Since Earth Day is this Wednesday, I thought I’d do a whole week’s worth of earth-friendly posts. If you know me or have been reading for any length of time, you know I’m a total tree hugger. Call me hippie dippie, call me Earth Momma, call me whatever. I happen to think it’s kind of important to take care of this little planet we live on. And I think it’s incredibly important to teach our kids the same thing.
Like many adults, kids totally tune out when you start lecturing them on the evils of pesticides or the dangers of water pollution. No one wants to be preached at. Instead, I like to fall back on the same rule of thumb I go by when it comes to teaching kids to be giving: make it fun and make it a normal part of their life.
If your kids see you throwing used bottles in the recycling bin regularly, they’ll start doing it too. If they watch you throw garbage out of your car window, they’ll do that. If you make a conscious effort to be environmentally friendly, those little buggers will be right there with you. And it doesn’t hurt if you model that behavior in a way that’s really fun.
I put together a list of 15 kids activities to try out this Earth Day—or any day.
- Go on a trash-free picnic.
- Make a plantable paper earth.
- Grow plants from food scraps.
- Put on some gloves, grab a garbage bag and pick up trash at a local park.
- Make stationery out of junk mail.
- Recycle old crayon bits into new crayons.
- Upcycle a can into a vase.
- Repurpose paintings and drawings into wrapping paper.
- Conduct a water pollution experiment.
- Make fairy houses out of egg cartons.
- Make an indoor meadow.
- Start your own vegetable garden.
- Find ways to repurpose things you might have thrown away.
- Plants seeds in an egg carton.
- Make paper out of recycled scraps.
I’m pretty sure I could get my girls on board with every single one of these activities—and I’m going to try. I’ll post them on Instagram as we go through them. Feel free to join me!