At age thirteen the high-achieving Yolen moved with her family to Westport, Connecticut, where she became captain of her high school girls' basketball team; news editor of the school paper; head of the Jewish Youth Group; vice president of the Spanish, Latin, and jazz clubs; a member of the school's top singing group; and a contributor to the school literary magazine. She also won a Scholastic essay contest called "I Speak for Democracy," and her school's English prize. Before graduation, her class named Yolen's voice to be a composite part of "The Perfect Senior." She also became close to her cousin-in-law, Honey Knopp, who sparked Yolen's lifelong interest in the Quaker faith.
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