Earth Day - how to explain it to children
What is Earth Day?
How do we explain this to kids?
Well, Earth Day is a day to reflect on our planet, our environment and what we can do to keep it healthy.
It can be difficult explaining big issues in the world to kids. There’s a fine line between worrying them and giving the right information to educate them. When it comes to the environment it affects us all and it’s important that all ages understand the importance of preserving our earth.
To help, we’ve put together a few tips explaining the importance of Earth Day.
Ask them a few simple questions, what comes in packaging? Sweets, toys? Where does the rubbish from sweets and toys go?
The most likely answer "the bin". But ask them what they think happens after that; after the bin lorry has come and taken away the rubbish, where does it go?
Keep it light and visual…
Use Google image search to show children what a landfill looks like. Now they know where our rubbish ends up you can explain why landfills are bad for our planet.
- Animals lose their home, as it becomes landfill space.
- Rainwater filters through the rubbish and into the ground, which makes its way into rivers and streams. This also affects animals and our drinking water.
- Landfills release gases that are smelly and can be unhealthy for humans.
Avoid getting too technical or factual, as they may lose interest.
Why it's important we stop…
The basics have been covered, next step is to discuss why it's so important we stop filling up landfills.
Talk about how we're running out of space for all of the rubbish. If we don't reduce it they'll be no room for parks and beaches.
If your little one loves animals, you can focus on how we need to protect the animals because they live here too.
How do we stop it…
If you have recycling boxes at home, show them and explain that by splitting the different materials, we can recycle and reuse some of our rubbish, rather than letting it rot away in a landfill.
Materials, like plastic milk jugs, are melted down which makes them reusable. Take a look at our Green Toys range made from 100% recycled plastic milk jugs!
There are also some great videos on YouTube that can help to explain.
Get them involved
If there are any local events, take them along! Down in Folkestone, the Bigjigs Toys HQ hometown, there are zero waste beach cleanups!
But if there's nothing like this nearby, take your little one out for a walk and pick up the rubbish as you go (be sure to wear gloves and to wash hands after touching anything).
Take baby steps to introduce them to the impact of waste on our Earth so they don’t get spooked! It’s such an important lesson and will create good habits for life. Start small and lead by example, use tote bags instead of plastic and reusable bottles rather than single-use plastic. Explain the importance to them each time they do something good, that way they can feel like they’ve achieved something.
If your children are a little older, sit down with them and brainstorm how they can help to make an impact - every little helps!
Earth Day 2018: Sunday, 22nd April
Have some tips to share? Comment below!