Thursday, April 22, 2021

Happy Earth Day


We love our Earth. We place on emphasis on recycling everything we can in this house. The minis are eagerly awaiting our recyclable build this summer (they requested to wait until we could use the backyard for more space), so I had to come up with a new activity for this Earth Day. Naturally, in daycare we covered the importance of recycling, what can be recycled, how plastic can hurt our Earth, and little things we can do to help. We watched a couple of shows on PBS about Earth Day, then we took an eagerly awaited walk around the neighborhood. If we saw a piece of trash, we picked it up.

But the main reason for the walk was to place our "happiness rocks" they painted and decorated the day before. We did this last year for the first time and everyone loved it, so we brought it back again this year! Daycare painted rocks using this kit, while my homeschoolers used a paint pouring kit. Some of the rocks from the paint pouring we held back for this weekend when we visit State Parks. I thought it would be fun to spread our cheer all over the state.

A late night art class with the minis. These dried overnight, but were still sticky the next morning. After placing in an open window, they dried fairly quickly, but still on the sticky side.

All around the neighborhood we walked (an astounding 2 miles. I was holding the youngest's hand and he kept up like a champ!), putting our kindness rocks, in trees, along the sidewalk, next to the creek, on near the bike path.

This was the sweetest moment: each big held a littles hand (or as the bigs say, they were "in charge of that kid"). The little "lost" one of her rocks in her pocket. The big helped fish the rock out of the depths of the pocket, all while talking to the little, telling her it was going to be okay. I had to stand back and capture the moment.

Can you spot their rocks? 

We're coming off a cold streak here in Iowa, so the sunshine felt amazing! We stayed outside after we returned from the walk so we could color with sidewalk chalk. Several kids drew pictures "of Earth Day."

With the few remaining minutes we had left of our morning, we broke out the dandelion play dough. I felt that was perfect for Earth Day! We made the play dough this weekend (using this recipe) and it's still just as fresh today as it was on Sunday. This recipe is a keeper!

While the littles slept (after our long morning walk, it was a much needed rest time!) in the afternoon, the bigs walked around the neighborhood picking up trash. Only one kid fell in water (I'm fuzzy on the details, but everyone came home unharmed, so I let it go), one kid picked up dog poop around the neighborhood instead of trash, and one kid had burs stuck to their pant leg. So, all in all, I think it was successful.

A go-to Earth Day activity for us is to plant flowers or our garden. Unfortunately, it's been too cold to plant flowers, but we have our flowers and garden ideas ready to go for next month!