Are you ready to save the planet? Earth Day is April 22nd! Since the first Earth Day celebration in 1970, this holiday has brought people all over the world together to celebrate our planet and make it a better place. Whether you’re a parent or a teacher, now is the perfect time to teach children the importance of protecting our environment.
Luckily, there are plenty of fun Earth Day activities for adults and children to enjoy together. From making your own compost bin to hosting a solar cookout, everyone can do their part to take care of and celebrate our planet. Check out these 9 Earth Day activity ideas and use them with your family or in your classroom!
1. Recycled Crafts: One man’s trash really is another man’s treasure. These “upcycled” crafts can teach your children how to reuse items like egg cartons or bottle caps in a fun and useful way.
2. DIY Compost Bin: Composting is not only an environmentally “green” activity, but it can help kids develop a green thumb in the garden. This sensory Earth day activity uses trash, kitchen scraps, and other recyclables to make a compost pile.
3. Earth Day Pledge: April is the perfect time to take action and commit to making the environment better one day at a time. Use this activity to help kids find ways they can care for our planet, like recycling or picking up litter.
4. Milk Carton Gardening Pots: This Earth Day activity for elementary students is another creative way to teach children how to garden. Make and decorate these recycled milk carton “houses,” then grow succulents, herbs, or other small plants.
5. Solar Cookout: Solar cookouts aren’t only a fun excuse to spend time outdoors, but they can help teach students about sustainable energy. With this Earth Day craft, you can make and experiment with your own homemade solar ovens.
6. Healthy Earth, Sick Earth: This guided reading activity teaches students about climate change through the book Planet Earth Gets Well by Madeline Kaplan. After reading the book aloud, discuss what your children learned and how they can help the Earth “get well.”
Once you’ve finished Planet Earth Gets Well, you can also read these fascinating Earth Day picture books together:
- The Earth Book by Todd Parr
- Wangari’s Trees of Peace by Jeanette Winter
- It’s Earth Day! By Mercer Mayer
- The Lorax by Dr. Seuss
- Curious George Plants a Tree by Margret and H.A. Rey
7. Virtual Tour of the Grand Canyon: Thanks to the National Parks Service website, your kids can visit the Grand Canyon from the comfort of your home or classroom. Use this virtual field trip to view the Grand Canyon in real time and learn more about the outdoors.
8. PBS Earth Day Specials: Every year, PBS releases free videos about environmental topics for Earth Day. Watch these videos with your children to discover more about our planet and what we can do to help the world around us.
9. Celebrate Arbor Day Early: Arbor Day is when people all over the world celebrate how much trees enrich our planet and plant new seedlings. While this holiday may be on April 26th, you can always play fun Arbor Day activities (like having a tree planting party) anytime this month.