Kids contribution: Learning Community — Preservation

When Xpress asked local educators for ideas about the focus of the annual Kids Issue, two distinct ideas rose to the top: activism and a kid’s view of the world. This week we focused on activism. We received a cornucopia of submissions, including the one you see below. 

I wake up to the sound of my sister’s alarm and crawl down the ladder from my top bunk. Even facing the window there’s barely enough sunlight to make out the rough edges of the trees surrounding our house. I push the door open and step out onto the porch. The cool air swallows me like a blanket. I reach out to the nearest leaf and feel the silky skin brush my fingertips. I am lucky enough to wake up to this picture-perfect scenery every day, a luxury most people in the world neglect. When was the last time you touched a tree branch and felt its bark scratch off the surface?

People don’t like the forest, I feel, because it’s disorganized and messy. In their all-but-perfect lives, they think the city is the most efficient place to live. But the city is noisy; all you hear in the forest are the faint sounds of animal feet hitting the leaves. Sometimes you need time to get out of the city and hear yourself think. Sometimes you need to feel like you know yourself and not the person other people have made you.

Not everybody wants to live in a forest. However, I wish that everybody could experience it, maybe just to hike or to go one time when you’re 5. It’s a necessary experience. I know that everybody’s just interested in progress, not preservation, but our history is as important as our future. We must learn from our mistakes. Only 8.5 percent of America is national forest land. The trees help us breathe and sustain life on our planet. We have to plan for the next generation and not just think about ourselves. We need our trees.

Olivia Kennedy, The Learning Community


Thanks for reading through to the end…

We share your inclination to get the whole story. For the past 25 years, Xpress has been committed to in-depth, balanced reporting about the greater Asheville area. We want everyone to have access to our stories. That’s a big part of why we've never charged for the paper or put up a paywall.

We’re pretty sure that you know journalism faces big challenges these days. Advertising no longer pays the whole cost. Media outlets around the country are asking their readers to chip in. Xpress needs help, too. We hope you’ll consider signing up to be a member of Xpress. For as little as $5 a month — the cost of a craft beer or kombucha — you can help keep local journalism strong. It only takes a moment.

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.