Every year Earth Day arrives in April. This national day arrived in 1970 with the onset of the modern-day environmental movement. It’s pretty common to find families, organizations, and friends gathering to clean up their local community on Earth Day. Today I’m focused more on toddlers and what parents can do to celebrate Earth Day with their youngsters. If you’re looking to celebrate this annual day with your toddlers, then continue reading to see how to celebrate Earth Day with toddlers.
Host a Nature Scavenger Hunt
This is by far one of the best ways to have some fun while helping your toddlers understand the world around them. Create a list of nature items that can be found inside and outdoors for the kids to find. Think of items like leaves, ladybugs, flowers, plants, and other nature-like items that your toddlers may easily find around your home. The list should include images and words to help toddlers who may recognize a photo but not be able to read the scavenger list item. Use a writing tablet or paper to write the list then get ready to enjoy a scavenger hunt while you and your toddler observe all you can about the natural items they locate.
Clean the Neighborhood
There’s always some litter to be found around the park, the woods, and roadways in every town. Try to plan a day when the weather is reasonable to get outdoors and clean up the neighborhood. And all you’ll need is some gloves and a bucket or bag to place the trash in. Toddlers can enjoy doing this activity with their parents as they learn more about being active members of the community. We try to keep a few spare plastic grocery bags in the trunk of our car as well as a few extra stored in our wagon. This way, any time we're on a walk to the park or out on an adventure, we always have the opportunity to leave our communities and the trails better than when we found them. And our kids see that us picking up trash is something we should always be doing, not just on April 22nd.
Make Recycled Arts and Crafts
This Earth Day celebration with toddlers includes upcycling. You can look around the house to find items that would make unique arts and crafts ideas. If you’re running out of creative ideas, use Pinterest for some inspiration. Toddlers will enjoy decorating cardboard boxes for spring home décor. You can grab old shoeboxes and plastic storage boxes to reuse them for filing junk mail, household items, and toys. Let your toddlers handle the decorating with glue, construction paper, markers, and/or whatever other crafting supplies you have available on hand. If your supplies are dwindling - head to the thrift store!
Plant a Small Garden
This is a fun way to celebrate Earth Day with toddlers because you’ll be able to enjoy the food harvested. No matter how small of an area you have at home, you can easily plant a small garden in containers on the porch or in the home. Growing fruits, veggies, or herbs with your toddlers will help them understand more about how we get our food. This will encourage healthier eating habits, too! Most toddlers enjoy eating the food that they planted from seed to harvest.