The Antenna

The Antenna is the official newsletter of the Youth Science Center and is published every February, April, June, October, and December.

Previous issues of The Antenna are available for download in the Archives.

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The Antenna welcomes your science-related comments and letters. Please submit printed copy to YSC, PO Box 5723, Hacienda Heights, CA 91745, or e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Articles will be printed at the discretion of the editor and are subject to space limitations. The opinions expressed in The Antenna are those of the authors.

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Federal Tax ID Number: 95-2273238

December 2007 - Vol 45, Issue 6

December 2007 - Vol 45, Issue 6

December 2007 Vol 45, Issue 6
YSC MAll Day

YSC MAll Day

16949 Wedgeworth Dr., Hacienda Heights, CA 91745

Founded 1962

Letter from the President/CEO

Dear Friends of the Youth Science Center,

Happy Holidays!

I would just like to thank you all for supporting our 4rd Annual Gala! It was a great success, with new sponsors and donors. Again, we would not be here without the support of our friends. Be on the lookout for next years Gala! Please contact us if you are interested in being a part of this successful event.

We have great plans for the New Year. We are continuing our 5th grade Water Education Program in January in partnership with the Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District and the Sanitation District of Los Angeles County. The focus will be on Project WET curriculum. We are working on other projects, including outreach sites. As I mentioned at the Gala, science education in the US has come under even more scrutiny, fueled by performance of elementary, middle, and high school students on science exams. Educators across the nation are also concerned that there are not enough students interested in science to meet the country's future needs. The federal government has just stepped up and pledged funding to support science curriculum from elementary school, all the way up to the university level. Just a couple of months ago, President Bush approved nearly $34 billion to improve science, technology, engineering, and math education programs through teacher recruitment and training. This is a step in the right direction. In response to the call for improvements in science education, YSC will be creating new innovative and fun programs for the new year. Be on the lookout for more after school programs and additional weekend projects for the YSC.

In the upcoming year, we will also begin focusing on a new facility for the YSC. If you are interested in joining the Facilities Committee, please contact us.

Look forward to great things from us in 2008!!

Please feel free to contact me with any questions, comments or suggestions. Happy Holidays to you and yours!!

Ling-Ling Chang
President & CEO
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New YSC Web Capabilities

The YSC is doing a makeover of its web page with new exciting graphics and sound. The web page is being designed as a public service by Ryan Gagajena, President of
We will also be adding social networking via weblogs (blog) and Facebook. If you would like to see the YSC Facebook page, click here . If you are already a member of Facebook, search on Youth Science Center and click on "Join Group." If you are not
a member of Facebook, you will have to log in to and fill out your profile information. Next, search on Youth Science Center and join our group. We want to expand our community of parents, alumni, students and supporters!
Starlab Inside
New Digital Starlab Shows Available
Starlab outside
The new digital Starlab is available for shows at your school.

Come and see the mysteries of space through the Starlab, the indoor planetarium of the Youth Science Center. It offers children the opportunity to study stars through a portable, inflatable planetarium. Now you don't have to wait until it gets dark at night to see the wonders of the sky. Our new digital projector will show the sun and the seasons, Greek constellations and how they move around the North Star, objects in the current night sky, and even a simulated fly-by around the moon!
The planetarium will accommodate a class of 35 students. It is 20 feet in diameter and 11 feet high. Narrated shows are 45-minutes in length, and must be done indoors. Digital Starlab programs are $100 each, 2 show minimum.

Call the YSC at 626.854.9825 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it to book a program or for more information.
Pictured above: Starlab instructor Judy Dominguez gives Hacienda Heights students an instruction to the stars before entering the dome.

Digital Starlab YSC Receives Funds for New Starlab Dome

The B.C. McCabe Foundation awarded a $27,535 grant to the YSC in November. The funds will be used to purchase a new Starlab dome. Starlab instructor Judy Dominguez (shown above at the entrance to the new dome) is thrilled over the prospect of conducting programs in the new dome with the digital starlab projector. The new dome has a double air lock entry system, eliminating the need to crawl into the dome (see dome entrance picture above). It also has a superior inside surface coating for better viewing of the LCD projector images.

