Third Graders Call Out Grown Ups For Unacceptable Behavior


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Margot Pepper’s Third Grade at Rosa Parks Elementary

(8 and 9 years old)

Over the last few years, when it’s time to write 3rd grade opinion pieces to change the world as part of our Lucy Calkins District curriculum, I’ve noticed students shift from a desire to change their school or persuade a parent to a desire to fix an increasingly broken world.  As my students decry, the problems adults have created are beginning to puncture that idyllic soap-bubble membrane of their childhood.  Each year our district mandates that we teach about different cultures, gender equality, Black Lives Matter and now the climate. Yet it is only this year that my students felt compelled to delve far deeper than what was taught to voice their opinions to a greater audience on such unwieldy problems as the passage of the women’s equal rights amendment,  police shootings of African Americans, migrant discrimination, the pandemic, the ocean’s garbage patches and global warming. 

The sophistication of these pieces stems from 10 months of Lucy Calkins Writer’s Workshop and PEPPP (Pepper’s Energizing Prose and Poetry Program.) Thanks to the virtual conferencing tricks I used teaching college composition at the San Francisco Art Institute a few years ago and again during distanced learning, I had students transition to writing in Google Classroom as quickly as possible. This enabled me to read larger volumes of their work, comment more extensively on their pieces and even have Siri read them to me a few times. Students and I were able to interact through a piece of writing by way of my comments and their responses to my suggestions, like a virtual dialogue.  This technique enables me to conference with more students at a time and to help them excel at their own level and pace. I provide them with the tools to teach themselves spelling, to look up similes, check grammar and plagiarism. 

In the beginning of the year, I modelled how to find, respond to and generate comments on their pieces by projecting Google Classroom onto a large screen. I put the kids into writing partners to increase our teacher ratio.  We published an anthology of memoir vignettes with students taking charge of layout, editing each other’s work and finally copy editing the proofs. 

It was during this quarter that PEPPP taught students to rely on their five senses plus their hearts to write powerful and descriptive personal narratives and poetry. They learned simile and metaphor. PEPPP borrows from the Japanese method of going deeper into a subject by focusing on one problem, in this case, one hyper polished piece of writing, rather than producing more work with more uncorrected mistakes. 

From decades of professional writing, I know the rewrite is the key to stellar writing. Early in the year, I gathered them around the oak desk I used to write my memoir, still available at the downtown Berkeley public and UCB libraries.  

“Through the Wall, started as 700 pages, and I cut it in half, but it took eight rewrites to get it right,” I pointed out to my students, dumping  the big fat bound mockup versions on my desk with a thud.  (That has always stopped any grumbling about rewriting.)  Before COVID made computers second nature, even one rewrite was an excruciating process requiring pencils, erasers, scissors and tape.  Writing on computers makes rewriting and spelling fun and easy for kids. Once my students felt comfortable with this tool, I was able to prompt them to manage extensive restructuring. 

In the second half of the year during our study of non-fiction, students conducted research on a favorite animal and put together extensive slide shows that they presented to the class. They learned fancy layouts, how to insert hyperlinks to sources they used and impressive animated slide transitions. They also began to learn how to cite evidence and sources, instead of plagiarizing.  

During their presentations to the class they were told to ignore any mistakes they noticed and instead say what they wished the slide stated.  Exercises like this made them keen editors.

In the third quarter focusing on opinion writing, students learned how to distinguish between reliable academic sources and unreliable sources and, like my SFAI college students, how to look up the distinction on Sourcewatch.

To get the pieces which follow to a polished state, I provided restructuring and elaboration suggestions. Some students carried out my instructions without complication.   A couple still required me to reorganize and cut, others needed transitions and basic copy editing of punctuation, grammar and spelling to get them to a polished state. A few inspired writers,  took the initiative to dictate elaborate changes to a parent at home. And of course, there is light copyediting for the final products so that mistakes won’t come between you and their message.

What follows are pieces that are not only insightful, but extremely timely. Inspired by Greta Thunberg, my students cannot understand why grownups are so ineffective in taking action on life-threatening emergencies and injustices. Thanks to Greta they know the solution to these weighty problems begins with educating the public. It is their wish that you will share their information widely, and then act upon this knowledge. While they decided to appeal to the president and vice-president, as though they are the Santa Clauses of political change, it is ultimately up to you, dear ZNET reader. Please don’t let them down!

