Friday, June 12, 2020

Atlantis School Renovation Project

Hey everyone and THANK YOU for checking out and willfully SUPPORTING and SHARING our Atlantis School Renovation Project!

The Atlantis School For Gifted Youngsters is a private institution established in Niagara Falls, NY. Its Mission is to teach and train youth in the growth, development and control of their powers through important projects, programs and initiatives such as:

Despite students of color representing more than half the student population in this country, black men represent less than 2% of that teacher workforce. As a black man and as an educator, my voice and presence within the lives of black children and all children is critical to combating family dysfunction, community deterioration and creating an inclusive workforce that ensures that all of our nation’s students receive a quality culturally enriched education. This is my not simply my profession, it is my passion and purpose! I established the Atlantis School For Gifted Youngsters as a community-based institution that provides projects, programs and initiatives that promote cultural competence, anti-bias education, social emotional development, optimum health and social justice. By exposing youth to these ideas through DAP [Developmentally Appropriate Practices] at an early age the objective is to set them upon a learning trajectory to become ambassadors of a brighter future and a more equitable society.

We are currently undergoing a renovation project for a recently acquired property that will allow us to centralize our projects, programs and initiatives for at-risk communities. We are seeking donations to help with roof repairs, kitchen and bathroom renovations, learning space modifications and program resources to meet NYS OCFS [New York State Office of Children and Family Services] Standards for our Early Childhood Certificate Program. Once renovations are complete the Atlantis School For Gifted Youngsters will operate an Early Childhood Development Program and Preadolescent After School Program. 


Friday, May 22, 2020

BREAKING NEWS: Lakota Nation Seeks Support of Five Percent Nation Amid COVID-19


Lakota Nation Seeks Support of Five Percent Nation
Lakota Activist/Spokesperson Chase Iron Eyes Releases Sioux Tribe Official Statement

Harlem, New York: May 20, 2020, the Oglala Sioux Tribe released an Official Public Statement via Activist/Public Relations Spokesperson Chase Iron Eyes seeking support from Five Percent Nation members to share in their struggle amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Most recently, South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem’s (R) has refused to issue mandatory stay-at-home orders for South Dakota which has put our Indigenous family members at risk via Covid-19. During an April White House task force briefing, Dr. Anthony Fauci shared that in some major cities where we see the epicenter of coronavirus cases black Americans are dying at much higher rates compared to other Americans. While it has been said that both marginalized communities are at a higher risk due to pre-existing conditions, America’s historical geopolitics and socioeconomic factors which contribute(d) to these conditions such as institutional racism, environmental injustice and chronic scarcities of resources are rarely mentioned.

For over five decades, from Wounded Knee to the Standing Rock #NoDAPL protest camps, Lakota leaders have championed cultural freedom and indigenous justice. Over fifty years ago when Allah (The Father) founded the Five Percent Nation [Gods and Earths], we began teaching self-knowledge as the basis of a unique God-centered culture that is free from religious indoctrination and social injustice.

It is within that conscience of cultural continuity and unity as an original people as highlighted within our 120 lessons that we stand in support of the Oglala Sioux and all “7 bands” of the Lakota Nation. Our shared commitment to amplify our unified voice and work collaboratively will enable us expand our efforts to achieve national consciousness, community control and peace.

"As civilized and righteous people, we understand the Lakota People’s right to preserve their Native rights, sovereignty, health, and the Earth. In 2020, these rights should be respected." -Starmel Allah, Author of The Righteous Way


Friday, May 08, 2020

4 DIY Distance Learning Ideas

This Article Appears in The Challenger Newspaper

     With the national economy coming to a grinding halt and educational institutions shutting down to help flatten the corona virus curve, many of us parents and guardians now find ourselves in a unique homeschooling situation that we, and many of our school districts, were not prepared for. Fortunately for us there are those who were prepared and seized this moment as a DIY distance learning opportunity. Today I would like to share some of those ideas in hopes that we can make the best out of the time educating our children at home. 