In addition to the Starlab dome, the grant provides for Starlab classes for Title 1 schools and support for summer outreach programs in 2008. Our thanks to volunteer grant writer Teri Malkin for writing the proposal.

Grant Received from Norris Foundation

The YSC is pleased to announce receipt of a $5,000 grant from The Kenneth T. and Eileen L. Norris Foundation of Long Beach on October 29. The funds are for general operating support and is the third such grant received from the foundation.

Dinner Sponsors
Our thanks to the following dinner sponsors, and especially to carpet manufacturer Bentley Prince Street in the City of Industry, whose ad was left out of the Dinner Program:
Star Sponsors
The Honorable Supervisor Don Knabe
Majestic Realty Foundation
Community Sponsors
Bentley Prince Street
Honorable Ling-Ling Chang
Dr. Joe Cheng
Ron and Judy Chong
Industry Manufacturer's Council
Malcolm Pirnie Engineers, Inc.
Mt. San Antonio College
Puente Hills Toyota - Scion
Sempra Energy
Southern California Edison
Warmel Corporation (McDonald's)
Honorable Andrew Wong
Silent Auction and Raffle Donors
Our thanks to the following persons and businesses for donating items for the silent auction and raffle and helping to make it a big success.

Mr. Chris Acosta Lava Bar
The Answer to Classic Rock Little Dragon Girls
Birch Aquarium Locks Plus
Body Hoops Los Angeles Dodgers
Callaway Winery Macaroni Grill
Camelot Golfland Mr. and Mrs. David Malkin
Casa Blanca Marie Callender's
Central Pet Panda Restaurant Group
Chili's Pasadena Playhouse
Claimjumper's Restaurant Petersen Automotive Museum
Command Nutrimax Pomona Valley Mining Company
Costco Puente Hills Mall
Dave & Busters Regal Entertainment
Disneyland Ronald Reagan LIbrary
Mr. and Mrs. Ted Ebenkamp Sam's Club
Miss Margaret Fang Soup Plantation
Fire Station 118 Southwest Airlines
Ford Theater Foundation Target
Gem Guide Books Thai Specialty 2
In-N-Out Burgers Trader Joe's Whittier
Kidspace Children's Museum Universal Studios
Kohler Company Wal*Mart
GATE Students Experiment with Density Derby

The YSC participated in the Mountain View school district's Fall GATE saturday series with Paul Burns leading a class called "Density Derby" at Madrid Middle School. Students in Grades 3 to 5 learned about mass, volume and weight through several interesting activities. The Great Pringle Challenge had the kids package up a single Pringle chip and send it through the US mail.
Points were given according to condition of the chip and its weight. Despite the best efforts of the postal service, several of the chips made it from El Monte to Hacienda Heights without damage. Others were not so fortunate and ended up in the "dust" category.

Helium balloons were fitted with weights to see whose balloon would rise the slowest. The 18 students had a great learning experience seeing what factors were involved in making the balloons rise.

Pringles Contest

Right: Students examine Pringle chips sent through the mail.

Below: Students release helium balloons fitted with weights under the guidance of instructor Paul Burns.

Density Derby 1Density Derby 2

Electronics Class at Baldwin Academy

By Lyle Majeska, YSC Instructor

Note: Lyle gave a presentation at an Industrial Technology Educator's conference in Palm Springs the weekend of November 29th on "After School Program for Electronics, Wood and Rocketry in Elementary School."

