The Korea Field Trip

Korea tripOn April 9, 2013, 18 students, parents, and teachers found themselves looking upon a familiar campus. Each of the participants from the Korea trip slowly left the ever-shrinking group to return home to their friends and family. 12 days of creating new relationships, making memories, learning about a different culture and having the experience of a lifetime had come to a close. The Korea Trip was over.

What did we do?

Oh, I’m glad you asked. Basically, we went to museums, an aquarium, church, restaurants, markets, an amusement part, the DMZ, malls, traditional villages, and, of course, McDonalds. Throughout the time spent in Korea we learned mainly about the Korean language and culture, both in the past and in the present. We went on bus tours around Busan and Seoul, allowing us to see tons of famous Korean sights.

Why did we go?

All of the students who went are either currently taking or have taken a Korean language learning class. This was a once in a lifetime change to try out everything that we had learned and to expand our knowledge of the language and the culture. And really, who wouldn’t want to go if they got the chance?

Basics about the trip…

We left Kenya on March 29, 2013 and came back on April 9, 2013. There was a total of 18 parents, students, and teachers who went. The students were either in high school or middle school. We have our wonderful Korean teachers, Mrs. Lee, Mrs. Park, and Mrs. Park, to thank for organizing the trip.

A Few Highlights…

The entire trip was absolutely amazing, but there were a few parts that tend to stand out in people’s minds. Everland was one of many things that will be hard to forget. It was cold and rainy and we were outside almost all day. Most of the roller coasters weren’t running and there were only a few other rides that were even worth going on. Just by looking at this you might think that it was a waste of a day, but I assure you it was not. It gave us a great chance to get to know each other and when we finally did ride the roller coaster, it just made it that much more fun. Another part of the trip that most if not all of us enjoyed were the bus rides. It was fun to just sit inside and look at the cold outside while we talked and laughed at each other. It’s hard to choose a couple things that really stick out because the whole trip was super fun.

From Rosslyn to the World…

Earlier this year, a group of Rosslyn students went to France for CFS. This was done instead of going to a rural location in Kenya. Like the Korea trip, these students have been learning the language and the trip allowed them to expand both their knowledge of the culture and of the language. Several years ago a group also went to Madagascar to help their French improve. However, the French Trip was in place of CFS, and therefore, they did some work and service projects. The Korea trip was over our own personal spring break and because of this, it was more like a vacation than a CFS.


Overall I think that everyone enjoyed themselves and would not trade the trip for anything. It was fun, exciting, and holds memories that will last a lifetime.

– Hannah B


Ask Miguel and Samantha #2

Dear Samantha,

What if I’m in love with my BFF’s boyfriend and he likes me too. How do I break it to my BFF? Should I keep on lying or tell her the truth?

Dear Triangle-Tracy,

You should decide which is more important to you: your relationship with your best friend, or the possibility of a relationship with this guy. If you decide that pursuing a relationship with this boy is worth endangering your relationship with your best friend, you should be honest with her. Try to preserve whatever friendship that might exist between you two after you explain the situation to her. If you decide that your friendship with your best friend is more important, then cease all contact with this guy. Whatever choice you make, let the guy know that he cannot continue to date your best friend if he has feelings for any other girl besides her, ESPECIALLY YOU.

kisses, Samantha


Dear Miguel,

How would you define PDA?

Dear Handsy,

Well, Urban Dictionary defines Public Display of Affection as “kissing, touching, groping, nuzzling, cuddling,” etc in  public areas. PDA is a touchy subject here at Rosslyn and the line between a friendly hello and inappropriate behavior is blurry. Where I come from (south of the border) we’re free to express our LOVE IN WHATEVER FORM WE WANT.  My love is as fiery as a hot jalapeño.

Anyway, don’t make people want to throw up in plastic bags.

Adios, muchachos



Add Some Spice To Your Life: A Recipe for Chicken Tikka Masala

One of my favorite dishes that my mother makes is her famous Chicken Tikka; not only is it easy to make, but it tastes absolutely amazing and is an exotic dish one can prepare for their friends and family.

chicken tikkaChicken Tikka is originally an Indian-Pakistani dish and is traditionally made by barbequing, grilling or baking the chicken in a clay oven called a tandoor. The chicken is normally cubed and placed on long skewers where it cooks very quickly.

