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Wayne Alarm: Security tips renters should know

SAFETY TIP OF THE DAY

SPONSORED BY WAYNE ALARM AND HONEYWELL.

Renters are just as likely to have burglary, a fire, and any other form of danger that any homeowner can experience as well. Renting a home can be an entirely different experience, however, since it all depends on the landlord. There is nothing to worry about, there are still options on securing your apartment!

  1. As most common entrances for burglary are through windows and back doors, it’s important to ensure they are closed at all time. If your door doesn’t have a deadbolt, and your landlord won’t provide one, see if you can install one yourself, or even a chain lock. If a deadbolt is installed, consider asking the landlord to replace it, provide them with a spare key if necessary.
  2. Strike plates, the metal plate on your door frame, are often found old and worn out in rental homes. This means it is not as secure as it once was. Instead, try replacing the screws with longer ones to secure it or replace it with a more secure plate altogether.

When living on the first floor of a building, windows should be your main priority. You want to always make sure all of your windows lock.

  1. Most importantly, however, don’t make it easier for thieves to hide.  Avoid having tall plants or shrubbery near your windows and use a rod on the tracks of a sliding window or sliding a glass door. Since these don’t require much maintenance or work to do in a rental, making it perfect for renters.
  2. Avoid placing your most valuable items near your windows. You don’t necessarily have to hide your valuables, but don’t place big screen TVs and such by the windows as it can intrigue thieves to take it.

Most importantly, make sure you’re aware of your neighbors and get to know them. Not only can they help in case of any emergency, but can also share any privacy concern that they might have. It also helps to keep a line of communication between your landlord and yourself, so you can feel comfortable in bringing any security concerns.

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Salad days ahead for Ford School

PHOTO BY NICOLE GOODHUE BOYD
Krystle Fandel and her son Julius Ruiz, 9, work to screw in a metal corner for an outdoor raised planting bed.

By BRIDGET TURCOTTE

LYNN — Students at Robert L. Ford Elementary School will soon live off the fat of the land.

When students return to school on Monday, they’ll begin planting lettuce seeds for a spring gardening project. Six weeks later they’ll harvest the lettuce and use it to make salads for lunch. They’ll have the option to take what’s left over home with them, said Jenn Coverdale, a FoodCorps service member working on The Food Project initiative.

“These kids are learning to grow and eat their own food,” said Coverdale. “This is a project we’re doing with all of the city’s third-graders, so all 500 students will grow lettuce.”

The Food Project is a Lynn-based nonprofit that works to help youth and adults from diverse backgrounds build sustainable food systems. The organization offers youth and community programs at different levels and in multiple seasons. Its goal is to engage young people in personal and social change through agriculture.

According to the FoodCorps website, one in three of the nation’s children are overweight and on track to develop diabetes in their lifetime. More than 30 million kids rely on their school for lunch; more than 12 million for breakfast.

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Third-grade teachers Melanie Maselbas and Nicole Guarino helped break down old, deteriorating garden beds and build new ones Friday morning. Julius Ruiz, a third-grader at the school, and his mom, Krystle Fandel, also showed up ready to work during school vacation week.

“It’s healthy for you to eat the food that grows,” said Ruiz, 9. “I like that we’re helping nature.”

His mom said she was impressed by the project and is attempting to start her own garden at home this spring.

Guarino said the hands-on activity fits with what the students are learning about plants in class. She said she felt the project would give the children a sense of ownership to see the work that goes into growing their own food.

Maselbas added gardening will benefit her visual learners.


Bridget Turcotte can be reached at bturcotte@itemlive.com. Follow her on Twitter @BridgetTurcotte.

Animal magnetism at Lynn Museum

ITEM PHOTO BY SPENSER HASAK
Vincent Lozzi IV, 11, pets a chinchilla during the Curious Creatures presentation.

By GAYLA CAWLEY

LYNN — Free Fun Family Day at the Lynn Museum gave children a chance to enhance their time off from school by interacting with animals and growing their own grass plants on Tuesday.

Judith Marshall, education and research specialist at Lynn Museum, said the museum usually holds one free family day a quarter, which typically have themes. Tuesday’s theme was Earth Day. She said the event is a great way to get all sorts of people to come into the museum.

Residents were invited to come to the museum for free for arts and crafts activities, such as coloring and word searches. Kids could grow their own grass plant and decorate their pots.

Children were also treated to a live animal program, featuring curious creatures such as a tortoise, snakes, a tarantula, flying squirrel, chinchilla and a little alligator.

“That’s always a hit,” Marshall said.

Conor Poverchuk, 7, said he liked the animals, specifically, the “little, tiny turtles.”

Jayla Walsh, 7, said she liked the “crocodile” because he had sharp teeth.

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Martine Georges came with her children, Nailah, 6, and Isaiah, 9.

“I’m off work and the kids are on school vacation,” Georges said. “I love it here anyways so we came to have a good time.”

Nailah Georges said the “crocodile” was her favorite, also because she liked the sharp teeth. She also enjoyed planting grass.

“I came because it’s something nice to do with the kids and a nice learning experience for the kids,” said Evelyn Panias, who brought four of her grandchildren.

Michael Celona brought his two daughters, Isabella, 9, and Lucia, 8.

“I thought it was a great way to spend the day with my two daughters and teach them a little bit about the history of Lynn and where Lynn is looking in the future,” Celona said.

Drew Russo, executive director of Lynn Museum, said the event is an opportunity to give people in the community an opportunity to experience the museum at no cost. The Lynn Cultural Council provided some of the funds for Free Fun Family Day. The museum does four of the events a year, and he is hoping to do six next year. He said the museum is seeking additional funding sources for the events.


Gayla Cawley can be reached at gcawley@itemlive.com. Follow her on Twitter @GaylaCawley.