1. Don't worry, be resourceful. Find out what your child's grade level learning targets are. Prior to the school year Teachers create lesson plans to cover the entire year and these plans are not like a freestyle rap. They take preparation and are based upon the student's grade level learning targets and NYS competency standards. So if your child is in the 6th grade, during any month of the school year 6th graders across the New York State are learning the same ELA, Math, Science and Social Studies curriculum with minor variations. If you want to know for sure what your child's learning targets are reach out to their Teacher and find out. I am sure they would be more than happy to give you that information! Why am I sharing this? Because the initial reaction of many parents and guardians teaching their children at home has been, "WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO TEACH THEM?!" If your child was given take home packets and/or access to an online learning platform, those learning packets and online assignments are based upon their Teacher's lesson plan. And their lesson plan is based upon the student's grade level learning targets and NYS competency standards. As a parent and guardian our job is to help provide added resources around our child's learning targets and competency standards. In other words, if your child has a Social Studies assignment about Ancient Egypt, there are many resources online, especially on YouTube, that you can share with them. If it is Math, no problem. You may not know the weird math your child is learning but someone does and there are resources online to support them. There are resources literally at our fingertips. Take advantage of them by connecting with your child's Teacher, School, using social media networks, searching the internet and contacting the School District if necessary.

2. Physical Education is everyday. According to various studies regarding lifespans, the present generation is the first generation that are expected to not outlive their parents and guardians. A combination of sedentary lifestyles, obesity, poor diets and other issues are the causative factors. Nowadays elementary school children are lucky to get more than two days of forty minutes of physical activity each week. Also, lessons about diet, eating the right foods and the importance of optimum health are few and far between. Especially with the social climate around COVID-19, this is an excellent opportunity to reinforce the importance of health and wellness. Encourage some form of physical activity for your child EVERYDAY. It doesn't matter if it is in backyard, front yard or on the side of the house -of course while maintaining physical distancing from others. If there is no place outside, use the basement, attic, living room or bedroom. Create some space so they can get their heart to race. Physical activity does not need to be standard exercises either. If you have a Wii game system, use one of those games that promotes physical activity. Use the TikTok for some fun physical activity. Find some fun activities on YouTube. Also, join them! In regards to diet and eating the right foods, this is also a great opportunity to include healthy snacks in your daily routine and easy to prepare healthy meals that promote optimum health. Health is wealth.

3. Don't forget the life skills. Use this time to incorporate basic life skills in your daily routine. Teaching a child how to separate, wash and dry clothes, garden, how to use certain computer programs, clean the bathroom and numerous other tasks that they will need later in life is priceless. These tasks are usually not even taught in school and this is a unique opportunity to school them. Plus you can make these tasks fun. I mean, I am not sure how to make cleaning a bathroom fun but I'm sure you can figure something out. Incentives always work.

4. Your home is the classroom. Distance learning does not mean to replicate our child's classroom at home. You are now the Teacher, again. I say "again" because you were the first Teacher to begin with. So make your child's learning environment yours. When I taught preschool, during breakfast time my class would listen to a mix of A Tribe Called Quest, Jill Scott, Alice Coltrane, Frankie Knuckles and others. On the walls I had images of black artists at their eye level. After our daily exercises we would meditate for five minutes to slow our heart rate before transitioning into our calendar lesson. It was our classroom. I am not sharing this to tell you to rearrange your home. I am sharing this to emphasize the fact that you determine the structure, time period and resources to support your child's learning environment. If the first thing in the morning you want your child to do is read for fifteen minutes, cool. If you want them to watch a ten minute national geographic video while they eat breakfast, do it. If they usually have math after lunch in school and you want them to knock it out in the morning, that is all good. Do what works for them, and you, and don't be afraid to make adjustments. Also, if you have children in different grade levels, delegate, delegate, delegate. The older children are your TA [Teacher's Assistant]. 

    In closing, I will that these ideas are not only helpful in making distance learning run smoother but also minimize the stress that many of you are feeling from being thrown in this unpredictable position. You have more skills, tools and resources than you may know or even give yourself credit for. I have worked with youth from preschool to college age, in various capacities, for over two decades. One of the most valuable assets that I or any Teacher could have is a relationship with a student. It is only through that relationship can learning be facilitated. For 8 hours every day throughout a school year we strive to build this asset which you naturally have as a parent or guardian. So don't stress, you got this, and when you want support that is what we are here for.