The marinade for the chicken is the most important component of the dish with areas of Asia having their own variations on their marinade; for example, Afghanistan’s tikka uses different spices to original Indian-Pakistani tikka.

Ingredients: Feeds a Family of Four

  • 3 Boneless chicken breasts, with their skins removed and cubed
  • 1 Cup Yoghurt
  • 1 Cup Cream
  • 1 tablespoon of butter
  • 1 tablespoon of ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon of Garam Masala (an Indian Spice has a red colour to it)
  • 1 teaspoon of Tumeric (has a yellow colour to it)
  • 1 teaspoon Chili Powder
  • 1 teaspoon of Lemon Juice
  • 1 inch of fresh grated Ginger
  • Garlic, how many cloves you feel you like and crush them
  • 8 ounces of Tomato Sauce (can be canned)
  • 4 teaspoons of Salt
  • 2 teaspoons of ground pepper
  • 4 Skewers
  1. For the marinade combine the yoghurt, spices, pepper, salt, ginger and some tomato sauce into a large bowl and marinate the cubed chicken in the marinade. Then cover the bowl and refrigerate the chicken for an hour
  2. Preheat a grill to high heat and skewer the chicken onto the four skewers
  3. Oil the grate of the grill and place the chicken skewers on top. You should cook the chicken until its juices are clear ( be very careful not to overcook the chicken)
  4. As the chicken is cooking, melt the butter into a sauce pan and add the crushed garlic, then add the tomato sauce and cream and simmer the sauce until it thickens, then pour the sauce onto the chicken
  5. Serve the chicken with rice or naan bread and sprinkle fresh coriander on the dish for garnish
  6. Tuck in! and enjoy, make sure to share the recipe with family and friends

– Afraaz L

When Black is No Longer Beautiful

Living in The Democratic Republic of Congo, I have been traumatized by witnessing men and women alike, whose faces have been transformed to an unnatural pink color from skin-bleaching products gone wrong.

jBeauty supply stores in Accra, Ghana, display products named “White and Beautiful” and “Fair and Lovely.”

What sort of message is that supposed to send to a dark-skinned beauty just trying to buy some more cocoa butter for her skin? If she has particularly low-self esteem and has been bullied since childhood for having skin the color of ebony, she might just reach for that box of White and Beautiful “skin-toning” cream.

So despite the obvious danger in skin-bleaching, which is literally the process of chemically lightening skin to lessen the amount of melanin in skin, many people are bleaching their skin, and business is great, especially in Africa.

In Senegal, a new bleaching product named “Khess Petch,” which literally means “all white,” has been introduced to the population, advertising light skinned women and proclaiming that the product magically bleaches anyone who uses it in 15 days. Before and after shots are even produced. The product targets mainly the poor and uneducated who might be deceived by advertisements containing numerous light skinned women who are successful and a product that is very affordable.

Many African women now have this mentality that having “lighter skin” automaticallyj2 makes one beautiful or more desirable, will provides one with more opportunities and thus, a better life.

There have been several attempts to empower black beauty in Africa, like Nuul Kuuk (which means “pitch black”) in Senegal, a campaign that empowers natural African beauty.

We, as Africans, need to stand together as one and embrace our different skin tones, rather than light skinned people feeling more worthy, or making fun of each other’s skin tones. It is obvious that African women need to be convinced and taught that the skin they are in is beautiful as well, but years of colonialism and wrong perspectives on what beauty truly is, is going to make this journey of empowerment tough, no doubt about that.

-Norkor N


The World We Live In: Politically Incorrect

There have been consistent threats launched from North Korea throughout the months of April and May, threats from a country known as the hermit of the world.

kim-jong-un-meme-e1365295475770These intimidations consist of hyperbolic, severe promises to aim nuclear missiles at the countries it deems as enemies. Though a nuclear warning should not be taken lightly, these numerous and increasingly comedic threats have made their way through the sharp social satire realm known as Internet memes. Yes, the Internet has taken nuclear threats from a despotic nation as a form of online entertainment. But it was bound to happen anyway.

