Photo: Trusty Joe
Earth Day activities that remind kids (and parents!) about the importance of being good global citizens…
Did you know that Earth Day turns 50 this year? Ever since its first observance in 1970, the day has brought attention to the importance of protecting our planet and its precious lands, air, and water—which allow human, plant, and animal life to thrive.
And, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, this message seems more important than ever. These past weeks, we’ve all been witness to that fact that we’re truly part of one Earth. This is the one and only planet we have—and the need to take care of it, and each other, is resonating across the globe.
Throughout this challenging time, we’ve been continually awed by the beauty of people coming together (even when that means staying home!) in new ways, working for a common good. We, along with each and every one of our fellow humans, are in this together. And it will take the work of global citizens far and wide to put this pandemic behind us.
That said, your family’s Earth Day celebrations may look a bit different this year, or maybe you’re not in the habit of doing anything to mark this day—but we encourage you to do so. It’s a great opportunity to show the planet some love and think about the positive impact each one of us can have.
We’ve gathered some ideas and resources to get you and your kids inspired:
Take a hike (or walk around your yard, or apartment)! Earth Day is a great day to get out in nature, if you can. Take a walk outside, even if it’s just in your backyard, and have your kids take special note of what they see. Show toddlers the difference between different types of tree bark, leaves, or flowers. Listen to the sounds of birds and insects. Older kids can do an art project, like a “rubbing.” All they need to do is place a piece of paper against a tree or on top of a leaf and color over it with a crayon. If you can’t leave the four walls of your house or apartment, you can still talk about what you see and hear outside.
Are you and your kids interested in trying your hand at citizen science? The Earth Day Network’s Earth Challenge 2020 aims to be “the world’s largest ever coordinated citizen science campaign.” Using mobile technology, participants around the world can help monitor and mitigate threats to environmental and human health in their communities. Learn more and register here.
f you’re feeling ambitious, now’s a great time to start a backyard vegetable garden. The Produce for Better Health Foundation has some great tips for how kids can help in the garden.
KidsGardening.org is also full of great resources, especially these (relatively easy) plant-based activities.
The Recycling Partnership has some fun coloring pages, a recycling quiz, and a reverse “scavenger hunt” that’s great for the whole family.
NASA has assembled a collection of fascinating earth-related articles, photos, videos, games, downloadable posters, and more—you’ll find something of interest for all ages.
And, parents: if you want to get even more involved with the Earth Day movement, learn more about volunteer opportunities here.
Whatever you and your family choose to do on Wednesday, take a moment to remember that we’re all connected as citizens of the world. Here at Finn + Emma, we’ve been truly amazed and inspired by the collective action that’s been happening around the globe these past few weeks, and by the camaraderie that has sprung up as a result of everyone stay at home, doing what’s right to stop the spread of the virus.
We wish you a lovely Earth Day, and we’d love to hear from you with any additional ideas you may have!
P.S. Here’s a bonus word puzzle that you can do with your kids. It’s technically for “Pollinator Week,” happening in June, but we won’t tell if you complete it early!