Losing Nani

After her grandmother dies, Maya reflects on what she most loved about her This December, I lost my nani (granny). I cannot even begin to describe the pain I feel right now. A lot of things I see around me have a bit of her in them; a lot reminds me of her. She had […]

Chinese Test

For Mason, a Chinese test feels like an odyssey It is time for the Chinese test to begin. I pick up my pencil, and focusedness is on my face as I write. Intensity stretches across the room with each moment. It is silent—so silent that I can hear the birds chirping . . . until […]

Hidden Opportunities

Olivia is devastated when she learns her family is moving away from lush, beautiful California to drab, grey New York City I relaxed in my backyard, delighted by everything around me. The warm breeze rippled through the air. A symphony of birdsong erupted from the chirping birds that swooped around the sapphire blue sky. I […]

Birthday Party Wonderings

After ten months without attending a birthday party, the narrator has developed a new appreciation for their rituals “Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you!” The group of ten or so middle school girls sings the traditional birthday song with considerably less enthusiasm than the ten-year-old boys clustered around another table. The birthday girl’s […]

Feather Finding

The writer is thrilled to find a rare yellow feather On the way back from a baseball game, the game I hit my first double, I was walking up to the snack bar with all five saved snack tickets clutched in my hand. I decided to walk farther up, when SCREEEEEEECH! I stopped dead in […]

Just One Letter Away

It’s the last day of school before summer vacation, but Ia isn’t happy—it’s the last day she’ll see her best friend The stairwell was filled with laughter, giggles, and cheerful voices as we left the school building on the last day of fourth grade. Somewhere on the stairwell was Yaara. Yaara was one of the […]

The Hummingbird Whisperer

After finding two abandoned baby hummingbirds, Michael must work hard to keep them alive It was a lazy day in the month of May when I got that so-memorable phone call from my sometimes-bothersome twin sister, May. “Michael, hurry, hurry, come over!” screamed my sister, who was practicing tennis with Mom at a nearby tennis […]

First Times

Claire recalls a day of many “firsts” Waiting for the bus was stressful, maybe in part because it was so new this time. Throughout elementary school at Bank Street, I had never taken the bus, and I most certainly didn’t go alone. I always went with my brother Eric and my mom in the subway […]


When a strict teacher confronts Ryan, a special day takes a turn for the worse I walked into the gymnasium and saw the face of Ms. Himmel, the one teacher I never wanted to see there on that special day. She was one of two teachers always patrolling our classroom. She was strict toward everyone […]

A Secret Untold

Months after an embarrassing incident at school, Emerson is faced with a difficult decision The most traumatizing thing that happened to me in all of elementary school took place in the fall of third grade. What is this? Oh, what happened to poor eight-year-old Emerson? Did a dear pet die? Was she tragically injured? No. […]


“I’m an average gymnast. To me, competition isn’t always about winning. It’s about the drive.” I nervously step into the arena, itching at my rhinestone-covered leotard. My hair is pulled back in a tight bun as voices echo off the ceiling that soars above my head. The cold concrete floor tickles my bare feet. I […]

A Magical Moment at Meow City

The narrator meets a remarkable kitten at the Houtong Cat Village in Taiwan I grinned from ear to ear as a cat cautiously strolled up to me and sniffed my hand, looking for food bits. I was so delighted to finally arrive at Meow City! In June 2019, my family took a trip to Taiwan […]