November 28. La Puente. Teaching with the YSC has been an enjoyable experience. I am into my fifth year and plan on doing it for many more. Right now as an Outreach Teacher, I am teaching Electronics to sixteen 5th and 6th graders at Baldwin Academy in La Puente. The principal, Bonnie Wilson, is very supportive and is happy with her student's progress. She has posted pictures of the students outside the classroom for others to see. Learning about Electronics can be challenging especially for students not familiar with Electricity. My approach is to teach them about Safety first and then to learn the skill of soldering parts onto a circuit board. I am having these students build a Blinking Eye Robot, a Rocket ship or Solar Bug which they will take home to show their parents and friends what they have done. This is an accomplishment they can be proud of and could lead to an exciting career later on. To do this successfully, the students must take an inventory of the parts, read a detailed set of instructions and then take their time and solder the kit together. So far progress is good and many of the projects should be completed soon. For those projects that don't work, I will have the students troubleshoot the circuit board and correct mistakes. To see the student's eyes light up the first time they see their project work is worth the time and effort invested in each child. Thank you YSC for giving me this opportunity to share what I do best with children.

Baldwin electronics 3Baldwin electronics 4

Baldwin electronics 1Baldwin electronics 2
baldwin electronics 5Baldwin electronics 6
Earthquakes and Volcanoes at Los Altos Elementary

YSC instructor Grace Huang led a group of young scientists on an exploration of seismic action and volcanoes. Students made simulations of earthquake faults and constructed their own volcanoes.
This afterschool class at Los Altos Elementary was given in six 90-minute sessions for students in Grades 3 - 5. For information about having this class at your own school, contact the YSC at (626) 854-9825.

los altos 1los altos 3

los altos 2los altos 4

High School API Scores for 2007
High School/District API 2007 API 2006
Whitney (Gretchen)/ABC 981 987
Oxford / Anaheim 981 977
Troy/Fullerton Joint 914 924
University HS/Irvine 881 888
Northwood/Irvine 858 863
Walnut/Walnut 854 841
Diamond Bar/Walnut 853 846
Sunny Hills/Fullerton Joint 843 805
Esperanza/Placentia-Yorba 837 838
Foothill/Tustin 830 817
Cerritos/ABC 813 815
Temple City 806 798
Brea-Olinda/Brea-Olinda 802 796
Ayala HS/Chino Valley 799 778
Diamond Ranch/Pomona 797 807
Claremont/Claremont 793 793
Mark Keppel/Alhambra 784 788
Newport Harbor 782 784
La Serna HS/Whittier Unio 777 742
Gabrielino/San Gabriel 773 781
Garden Grove 770 765
Rowland/Rowland 769 780
Glendora/Glendora 767 790
Sonora/Fullerton Joint 756 761
Wilson / Hacienda 749 761
La Habra HS/Fullerton 745 756
South Hills/Covina 743 738
Los Altos/Hacienda LP 734 743
Fullerton/Fullerton Joint 732 735
Buena Park/Fullerton 717 699
California HS/Whittier 714 709
Alhambra/Alhambra 708 721
Northview/Covina Valley 705 688
Covina/Covina Valley 700 690
Rosemead/El Monte Union 688 668
San Gabriel/Alhambra 687 697
Nogales/Rowland 673 654
Workman/Hacienda LP 633 578
La Puente/Hacienda LP 607 612


us news Best High Schools
December 3, 2007. US News and World Report released its rankings of 18,000 high schools. Top scoring high schools were placed in gold, silver and bronze categories.

Scores were compiled based on college readiness, AP tests and achievement of minorities and economically disadvantaged students. The assessment basis is given here.

Alhambra Bronze
Arcadia Silver
Brea-Olinda Silver
Corona Del Mar Silver
Cypress Silver
Diamond Bar Silver
Diamond Ranch Silver
Esperanza Silver
Foothill Silver
Gabrielino Silver
Garden Grove Silver
Gretchen Whitney Gold (#12 out of top 100)
Irvine Silver
Mark Keppel Bronze
Newport Harbor Silver
Northwood Silver
Oxford Cypress Gold (#4)
Rowland Silver
San Gabriel Bronze
San Marino Gold (#82)
South Pasadena Silver
Temple City Silver
Troy Silver
University Irvine Gold (#76)
Walnut Silver
West Covina Silver
Record Number of High School Students Studying Physics

In Science Classrooms, a Blast of Fresh O2

Published: October 30, 2007 New York Times

Maybe you've seen the television quiz show, "Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?" and will proudly attest that you are. But how might you stack up against the students in Faye Cascio's ninth-grade physical science class?