 

Dear Vice President Kamala Harris, 

You are doing a great job at being a vice president and I’m glad you were chosen. But now it’s time to focus on WOMEN’S RIGHTS!!!!!!!!! Vice-President Harris, you’re a woman so why aren’t you doing anything? I never see you talking about it. You never define it as a problem that needs solving. This has to change. If this goes on women will always be treated unfairly. 

Here are some examples. According to the trustworthy Marie Claire Magazine, did you know “retired women are twice as likely as retired men to live in poverty?” Another shocking inequality is “women pay more for common household items.” If you’re not shocked enough, “women enter male-dominated industries and their pay decreases.” Also “only 10 countries offer women full legal protections and the United States is not one!” Moreover, “women experience medical side effects to a disproportionate degree because drugs are designed for men…. Yet, female pain and medical issues are not taken as seriously as they are with men.” And you may already know women are far less represented in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math.) 

Women around the world are working too hard and not even getting paid enough for all the work they do. It has to change! Women should be enjoying their lives not working, working and working. Women also do work around the house, take care of the children, clean and much more.  This is called invisible labor because it’s work that’s not seen or paid for.  Women might do the exact same job as a man but only make 82 cents for every dollar a man makes. Why is this happening? 

OK you might be thinking this is a school project but still I chose this topic because it’s important. My teacher Ms. Margot Pepper chooses projects that will help change the world into a better place. I hope this one will change women’s rights.

It’s time for a 28th amendment where women are equal to men and you should sign it!

So you might be thinking oh no, but we’ll have to open up all the amendments at a time when too many senators may propose and vote on changes you don’t like. But don’t you think this is just an excuse? It’s time to take a stand. Talk to Joe Biden and make him pass executive orders that help women achieve equality.  Then go further yourself, as a woman. 

You are a Black and Indian woman who has gone through a lot and have achieved so much while helping so many people.  I am proud that you are the first woman to hold this position, the highest in the executive branch that any woman has ever been elected to. Now you could be remembered as the vice-president who finally took the lead to get women’s rights into the constitution! Take charge to help us pass that 28th amendment. It’s 2022! We can’t tolerate another day.  I hope you consider the need for women’s equal rights now.  

Sincerely, 

Anika, age 8 

Ms. Pepper’s Note: When Anika first began, she had pages of notes.  I told her to pick the most outrageous facts to put in her introduction and to expand on no more than ten and add transitions and a conclusion. I was stunned by her work and promptly called her mother to see if the piece had a co-author.  This is an excerpt of her response: 

“Thank you for your message.  It brought tears to my eyes.  I’m so proud of my Anika.  SHE is the writer in this family.  She first shared this piece with her father.  He didn’t help her at all other than to ask her questions about her ideas.  Then a few days before it was due we literally spent maybe 30 minutes on it together. The only idea I introduced her to was invisible labor.  And it wasn’t because she didn’t already have it in there, she just hadn’t named it. She was adamant about not changing 98% of what she had written.   She said that you’d pointed her in good directions to get her facts and that you told her how to structure it and she wouldn’t let me suggest changes to the structures.  For example, I said, do you want to say something to Kamala Harris about what she’s doing well at the end of the document before you sign off and she said, no, she already had and Ms. Pepper told her to write it in this style.  I thought you are an amazing teacher.  You see my girl and you’ve really brought out her skill.”

I ran Anika’s piece through the plagiarism checker, as I do all the pieces.  There were no flagged passages.  

I ran Anika’s piece through the plagiarism checker, as I do all the pieces.  There were no flagged passages.  She helped Falcon Shapiro power through his ambitious piece on addiction. I have never seen Falcon so inspired and proud of himself as he was with Anika as a writing partner. His piece follows.

Dear Governor Newsom,

My Aunt Hazel died of a drug overdose when I was seven. While no one really knows what led to her overdose, I do know it could have been avoided.  You see, people only overdose on drugs when they are sad or hopeless. In our country people get sad when they don’t have housing, a good job, healthcare and education.  People can also get hopeless if they don’t get help for depression.   According to Harvard, poverty, low education, unemployment and homelessness, can lead to an addiction overdose in the United States.

In the United States, there are About 42.5 million poor people according to Google. California has the highest number of unhoused people: 151,278, or ⅓ of the nation’s unhoused.    In addition in California, only 509,128 of 39,185,605  people have a college education in California.    There are 27 million people not  being treated for depression. 13.2% of people in California are on antidepressants.  There are 19.2% of  people in California being treated for mental health.    In California 96,700  people die of addiction.  2.7 million people are addicted.

