Earth Day Celebrations
Each year on April 22, millions of people around the world celebrate Earth Day. It is the largest, most celebrated environmental day worldwide. Earth Day was founded by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson, from Wisconsin, as a result of witnessing the results of a massive oil spill. On the first established Earth Day, on April 22, 1970, 20 million Americans took to the streets, parks, and auditoriums to demonstrate for a healthy, sustainable environment in massive coast-to-coast rallies. In 1990, Earth Day went global, mobilizing 200 million people in 141 countries and lifting environmental issues onto the world stage.
Though Earth Day has grown into a global event, at Rainbow Child Care Center we want children to see the impact they can make and take responsibility for making a difference. Taking care of the environment we live in is something we want children to focus on every day, but we would also like to celebrate and bring attention to it on this day as well. Some ideas that you can reinforce with your child year round would be:
- Talk about recycling and reusing products on a regular basis. Have a spot where objects/scraps can be put, where your child knows to look to find things to experiment or construct with.
- Always remember to role model cleaning up after yourself outside. When you have garbage outside, make it a point to put it in the garbage or stick it in your bag to take home if there is no garbage can available.
- Always turn off the lights when you leave a room. Talk to your child about conserving energy, because most forms of energy are not renewable resources.
- Talk about the importance of not wasting water, which would include not running the water while brushing your teeth, taking efficient showers, and being deliberate when watering your yard or flowers. Have a discussion about how in some areas of the world, people do not have access to clean water, so we need to treat it with care.
Some activities you could do on Earth Day to celebrate include:
- Organize a park clean-up initiative in your community or volunteer and join one that already exists. Remember to show your child how much different it looks after and remind them of how much fun it can be to work as a team to make the park a better place.
- Create a compost receptacle that you can add to year round with your child. Earth Day is a good day to get the ball rolling on something that is a continuous benefit to the environment.
- Do some spring cleaning and go through old toys and clothes together. Once you have gathered items for donation, have your child ride with you to drop them off somewhere. Talk about how other people can reuse things that we have outgrown or don’t want anymore.
- Plant a flower or tree with your child. Talk about how plants help keep our air clean and the important role they play in our ecosystem.