For the rest of the article click on the Times article

Pictured above: Mrs. Cascio

High School Tutoring Being Outsourced to India
The Bangalore Butler is the Latest Development in Offshore Outsourcing

The October 31st New York Times reported the following:

"Kenneth Tham, a high school sophomore in Arcadia, Calif., strives to improve his grades and scores on standardized tests. Most afternoons, he is tutored remotely by an instructor speaking to him on a voice-over-Internet headset while he sits at his personal computer going over lessons on the screen. The tutor is in India."

One of the tutoring sites mentioned is TutorVista . Instead of spending $40 and more per hour for tutors, TutorVista offers a flat rate $99 monthly charge for unlimited 45-minute sessions, with an introductory $49.95 first month offer. At times the Tham family has paid $500 a month for tutors. The savings are obvious and Kenneth said the system works for him. For more on offshore tutoring, click here .

San Francisco Biotech Program at the High School Level

Wilson High School in the Hacienda district has started a biotech program. Here is a look at what the biotech program at San Francisco's Lowell High School is doing to develop home-grown talent in science by giving the students hands-on experience and teaming up with UCSF. Click
here for the NY Times story.

Vocabulitis Orig

Yubin Chang, shown at right, is starting a vocabulary learning program, Vocabulitis TM, in Rowland Heights.

We visited her new Project IQ center and were impressed by the Vocabulitis program. This learning technique could become the Kumon of vocabulary development.

She has written a computer program which will develop your child's vocabulary, and will do so with an amazing 90% retention rate. Yubin has degrees in Child Development and Child Psychology from Cal State University at Long Beach.

Children use laptops to learn vocabulary words in the context of phrases, which is the key to helping them remember the meaning of words, according to Yubin.

During the Christmas break, Yubin is offering free introductory lessons to students in Grades 5 and up. This series of 3 two-hour sessions will cover 250 vocabulary words. Although this program is for students of all abilities, it is especially helpful for ELD and ADHD students. The program is a great way to prepare kids for the SAT tests. The strength of this program is the extremely high word retention rate of 90% or more.

The classes are scheduled for December 26-27-28 from 10 am to Noon, 1 to 3 pm, and 3 to 5 pm,
and also on January 2-3-4 at the same times. For more information call 626 581-8697. Parents will need to PREREGISTER their children in person along with a $20 refundable deposit before the first day of class. Please tell the staff that you are responding because of the YSC e-newsletter article.

The PROJECT IQ office is located on the second floor of the Nara Bank building, southwest corner of Nogales and Colima at 1709 S. Nogales, Suite 201 in Rowland Heights. Entrance is on the south side of the building. Please do not park in the other tenant spaces.

Taking A Closeup Look At Microscopes
Microscopes are a relatively hot item for Christmas this year. The Wall Street Journal checked out five different models for 2007 and found that one was superior to the others:

We purchased five kits and reviewed them with Jessamyn Ramsey, a biology teacher at the Jupiter High School Environmental Research and Field Studies Academy in Jupiter, Fla. Ms. Ramsey emphasized that a good beginner's kit should include an easy-to-use microscope with a magnification range of 40 to 400x-plus and several prepared slides of plant and animal life. "Anything less than five slides and kids will get bored," she said.

Unfortunately, our findings weren't all that encouraging -- with one big exception.
-- the Discovery Macro Microscope ($79.95, available exclusively through the Discovery Channel Store) -- that much more a find, and our obvious pick for Best Overall and Best Value. This colorfully designed, kid-friendly kit included a microscope that made focusing a snap -- the magnification range is 40 to 400x, plus there's a fine-adjustment setting, padded eyepiece and ergonomic-minded handgrips. And the prepared slides include everything from insect cross-sections to a piece of a 900-year-old Peruvian mummy wrap. Our biology teacher described the kit in terms a kid could understand best: "It's cool!"
Donald Bauman YSC Co-Founder Dies

Services were held in August in Fullerton for Dr. Donald Bauman, 89, one of the original sponsors of the Youth Science Center in 1962. Dr. Bauman was recognized as the first pediatrician in north Orange County and practiced medicine for 37 years.


