When I started 6th grade, I was worried only about my first year in middle school. I was scared I wouldn't make friends, I was nervous about facing the 8th graders... but I wasn't concerned about the health of our planet. I was just a typical 6th grader, watching Hannah Montana and High School Musical. Oblivious to the turmoil Earth is in. Halfway through the year in Science class, we started an "environmental issues" unit. Like everyone else, I rolled my eyes and scoffed at the idea. My science teacher called me in after class, telling me there was a contest I should enter, where the goal was to fix an environmental problem, for which I would receive extra credit. I reluctantly agreed, not wanting to disappoint her. Later that day, I called my three closest friends and we decided we'd attack the problem together. The environmental issue we chose was, in fact, something we'd all been suffering from- awareness. We learned that many people don't even know what issues are affecting our planet- and we hadn't known about them before either. Together, we created a website called "Earth Ideas", where we would research solutions to help the earth and post them, and let classmates learn about the problems and send us ideas as well. I created fliers, put up posters, even went on the school intercom to raise awareness. Soon it became more than a class project for all of us. It became an obsession. Even though we didn't win the contest, we all felt like winners- we'd gotten an A in science, we'd helped the earth, and we'd had fun. Although the website expired a while ago, the ideas live on- and maybe we didn't change the world, but at least we changed our lives for the better.
July 11, 2010