s Cube from the ’80s has been back for a while but it recently has been growing amongst many teens and tweens.

I personally have been into solving Rubik’s Cubes for almost 3 years. On average I can solve it in about 10-12 seconds. I got introduced to it by my friend, back in 2014.

I was recently on the news for the second time talking about cubing competitions! They happen about 3-4 times in Alberta a year and we have 140-220 people show up and compete! The last competition I went to I got a 13.66 3×3 average.

I think that the Rubik’s Cube is a great way to pass time as well as increase memorization and even increase your strategy skills. I recommend everyone to at least try to learn one at some time!


Joshua Makes Chapatis

Dec 7, 2016   //   by Joshua   //   Age 9-15, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on Joshua Makes Chapatis

In under five minutes, Joshua will show you how he makes Ugandan chapatis.


Julia is Ready to Make a Change: WE Day 2016

Nov 30, 2016   //   by Julia   //   Age 16-19, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on Julia is Ready to Make a Change: WE Day 2016

This year I was lucky enough to attend WE Day 2016 in Toronto.

Now for those who may not be familiar with WE Day it is a youth empowerment event in the style of a concert that is put on by Me to We and Free the Children. It features many speakers and musical artists who all use their stories and talents to inspire 20,000 or so youth in the Air Canada Centre. With musical performances from the likes of Jason Derulo and Gord Downie as well as speeches of empowerment and awareness of Canada’s history and future, it was a concert like no other.

Here’s a video that will help describe a little more about the event:

Like the video said, you can’t buy a ticket to WE Day. It is earned through your school and the work you do to support Me to We and Free the Children.

This was not my first time attending WE Day. Back in 2010 I was fortunate enough to attended for the first time in Vancouver. I found myself so inspired and it gave me a love and connection to the organization and the work that they do. So when I was faced with the offer to go again this year, I was ecstatic. I remember being so moved the first time, that the idea of going again and getting to hear more speeches and be influenced to think about some more important topics that I hadn’t thought about before was fantastic.

On the subject of important topics I hadn’t really thought about before, there was one that really touched me deeply that made me think hard about it and continue to. There was a section of the performance that they really focused on Canadian history and the upcoming 150th anniversary of Canada, and during that part, one of the main points was about reconciliation. The section started and was led by Gord Downie and the project that he was working on called “The Secret Path.” They told us about the story of Chanie Wenjack, a young native boy who died while trying to get back to his family from the reformation school that he was being kept at. Gord did this through song, speech and video as well as bringing along Chanie’s sister Pearl Wenjack. Pearl also did a short speech before singing a song in her native language. The atmosphere at this moment was intense. The whole stadium felt moved. It definitely left an impact as it is the thing I have been telling people about since.

This is an experience that will stay with me forever. It was a life changing event that has inspired me to help change the world and I am so grateful for being able to attend. If you ever get to go I would say: take the chance to be inspired. For we all can be the change.


Emanuel and His Dad Clash Together

Nov 23, 2016   //   by Emanuel   //   Age 4-8, Kids' Panel  //  Comments Off on Emanuel and His Dad Clash Together

Emanuel Reviews ‘Clash Royale’ – an online game he enjoys playing with his father.



The Kids' Panel

Meet our kids' panel: a savvy group of kids with a strong point of view about the media and the culture they consume. Culturally diverse, a range of age and interests, they'll provide you with an insight into kids' media ... what works, what doesn't and why. Check back often for new reviews. We think you'll be inspired! @storyartscentre