7 Earth Day Activities Kids Can Do at Home
Founded in 1970, Earth Day serves as an opportunity to celebrate our planet and protect our environment. Families often demonstrate support by visiting national parks, embarking on nature hikes, and spending time outdoors. But the event falls on April 22, and social distancing measures to combat the coronavirus (COVID-19) will still be in place during this time.
Fortunately, you don't need to compromise your family's safety to spread love to our planet. Here are seven Earth Day activities for kids that can be done from the comfort of your home.
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Virtually Tour National Parks
Itching to explore the great outdoors? Tour a national park without leaving your couch! Google Arts & Culture is providing virtual tours of five famous parks in different climates and environments. They include Kenai Fjords National Park in Alaska, Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park in Hawaii, Carlsbad Caverns National Park in New Mexico, Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah, and Dry Tortugas National Park in Florida. Check out this article from Travel + Leisure to learn more.
Start a Compost Bin
Composting has many earth-friendly benefits: it reduces landfill waste, introduces nutrients and beneficial bacteria into soil, and lessens the need for chemical fertilizers. It's also easy to start a compost pile at home. Soon enough, your kid will be scouting for compost materials like grass clippings, fruit and vegetable scraps, branches and twigs, coffee grounds, dead leaves, and more.
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Complete Coloring Pages and Worksheets
If you can't admire the environment in real life, print out free nature-inspired coloring pages for your child. Check out this round-up on Parents.com. You can also find educational worksheets, crossword puzzles, and word searches related to Earth Day online.
Regrow Romaine Lettuce
Your kid's classes might be cancelled, but you can still teach science with a fun kitchen experiment: regrowing romaine lettuce. The next time you eat romaine, save one inch from the bottom of the lettuce head. Submerge it in one-half inch of water, and place the container in a sun-lit window. All that's left to do is change the water every couple of days, and the lettuce will start growing!
Go on a Backyard Scavenger Hunt
As a fun Earth Day activity for kids, whip up a scavenger hunt that can be completed in your backyard. Items on the list will vary based on your location and climate. Here are some examples:
- Create a tree bark rubbing
- Throw away two pieces of litter
- Find a nut or seed
- Draw a picture of a flower in your yard
- Photograph a live animal
Start a Garden
Have a stash of seeds and gardening tools in the garage? Encourage your kids to start a vegetable garden in a sunny patch of yard. Gardening enhances fine motor development, connects kids to nature, introduces scientific concepts, and promotes family bonding. Your kids will also appreciate the value of hard work once you harvest produce in the fall.
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On April 22, pick up a book about wildlife, nature, or taking care of our planet. These five options are both educational and entertaining, making them perfect for Earth Day!