By Fredrica Syren:
Earth Day is now the most celebrated environmental day worldwide. Senator Gaylord Nelson founded Earth Day on April 22, 1970, to promote ecology and respect for life on the planet, as well as to encourage awareness of the growing problems of air, water and soil pollution.
Usually climate change is far from the priorities of many people and leaders. However, when world leaders from 195 countries gathered in Paris for the UN global warming talk last year and agreed that global warming is the greatest threat facing humanity and that the time to act is now, I finally felt a “hallelujah!!!”
For my family, Earth Day is pretty much every day, but we do try make this a bit special and spend more time celebrating earth than just being green. Usually we like planting in our garden, taking a nature walk of some sort, preparing a wonderful vegan meal together and, when possible, eating it outside. We also try to talk to our children about nature and earth, and ask them how we as a family can challenge ourselves to make a difference for planet earth. This year we’re working on achieving zero waste, and it has been a fun adventure that is still in progress.
For kids, there are so many fun activities to celebrate Earth Day. Here are some of my suggestions:
- Go on a nature walk or hike: Find a nature reserve near you. While you’re out there, play a game and try to identify different plants, weeds and wildlife.
- Plant something: Let’s face it: most kids love to play with soil. Planting fruits, vegetables, flowers or herbs can thrill children. And it can teach them to work with Mother Nature and contribute to the natural beauty of the world.
- Turn rocks and stones over: Take a very good look at bugs and worms — creepy crawly, perhaps, but kids might get a kick out of it. Bring a magnifying glass and REALLY look at them.
- Visit a farmers’ market: Enjoy what organic goodies nature has to offer and support a local farmer.
- Make a wonderful plant-based meal together: Kids love to help in the kitchen. What better way to teach them about where food comes from?
- Read a book about eco-friendliness: The best way to teach your child can be to read a book with them. Some children’s books often can get across beautiful messages about planet Earth in a very understandable way. My personal favorites are I Want To Go Green but What Does That Mean?,The Lorax, and We Are Extremely Very Good Recyclers.
Here are some more ideas for kid friendly Earth Day celebrations:
Here you can learn more about what you can do for your part: