Lisa Rivera

The first Earth Day took place in the US in 1970 as a way to encourage people to better look after our planet. Since then, many countries around the world take part in activities every 22 April to make Earth a greener and safer place.

While we should be thinking and caring about our planet every day, we all need a boost every now and then. Getting involved in Earth Day activities can help us and our children to think about our planet and protecting our environment.

That said, exploring our home surroundings is a great way for children to learn about Earth Day, while also discovering something new. There are many activities you can do together to help children recycle, protect trees and plants, and all without leaving a carbon footprint.

10 activities to teach children about Earth Day

  • Plant a tree: There can never be too many trees in the world, so get planting and help keep our planet green.

  • Hike, bike or stroll: Whatever the method, you’ll not only be saving energy, but you’ll also be getting plenty of exercise.

  • Make an Earth Day Pledge: Get the kids to create, draw and write their own Earth Day Pledges, and put it up on the fridge as a reminder.

  • Set up a recycling centre at home: Start them early, by having different bags to separate recyclable materials. They can also suggest the same for their school.

  • Get baking: Bake together cookies or cupcakes and decorate with green, white and blue icing.

Baking cookies

  • Create some posters/drawings about the importance of saving water when brushing your teeth, and saving energy by turning off the lights when you don’t need them.

  • Go vegetarian: Children may not be the biggest fans of the green stuff, so hide them in a ‘meat-free’ chilli con carne instead.

  • Explore the outdoors with a scavenger hunt: This is a great activity for adults and children to get to know their local surroundings and have fun at the same time. Place clues about Earth Day around the local garden, park and have some treats waiting in the wings after.

  • Meet up with family, friends and other children: Go for a picnic and arrange a rubbish clean-up after.

  • Donate unwanted clothes and items: Manufacturing new clothes takes up a lot of energy and water. Instead take any unwanted clothes, plus other unused items to your local charity shop: there are plenty other people who’d be happy to receive them.