By Andrea Kemp
Des Moines, IA (September 26, 2008)- Students at the Downtown School got their hands dirty Tuesday afternoon while they learned the importance of planting trees in urban areas. Prior to the tree-planting outside the school at 500 Grand Ave., Alice Ewen Walker, president of the National Alliance for Community Trees, explained to students why trees are needed. She said educating urban dwellers at a young age to appreciate nature’s role in improving the quality of life is key.
“Children are the future leaders of our cities,” Ewen Walker said. “I think you need to reach out to kids when they’re young and establish a connection to nature.”
Downtown School students seemed to have no problem identifying the benefits of the new trees that now line the sidewalk outside their school. “Trees are important for the water and for the shade,” said Sam Richardson, a second-grader. “We don’t have any inside – we can’t just have a tree in the middle of the classroom!”
Sam wasn’t alone in his theories on trees as essential to humanity. “Trees help you breathe and if we didn’t have trees, we wouldn’t survive,” said third-grader Carter Frey. “There would be no people on earth.”
Des Moines Register- Downtown School students learn importance of planting trees