The nature of the Internet is to spread innumerable amounts of information between billions of people in as little time as possible. While this is a good development, it is rather inconvenient for dictators who attempt to bully their way into the international community by waging an invisible nuclear war between nations.

Kim Jong Un, the son of the late Kim Jong-Il and the current leader of North Korea, might Kim-Jong-un-Meme-Wants-To-Nuke-The-Chinesebe feeling the sting of the cynical parts of the web as verbal slaps and ironic images swirl around in the Interwebs. Many of them relate to his eating habits while the country he rules is rife with famine and the majority of the memes turn North Korea’s nuclear launch threats into jests.

Now the real question is, is this politically incorrect or just a way to ease the tension after Kim Jong Un tells the world he plans to nuke ‘em all?

– Milkah K


Theraflu Might Not Be Good Enough: The H3N2 Virus

There have been many health scares in the past such as strains of Avian Influenza like Bird Flu, Swine Flu and other mutations of the influenza A virus. These new strains of influenza are becoming stronger and adapting to survive the effects of today’s modern medicine. The new flu virus, H3N2, swept the United States earlier this year and has strongly affected states such as Alabama, Oklahoma, North Carolina, Tennessee, Iowa and Virginia. The new strain has hit areas of Alabama and Oklahoma worst, as both states have experienced causalities as eight people died from contracting the flu.

The H3N2 virus is a sub-type of the Avian Influenza; the flu also infects animals such ash3n2 birds and pigs as well as humans. However, animals act as hosts for the flu rather than victims. According to the Center of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) an estimated 36,000 Americans die from strains of Avian Influenza every year.

The CDC has recorded more than 41 states that have reported patients that have contracted the flu with children and the elderly making up the majority of the cases as the virus attacks vulnerable immune systems. The CDC has also reported than eighteen children have died in the United States and warns all parents and families to be on high alert with regards to checking their children for symptoms.

Symptoms of the flu include fever, muscle aches, abdominal aches, vomiting, diarrhea, nausea and blocked sinuses, and it is highly recommended to check into a hospital or clinic to receive anti-flu medication and plenty of rest. However, halfway through this March, a new vaccine was developed that helps the body make antibodies to help fight the flu and the body develops immunity towards the strain. Vaccines are now being distributed to both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres in order to protect people from potential pandemics. Recent studies have found that Eastern and South-East Asian countries are hit by the flu around 6 to 9 months before any other country, which makes vaccine distribution in those countries a primary priority for drug companies.

The flu was believed to be very harmful as in the United States it seemed a pandemic was forming with the deaths of 18 people, when in actual fact the flu strain is very similar to the H1N1 virus and the new vaccination drastically increases the percentage of not contracting the flu, provided that one’s body develops antibodies. The CDC has also placed the flu situation on a lower alert and it seems that we have nothing to worry about at the moment.

– Afraaz L

The Lie That the West Told and Africa Believed

Imagine putting all the Heads of State of the West in one room and attaching them to heart rate monitors.

In front of you, you have a list of words to read out loud, so that we may monitor the responses of each and every President, Prime Minister or Monarch in the room. The room is quiet, except for the steady beep of each HRM in the room, all within the acceptable range of a healthy heart rate.

You read: World Hunger.You pause for responses. Everyone in the room remains silent.African Union Heart rates remain normal. There is a couple of coughs, and everything goes back to silence.

HIV/AIDS. Similar response, no reaction. You begin to wonder if they all have nerves of steel or if they truly just don’t care.

Global Warming.A couple heart rates slightly, but negligibly go up. The American Head of State scratches his brow.

Oil. For the first time you hear beeps. A few Heads of State squiggle in their seats. Rise in heart rates indicate some level of concern. The American Head of State uncrosses his legs and switches, and one could even think he was repressing a smile.