Wednesday, April 01, 2020

Five Percenter Table Talks Featuring: Courtney Sullivan

   Courtney Sullivan is a follower of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, homeopathy study group leader and student. She is also a Do For Self health coach who encourages people to learn how to use herbs, essential oils and homeopathy to take charge of their life! In this Five Percenter Table Talks interview Courtney discusses her journey as a Caucasian woman ally with oppressed people, her challenges finding and aligning with other Caucasians, her experience farming and passion for homeopathy and how her journey of self-knowledge began when she was exposed to and welcomed to be among some Five Percenters. You can connect with Courtney via Instagram: HERE

Atlantis Build Talk Radio

Sunday, March 08, 2020

Is Social Media The Digital "Turn on, Tune in, Drop out"?

With the growth of social media and expansion of the Internet many of us are slowly losing our ability to effectively communicate and form meaningful connections with others. Technology is reshaping our brain architecture and how we explore and attend the real world. 

     Many websites today list the average reading time at the top of articles to inform people how much time they can't expect to invest on that site before even reading the article. Prior to development of social media Journalists took more pride in being right and there was a certain degree of integrity that came along with that profession. Nowadays it is about being the first to break a story, regardless if the details are right, in order to monetize web traffic to a website. Even the cycle of news stories have changed. Fifteen years ago National News was a mainstream talking point for at least a week. Nowadays National News has about a 48 hour life unless other information is shared in connection to that information. This is why stories are now shared in segments and you rarely get all of the details when a story breaks. This is not because of lack of information, it is often done in parts to lengthen the life of a story. Sometimes the wrong information is deliberately shared in order to retract it 24-48 hours later, which insures web traffic for another two days. Keep in mind that I am speaking from personal experience, as a writer and as a subject who was catapulted into the spotlight in 2014 when I was cited by as a subject matter expert by the international and national press on Jay-Z's Five Percenter Jewelry.
     Average films today are shorter in runtime, use shorter shots and have more motion and action. That, including the increase in web series on streaming sites and increase commercial time speaks to the changing attention span of audiences. In the early nineties standard Rap songs were comprised of 3 verses and 4 minutes and some seconds long. Now you get two verses for a few minutes, as a standard. Dope albums that dropped in the Spring got bumped the entire Summer and into the Autumn. In fact, when we personally declared an album as "Album of the Year" that is because we literally listened to it all year. Nowadays an album may get attention for maybe a week before people begin looking around for the next new release. This is why many Artists today compulsively push out music like it is coming off of a conveyor belt and tour to the point of putting their health at risk; they're trying to keep up with the attention span of their fickle audience. If not, they run the risk of being labeled irrelevant and the next unwilling contestant on the popular game show Cancel Culture. These are just some examples of the changing technological landscape, which has been critical to how we engage one another. 

     All social media formats use a scroll screen model. This enables users to easily scroll through pages without the cumbersome task of reading anything. If reading was not considered cumbersome social media Apps would not limit the character count to convey a thought. Consider the following character count limits and ideal character count:

Instagram = 2,200 characters max (144 ideal)

Twitter = 280 characters max (71-100, 85 ideal)

Facebook = 63,206 (40-80, 60 ideal)

LinkedIn = 700 (50-100, 75 ideal)

