Earth day is a special annual event celebrated globally to appreciating the environment while creating awareness on the need for environmental sustainability. The day was proposed by peace activist John McConnell in a UNESCO conference in 1969 and the idea was later confirmed by the United Nations and its internationalization began in 1990.
First celebrated internationally in 1990, the event takes place every year on the 22nd of April and is coordinated by the Earth Day Network. The day mainly acts as a means of sensitizing people about environmental conservation and discussing other relevant environmental issues facing various parts of the world.
In schools, this day is dedicated to teaching students the importance of caring for the earth. To join the rest of the world in celebrating this day, there are a myriad of games and activities that an individual, group of people/friends, or an institution can participate in or organize. Some of them include:
20+ Wonderful Earth Day Games and Activities
1. Environmentally focused Art projects
For student, this should be an activity that makes them come up with art or pictures of the environment they desire to live in or see around them. Various art projects ensure diversity in children enabling them to practice what they see. Also, it is a way for them to have a deep connection with the environment as such projects enables them to reflect, show interest, and learn.
2. Town Clean up
The community, authorities and children can undertake the activity of cleaning up the town. This may involve various activities such as collection of papers and plastics, sweeping of parks, and clearing of weeds. These activities lean towards preservation of the environment and incorporation of the culture to young kids.
3. Nest Building
This activity involves the making of model nests for birds out of wooden material. It is a good activity for both beginner carpenters and bird lovers and gives enthusiasts a chance to interact with birds, yet in an indirect way.
Caring for birds means caring for the environment. Furthermore, the materials used for the construction of the nest come from scraps of wood that are not in use. This optimizes the reuse of wood materials.
4. Watching fun conservation videos
Kids are able to respond to things they have seen on screens. Teachers should be able to search for environmental sensitization movies that also appeal to kids to motivate them to participate in various earth friendly activities.
5. Signs and Reminders
There are a lot of wastages that take place in our homes. Children are allowed the freedom to write reminders and signs and post them around the house. Reminders on the fridge such as reducing the frequent opening of the appliance to conserve energy are important.
Signs below switches to remind the household not to leave the lights open. These serve as fun activities for kids and also help the rest of the family to better conserve the environment at home.
6. Use of recyclables in science projects
Students can be tasked with coming up with science projects that use recyclable materials. Such a project may go as far as involving parents, creating environmental awareness among parents. To make it enjoyable, it should be set up in a way that the best projects get prizes and the rest get goodies. Parents can also be part of the audience to assist their children.
7. Eating organic
Consumption of non-organic foods comes with lots of threat to human health. To promote the idea of healthy living while protecting the environment, such a day can offer the perfect opportunity whereby as an organization, friends, or family; you can opt for eating only organic foods gathered from farms, organic food stores, and supermarkets cooked in the open. This is a perfect activity that ensures everyone knows the various ingredients being sought and gets to appreciate the process of cooking and eating healthy.
8. Customized earth day collages
Teachers can engage students to come up with various collages that represent the Earth day. These items can use materials that are recycled to inspire the idea of environmental conservation as well as sustainability. The students can later on take a trip around the town or community to display the collages to sensitive people about environmental conservation.
9. School Presentations
On this day, children and students can be allowed to make presentations about the various ways the environment can be protected. Such assignments must be given earlier, for instance, two days prior to ensure the participation of all. Parents can as well be involved and encouraged to attend to watch their children do the presentations.
10. Recycle games
This is an activity that is set to aid kids and even adults to know the various ways of disposing of used materials such as glass, plastics, and metals and the different ways of recycling them.
In order to set up the game, empty bins are needed – labeled recycle. The students can be divided into teams and each tasked with finding a recyclable material and placing it in the correct recycle bin. This is a way to teach kids and adults about recycling and reusing.
There are various types of fairs but on this day, a fair that sensitizes about the environment is essential. The program of the fair should incorporate talks about pollution and how to prevent it, activities such as tree planting, recycling and reuse and consumption of organic foods to reduce intake of processed foods. It is also a way to showcase how others have been able to preserve the earth to motivate the masses.
12. Scavenger hunting
Kids love outdoor activities. This can be utilized by making a game out of earth day. Have the kids make a list of the items that can be found in the surroundings. Items such as stones, plastics, paper, flowers etc. Divide the kids in groups of two and set a prize for the winner. By the end of the day, these kids will have a lot to say about the items they collected making it easier to teach them about recycling.
13. Tree Planting
This is one of the most basic ways of saving the earth. Tree planting is an exercise that involves both the old and the young. Earth day is a good day to organize a school or institutional tree planting day by inviting students, parents, the community and other stakeholders to plant trees both around the school and also in the community. It is a good way to show how important trees are.
14. Flower pot planting
Kids love pets as well as something to care for and call their own. What better way to tap this than to encourage them to have their own flower pots and to plant the flower of their choice on them. By doing this, they will learn how to nurture these flowers and have the opportunity to watch them grow, making them care about plants and nature.
15. Weeding and manicuring of flowers and shrubs in parks and streets
Parks, streets and certain centres either managed by the state or public land from time to time need to be manicured. Weeds also tend to crop up in these areas. On this day, the community can use their local tools and resources to weed out and manicure such areas within parks and streets. Because it improves the aesthetic value, it encourages people to take care of their environment and keep it clean.
16. Play in the dark games
This is a day to preserve the earth and energy. Play in the dark games may, therefore, go a long way in teaching kids essence of conserving energy.
17. Pollution projects
Just like art projects, pollution projects can help people appreciate the environment. By undertaking assignments and experiments that involve pollution, students can learn the impacts of pollution and get the bigger picture of the damaging effects of pollution on the earth.
18. Planting of seeds in class
Kids appreciate hands on activity and being part of the process. On an earth day, the teacher can have the kids come with empty containers in class. Thereafter, provide seeds for them to plant and water for the course of the week. These kids will be active through as they wait to see seedlings sprout out. This teaches a lot about conservation.
19. Bike Riding
This is a fun exercise game that involves riding of bicycles. Motor bikes and vehicles tend to release a lot of carbon to the atmosphere which is hazardous to the environment. As a result, this activity can focus on communicating that bike riding is a convenient way to commute from work place to home while caring for the environment.
20. School Clean up
Getting students out of their routine work to pick up trash around the school is a great way to teach how to keep the environment clean and conserve it. It also cautions against littering.
21. Recycling and environmental pollution writing competition
Recycling and environmental pollution writing competition can be organized on earth day with prize rewards for the best writers. This promotes environmental awareness.
22. Visit to the zoo or wildlife sanctuary
A visit to the Zoo or wildlife orphanage is a great way of understanding wildlife conservation and nature.