Celebrating Earth Day with Kids

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I’m a few days late to the Earth Day game, but I wanted to share how we celebrated this year and how we celebrate Earth each and every day.

I talked HERE about how some of my greatest passions are education and science, so Earth Day is one of my favorite days to lay the educational fun on Little Daisy!

Learning about Earth

Each night last week, we read a chapter from Usborne’s Why Should I Bother About The Planet? book.

We had so much fun reading through this book! Some of the topics we covered were green energy, water pollution, water shortages, wildlife in danger, air pollution and recycling. It was heartening to watch my three year old realize that there are places in the world where access to water is not as simple as turning on the faucet. I caught her sternly telling Mr. Daisy to turn off the sink while he was brushing his teeth 🙂 This book has 48 pages of beautifully illustrated artwork bursting with information.

Some of the interesting tips offered in the book:

  • Don’t buy foil or helium balloons. The foil is not biodegradable and helium is a valuable gas. Instead, buy latex balloons.
  • Don’t pick wildflowers. The entire plant may die, and the flowers can’t make seeds.
  • Buy dolphin-friendly tuna. That means the tuna is caught with nets meant to exclude dolphin by-catch.
  • Wash dishes and vegetables in a bowl for less water consumption.
  • Use rechargeable, alkaline manganese batteries. Other types of batteries can leak toxic heavy metals into the soil and landfills.

My favorite feature of this book is the even distribution of information to recommendations. There are several pages of tips, tricks, and ideas for children and families to utilize in order to reduce their energy consumption. Every little bit counts, right? Unfortunately, Usborne Books & More no longer lists this book on their official website. However, you can purchase it on Amazon or eBay!

Saving the bees

Another way we celebrated Earth Day was by planting some bee friendly flowers! We are bee lovers in this family, lovers of any pollinator actually. (Even though I’m highly allergic!) I routinely catch and release bees that fly in our home rather than swatting them with a rolled up newspaper! And although I’ll fiercely and unashamed-ly run from a yellow jacket, I understand they serve a purpose in our ecosystem and resist the urge to take a swing at them with a hard object.

Usborne’s Gardening for Beginners book is one that we have been using with Little Daisy for the past two summers. We’ve also gifted this to many, many friends! This book is full of delightful illustrations, information, and detailed and fun activities to do with your children. Or by yourself if you’re a kid at heart like me.

 

It has a durable cover, thick glossy pages, and my favorite feature…a ringed binding! I wish ALL books were like this. It would just be so convenient. Amirite?

Here is the page we worked off of for our bee-friendly project this year. We requested some seeds from Feed a Bee  when they were running a special. Little Daisy and I are very excited to see what sprouts in her little flower garden. Photos to come!

Here are some of the other projects outlined in this awesome book:

Hands-down, my favorite feature of these Usborne books is that they are Internet-linked. What this means is that each book has a set of unique quick-links online that will link you up to more information and activities for FREE!

How we practice green living

Of course, we try to practice a green-leaning life on the Daisy Homestead every day. Some ways we do this are:

  • composting our scraps of food, paper, and grass clippings
  • recycling our recyclables
  • catching the water the we run while warming bath water
  • watering plants with water that pasta or other food was boiled in
  • turning off the sink when brushing our teeth or washing our face
  • only washing clothes when there is a full load, same for the dishwasher
  • being mindful of the lights that are on in our home
  • reuse as much as possible…packaging, paper, envelopes, etc.
  • make an effort to purchase items made from recycled or sustainable sources
  • growing our own vegetables
  • we never litter. And if we see someone litter, we pick it up and maybe kindly tell them it’s not such a nice thing to do. It’s mean and lazy.

How did you celebrate Earth Day? What does your family do to benefit the environment?

6 COMMENTS

  1. Erik @ The Mastermind Within | 24th Apr 17

    I make sure to turn off lights and appliances I’m not using whenever I leave the room. I even unplug things because I know it pulls a little bit of energy out.

    It saves money and energy! 🙂

    • Mrs. Daisy | 25th Apr 17

      I try to as well! I’ve hooked a good amount of our plugs into surge protectors so that I can simply turn of a surge protector and unplug it. The only thing that stays continuously running is our fish tanks because of the filters!

  2. Troy @ Market History | 24th Apr 17

    A couple of friends and I went down to the beach to clean up some trash. Most of the northern beaches are pristine because only locals go, but the eastern beaches are heavily visited by tourists, some of whom leave garbage lying around.