That is why I believe we can reduce drug addiction by funding a care center for mental health. I’d like you to change this in the California Constitution by putting a portion of tax money into all mental  health  care programs in California. Mental health care programs help by giving people who need mental health a place that can really help them. Right now only 4.1 million dollars goes into mental health care programs.

Some examples of what mental health care programs could do are meditating, adding tiny houses, animals for support, and a gardening space. The maximum number of people in a mental health care program should depend on how big it is and how much staff the mental health care program has. The mental health care program should decide what’s best.

The mental health care program should use the tax money for whatever they want, or whatever they need, just in a sustainable way. I hope you consider some of these ideas for the constitution to help some of the people suffering from addiction.

Sincerely,

Falcon with help from Anika

When our District mandated the teaching of Black Lives Matter, I asked students to raise their hands if they thought Martin Luther King Jr. was alive during slave times. All but a few did, so I set out to help them build a timeline that began with Harriet Tubman, continued with the Civil War, Reconstruction, Jim Crow, the Harlem Renaissance, Civil Rights Era, Black Panthers and finally culminated in Black Lives Matter.  

The following opinion piece was inspired by two Flowcabulary Lessons (brilliant animated, poetic and educational rap songs) focusing on the Civil War and Reconstruction.  As our class learned how those who lost the Civil War tried to skirt the new laws, it became apparent that the losers of the war never really surrendered; they just changed their tactics to hold on to their racism and oppress African Americans. When students learned about the three branches of government and voting, we noticed some new restrictions that were just being instituted bore some similarities to restrictive laws during Jim Crow.  

Weeks later, when it came time to write opinion pieces, a group of students chose to focus on racial inequality.  I asked them what sorts of injustices they were most interested in solving and voting rights came up. I helped them understand the Fifteenth Amendment and reviewed how it had been circumvented during Jim Crow. We suspected that some of the same states might be involved in voting rights restrictions today.  

I found a huge laminated map of the United States and Naomi and Ollie took charge of looking up all the former slave states and filling them in our map with diagonal black lines. Next, they looked up states with voting restrictions and marked them with red lines going in the opposite direction.  I then asked them to report any patterns they saw.  Naomi and her mother did some research about this and brought in the political parties. The following article documents everyone’s observations. I helped them expand where necessary with more research and to structure their piece.  Naomi wrote a first draft of the conclusion and some of the opinions. She and Ollie presented their work to the whole class.  I then guided the class in editing the piece, providing stronger language, elaboration on weak points, transitions and reworking the conclusion to make it even more powerful.   

The group thought it would be “cool” to vaguely link voting restrictions to the refusal the relinquish slavery during Jim Crow.  Yet, during the process of obtaining permission for the piece, one parent suggested they use less divisive langue such as presented in  “The Race Class Narrative.” After all, just like during Jim Crow, there are opposing movements in each state. The farther we move from direct democracy,   the worse for the average working person. In other words, even those who are in favor of voting restrictions have more in common with the casualties of such restrictions than they do with the elite whom the architects of such policies aim to maintain in power.

BACK TO SLAVE DAYS?

By third graders Naomi and Oliver with some inspiration from Isaiah, Kevin, the Pepper Panthers 

(8 and 9 years old) and Ms. Pepper

Dear President Biden and Vice-President Harris,  

After the Civil War, the Fifteenth Amendment gave African Americans the right to vote. According to CNN “the 15th Amendment prohibited states from taking away the right to vote ‘on account of race, color or previous condition of servitude.’” But there was a big loophole or exception: “States could still impose voter qualifications. And in time, many former Confederate states did exactly that” to prevent African Americans from voting. They passed voting restrictions like poll taxes and reading tests and called them qualifications. People who used to be slaves were kept from reading so many couldn’t pass these tests and therefore couldn’t vote.

Well today, in 2022, 25 mostly Republican states (all but 6) are still trying to limit African Americans and Democrats from voting with voter restrictions just like the Confederate states did!  In all, 25 states have passed voting restrictions but 22 are recent according to a map by  Prospect.org.  “Studies show that these new laws will disproportionately harm voters of Color,” says the Brennan Center for Justice.  Voters of Color tend to vote Democrat. 

