Hello again! I'm Ayn and I am a Ga. Pre-K teacher, serving 4 and 5 year olds in an inclusive setting. I share my classroom adventures on my blog, little illuminations.
Teaching kids to care for our earth is an enormous task. I confess that I am not nearly as green as I would like to be. We live in a disposable world these days and I know that it's easy to "talk the talk" about being green and not so easy to "walk the walk". Today, I'm sharing 5 simple ways to help kids start to make environmentally friendly habits.
5 Simple Ways To Help Your Child Love The Earth
1. Take a Litter Walk
Nature walks are always fun and help kids become aware of the world around them. Try turning that nature walk into a litter walk! We frequently go on nature walks and pick up any litter we may find.
2. Create awareness
One of the simple ways I illustrate the effects of litter is to take 2 clear containers filled with clean water. I place some of the litter we find in one of the containers. After several days, the container with litter has very dirty water and the children can easily see the effect the litter has had.
Another activity I do is to make a fake "pond" with paper, a blanket or a towel. I invite the children to put some toy pond animals in the pond and talk about how happy they are to live there. I walk around the pond, and pick up various items of litter and carelessly toss them into the water as I stroll around. Soon, the pond is covered in litter. We talk about how this affects the animals and pond life. We then work together to "clean the pond".
3. Plant a seed, plant a garden
Although I don't have a green thumb by any means, planting is always a great Spring activity. This year we planted sunflower seeds in cups (next week, we'll plant beans in baggies taped to our window).
We also started a brand new garden this year, from the ground up. We hauled the bricks for the perimeter, raked and hoed the weeds and grass out of the patch and softened the soil. We then planted a variety of seeds and took turns filling the watering can and watering the garden. I'm excited to see how our garden grows!
4. Start a recycling bin
Kids are great little "detectives", searching for the recycling symbol on bottles, cans and containers. Why not let them make their own bin out of recycled materials, too?
|Note the green recycle arrows and the happy earth!|
We use old containers and boxes in our home living center, we make props out of boxes that supplies come in, use coffee cans for storage, instruments and sand toys. Old magazines become art supplies, scrap yarn goes in our "make a puppet" box and bottle tops become math and literacy manipulatives.
Each small step helps build a lifelong awareness of caring for our environment. Start small, and let the kids help brainstorm ways they can help take care of our planet.
Stop by and visit me anytime at littleilluminations.blogspot.com or visit the little illuminations fanpage on facebook!