8-18 Media a great way to nurture young minds

The mind of a child can be innocent yet insightful, simple yet deep.

Where else can you discover that Esme Ulland-Joy, a fourth-grader at Sandy Knoll Elementary School, can perform two types of splits? And that she loves to dance and read?

The Mining Journal, in various Sunday Youth sections, runs columns by local youths belonging to 8-18 Media, whose awards were given Monday night by The Mining Journal, Marquette Monthly and WNMU Public Radio 90.

8-18 Media is a journalism and leadership program whose parent organization is the Upper Peninsula Children’s Museum, the popular attraction on Baraga Avenue in the city of Marquette.

Youngsters age 8 to 18 work in teams on issue-based stories, and even have covered political conventions.

The program’s mission is to amplify youth’s voices through adult media, such as The Mining Journal and local radio.

The Mining Journal has covered many youth activities, such as school activities and sporting events, giving readers insight into how kids think and act.

Sometimes, though, you need to get that insight from the kids themselves.

What makes the Sunday Mining Journal columns so charming is the wording the young authors use.

In the Jan. 28 column, Graveraet Elementary School fourth-grader Ben Rayhorn discussed his passion for the Seattle Seahawks football team.

“When I am older I want to play for the Seahawks,” he wrote. “Recently, I have been training to get my body stronger so I can play for the Seahawks when I am older.”

One of his favorite players was quarterback Russell Wilson because “he is 82 percent” of their offense.

Sophia Capuana, a fifth-grade student at Father Marquette Elementary School, wrote about letterboxing. In case readers didn’t know what that meant, she explained a letterbox is a logbook full of other people’s signatures and stamps.

Sophia also said the activity was like geocaching without a GPS.

“Think about all those poor unfound letterboxes sitting around waiting for you to find them,” she wrote.

After reading about her enthusiasm for letterboxing, a person could be tempted to start a search. After all, Sophia found one on Sugarloaf Mountain.

These are the types of tidbits the public can glean from 8-18 Media.

Many local individuals and organizations have contributed to the program, and we wholeheartedly agree with their support.

We realize that not every 8-18 Media member will choose journalism as a career, but creating content at a young age can help those youngsters in many ways, allowing them to become more eloquent and building confidence to name just a few.

In the meantime, the community can enjoy what these young creative minds have to offer.