Let’s compare states with voting restrictions and those states that had slavery.  Both prevent African Americans and other People of Color from voting, from having equality. Such restrictions today include not allowing voting from churches, closing polling places and making long lines or long trips necessary and making it hard to vote by mail.

At the start of the Civil War, there were 34 states in the United States, 15 of which were slave states. These were Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia.   

By today, the majority of the slave states, that is 10 out of 15, have passed voting restrictions. These states are Texas, Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee, Virginia, Alabama, South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia and Florida. It’s like the losers of the civil war are still out there, trying to get their way. The majority of voters don’t like this so we need to change this now.

The former slave states that have not passed voting restrictions are Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma and Delaware.  So they’ve come a long way.

President Biden and Vice-President Harris, can you pass an executive order to close the loophole in the 15th amendment? Voting restrictions are straight out of the Confederate play book and slave times.  Aren’t we living in 2022 now?  Rights matter.  We should let all people vote whether they’re Black, Latine, Native American, Asian American, Pacific Islander or Euro-Americans, poor, unhoused or wealthy alike.  What kind of a message are states with voter restrictions sending to us children? Are we back to slave days?

Sincerely,

Naomi and Oliver with some inspiration Isaiah, Kevin, the Pepper Panthers and Ms. Pepper

All Immigrants Should Be Treated As Well as Ukranians

Dear Vice-President Kamala Harris,

You are doing a great job, but we have a problem. Have you seen the way immigrants from Ukraine, who are mostly white, are being treated differently than immigrants from other countries? Especially Black immigrants from Haiti and immigrants from Honduras and so on. This must stop. NBC news says that Black immigrants from Africa and the Caribbean are being denied from being helped out of their situation. Yet white Ukrainians are. This is not fair. All people who are in trouble should be treated the same no matter what. 

According to Democracy Now!, the US has made shelters for Ukrainian asylum seekers but evicted Blacks from other countries from their shelters. And now those people are homeless. They even have a special line only for white Ukrainians just to help them.  And before they could only process 30 people a day, but now they process thousands of people from Ukraine. Some African-Ukranians are also being turned away. According to Erika Pinheiro, an immigrant attorney, “The way they (white Ukrainians) are being treated at the border is the way everyone should be treated.” 

The reason you should solve the problem is if nobody helps the Black immigrants, they will die. All human beings should have equality and stick together. You believe in equality, right? So do I. That means we should help all people no matter their race. If they die, their blood is on our hands. 

The solution is to tell them to let all refugees into America no matter what race they are. And if immigration officials are racist or discriminate they will have to be fined. This is just a suggestion and I hope you consider it. 

Some might say we should not help immigrants of Color, but they are wrong. You may be wondering why they are wrong, it’s because we all deserve equality. It’s difficult, but you can do it. Or you may think this is not happening but it is, and we can’t ignore it anymore. 

Thank you for taking the time to read this. Please watch this video of Amy Goodman. I hope you consider an executive order. 

Sincerely,

Mustafa, age 8

Dear President Biden and Vice President Harris,

I am happy you got elected for president and vice president. You are a better president than former president Trump. But police violence targeting African Americans needs to stop. In other words, it is wrong that police are racist and torture black individuals just because they are Black.   

However, this is not too surprising.  The reason is that “the origins of modern-day policing can be traced back to the violent “Slave Patrols” according to the NAACP.. Slave patrols were people who if the slave ran away, they were they ones who captured them and brought them back or punished them. 

According to a NAACP fact sheet, and a NAACP video,  police violence today has some similarities. First let’s look at the facts.  African Americans are 2.5 times more likely to be killed as whites, according to the NAACP. Both slave patrols and today’s police torture and kill Black people.  They work for a system that keeps Blacks from succeeding or getting equality.

So why are you not doing anything about it? Why are you not putting an end to police violence that targets African Americans? You’re a president. You can change things. Do you not know that white people are actually killing black people? Police should be protecting and bringing peace. But they’re not. They’re killing black people and you’re not doing anything about it.  You’re just sitting around in your big White House doing nothing while mostly white police are killing black people outside your window. How would you feel if you were a black person and you were just minding your own business and then a cop just shot you for no reason? So can you please do something about it? And thank you for being a better President than Trump.         

