05/11/2007 11:37 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

What Kindergartners Think of Global Warming

I have recently found myself in the unexpected and rather wonderful position of kindergarten science teacher at a Manhattan independent school. The kids are fascinated by and thirsty for science, and were riveted by our unit on color, light, and shadow that was ongoing when I stepped in. However, no lesson I have taught yet galvanized their passion and attention like this week's impromptu discussions on global warming.

At an assembly, the 5- and 6-year-old children watched a presentation on energy-efficient CFL light bulbs by the teenage masterminds of anti-global warming campaign Relight NY, and couldn't stop talking about the issue. Their ideas are worth sharing:

"Global warming happens and then earth will get more humiliated [humid] and then bad things happen to everyone."

"When the ice melts, the ocean will be like a bathtub that's going up and up."

"The atmosphere is a force field!"

"We should fight global warming and cars and trees and light bulbs are bad for global warming. And SUVs. Wait a minute."

"Trees clean the air!"

"Mr. Brown, I know what a hurricane is. I know that they smash things up. Are they badder because of global warming?"

"The good cars are like a mix [hybrid]."

"Maybe if the cars go slower, they won't make so many bad gases. They go too fast."

"Where will people live when there is water all over?"

"We can use the special [CFL] light bulbs to be good for global warming. What else can we do?"

"Jack said the d-word."

"Can they make good cars? Can the scientists make a car that uses ice instead of the green [greenhouse] gases? ...I want to be a scientist."

"Mr. Brown, does everyone care about the earth like us?"