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Kate Hill

Cape Henlopen High School, 9th grade

The Beauty of the Outdoors

Ever since I was little my family was constantly outside. We would have picnics in the yard in the summer, jump in leaves in the fall, have snowball fights in the winter, and play countless games year round. I am one of four, so the house can get pretty chaotic. Whenever it got too much for my mom to handle she would kick us outside and make us find something to do on our own. At the time it was the absolute worst. No air conditioning. No technology. It forced us to explore and make up games, keeping us entertained for hours. Being outside is where I gained my love for sports. Growing up and being outside a majority of the time has been a big part of my upbringing and made me who I am today. 

We live on an old farm road with not a lot of homes, so playing on the road was no big deal. Now they are trying to put in neighborhoods all along the road, and the traffic can be overwhelming. Our once, slow, farm road is soon to be suffocated with constant traffic. Cars bring people, and people naturally bring waste. We will most likely have more trash along our road. It’s horrible to think of all the kids that will be growing up on Round Pole Bridge Road in the future and not have the same freedom and clean road that I did. There are so many simple things that people can do every day to keep the Earth clean for kids to grow up in. If people keep neglecting all of our beautiful space, where will kids learn what it’s like to be a kid? 

We have to all protect the Earth by being conscious of excess waste and choosing healthier options, like riding a bike or using a reusable water bottle. Something this simple can go a long way, once everyone contributes. Some bigger ways to implement the experiences of the outdoors could be to promote environmental education in school. If all kids have no choice but to learn about nature they can understand the importance of it. Green spaces can also be implemented in more urban areas to encourage people to escape the constant hustle and bustle of the city. This gives an opportunity for outdoor activities as part of the community like nature walks or clean-ups. It comes down to making nature important to people. With all the recent advances in technology, it seems as if better things is going on in our back pockets. Somehow we have to steer society’s mindset back to focusing on what we truly can never lose: nature. 

My personal connection to nature is strong in my everyday life, which is what makes me feel so strongly about protecting it. I think that being outdoors is an unmatchable feeling, something a device could never give you. We should never take the beauty given to us naturally for granted, for we are all only here once. 

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