Earth Day is April 22nd and is the day we celebrate the earth and everything it does for us. We use Earth Day as an opportunity to teach our children about how we can lower our impact on the planet to help protect the environment and do our part for a better future. These Earth Day activities for kids are a great opportunity to not only have fun but to teach our children how they can take steps towards a better future for the planet all year long.
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Fun and Eco-friendly Earth Day Activities for Kids
Trash Scavenger Hunt
Grab the kids and some bags and go for a hike or nature walk. Have your kids race to see who can fill their bags with trash first. Keep an eye out for plastic bottles, paper scraps, plastic bags, etc.
The dollar store often carries little grabber tools if you are worried about your kids picking up trash with their little hands. I like this grabber tool from Amazon too.
This is a fun way to teach kids about not littering, leaving a space cleaner than when you arrived, and the damage that all of our trash does to Mother Earth.
If you can’t make it out to a hiking trail, this activity can work anywhere – even in your very own neighborhood.
Choose a fun reward for the person that fills their bag first!
Can You Recycle That?
Spend Earth Day learning what you can and what you can’t recycle. If your city participates in a recycling program you can use this as the perfect opportunity to get your kids to help with a bit of spring cleaning.
You may want to make a chart of recyclable materials similar to this one, to help kids remember what can be recycled and what can’t.
Have your kids gather up things that can be recycled from around the house to fill the recycling bin. Look for plastic water bottles, cereal boxes, and even some food wrappers.
As a reward for after it is full, get the entire family together for a picnic at the local park. Finish up with a family bike ride or take a long walk.
This can be a great game to see how fast your family members can fill the recycling bin each week when it
is time to clean up the house. The more fun you make the family chores, the more likely your kids are to help out without a fight – all while making a positive impact for our Planet Earth!
Make Compost Stew
If you haven’t built your own compost bin yet, Earth Day is a great time to start one!
Grab the book Compost Stew: An A to Z Recipe for the Earth. After reading it, have everyone help fill up a container and start your very first compost bin by making your very own Compost Stew.
Not only is this a great Earth Day activity that captures young children’s interest in imaginative play, it is also an amazing way to work on reading comprehension with your child.
For years to come, your kids will know what they can put in the compost to help make amazing food for your garden and reduce your carbon footprint.
Make a Tic Tac Toe Game on Rocks
Painting rocks with nontoxic paint is a great activity for kids and is one of my favorite Earth Day crafts! Making a popular game like tic tac toe on rocks is a great way to make an earth-friendly game that you can leave at the park to share with others.
Everyone knows how to play this game so when they stumble upon the set they will know just what to do making this a great way to bless others in your community as well.
Not interested in a game of tic tac toe? You can still make a game of painting rocks to leave around your community, at the park, or on your favorite hiking trails.
Art projects like this one are a great way to cheer others up by leaving a surprise that doesn’t litter or leave behind trash should your surprise go undiscovered.
Many cities even have rock groups so you can dive in and go searching for other people’s rocks.
Make and Toss Seed Bombs
Look for native to your area wildflower seeds. This is a great opportunity to discuss with your child about invasive species and why we need to be responsible when planting seeds to help balance our local ecosystem.
Seed bombs are a great way to help feed the bees and make the most of open spaces and abandoned lots in our communities that may not receive the best of care.
Younger kids might also enjoy inspecting the seeds more closely with a magnifying glass. You can talk about similarities and differences in the seeds, and even have some sensory play by putting the seeds into little bins before making your seed bombs.
Use upcycled tissue paper saved from past gifts or the brown shipping paper from recent packages to make your seed bombs. This shows your kids that we can get creative and reuse items in tons of ways – even for fun Earth Day projects!
The paper will biodegrade into the soil as the flower sprouts and grow.
Start Seeds for Your Garden
Gather the kids and start looking for things you can upcycle into seed starting containers to get a head start on your vegetable garden before the danger of the last frost is gone. This is the perfect Earth Day activity to challenge your child to come up with new and creative seed starter containers.
It would be great to use a variety of materials to try different ways of getting your seeds started. Sort of like combining science experiments with fun Earth Day activities!
The winner of this game is the one that finds the best eco-friendly container. When you plant your seedlings in a few weeks it will be clear to see who the winner is.
Not only is this an earth-friendly earth day activity, but your garden helps to lower your family’s carbon footprint all season long.
If this is your first garden, planting new seeds year after year will lower your carbon footprint for many years to come.
Bird Feeder Builder
Feed the birds with a challenge to see who can build the most creative bird feeder (or the simplest, fastest, etc). This is a fun craft idea that will allow you to feed the birds while having a fun little competition.
This can be designed to fit the needs of each child depending on your child’s age. For a simple version, use pine cones and peanut butter to place bird seed on your bird feeder.
Take it up a notch for older kids and have them go searching for the supplies to build their own earth-friendly bird feeder to see who can design and create their bird feeder first.
You can get lots of DIY bird feeder ideas here!
This is a great Earth Day activity for kids that helps feed birds returning home in the early spring when food is not yet abundant.
We hope you enjoyed these fun ideas of our favorite Earth Day activities! Whether you’re celebrating your first Earth Day or if you’re just looking for new ideas and fun games to celebrate our amazing planet, I hope you have so much fun on this special day!
Thank you for caring about our world, and Happy Earth Day!
Amanda is a mom of 4 living a mostly crunchy lifestyle outside of Atlanta, GA with her husband, 2 dogs, and a cat. As a former special education teacher who also has her personal training certification — Amanda really enjoys teaching others how to do things!
When she’s not working, Amanda enjoys DIY projects, exercising, photography, hiking, and long walks through Target.