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It’s a Saturday. It is warmer than the previous days of winter. The sun is not waking people up but it comes through the spaces in the blinds. Now you know it’s going to be a good day.
Sunny, warm, beautiful. That’s a day that brings one thought to your mind: let’s take advantage of this beautiful day! Perhaps we will go on a hiking trip, a walk to the park, or a visit to the grandparents.
We all dream of glorious weather on Saturdays, those perfect days to enjoy as a family. The sun will offer plenty of vitamin D as the children run and exert their energy.
It is a great day. And, there is more to it. Not every day is really like this one. Every day is unlike the other. Our babies grow and our children are more curious every day.
While the kids are running, they will discover something new and call us to see it. Maybe it is a flower they have not seen before or a worm that is moving slowly – quite new and utterly different than the family’s fast and oversized pup.
But, all those observations should not be taken for granted. They are gifts from the Earth. The children’s knowledge and instincts expand a bit more as they learn and observe their home, Earth.
Let’s inspire children to love their home, to give back to her, to feel inspirited by her.
What is Earth Day
Earth Day occurs on April 22 each year. Its purpose is to raise awareness about environmental issues – to save our Earth from pollution, climate change, deforestation and other negative man-made effects on our planet. The first Earth Day occured in 1970. Earth Day is a global movement and is celebrated in many countries around the world.
Each Earth Day activities are scheduled around the world to protect our environement and raise awareness about the current issues affecting our planet.
How can we be sure our children will care enough to get involved? First we must instill a love of the Earth. If a love for the Earth is cultivated, they will be inspired to take action to protect and nurture their planet.
How To Inspire a Love for Mother Earth in Children
Reading Books About Mother Earth
The first introduction to Mother Earth should be reading books about her. Books are a gentle introduction. They are an open space for questions and observations for how to inspire a love for mother.
Here are some of our children’s book recommendations. Happy reading!
The Great Big Green Book by Mary Hoffman
Earth Day Every Day by Lisa Bullard
The Adventures of an Aluminum Can: A Story About Recycling by Alison Inches
Compost Stew: An A to Z Recipe for the Earth by Mary McKenna Siddals
Thank You, Earth: A Love Letter to Our Planet by April Pulley Sayre
Seeing Earth Is Believing In Earth
The best way for a child to connect with Earth, with nature around them, is to see it for themselves. That’s where the connection truly begins and forms.
Earth Day is not small. It’s not celebrated in a single location. Earth is everywhere. Feel encouraged to choose different places to visit for a hike.
A planned walk to a forest with big trees or near the park is definitely a wonderful way to play around and be one with the greenery. But, know you have infinite choices in your comfort. If you need a reminder, here it is, the Earth is everywhere and has many colors.
You could visit a planetarium, see the Earth from the stars’ side. Another wonderful idea is to visit rivers or an aquarium. The big sea waits for you in blue shades. Nature is endless.
Anywhere outside the four walls of the home is a place to connect with Earth.
Clay Model Earth
As parents, we can join as guests, but it is the kid’s playtime. One of their favorite independent play activities with many benefits is playing with clay.
Give them blue and green clay, a few shades of it too. Keep the rest of the colors for the rest of the planets, in case they want to make the solar system.
The only instruction they need is knowing the Earth’s shape. Give them a few maps to see what Earth looks like from the stars’ point of view.
They will be surprised to see that the Earth is mostly covered in blue. One of the many surprises they will come to know as they grow!
While you are on a hike with your family, or really anywhere outside for Earth Day, your child will notice something that you might not. Starting from the fallen leaves to the birds gathering nearby. Most of us used to love the pile of pines falling under the tall trees that hid the sun in the summer.
How about making a tree jar? During your hike, bring a jar with you. It can be plastic or some other material if you worry about your child’s safety. Every choice is completely okay.
Give them the jar and explain that this is going to be a tree jar. They have to collect items they find under a tree and put them inside their jar. They’re going to have so much fun and the jar will be their little piece of adventure in nature. Almost like a live photograph!
Observing a Cycle of Earth
Our home has many cycles. The lives of creatures: humans, flora, and fauna are intertwined and change over time. Earth is our home, turning like the hands on a clock. Our time on Earth is beautiful, and is the most precious daily gift to us.
We can teach our children the gentleness this planet deserves, by observing even the smallest life cycle. The life of a flower that grows in the spring or a butterfly leaving its cocoon.
What Can We Do To Show & Inspire Our Love For Mother Earth?
Here are some environmentally-friendly changes your family can commit to for Earth Day:
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle:
- Go paperless – cancel your paper bills and subscriptions
- Print out fewer things to reduce your paper use
- Buy products in recycled packaging
- Stop using single-use plastic bags, carry your own reusable grocery/shopping bag
- Switch from bottled water to a reusable water bottle
- Switch to a reusable coffee cup
- Shop preowned
- Beach clean-up
- Road clean-up
Minimize your carbon footprint:
- Conserve electricity: Turn off the lights when they aren’t being used
- Conserve electricity: Dry your clothes on a clothing line or drying rack instead of using a dryer
- Unplug: Turn off the tv and electronics, spend more time outdoors
- Walk or ride your bike instead of driving
- Switch to solar power
- Switch to electric vehicles
- Support companies commited to zero emissions
Environmentally conscious eating:
- Commit to Meatless Mondays
- Eat locally sourced foods
- Eat fruits/vegetables that are in season
- Eat your leftovers
- Plant a tree
- Grow your own food
- Collect rainwater to water the plants
- Plant a pollinator garden
- Turn off the water when you brush your teeth
- Take a quick shower instead of a bath
What are your plans for Earth Day to inspire a love for Mother Earth? Leave a comment below and tell us what you are planning!
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