Photo by Kaitlyn Tsai, 16, Walnut HS

Time for band camp
Even though it's hard work, Brian, 15, looks forward to learning a new show and hanging out with his friends.

Every summer 200 kids from my school come to band camp to learn a field show and rehearse and rehearse and rehearse. At its best a field show is a work of art. Take a 200-piece marching band and have them play three or four difficult songs. Now have them do it while marching in different formations. The music, steps, instrument direction and placement all have to be synchronized. Add in a color guard that throws, twists and spins sabers and flags. Throw in performance theatricals such as poses or chants, and you have some idea of the difficulty of a field show.
Volunteering with sharks, starfish and sea slugs
Chelsea, 17, was nervous when she started volunteering at the Santa Monica Pier Aquarium, but she has grown to love teaching visitors about the unusual plants and animals.
My best friend
Julia, 15, couldn't imagine getting another dog after her first one died, but now she's glad she did.
Playlist blog (Summer 2010)
Music for the surviving a breakup, the ultimate 80s dance party, a summer's day and late-night love songs.
My summers in Taiwan
Leslie, 17, wishes she could spend every summer in the country where her family is from because she feels so at home there.
What teens think about Prop. 8 being struck down
L.A. Youth writers react to a judge's decision that strikes down the ban on same-sex marriage.
They got me through
Teresa's foster family gave her a stable home and a chance for a better future.