Today, June 5 is World Environment Day. The day almost caught me by surprise. The weather has definitely turned chilly in Sydney over the last week. While chilly in the morning, it is beautifully clear and somewhat warm in the day. So on this day I’m trying to think of some fun things I can do with my children to give thanks to our planet and acknowledge all that it gives us.
Here are some ideas:
Get out! There is a small bush track which is very do-able for children near me, so I plan on taking a little bushwalk with my daughters. Along the way I’ll point out trees, flowers, teach them to be silent and hear the sounds of the creek and leaves under their feet. If you don’t have bush near you, maybe just look out at the sky, look at the clouds and any birds or trees that may be present.
Plant a tree. There is an initiative this World Environment Day called ‘Do Something!’ where it is encouraging people to ‘plant one tree per child’. I might not plant a tree per child (I have three!), but I will plant one today and will do it with my children.
Grow some food. Not many children have exposure to growing food. If you have a garden, then great get some seeds and get planting. If not, then get some herbs in a pot and get them to help you maintain it and pick leaves to add to salads. Get them to feel the leaves, crush it and smell it….
Paint – Children love to paint and today you can ask them to paint what they see, or what their ideal world would look like. You could even make your own paint. Here is a recipe for for homemade watercolours:
1/2 cup bicarb soda
1/4 cup corn starch
1/4 cup white vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar syrup
Natural food colouring
Ice cube tray
Mix all ingredients together on a container or bowl. Stir immediately with a fork to combine until thickened. Pour small amounts into an ice cub tray, then add some food colouring, use immediately, or leave to dry.
Get crafty using recycled materials. Use egg cartons, cereal boxes, lids of milk bottles, old paper – anything really and get creative.
Give back to others. There are a number of elderly people on my street and one recently broke her hip. I never got to drop by, so hopefully in the next little bit I can get my kids to help bake some cookies and drop by and say hello. It’s so important to teach children empathy and how to care for others.
If you’ve done anything today to give thanks to Mother Earth, then let me know. I’d love to hear about it!