Posted April 22, 2011on:
Today, Friday, April 22, 2011 is Earth Day.
Earth Day was officially founded in 1970 by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson, Wisconsin. Currently over 200 million people in 140 nations around the world hold advocacy events on April 22nd each year to promote ecological responsibility and a better understanding of the effect we have, as a global population, on our planet.
Here are some ideas to celebrate Earth Day – everyday! (Adapt to age and ability of your children.)
* Grow a garden. Plant a tree.
*Explore a Farmer’s Market and ask questions about the plants, fruits and vegetables you see.
*Plan a healthy menu and discover how each food gets to the table:lettuce on table ←supermarket←transport system←farm field←seeds (This summer check out The Erie County Fair’s fun education event for families: From Field to Table.)
*Hang a thermometer / wind sock at the window and track daily weather conditions.
*Set up a bird house and feeder in the yard. Monitor the seeds eaten, how many and what kinds of birds are attracted and what happens when seeds fall.
*Change standard light bulbs to energy savers and have a discussion why.
*Have a scavenger hunt (look for stones, grass, twigs, insects…) in many, different natural spaces i.e. field, park, creek bed, woods… talk about the value of natural spaces.
*Make a big deal out of the importance of recycling, reducing and reusing – involve children.
*Walk, jog, bicycle and skate instead of driving – talk about pollution.
*Find fossils, paw prints and shells on water beds and beaches – life cycles are everywhere.
*Investigate, participate in and attend community events that support Earth Day. Be a family sponsor.
*Go to the library or bookstore and select books with beautiful stories and pictures of the world and its marvelous inhabitants.
In addition to these ideas, www.chiff.com/society/go-green.htm has great “kid friendly” ideas and articles to investigate.
Children are who we are, they truly learn what they live. At a very young age, they mimic our actions and start to follow our lead. Make this a litter-free, recycling, reusing, go-green time in their lives. Talk about responsibility to our world and appreciation for what we have. These will be life lessons.
“The earth does not belong to man; man belongs to the earth… We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children.” Chief Seattle, Suquamish Tribe
-Kate Dust, EduKids Education Director