China.Mixed reactions. A few settle back down, while America’s relatively cool, unflinching persona momentarily wavers as an audible gulp is heard, and his right hand develops a nervous tap.

Panafricanism.Nearly immediately responses are clearly identifiable. Eyes widen. Collars loosened. Wet brows and sweaty palms. A few European Monarchs pull out fans. You’d think the room got hotter. The Queen of England, who has now turned bright red at this point, politely excuses herself, and the Prime Minister worriedly follows closely behind. Heart rates? Well, let’s just say, you hit a nerve with that one.

“You need us.”  The West has said this to us so long we believed it. In the mid-twentieth century, efforts towards Pan-Africanism ideals were conceived for the first time in history, and that lie was challenged for the first time as the return from the second World War had taught Africans two important lessons: the first, Europeans were not invincible, and the second, the only way to pull out of colonialism was to pull together.

Although the fight against colonialism was a country to country effort, the idea that the rest of Africa was fighting the same battle was a driving force and a comfort. With colonies being declared independent one by one, it seemed like a domino effect through Africa. The Organization of African Unity (OAU) was formed, later to be reformed into the African Union (AU). Trading blocs, such as the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), came into being, and have continued to prove useful.

As each country enjoyed its new found independence, however, efforts toward enriching Africa as a whole rather than individual country took a back seat. This factor, however, limited how much Africa could truly be independent of the West.

Trade with the West comes with strings attached: this is no secret. Trade with these powers will happen on their terms and their terms alone. Take a country such as Nigeria for example. Nigeria is arguably the richest country in Africa, with a great wealth of oil found within its borders. Nigeria’s main imports, however, come from countries such as Belgium, France and the United States. It seems preposterous that a country in Africa with means and wealth should be reliant on the West to provide them with goods such as French beans (which the agriculturally rich Kenya could easily supply), cattle and their products, and ham (which Somalia brandishes as one of its main exports and produces in surplus). This is just one example of many. Why should we, as Africa, continue to jump through hoops to trade with the condescending West when Africa could be on the path to greatness and self-enrichment if we did not waylay ourselves?

Europe in particular is a dying market. In my lifetime, I will watch Europe regress into a second-world and lose the superpower status the countries that constitute it have enjoyed. They have been sustained by sucking on the blood of Africa so long that it has made us anemic.

“We need the West” is a lie we have been taught to believe, and the moment the realization dawns on us, the future is limitless. Now there would be, of course, many political hurdles to get over. There would undoubtedly be fallout for severing unnecessary ties with the West, but none of which would not serve Africa in the long run.

– Luca A

Ask Miguel and Samantha #1

1. Dear Samantha,

Will you go out with me?

Dear Misguided Underclassman,

Unless you’ve been home schooled since grade one and have never come in contact with a member of the female gender, besides your mom, you’d know that no girl likes to be asked out by an anonymous, barely legible note. Buy some flowers and chocolate, wear something nice, toughen up, and maybe I might consider, if you are not completely hideous.

Kisses, Samantha

2. Dear Samantha,

Who do you like?

Dear Nosy,

Who I like is like my favorite brand of toilet paper- none of your business.

Kisses, Samantha

3. Dear Samantha,

Would you go out with Wesley Preston?

Dear What’s-Yer-Face,

Grumpy-Cat-NOKisses, Samantha

If YOU have any intellectually stimulating questions that don’t make me want to eat a cereal bowl full of nails, without milk, please don’t hesitate to leave a note in the Ask Box.

Behind the Scenes: Spring Fling

Every year, two things that students look forward to are Mistletoe Market, which takes place in mid November, and Spring Fling, which takes place in April.

spring flingThey are both a great place to hang out with friends, eat delicious food, participate in multiple activities, and buy a variety of things from clothes and jewelry to household appliances. Parents with younger kids tend to enjoy both these events as well because they are able to roam around the school with assurance that their children are safe at the gym daycare.

Both Spring Fling and Mistletoe Market are open to the public and end up being impressive ways for the school to raise money, businesses to get promoted, and for students or parents to get rid of old apparel. On the day, everything usually runs smoothly, and one may wonder how exactly does the PTF manage to pull this off? We were able to interview Mrs. Audrey Noble, who plays an important role on the PTF, on the topic of preparations that take place before Spring Fling.

