In past years, I never really considered celebrating Earth Day, my rationale being that I do my part daily to contribute to sustaining our planet’s health. I recycle, I continuously work toward reducing my family’s use of plastic, and I vote for politicians who support blunting climate change. This year though, I thought about my two young sons and how honoring this day would be a great opportunity to instill compassion in them for our planet’s longevity.
I also knew I needed to set realistic expectations as to how elaborate our celebration can be. Earth Day this year is on a Monday, which also happens to be the Monday after Easter Sunday. My husband and I both work full-time and our kids attend daycare. I found a few simple ways to commemorate Earth Day with my young family – things that seem doable in the morning and evening. Here are some easy ways families on tight schedules can participate in Earth Day.
Earth Day Breakfast
What easier way to start the celebration of Earth Day off with than a blue and green breakfast. The simplest way I found to do this is to make an Earth Day fruit plate. If you are feeling more ambitious, here is cool way to make Earth Day waffles. These healthy Earth Day muffins also look like a delicious breakfast option.
Earth Day Crafts
Last weekend my three year-old caught me changing out the toilet paper rolls and begged me for the tubes. He insisted he needed them so we could make a snake. I grabbed a roll of tape and some markers and next thing I knew, he was entertained for hours playing with his new creation. Here are a few other easy ways to turn upcycled trash into arts and crafts this Earth Day.
To turn everything from those toilet paper rolls to egg cartons and milk jugs into Upcycled and Recycled Earth Day Crafts click here. If you have an abundance of plastic lids, these necklaces are cute and creative. And if you can’t quit your Keurig, here are some earth-friendly ways to reuse those K-cups.
Earth Day Activities
Lengthy activities aren’t really in the cards for my family on Earth Day, but an evening stroll is feasible. I found two ways to turn a family walk into a lesson on taking care of our planet.
1) If your kids are little like mine, load those babies up in the stroller, grab a trash bag and some gloves and walk around with a purpose. That purpose being to pick up the trash you find along your way and talk to your kids about how litter hurts our planet.
2) Turn that evening walk into a scavenger hunt. Ask your kids to look for sticks and flowers or even trash and talk to them about the impact these things have on our planet. Here is a printable list for an Earth Day Scavenger Hunt.
Sort Recycling, Trash, Compost
After dinner, take all of the waste your family created on Earth Day and spend some time sorting it into the appropriate bins and explain to them what happens with each type of waste. Here is a simple, printable guide to help your kids understand how to sort trash. If you are more ambitious or crafty, you could use make this reusable Compost and Recycling Activity.
These are all easy ways you can celebrate Earth Day from your home along with the other billion people from 192 countries around the world.