     While some people have learned and are learning to use these limited/ideal character counts to refine concise truncated thought, many others have found themselves becoming less and less equipped to communicate, online and offline. This technological shift coincides with what we are also seeing across the country with the closing and defunding of libraries, the historically low ELA competency levels in primary school students and the moving away from handwriting in exchange for typing. This is vitally important to understand because it affects the social emotional literacy trajectory of our for children and their ability to effectively communicate. In my article 1-36: What is English Lesson No. C1? I discussed why early talking matters and how children in impoverished communities on average hear 30 million fewer words than their privileged counterparts. With the introduction of the Internet and Social Media that is not integrated into our children's daily lives with Apps and Programs to help facilitate social emotional development and literacy, it only widens the disparity between children in impoverished communities from those in privileged communities. I know children in various grade levels who consistently tell me that they just played on a phone, an iPad or laptop when they're asked who when asked, "What did you do this weekend?" 
     In seeing this shift happening over the years I have consistently explored and wrote on this subject. My goal has been and continues to be finding effective ways to use this technology without undermining our ability to function within the real world. This is especially important to me as a Five Percenter who publicly represents our culture. As a Five Percent there are still many of our traditions that are not transferable in this digital domain. For example, in the digital world "all being born to" has been shortened to "abbt" in SMS language or textspeak just like "laugh my ass off" is "LMAO" and "get the f*ck outta here with that bullsh*t" is GTFOHWTB. Abbt does not appropriately convey the concept of drawing things up to their highest nor does textspeak enable us to explain that. Again, while character count limits can be used to develop concise thoughts, I have never been in a cipher where someone used Twitter's 85 ideal character count to build on Today's Mathematics or Today's Degree. The problem is there are folks today who have gotten exposed to KOS [Knowledge of Self] via the Internet and social media who believe that they are actually building with limited characters, comments and SMS language. Even with the LIVE function, social media Apps are not designed to support our traditional form of cultural engagement. As I've consistently mentioned over the years, I utilize these articles, my literature, videos, animation and online classes as routing devices to realtime. Regardless of technology's ability to help facilitate engagement, the best way to build with someone about our culture is to walk with them. The irony is it is "virtually" impossible to learn an entire culture without being actually immersed in it. Ironically, this has become an integral part of American culture and if you were to ask children today what they want to be when they grow up many will say, "A YouTuber!" Their aspirations are not to be a person with a measurable skill set that can contribute to this world, they aspire to be a talking head. It is a digital form of "Turn on, tune in, drop out." 
     There is no way to be a part of this society without interfacing with its technology. So we must explore effective ways to utilize it without it using us. Friday March 6th was National Unplugging Day which is something we need to do more often. This enables us to be more present and better focused on what is happening in realtime. Fasting, Meditation and Mindfulness are also a few techniques that help strengthen our attention span AND minimize attention seeking behavior. Our ability to effectively communicate, and form meaningful connections with others, is ultimately on us. 


Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Where Are The Women And Children?

Sausage Partyan event or group in which the majority of participants are male.

     Sex Ratio is the proportion of males to females in a population. If the Sex Ratio were 8:1, this would mean that for every 8 males there is 1 female. While these Sex Ratios have not been formally examined among the Five Percent, when you look at our ciphers around the Nation, our Sex Ratios are grossly disproportionate and imbalanced. It does not matter what the occasion, Five Percenter males far outnumber the presence and participation of Five Percenter females. I've heard people give various reasons why this occurs. Regardless of those reasons I think we can all agree that the absence of women and children undermines our national growth and the growth of any nation. Without the Earth, seeds or soil, there is simply no life. These disproportionate Sex Ratios, combined with the low retention rate of women remaining citizens of our Five Percent Nation, is problematic and must be addressed. There is no silver bullet to address this, yet there are some things that we can do to help change this trajectory of our Nation. Here are a few ideas:

120 Degrees Are For Women Also
     Over the years of being a citizen of this Nation I've heard differing perspectives on if women in our Nation should know 120 Degrees. I've always been an advocate that she should know 120 along with Supreme Mathematics and the Supreme Alphabet. Why shouldn't she? Some brothers have said that 120 Degrees are FOR MEN ONLY, which is one of the most asinine statements that I have ever heard. Some other brothers think that you should only teach a woman 120 Degrees because she is going to be your woman. Which is also asinine because I am not sure how dudes handle that situation when an underage girl outside of their family is striving to learn or a woman they're not interested in having a relationship with. One of the primary reasons that learning 120 Degrees is important, whether we are a male or female, is because it represents 6/8th's or 75% of our cultural curriculum:

1. Supreme Mathematics
2. Supreme Alphabet
3. 1-10 (Student Enrollment)
4. 1-14
5. 1-36
6 1-40
7. Actual Facts
8. Solar Facts

