What an amazing place we get to call home—a world filled with majestic mountain ranges, rushing rivers, and deep oceans filled with marine life! With close to eight billion people living their lives on the planet, can you imagine what would happen if we all pitched in to conserve the beauty around the world?
In 1970, President Nixon acknowledged the first Earth Day by planting a tree in the lawn of the White House. That same day, millions of people attended Earth Day festivities around the nation. Over the next few years, the White House stepped up its efforts to bring public awareness to environmental conservation. Today, more than fifty years later, Earth Day is widely remembered around the globe as a day to take action against concerns such as pollution and protect Earth’s natural resources.
Girls at Earth Day festivities in 1970. Image credit: Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division,
photograph by Bernard Gotfryd, LC-DIG-gtfy-07717.
How can you do your part on April 22? Check out these five family-friendly activities to celebrate Earth Day this year!
1. Start a bee-friendly garden. Bees are critical to agriculture and the ecosystems of our planet. These tiny creatures are essential to plants and flowers as they depend on them as pollinators. Use the tin can from dinner last night or the empty egg carton from your morning eggs to grow a handful of flower and plant seeds. Bees are especially attracted to lavender and wildflowers native to your area! Forgo the pesticides and your garden will thank you later!
2. Start a compost pile! Speaking of gardening, you can start a compost pile using scraps and recyclables to create something new your garden soil will love. Reduce the amount of food scraps headed to our landfills by collecting egg shells, fruit and vegetable peels, and even coffee grounds in a compost pile.
3. Organize a neighborhood cleanup! Partner up with your friends and neighbors to set up a time and location, then gather some supplies. Sort the recyclables and trash along the way and arrange to dispose the waste properly.
Teenagers collecting trash in 1972.
Image credit: National Archives (Local Identifier 412-DA-10462).
4. Make a bird feeder with recyclable items. Spread peanut butter on an empty paper towel roll or a milk carton, then cover it with bird seed to create an environmental-friendly bird feeder perfect to hang outside a window.
5. Make it a goal to go paperless. Start with attainable goals to go printer-free in your home. Subscribe to paperless billing and mail or use a note app for digital notes and lists. Start small and try one week at a time!
As a bonus, check out our Earth Day DIY crafts inspired by our kids magazine—or dive into Issue 7 | Into the Deep to learn about important conservationists like Jacques Cousteau and Rachel Carson. Every action and change, large or small, can have an impact on the Earth we know today! What will you do this year to make a difference?