RadioActive Youth Media

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RadioActive is the youth media program at KUOW where youth delight in discovering public radio journalism. Hear stories created by RadioActive youth producers about the people and issues that matter to young people in the Northwest. Subscribe to get our latest audio pieces delivered directly to you.

Email: radioactive@kuow.org | Facebook: RadioActive Youth Media

RadioActive stories produced prior to October 2012 can be found on our archive or here, too!

21 Things RadioActive Learned At Third Coast

Nov 20, 2014
KUOW Photo

KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media recently spent three days in Chicago with 550 of the world's most talented  radio makers at the 2014 Third Coast International Audio Festival.

“I washed my hands next to [NPR health reporter] Alix Speigel,” said youth producer Madeline Ewbank. "Once [former Planet Money reporter] Alex Blumberg passed so close to me that I could've tripped him. Not gonna lie, I seriously considered it.”

Why Do We Love Spooky Things?

Oct 30, 2014
Flickr / vmax137

It’s that scary time of the year again, and RadioActive gets spooked out.

Kendra Hanna asks young writers at 826 Seattle and author Neil Gaiman why kids love scary stories.

Then Esa Tilija goes inside a haunted house for the first time. Don't act vulnerable!

Welcome KUOW's Fall 2014 RadioActive Youth Producers

Oct 22, 2014
KUOW Staff

KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media is proud to offer a fall journalism workshop at the Tukwila Community Center, in partnership with the City of Tukwila Parks & Recreation.

Six students, age 16-18, will spend 11 weeks learning what it means to be a journalist. During that time, they will pitch, interview, edit and write their own feature stories for KUOW.org.

Youth Find Themselves By Crossing Religious Boundaries

Sep 25, 2014
KUOW Photo / Jenny Asarnow

This month's podcast features stories about youth who are defining themselves by building new religious community. 

First, pre-teens on all sides of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict put aside their cultural differences to find peace and friendship in a program called Kids4Peace.

Then, two young Muslim converts pursue their beliefs in spite of what their families or the media have to say.

RadioActive is KUOW's program for high school students. Listen to RadioActive stories, subscribe to the RadioActive podcast and stay in touch on Facebook.

Youth In Crisis Find Someone To Listen At Teen Hotline

Sep 12, 2014
KUOW Photo / Caitlin Gaylord

The walls are covered with colorful decorations and pictures of about 80 smiling volunteers. Wires covering the desk connect computers to phone headsets. And volunteers like high school senior Colin are waiting for the phones to ring. 

Most cities have their own anonymous hotline for people in crisis. Few of these hotlines are specifically for teens and staffed by teens. At Seattle’s Teen Link, teen volunteers answer calls from teens in crisis every night. Teen Link doesn’t allow volunteers to share their last names, in order to prevent harassment.

A Death Sentence Turns Into A Call Of The Wild

Sep 4, 2014
Courtesy of Leo Egashira

Leo Egashira, 60, is no stranger to death. He once saw his life flash before him when chased by a thousand-pound muskox in Greenland.

However, he had an even scarier encounter when he received an HIV diagnosis back in 1992. The life-changing event fostered his appreciation of the outdoors.

How My Basement Led Me To The Jazz Scene On Jackson Street

Sep 3, 2014
Public domain, via BlackPast.org

Nia Price-Nascimento lives in a house built in the 1920s in the Central District, Seattle's historically African-American neighborhood.  Last year, she found out there are two chambers hidden under the wooden floorboards in her basement creating a sub-basement. That led her to a journey back in time, as she explains in her own words.

Before I get into the story, you need to know I’m African American and Brazilian. I grew up in a mostly African-American neighborhood, but most of my friends are white, and I never really felt like I fit in. I recently got curious about my heritage.

Young Seattleites Feel Limited By Lack Of All-Ages Live Music

Sep 2, 2014
KUOW Photo/Noah Phillips Reardon

At Seattle's Capitol Hill Block Party this July, a crowd at the Main Stage was waiting for hip-hop artist ASAP Ferg to come out. The crowd was chanting and everyone was excited.

