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Share Earth Day with Your Students

Children, Teacher Gazing at Globe <br \> U.S. Department of Education, via ProQuest SIRS Government Reporter [Public Domain]

Children, Teacher Gazing at Globe
U.S. Department of Education via ProQuest SIRS Government Reporter [Public Domain]

Young students love learning about Earth and discovering ways that they can help the planet. As adults, it’s our responsibility to teach them ways and encourage their ideas. The classroom is an ideal place for this type of learning and exploration. And Earth Day, which is April 22, is the perfect time!

SIRS Discoverer, and its April Spotlight of the Month on Earth Day, can assist in planning for this significant global holiday. Founded in 1970, Earth Day began and continues as a day of environmental education and action. In honor of our Earth, plan activities that promote awareness and appreciation of nature, recycling, and the environment.

An outdoor garden is a great classroom. Lessons that occur there can help students develop listening, comprehension, and collaboration skills, as well as providing a solid foundation in Earth sciences.

Try an activity that helps students understand the parts of a plant and how they grow. The printable PDF version of the associated Teacher’s Guide provides information, photos, and activities. You can help your students dig deeper and understand more about plant growth with this article and associated activities on composting.

Your students can learn the art of recycling–literally–with this activity, which provides age-appropriate ideas and instructions for recycling newspapers into papier-mache, collages, or weavings. Or, impress them with the power of nature, and show them great ways people are using wind, water, and sunlight to generate “clean energy.” A diagram, quiz, and activity are provided.

We can also help the Earth–and help young students help the Earth–by learning about what is happening around the globe, from the deteriorating condition of our oceans’ coral reefs , which can lead to discussions about the warming of our planet, to the destructive and growing Great Pacific Garbage Patch, which emphasizes the necessity of recycling and limiting our use of plastics.

SIRS Discoverer’s Animal Facts feature is a wonderful way to introduce students to the many amazing creatures of our planet. Some are endangered, like the Asian elephant; yet some have recovered from the brink of extinction, like the Galapagos tortoise. Why are some animal populations struggling? How can we help the diversity of Earth’s life thrive?

Celebrate life on Earth, and Earth itself, this Earth Day. If it is important to you, it will be important to the children you reach!

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