   When a person only knows the Supreme Mathematics they only have access to 1/8th or 12.5% of what they need to know about our culture. If they only know the Supreme Mathematics and the Supreme Alphabet they only have access to 2/8th's or 25% of what they need to know about our culture. That is completely unacceptable. You cannot expect a person with 12.5% or 25% knowledge of our culture to have wisdom and understanding. 
     If a man is the only one that possesses 120 and something happens to that man, those Degrees will die with him also; as we have seen with some of our elders and the widows and children they left behind. It is obvious that these Degrees were that important for him to know and use in his daily life to the point of reciting them word for word. Why then are they not as important for a woman, especially upon his physical death? When a woman knows 120 Degrees her children also have direct access to them, regardless to whom or what. This is important to understand because the Woman is naturally the closest teacher of the child during their formative years.  This period of growth and development is the transition from a child's pre-verbal to verbal years and the manifestation of their mother tongue. As I mentioned in my article Semantic Enigma: How To Speak Five Percenter Language 101, learning our language that is comprised of 120 Degrees, Supreme Mathematics and the Supreme Alphabet "promotes positive cognitive, social, emotional, language and literacy development. Make no mistake about it, a child [or any person] with access to a language that reinforces an identity of power and infinite potentiality has a profound effect on brain architecture and psychological orientation." Whatever a woman knows and understands will be what she will give her children. To deny her access to information, that we as a man deem important enough to live by, is criminal.
     How can a woman knowing 120 Degrees help change the Sex Ratio trajectory and low retention rate of women remaining citizens within our Nation? Women who know 120 Degrees will have an opportunity to be more invested, more empowered and have a greater sense of emplacement within our Nation. This will also serve the purpose of holding women to a higher cultural standard and both of us, men and women, to a fairer degree of accountability concerning our relationships, social norms and resources we provide for our families and communities.  When we are both in the know we have more potential to grow.

Encourage and Support Women Specific Events
     Some brothers are concerned that if women are encouraged or supported to create women specific projects, programs and initiatives that men will be left out. You obviously will be left out if you are not helping out. In all of the numerous projects, programs and initiatives I have organized or been involved in over the years, those Sex Ratios I spoke about earlier are flip flopped; men are in the extreme minority. If it is a guy thing then the guys come out, sometimes in droves. Yet if it is something concerning women and/or children I have never seen the same degree of equal participation. 
     I am not advocating that men abandon projects, programs and initiatives that are specific to our growth and development in order to support women. Naw, that would not be equality. I am saying that we should equally support what we are both doing for the growth and development of our families and communities. Those women who have seen me give all that I have and do all within my power to support them were/are more likely to support what I am doing. I also need to note that there are projects, programs and initiatives some women are advocating that do not have the family and community in mind nor are they working towards a sense of reconciliation or understanding with men. Some of these women are misandrists and I would not encourage men to support them, the same way that I encourage women not to support misogynists. None of them are about family and community; the propagative pillars of our Nation.

City Science, Social Science and the Role of Cultural Capital
City Science and Social Science is the knowledge of inhabited places, its people and their relationships. In considering where we live and how we function as a Nation, there are two unavoidable questions that we must answer for ourselves: 

1.) If what we can offer as a Nation in regards to food, clothing, shelter and other resources is not on par or greater than what the larger society is offering our women and children, why should we expect them to be fully committed to our Nation? 

2.) If we cannot offer women and children protection and security from being abused physically, emotionally, financially and etc., why should we expect them to be fully comfortable within our Nation? 

While these questions do not reflect the status quo within our Nation, they do exist in some places. And like MLK said, "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly."
     Without these provisions and protections we are not dependable. When we are not dependable we are not trustworthy. And without trust, there is no way of building solid relationships that establish and maintain families and communities. This requires Cultural Capital; a network of relationships and resources rooted in shared customs, principles and values that mark our way of life. These relationships of reciprocity, trust and the cooperation among citizens of our Nation systematically advances our cultural interests. Cultural Capital is the practical link between City and Social Science. Talk is cheap and the only real value of our culture is its investment in our people and the places where we live. 

     As we continue to embark upon our personal and interpersonal journey of Knowledge of Self, keep in mind that we need each other. No one is better or more important than the other. Culturally speaking, both men and women within our Nation should have equal access and exposure to 120 Degrees, not just our Supreme Mathematics and Supreme Alphabet. When we have unequal access and exposure to this cultural map, and its terrain, it undermines our ability to read/interpret that map and navigate that terrain. Men are not the only ones qualified to teach 120 Degrees to others. When a woman has 120 Degrees she is held to a higher cultural standard and is qualified to teach other women and children. She is also qualified to build with a man who has 120 Degrees, or who is learning his Degrees, and can share her wisdom and understanding with him. Every female that a man teaches 120 Degrees is not automatically his woman. That is ridiculous! There are many young girls, some underage, who are striving to learn and it would be wrong, and in some cases outright criminal, to expect a companionship from them. Our goal is to teach and we should simply expect more teaching in return.