Earth Day is Apr. 22 each year—and it’s right around the corner. Here are some simple things you can do with your family for Earth Day—or any day of the year—that will make a difference for our planet.
1. Read Books about Taking Care of the Earth
There are so many great children’s books on this topic to choose from. Written with fun and engaging story lines, they also teach kids about the importance of loving and caring for our Earth. Here are a few of my favorites:
2. Organize a Neighborhood Trash Cleanup
Gather your neighbors and spend a couple hours walking around picking up trash. You will be surprised at how much you will collect. Make it a contest to see who can collect the most trash. Don’t forget to wear plastic gloves and make sure to wear appropriate clothing for wooded areas. Trash grabbers are a great item for kids to use. They will have so much fun grabbing garbage with the claw and it keeps them from handling the trash directly.
3. Plant Seedlings Using Upcycled Items
Earth Day marks the day we start seedlings for our garden each year. We use anything that we can plant in: egg cartons, toilet paper rolls, K-cups, plastic bottles. Turning these items into mini planters is a fun project for the kids. Once your seedlings are ready to be planted in the ground, you can just use the planters again or recylcle them.
4. Start Composting
For whatever reason, my children are obsessed with composting. I think it is because the concept is a bit gross, and they love anything gross. Composting can be done all year in your kitchen with the use of a counter top compost crock. They blend in with your kitchen and are designed to be odor free. Composting is a fantastic way to support our environment and reduce food waste.
Kids can see how their vegetable scraps are turned into fertilizer to help the Earth. Almost anything that comes from the ground can be composted, like as fruits and vegetables. Other things you can compost are egg shells, coffee grounds, flowers, plant trimmings, and herbs. Compost is a great natural fertilizer and alternate to consumer fertilizers that can contain chemicals. Composting also reduces landfill waste.
5. Give Out Seed Favors
Send the kids to school on Earth Day with a seed favor for each classmate! Kids love getting favors and these will encourage kids to go home and plant their own flowers. These favors come in all different adorable shapes and designs with seeds embedded into the paper. All you have to do is place them on the ground outside or in a planter to grow.
6. Host an Earth Day Playdate
Great for any age, invite your children’s friends over for a playdate all about Earth Day. Set up a coloring station with Earth-themed coloring books, do a craft using recycled or upcycled items, read a book about the Earth or plant something outside.
7. Get Your School Involved
The PepsiCo Recycle Rally is a program designed to help get schools get involved in recycling by offering programs, rewards and educational incentives. Ask your child’s teacher or principle if they know about the PepsiCo Recycle Rally Program or PepsiCo Recycling Roadster. See if they would be willing to participate or learn more about the program. You can find more information here.
8. Have a Tree Planting Ceremony
lant a tree in your yard, take pictures and record the height. Check on it each year on that date to see how much it has grown. You can find tree seedlings at your local nursery, or you can even purchase them online.
Lastly, although Earth Day is a great day for celebration, it is important that we take care of our Earth each and every day.