Shop for museumsShop Online and Help the YSC: You can help the YSC by shopping online via the Shop for Museums network. All you need to do is visit the Shop for Museums' website and register your email address. When registering be sure to specify the "Youth Science Center" as the beneficiary of the benefits of your shopping. Some of the more notable shops that will donate a percentage to the YSC are, the National Geographic Store, Dell, and Tiger Direct.

Albertson's Community Partners: If you shop at Albertson's Markets, your purchases can help the YSC. For every purchase, we receive a minimum of 2% as a rebate. Last quarter we received a check for $120. If you have an Albertson's Preferred Savings Card and would like to support this program, please e-Mail your name, phone number, and Albertson's Preferred Card to This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it g

Kripy Kreme Cards:
The YSC has Krispy Kreme cards available for $10 each. Purchase 1 dozenkrispy kreme doughnuts of any kind and get 1 dozen regular glazed doughnuts free. The card is good for 10 dozen doughnuts. Purchase your cards by mail by sending a check for $10 for each card to YSS, 16949 Wedgeworth Drive, Hacienda Hts, CA 91745.
For more information check their website.

GRAFFITI REPORTIING. Help fight graffiti in the unincorporated areas of Hacienda Heights and Rowland Heights. Call the 24-hour Los Angeles Public Works hotline at 1-800-675-4357 or do it online and upload optional pictures.

The Antenna: This electronic newsletter is made possible by the sponsorship of Shop for Museums and a grant from Constant Contacts Care 4 Kids Program. Graphics and newsletter layout designed by Kristopher Kato.
Visiting the Hacienda Heights Youth Science Center
The Youth Science Center operates a hands-on science center in Hacienda Heights in Room 8 of Wedgeworth Elementary School. (Map) Since 1984, visitors have enjoyed our free-of-charge science center.
The Youth Science Center is open Tuesday and Friday from 12:00 P.M. to 3:45 P.M., and Saturday from 10:00 A.M to 2:00 P.M. Closed for the Christmas break from December 22 to January 5. Visiting guests can also enjoy the Youth Science Center store, which is stocked with various science related materials. For more information regarding the Youth Science Center please call (626) 854-9825
The mission of the Youth Science Center is to inform, instruct, and inspire people of all ages and backgrounds to discover the excitement of science and technology through exhibits and programs that promote learning through interaction.

The Antenna

The official newsletter of the Youth Science Center is published February, April, June, October and December. The Youth Science Center was founded in 1962 in Fullerton. The Hacienda Heights branch was established in 1984. The Youth Science Center's Tax ID Number is 95-2273238.

President and CEO: Ling-Ling Chang
YSC Board of Directors: Hacienda Heights Site Committe:
Chairman: Ron Chong Museum Director: Judy Chong
Vice-Chairman: Kim Bach Secretary: Sandra Talancon
Treasurer: William Yuen Summer Director: Phyllis Vandeventer
Secretary: Walt Clark Summer Registration: Carla Neiswender
Star Lab Director: Mariann Hess
Members of the Board of Directors: Star Lab Instructors: Judy Dominguez and Mike Vandeventer
Phyllis Vandeventer Tom Chang Museum Aides: Evelyn Fuentes and Jena Bueno
Patricia Smith Manuel Serrano Member at Large: Rolin Soong, Mariann Hess, Edy Au
Kim Bach Mary Tang Store Purchasing: Dorothy Chu and Vicky Soong
Jose Romo Vicky Soong Grant Writing: Teri Malkin
Tracy Chen William Yuen Antenna Editor: Ron Chong
Chair, Executive Comm.: Manuel Serrano
Save 5% For a limited of time save five percent off any purchase of $20 or greater at the Youth Science Center's store. To receive this discount, just print out this coupon and give it to the store clerk at the time of purchase.
Offer Expires: January 15, 2008
Top-Rated NonProfit