Previous events have had invitations such as the following:
KIDS . . . . How can we help the Earth? Do you know what we need to do to live more green in Sandbach?
I think the biggest thing we can start with is to WATCH OUT!
Firstly, think about your SAFETY. If you are out in green places, WATCH OUT for yourself! That means, WATCH OUT for:
· fast, dangerous traffic
· lonely places you should only go to with others
· dangerous things in those places, like broken glass and other litter
· wild things that you might hurt or destroy
· things you can do to help everything in nature.
Secondly, WATCH OUT for friends. Some people care about nature, some do not. But perhaps there are also friends that aren’t people? What friends like that might we find around Sandbach? I think I have spotted a few, and here are some of them.
REES, THE RECYCLING CROW
There will be a bird close by when you recycle something in the bin outside your home. There will be a bird close by when you take something to the recycling bin in the town centre. And perhaps they would like to say thank you. Can you hear them singing to you, to do that?
The main recycling bins in the middle of Sandbach are near the Library and Park. There’s a tree in the middle of the bins. Watch that tree, and you might see him – he’s a big, black CROW! He isn’t always there, and sometimes he is in one of the other trees, or on the grass in the Park, but you may see him in the “recycling tree” when not many people are around. Let’s give him a name – how about REES, the Recycling Crow? He’s there to watch, every time anybody recycles something. Do you think he cheers when they do?
He’s quite funny, actually. He is not there to recycle anything, himself. (There isn’t a feather recycling bin!) Actually, he’s there because he likes the tree. He likes to sing from that tree to Mrs Crow. He sticks his head up, fans out his tail and says CAW very loudly, four times. CAW-CAW-CAW-CAW. That’s Crow-speak for “I love you”.
Do you have a good singing voice? No? Well, don’t worry. Nor does he – but Mrs Crow still loves him! She is a bit smaller than him, and a lot more nervous, so you might not see her. But she is listening. And his voice sounds as sweet as you like – but only to her. Hundreds of years ago, there was a man who perhaps did not have a good singing voice himself. His name was John Bunyan, and he wrote one of the most famous Christian books ever. John once said this: “God, who made the Nightingale, also made the Crow.” Nightingales sing very beautifully. But do Crows?
But I’ll tell you what. Sandbach does not have a recycling Nightingale. Who needs a Nightingale, anyway? We have a recycling Crow! Let’s stick up for our Rees. Whatever his voice is like, his heart is in the right place. And if you go when it is quiet, and drop something in one of his recycling bins, he might even reward you by saying CAW-CAW-CAW-CAW to you. Perhaps if we recycle enough, we could train him to do it every time for us? CAW, that would be a nice way of saying thank you to us, wouldn’t it?
THE ROADSIDE ROBINS
Do you know what a Robin looks like? Robins are those little brown birds with bright orange-red fronts, which sit in bushes and sing sweetly.
Robins are not as shy as many birds. You can get quite close to one, if you don’t frighten it. In your garden, if a Robin sees you digging, he may even come and stand near you, watching for any worms you dig up.
Robins love to sing. They are about the only birds that will sing all year. Mr Robin sings most of the time, and even Mrs Robin might sing occasionally. They will sing anywhere, even under a streetlamp at night. (People sometimes think they are Nightingales, when they do that!) And they will sing even next to busy noisy roads. So they are Roadside Robins – but can you hear them?
So this is the test. Next time you walk along a pavement, listen for a Roadside Robin. It won’t be on the road itself, of course – it will be in a hedge or bush. But can you hear it?
It’s quite simple. If you can hear it, that’s OK. But if you can’t, do you know why? It’s because the traffic is too loud. So go home and tell anyone in your house who drives a car that they must not drive too much. You want to hear the Roadside Robins. And, of course, they want to hear themselves!
So we must all drive less – and listen more. Happy listening!
THE MOTLEY MEADOW CREW
Kids - do you know that there are four big problems for wild animals and creatures nowadays (and for us, of course?
One of the problems is called GLOBAL WARMING. That’s happening because we are all using and wasting too much. Actually, it doesn't always cause warming so a better title is CLIMATE INSTABILITY. We need to stop things getting out of balance!
Another is called POLLUTION. That’s a similar problem, except that instead of heating the Earth up too much with carbon dioxide, we are poisoning it with other things.
We also waste too much! That's a problem called WASTE OF RESOURCES.
But the fourth is slightly different. It’s called the LOSS OF BIODIVERSITY.
What’s BIODIVERSITY? BIO means life – that’s all living things. And DIVERSE means different.
Difference is wonderful. Think of all the colours in a rainbow, or all the different skill that players need in a football team. All your friends are different. You wouldn’t want them all the same, like robots, would you?
So what does this mean we should like for? What is BIODIVERSE around Sandbach? Well, let me introduce you to the MOTLEY MEADOW CROWD!
Have a look at wild flowers. How many different colours and shapes and sizes are there? There are lots and lots! And so there should be. God never makes the same thing twice – how boring would that be?
You don’t need to be down in MOTLEY MEADOW, either! You have a look, next time you see some grass with flowers in it. If you see some yellow flowers, look for different yellows. Some of them will belong to the Different Dandelions.
Dandelions are the ones that have feathery clocks that you can blow away. If you count how many blows you need, people say that will tell you what time it is! But there are lots of different kinds. The experts say there are nearly 700 different kinds of dandelions. What if one of them died out? Do you think that you would miss it? Well, maybe not – but your children would never be able to see it. And God would miss it, too!
In spring there are the Variety Violets – or in summer I suppose it should be the Variable Vetches. All of those are purple. Not everything is nice and flowery, of course. We all know about the Nasty Nettles and the Thorny Thistles. Mind you, thorny things can be very beautiful – like the Rainbow Roses in peoples’ gardens.
But wouldn’t life be boring without rainbows? The Bible says that God gave Noah the rainbow as a sign, when he came out of the Ark. It was meant as a promise of hope for the future.
But the future also depends on us playing our part!
Written by George Hill