April 22nd is Earth Day – a time for everyone to show their support for environmental protection and to take action against climate change. Soon, our children will become Earth’s caretakers and it is our job, as parents and childhood educators, to give children the knowledge and tools they need to continue caring for the environment. Below, we’ll share our favorite activity ideas and Earth Day facts for kids that you can share while you celebrate the earth this month.
Why Should Children Learn About Earth Day?
Earth Day is the perfect opportunity to teach your child about the value of caring for their immediate environment and of eco-friendly concepts such as picking up litter, how to compost, and how to recycle waste correctly.
Today, over one billion people worldwide take meaningful action every year on April 22nd to acknowledge the need to protect the environment, change human behavior, and create global policy changes.
Role models such as Greta Thunberg, Rachel Kyte, Sir David Attenborough, and Katharine Wilkinson are continuously contributing to the climate change conversation to educate and inspire others to take action. While progress has been made, there is a lot more work to be done, and teaching kids about Earth Day can be a great first step in empowering them to make change for the world they are growing up in.
5 Mind-Blowing Earth Day Facts to Share With Your Kids
Learning about the history of our planet and how to take care of nature and the climate is a fun experience for children of preschool age – not only does it awaken their sense of inquiry, but also their creativity. When speaking to your child about Earth Day, these top facts for kids will be sure to capture their attention.
1. The First Earth Day Was Over 50 Years Ago
The first-ever Earth Day happened in 1970 and was inspired by the actions of Senator Gaylord Nelson who was worried about the lack of environmental issues addressed in politics. Enlisting the help of eco-activist Dennis Hayes, Nelson organized a nationwide “teach-in” event.
2. Earth Day Went Global in 1990
In 1990, the Earth Day campaign went global and has now become an international event that many people mark on their calendars each year. The 1990 event saw over 141 countries become involved and helped to spread awareness for major environmental issues such as recycling.
3. 8 Million Tons of Plastic End Up in Our Oceans Every Year
One of the most important aspects of Earth Day is bringing awareness to those issues that harm the planet we live on. Plastic is a leading polluter of the earth’s blue oceans. Scientists believe that over eight million tons of plastic end up in the oceans each year – think of how many straws that is. This not only pollutes the water but is harmful to all the animals that call the ocean their home.
4. Reducing Climate Change Will Benefit Wildlife All Over the World
Global warming impacts all animals from the polar bears in the Arctic to the orangutans in the Indonesian rainforest. By caring for the planet and making small changes in our daily lives, we can preserve the habitats of wildlife all over the world.
5. Brushing Our Teeth Can Waste Up to 5 Gallons of Water
Brushing our teeth is important but when we leave the water running it can waste up to 5 gallons of water each time. Imagine how many baths and showers you could have with that much water – that is a lot of waste!
Celebrating Earth Day: Fun Ways to Get Your Child Involved
Preschoolers learn best when they are active participants. So, lead by example and plan some of these environmentally-friendly Earth Day activities for your kids on April 22nd. These activities teach the importance of taking care of the environment while also teaching them about responsibility.
Below are some of our favorite Earth Day activities:
- Save energy: Make a game out of turning off the lights when not in use or before bedtime
- Reuse, reduce, recycle: Ask for your child’s help when taking recyclable items to a recycling center
- Take a ‘green’ trip: Walk or bike to your favorite park
- Give back to the earth: Plant a tree, herbs, or flowers in your backyard or a window box
- Read and learn: Read an insightful and fun book such as ‘Why Should I Recycle?’ by Jen Green
- View the beauty of our planet: Watch a movie or documentary about the environment Here are some great family-friendly documentaries
- Get crafty: Involve children in creative activities such as building a birdhouse, painting an Earth Day poster, or making flowers with upcycled materials
Here at Vivvi, our inquiry-based learning model encourages children to expand their horizons by interacting with the world around them. Through activities that focus on sensory play, scientific inquiry, literacy, and more your child will learn the skills they need to make a positive impact in the world.