"There's a lot of emotions attached to music that you don't get with talking to somebody or going down the street," observed Mila Widmayer, 16. She's a singer and a volunteer at the Vera Project, an all-ages concert venue. "Music just affects your life in ways that other things can't."

Courtesy of Kathleen Gillette

Kathleen Gillette has had a passion for singing for as long as she can remember. She was always "very excited about bringing a piece of music to the audience. I loved it. I just loved it.”

Life is about making difficult choices. Sometimes you make them, and other times it’s not up to you. For Gillette, life pulled the stage out from under her.

Water Is the Sound Of Freedom For My ‘Ba’

Aug 28, 2014
Courtesy of Quang Adam Nguyen

I’m at a dock on Lake Washington and it’s a calm evening. I’m with my "ba" – dad in Vietnamese – Quang Adam Nguyen.

Ba is handy and loving. According to my mom, he’s “a little chubbier” than the “handsome, buff” man she married 25 years ago. My brother Andy calls him a “fixer,” and my sister Kristy says he’s “stubborn.”

He's always thinking and forgetting, about too much, if you ask me. He remodeled the house I’ve lived in my whole life but still hasn’t finished the gazebo. He did finish a waterfall in the yard, however. 

An Autistic Teen's Guide To Impersonating Michael Jackson

Aug 27, 2014
Courtesy of Lorenzo Manuel

It was homecoming dance at Roosevelt High School, and the Roosevelt football team had just been crushed. As it started getting late, the energy sunk even lower. People were mostly slow dancing; it was all Taylor Swift at that point.

Just then, a familiar tune started to play. The thinning crowd began to roar. A spotlight came on. As the first lyrics of Michael Jackson's "Thriller" shook the room, a skinny kid with short brown hair and a sparkly glove began to dance.

Teen Girl Loves Computer Science, But Struggles To Fit In

Aug 26, 2014
KUOW Photo/Ahlaam Ibraahim

It was the first day of freshman year at Rainier Beach High School and everyone had first day jitters. The first period bell rang: computer science class. It wasn't a good experience for 16-year-old Ifrah Abshir.

"I could never get it right," Abshir said. "Everything just kept crashing. Nothing worked, and I got mad, and I'm short tempered!"

Professor Vincente Rafael On Filipino Folklore Origins

Aug 25, 2014

Vincente Rafael is a professor of history at the University of Washington, specializing in Philippine history, colonialism and nationalism. RadioActive youth reporter Maria Caoagdan interviewed Rafael for her story exploring Filipino supernatural creatures.

Unraveling The Family Folklore Passed Through Generations

Aug 25, 2014
Courtesy of the Caoagdan family

What if you grew up being told that the monster under your bed is real? Seattle is home to a large Filipino Community, and in the Philippines, superstitions and the existence of supernatural creatures are firmly believed. RadioActive's Maria Delmar Caoagdan was born there, and tells us what it's like.

In my family, whenever we walk through the woods, we say the phrase "tabi tabi po." Why? I don't know.

As a child, I did whatever my family told me and believed whatever they said. Occasionally, I'd also watch horror films that introduced me to Filipino mythological creatures. But after hearing my family's own paranormal encounters, I began to wonder if those myths really have some elements of truth.

RadioActive: Music For All Ages And Lessons From Opera Singers

Aug 8, 2014
KUOW Photo / Jenny Asarnow

Come with Noah Phillips-Reardon and Ernesto Morfin and hear two musical stories in this final podcast of RadioActive's Summer 2014 Workshop. Noah finds out why some shows in Seattle aren't all ages, and Ernesto learns life lessons from an opera singer. 

RadioActive is KUOW's program for high school students. Listen to RadioActive stories, subscribe to the RadioActive podcast and stay in touch on Facebook.

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