Sincerely, 

Arthur, age 9

 

And Now I’m Going to Talk

Dear Reader,

I think we should go back to wearing masks in school because we need to protect ourselves from coronavirus. And people are dying because of it. You guys think it’s over? Because it’s not. People are not wearing masks in schools, restaurants ,coffee shops, arcades, toy stores and many more. Yet masks help people to not get Covid.  And if everybody wears a mask Covid will slowly vanish away. So for now we need to wear masks so we don’t get Covid. Let’s stop complaining; sometimes you forget you’re even wearing a mask because you get used to it.   

Sincerely, 

Arthur, age 9

Police Killings Have Been Going on Since Slavery

Dear President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris,

I am happy you got to be president and vice president. You are a better president than former President Trump. But there is one thing that I need you to help with: the police killings that need to be stopped! Now, yes, NOW!    

Police have been killing citizens in their house like Breonna Taylor who was killed in her apartment and Stephon Clark that was killed in his grandmother’s backyard.  And Alton Sterling was killed by police just because of a little disturbance outside a shop. That is unbelievable. And Walter Scott was shot in the back 5 times by a police officer that was later charged for killing a man. And George Floyd was killed by an officer putting a knee on his neck for 8 min and 46 sec.  Since 2015 there have been 1615  Black  killings by police  says the Washington Post.

When you look at this BBC  timeline of African Americans killed by police, titled George Floyd: Timeline of black deaths and protests – BBC News,  you will think that is a lot of deaths but that was only since 2014. This has been going on a lot longer than that. Believe it or not, police have been killing people since the 1890s.  The Origins of Modern Day Policing  according to the NAACP,  was the slave patrol. That’s right.  Police killing have been going on for over 130 years, since the slave days!  Back then the slave patrols rounded up runaway slaves.  Then after the civil war, they became police.  Here is another link for a good source to check.   Why do US police keep killing unarmed black men? – BBC News

In conclusion, police have been killing black citizens for years and years on end. They will not stop if normal citizens tell them to.  They aren’t going to stop like, “oh let’s stop killing.” The answer is “no.” Only you, President Biden,  and Vice President Harris can stop police killings.  And that is why you need to make a stand to stop police killings. We need police killing to stop now!!

Sincerely,

Carmel, age 9

Save The Ocean

Dear President Biden and Vice-President Harris,

I’m so thrilled for you to be reading this as President and Vice-President. You are way better than former president Donald Trump, but there’s a problem: most sea mammals are dying because of plastic. Can you believe there will be more plastic mass in the ocean than fish by 2050?

This is because “About 10 million metric tons of plastic waste enters the oceans each year, killing seabirds, fish and marine mammals. It breaks down into smaller pieces called microplastics that absorb a range of chemicals floating in the marine environment, including pesticides and toxic meals,” according to www.niehs.nih.gov. People are also harmed by eating plastic-infected seafood.

“There are 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic waste estimated to be in our oceans. 269,000 tons float, 4 billion microfibers per km² dwell below the surface. 70% of our debris sinks into the ocean’s ecosystem, 15% floats, and 15% lands on our beaches,” according to Ferries to Guernsey, Jersey, St Malo And The UK.

Mr. President, and Mrs. Vice-President, thank you for reading this. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you plan to save the ocean before it gets too late and our ocean is nothing but trash and plastic.  

Sincerely, 

Sara, age 8

Are Humans Burying Themselves in Trash?

Dear President Biden,

I’d like you to help stop our trash problem. Did you know that US scientists estimate there are 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic in our oceans today? If this keeps happening, many more fish, whales, sharks, seals, otters, dolphins and many other marine species will die. Without them our oceans will turn into a swamp.  It’s like if we don’t care about making animals go extinct. Well, guess what ‘’other ‘’ kind of species of animal will also go extinct. That’s right humans. So let’s stop before it is too late. 

All this plastic has created five garbage patches;  the ocean current  goes in circles which makes these patches in our ocean. To be exact these are:  the North Atlantic garbage patch, the South Atlantic patch, the North Pacific patch, the South Pacific patch and the Indian Ocean patch. They are as big as huge countries!

Did you know that if you litter even on land, your trash might go into a drain that leads into the sewers then it goes into the ocean?   So whenever you have trash, you need to put it in the trash can or, better yet, recycle.  Better still, we should stop buying and using up as many things.  

China and America are responsible for 242,000,300,000 pounds of trash dumped into the ocean every year. That’s a lot of trash dumped into the ocean. So instead of using 1 water bottle once and letting it eventually kill an innocent little baby sea animal, people should donate 1 dollar to a website called #teamseas and get 1 pound of trash out of the ocean.  President Biden, maybe you can raise money to match each of our dollars!

