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Local boy does his best for Mother Earth

Xyler Ordner's ideas have come to fruition.

By GREG EICHELBERGER
Sun Advocate reporter

There's a Bible verse which reads, in part, " ... and a little child shall lead them." (Isaiah 11:6).

And in the case of Creekview Elementary School's celebration of Earth Day, 2010 (Thursday, April 22), a child is leading the way, somewhat. Xyler Ordner, 8, a second grade pupil in Grace Gutierrez's class, was watching a recent program on the Nickelodeon channel, in which a report came on describing how some homes and businesses will turn off their lights for an hour.

This was a year after the last Earth Day in which the school went paperless (basically no homework assignments for the day), but not much else.

"We don't blame the school, they did what they could, but I guess he expected something more," said Xyler's mother, Veronica. "He's kind of thought about it since then."

And while he was contemplating Earth Day, 2009, the carefree days of youth intervened and he went on to other things. The Nickelodeon show, however, pricked his memory and he suggested that his mother help him to articulate his plans for a real Earth Day fete.

"I saw the thing about turning off lights and thought we could do it at our school," he said. "Last year we recycled some stuff I think and didn't use paper, but I was bummed about it."

With his mother leading the charge, and Creekview principal Joan Atwell endorsing the effort, the school decided to add a little more the the festivities. In addition to going paperless - again - turning off the lights (from 12:30-3 p.m.), those wishing to may walk from the Community Nursing Center on Carbon Avenue from 7:45-8:10 a.m. (to save carbon emissions). Each class will also engage in an activity, such as tree planting, picking up garbage or playing games with recycled items) and will also be given a special 15-recess at the end of the day, just for helping out.

All of this in addition to the recycling efforts already taking place at the academy.

"Xyler even begged me to join the PTA (Parent, Teacher Association) so that we could get these ideas okayed by that group," his mom added. "He is amazing. I was just blown away by his suggestions. He's really a smart boy."

Atwell concurred, saying, "I think his ideas were just awesome. It's rare when a child thinks of something like this, but when they do, we want to honor that initiative."

Veronica Ordner also wanted to spread the word that other schools and businesses are welcome to participate, but that while the school does recycle, it is not a recycling center and is not a drop off point for such material.




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