For the beauty of the earth, for the splendor of the skies... —For the Beauty of the Earth, Hymn 21 in Singing the Living Tradition
IN TODAY'S SESSION... We celebrated Earth Day with an outdoor treasure hunt and looked for nature's interesting plants, animals, rocks, and more. The children shared what they know about taking care of the earth.
EXPLORE THE TOPIC TOGETHER. Share together... the books suggested for this session:
- The Earth and I by Frank Asch, 2008. This story celebrates friendship that one child has with the Earth. They play together, listen to each other, and nourish each other. But when the Earth is sad, the child is sad, so he finds a way to make his friend, the Earth, happy.
- The Earth Book by Todd Parr, 2010. With his signature blend of playfulness and sensitivity, Todd Parr explores the important, timely subject of environmental protection and conservation in this eco-friendly picture book.
- The Curious Garden by Peter Brown, 2009. One boy's quest for a greener world... one garden at a time. As time passes, the garden spreads throughout the dark, gray city, transforming it into a lush, green world.
- I Can Save the Earth: One little monster learns to reduce, reuse and recycle (Little Green Books) by Alison Inches and Viviana Garofoli, 2008. Little Green Books educate children on ways they can be eco-friendly.
EXTEND THE TOPIC TOGETHER. Plant a tree, a flower, or a garden for Earth Day. Make sure there are tasks for every age and ability to do.
A Family Adventure. Where does your household trash go? Explore by researching online, by calling your municipal public works department, and by touring around. Visit a local waste processing facility and observe the mountains of trash. Ask your family how to choose one or more ways you can reduce, reuse, and recycle.
A Family Discovery. Plan to do an Earth Day Activity together. Check local listings. Get ideas on the Tinker Lab website for "Fifty Earth Day Activities" and by watching recent, annual Earth Day videos posted by the Disney Corporation on YouTube:
2011 — Life is Beautiful
2012 — The Sound of Sunshine
2013 — Three Million Trees Planted
A Family Game. Learn a motivating song, "Reduce, Reuse, Recycle," and simple movements to turn the song into a game. Sing to the tune of "The More We Get Together":
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle,
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.
It's easy to do.
'Cause your trash
And my trash
Make up way
Too much trash!
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.
It's easy to do!
Learn the movements together: Skip or walk in a circle while singing the tune. Stop after "It's easy to do" and point to another person on "your Trash." Point to yourself on "my trash." Fling arms overhead for "Too much trash." Then, skip or walk in the circle to finish the song.
A Family Ritual. Find a blue and green marble to represent the earth and place it in alongside, or in, your mealtime chalice.