Celebrate Earth Day through crafting and reading with your family!

Happy Earth Day! Earth Day is April 22. It’s a day to celebrate and support environmental protection across the world. 

April 22, 2021 marks 51 years since the first Earth Day in 1970. The coordinated marches across the United States on that historic day remain the largest single day protest in human history. Today, Earthday.org coordinates global protests, actions, and summits each April 22 and throughout the year.    

One way to celebrate safely at home during the pandemic is through crafting and making art.

Use what you have!  
Whether that’s some digging out those aspirational craft supplies you bought last year and haven’t used yet or digging through this week’s recycling to find materials, reducing waste by using what you have helps protect the environment. Look for materials for crafts that might otherwise be thrown away. Try using household materials in unconventional ways, such as creating a seed painting with beans and seeds from the pantry, creating art with coffee filters, using vegetable ends as stamps, or painting with toy car wheels.

Take a nature walk to gather supplies.  
Environmental protection preserves and restores our natural spaces. Enjoy nature by walking in your nearest natural space or one that’s special to you. Look for a few materials such as sticks, stones, leaves, or moss that you can gather in a non-destructive way to use in craft projects or play.  

Ideas for eco-crafting with small children

  • Make toys from things that might otherwise be thrown out, such as a dollhouse from boxes or blocks from wood offcuts.
  • Make a fairy house from those natural materials you gathered.
  • Use anything blue and green (paint, markers, crayons, playdough, icing, paper collage, etc.) on anything round (paper plate, coffee filter, cupcake, balloon, etc.) to represent the planet Earth.
  • Bake or create a gift for a neighbor to intentionally build community.

Ideas for tweens and teens

  • Make your clothes special with creative mending.
  • Sew up some reusable produce or sandwich bags from old clothes or scraps.
  • Get involved in craftivism.
  • Make postcards. Send them to your state or national representative with a message of support for environmental legislation.  
  • Paint a protest sign. Google “climate protest art” for inspiration.  

Make it public. 
Decorate a public space you control such as your front yard or front door with a friendly, creative message of support for the environment, clean energy, climate justice, social justice, or any cause dear to your family.  

Collaborate.  
Individual actions are important, but real change happens when we act as a community. Invite passersby to interact with your art. Use your creativity to help your neighbors feel connected. They might participate by adding a message, taking something, or interacting with the art. See some of this sort of art in action.  

Read.
And of course, there are lots of books you can read to help you celebrate this important day. And why not check them out from one of the leaders in "recycling," your public library! You'll find a booklist below, or you can do a general search in the library's catalog for Earth Day or Environmentalism

This article was written for our Family Newsletter, brought to you by Home Learning Support and available in English and Spanish. Please sign up here and you can email us at learning@multcolib.org with any questions.

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