    • Mrs. Daisy | 25th Apr 17

      That’s so awesome Troy! Not the littering part, but the fact that you and your friends picked it up. My family makes fun of me because no matter where we are, I will pick up trash if I see it lying around!

  3. Nathalie | 25th Apr 17

    I love the Usborne books. When I homeschooled my youngest, we used several Usborne encyclopedias as well and I was geeking out with the internet links. However, when I went to check on those a couple of years back as I was selling the encyclopedias, the links didn’t work anymore 🙁

    I love that you’re reading a chapter of the ecology book with your daughter every night and that she now nags her dad to do the right thing! Go little Daisy!

    We’re not perfect. We drive large, gas-guzzling vehicles and we love them, but we do other things to assuage the guilt 🙂

    1) We usually have very few lights on in the house and 99% of our bulbs are now LED. The rest are CFLs. We could do better by unplugging several power vampires but I have to admit that convenience trumps power consumption a lot of times. Still, those appliances that don’t get used every often are left unplugged.

    2) I don’t use fertilizer or pest killers in the garden and we don’t water our lawn or treat it in any way. I water our potted plants and the pineapples that I’m growing in ground. I built my own self-watering bins for the rest of my crops, although I’m not actively gardening this year. I do use wasp killer on wasp nests, though.

    3) I recycle, reuse, and buy used. I could do better but I do my part and we recycle more than anyone else on our block, that’s for sure!

    4) I donate everything that can still be used but that we have no use for anymore to our local thrift store so that someone else can use it. A lot of our furniture and furnishings were bought from thrift stores. A lot of my clothes were as well.

    5) I batch my errands and try to go out just once a week. If I do have to go out more than once a week, I try to make sure to run several errands when I go out so as to minimize the number of times I go out, since most of the stores are about 20 minutes away from my house. However, I do drive my son to school every morning instead of letting him take the bus, but only because the bus has stopped coming on time and I was tired of wondering if my kid would make it to class on time or be penalized because his bus was late (or didn’t show up at all!). He does take the bus home.

    6) I take showers every other day and wash my hair only once a week. I mostly stay home and I’m not extremely physically active on most days anyway. And then my showers are pretty short, 5 minutes maximum, usually about 3 minutes.

    7) I use reusable bags. I have a ton of them in my car. If I’m at the store and I don’t have bags with me, I tell them that I don’t need bags because they’re in my car. The exception would be if I drive my husband’s truck and I forget to bring bags because I don’t like having my stuff rolling around in the bed of his truck!

    8) I don’t use produce bags at the store. I have a couple of produce bags in my coupon organizer that I reuse over and over, or I don’t bag the produce it if I don’t have those with me and it”s loose produce.

    9) I do do the dishes in a couple of plastic dish pans because my dishwasher stopped working. When it did work, I only ran it when it was very full.

    10) I don’t separate my laundry at all. I wash everything together, on cold/cold and hang dry 80% of the clothes. The only things I throw in the dryer are Greg’s shirts and undershirts (because he hates it when I dry them outside) and the bath towels because I like them soft and our water is so hard that even with vinegar as softener, they’re never soft when I hang them to dry.

    11 and above. We do a lot of what you do. I also compost vegetable scraps, use a rain barrel to collect water to water my plants (but right now it’s not raining in Central Florida at all!), reuse the water from glasses and boiling eggs to water plants as well. We don’t smoke and we don’t litter either.

    We can always do better but I feel pretty good about our efforts.

    On Earth Day, we went to take a walk on our local trail and observed nature. We’re undergoing a severe drought and my husband was lamenting about it when he noticed that the ditches that are usually full of water were dry. That is why he actually listened to me when I told him that he wasn’t to wash the truck at home the next day and drove to the car wash instead. Honestly, I would have preferred that he didn’t wash the truck at all, but the car wash is more efficient and he ran errands at the same time, which made the gas consumption more necessary.

    • Mrs. Daisy | 25th Apr 17

      We’re not perfect either, that’s why I use the term “green-leaning”. We definitely do not live a green lifestyle, but we truly try where we can. My husband drives a gas guzzling pickup truck, but it’s necessary for our lifestyle. We don’t have a rain catchment system since we do not own our land. That’s one of the first things we plan to do when we purchase a home! We would also love to use solar power at a new home as well! I love the photos from your nature walks, the alligator photos scared me a bit! I can’t believe they are so common down there!

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