Some solutions you can promote to help us save the ocean are….

  1. Reduce pollution 
  2. Shop wisley
  3. Reduce vehicle pollution
  4. Use less energy
  5. Don’t litter 
  6. Practice safe boating
  7. Fish responsibly
  8. Reduce waste
  9. Conserve water. Use less water so excess runoff and wastewater will   not flow into the ocean
  10. Donate 1$ or more to get a pound of trash out of the ocean.  

So that’s what you have to help us do, President Biden. Don’t you want me and many many many kids to live a life that is happy, or do you want no human life to exist? It’s not fair that you get to live a nice life and we will have to live a hard life. You might be thinking,  “I am living a hard life.”   But you are wrong.  When I say “hard life” I mean barely any clean water to drink, no clean air, storms, fires, hurricanes and other disasters, big animals going extinct, wars over what we have left, so if you want to not be forgotten and hated you have to help us do those ten things, just those ten things. It’s not like you have to risk your life.

Sincerely,

Jiguur, age 9

Climate Change                                                  

Dear President Biden & Vice-President Harris,     

      I am so happy that you are president and vice-president but you have to do something about climate change!!!  In about 7 years it will be irreversible. 

     If we don’t do something Antarctica and Greenland will melt. Then sea levels will rise to about 230 feet. There will be more fires, starvation, bigger storms and more heat waves. We can solve the problem by implementing these strategies: Save energy at home by  walking, biking or taking public transportation and consider how you travel.  Try to eat more vegetables instead of meat and don’t throw away food. You can also practice the four Rs, reduce, reuse, recycle and repair.  Switch to a cleaner source of energy such as solar panels and wind power.  You can also switch your gas powered vehicle to an electric vehicle.” According to https://www.un.org/actnow

        Last but not least, I really think you should get rid of OIL COMPANIES!!! If we don’t get rid of them now they will sell more and more oil and gas which pollutes the air. It’s horrible because soon we will choke on the air we breathe. Our atmosphere will be so dirty and hot we will have to find a new planet to live on. None of us want that, right?

     I really think everyone can do their part to stop climate change. It’s everyone’s responsibility to do something now otherwise our lives are coming to an end. Our world is dying and we need to help the Earth. I should not even be writing this! I chose this topic because it’s an emergency but nobody sees it as a problem.

Sincerely,

Zoe, age 8

Dear President Biden, 

You are a great president. You’ve accomplished a lot by being decent. That is why I think you can help save our planet.  This is no exaggeration.  Allow me to explain. 

 The world is heating up from human activity by pulling coal and oil out of the ground and creating fossil fuels which is sending carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere.  For about 200 years people have created lots of greenhouse gasses. This is bad because the greenhouse gasses are being sent into the atmosphere which is trapping heat from the sun and warming our planet. By warming our planet, sea levels are rising, trees are getting chopped down to make space for factories, and species are dying.

You can help by giving companies the money they need to produce solar panels, electric cars, and renewable light bulbs.  Solar panels will harness the energy from the sun to power houses.   When gas is being burned inside cars, it creates methane which is one of the greenhouse gasses. But with electric cars they don’t run on gas, they use batteries. The light bulbs we use now require a lot of energy from fossil fuels to power them, which is sending carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and  heating our planet. LED bulbs hardly use any energy and don’t get hot. 

Besides fossil fuels, something else is contributing to global warming.  People are also raising a lot of cows for meat and milk.  These cows create a lot of methane from their rear ends. You can help stop this by getting people to eat more vegetable protein. You could help farmers by giving them money to buy seeds to plant more vegetables and fruits so we won’t be eating so much meat. 

A third problem confronting our planet is plastic. All the plastic that we use is blowing into the oceans from rivers and sewers. Plastic In the ocean is harming all the fish. Sea creatures are getting plastic stuck around their heads and choking. You can help by organizing more beach, pond, and river cleanups. And substituting other materials for plastic so it doesn’t end up in the sea.

 If you help make clean energy I can do my part by: turning off the lights when they don’t need to be on, using paper straws instead of plastic straws, and drinking less milk. Thank you for considering these ideas so we can help the world that we live on.

How I feel about climate change is I do not like it at all and think it should stop. People behave like it’s no big  deal,  but it’s a huge deal.  After all, the world is dying! Won’t you please wake up? 

Sincerely,

Michael, Age 9

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