Community Voices: Sixth-Graders’ Views on Climate Change

compiled by Jerod Santek, Artistic Director, Write On, Door County

Write On, Door County and Northern Sky Theater continue to inspire local students to write about nature through the SkyWriting program. 

Teaching artists from both organizations conduct writing workshops geared toward creating work that can be performed. Students brainstorm ideas, then work together and independently to write poems, stories or graphic novels – whichever genre they wish. A review committee will then select work to be set to music and performed at Northern Sky during the 2020 summer season.

Last month, students in sixth, seventh and eighth grades at St. John Bosco Catholic School in Sturgeon Bay participated in the SkyWriting program. One of the activities is a group poem: Students are given a heading or title; then each student has one minute to write a line and pass the paper on to the next student.

Although we’ve heard a lot recently about adults’ thoughts on climate change, here we’re sharing the perspectives of sixth-graders about what scares them about the climate and what makes them hopeful. 

Thinking about the climate makes me scared because …

Something might happen to it one day.

Sometimes it can get so cold that if you step outside, you freeze.

Things might change to bad stuff.

A big flood or natural disaster may destroy something I like.

I hear about global warming, and I think the world’s going to end soon.

There could be no school, or a really bad storm could come.

Things changing is not always good and sometimes leads to destruction.

It means I have to wait a whole year for the same kind of feeling.

It might be so hot that you have to stay inside, or it could be so cold, too.

It could be bad and dangerous.

There could be an earthquake at any second.

I think about the earth and the pollution. I wonder if we’ll survive.

Thinking about the climate makes me hopeful because …

Spring will be warmer and summer will be even warmer, and I like warm weather.

There are many different things to do. Sometimes it could be warm, and I can go swimming. It could also be cold, and I could go sledding.

It’s a mix of warm, cold, muggy, humid and freezing.

It might get warmer, or colder for snow days.

I get to go sledding down on Big Hill, and I could go sledding and build snowmen, or I could go snorkeling and find cool treasures.

I love snow and warmth. I hope for good weather like a snowstorm.

When summer comes, I love to play soccer, which is way better outside. 

Things might become better.

I get to see more of nature’s mysteries. 

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