EW: What preparations go into organizing Spring Fling, in general?

Mrs. Noble: There are many preparations that go into organizing Spring Fling. From gathering vendors, organizing the ticket distribution, gift basket raffle, security and gathering volunteers to help out for the day are some of the main activities.

EW: How does the school advertise Spring Fling for people wanting to sell things?

Mrs. Noble: Most of our advertisement to vendors comes by word of mouth as well as sending emails or phone calls to new and previous vendors.  You need to know someone at Rosslyn in order to sell at Spring Fling.

EW: What are some new stalls or food vendors we’ll have this year?

Mrs. Noble: We will have a variety of new vendors this year.  We have several selling jewelry, hand crafts and other items that we may not have seen before at these events.   PTF is selling the famous RVA donuts and BBQ pulled pork sandwiches.  Rob Beyer’s business class is making deep fried sweets and a juice bar that should be delightful to name a few of the food vendors this time around.

EW: How is the school advertising Spring Fling for the public?

Mrs. Noble: Overall advertising for Spring Fling is through the Rosslyn Reporter, Rosslyn Google Forum, The Roar at the US Embassy and even the UN. For entrance into this event, everyone must have a ticket.  So the best advertisement is by word of mouth to all of your friends.

Each year both Spring Fling and Mistletoe Market are great successes and that’s all thanks to the weeks of planning and preparing for the event by the PTF, the teachers and parents that volunteer to help on the day of the event, and Rosslyn’s support staff that help set up and clean up afterwards. With the amount of planning that’s been taking place, there’s no doubt that this year Spring Fling will be just as spectacular, or even better, than the years before. Hope to see you there tomorrow- Saturday, April 20.

– Sheree M

Rosslyn Academy: Under Construction

In the past year, Rosslyn has been going through some changes in terms of construction. Walking through the elementary zone one sees bright orange restrictive nets around large areas, or if someone is running the campus mile they notice more staff houses being built.

rosslyn eagleThis brings up the question what exactly is the school doing in terms of construction? At a recent meeting for the staff, Dr. Phil Dow, the superintendent, was able to answer this pondered upon question.

In the next couple of years, Rosslyn wants to build multiple buildings, from staff houses to new classrooms, due to the rapid growth of the student body. These include new houses, a fine arts commons building, MS classrooms and bathrooms, an auditorium balcony, refurbishing the science labs, a new sports field, maintenance area refurbishing, a clock tower/ garden area, Founders Hall, and lastly the security wall which is said to be done by August of this year.

The Fine Arts Commons building is envisioned as a two-story building that is dedicated to fine arts and student eating and recreation facilities. The new high school block will include five new classrooms that will match the existing building, with construction hopefully beginning in June of this year.

The Auditorium balcony will be built primarily for teachers and parents due to the inability of the current building to seat the number of people wanting to see school performances.

The clock tower/gardens, which is not a definite part of the building plan, would be built at the bottom of the school by the security wall and the current water tank would be transformed into a clock tower, surrounded by gardens.

The Founders Hall will be a multi-purpose building that will include an indoor PE facility, a place for all school assemblies (fitting 900 people), place for ES chapel and assemblies, place for ES recess on rainy days, ES dining hall, and school functions (MS/HS banquets and graduation, for example). Dr. Dow states, “This building will be done to the highest standard where it can be ‘dressed up’ for formal events but is still functional for day to day use.”  The building will be a replica of the National Museum room; however, it will be approximately 30% bigger in size.

With Rosslyn’s rapidly growing student body the school is definitely preparing for the future by building classrooms, houses, and other structures in order to accommodate the estimated student body. The original cost for this was $4.5 million (pre-interest), but the revised plan is $4.62 million before interest and $5.8 million after interest. This is without a doubt an excellent plan and is extremely exciting for the entire Rosslyn community. It wouldn’t be taking place without Dr. Dow and the board of directors at the school.

– Sheree M