Everything Earth Day!

Did you know that this year is the 40th anniversary of Earth Day? Teaching students about the environment is easier than ever with contests, freebies, and Earth-friendly resources like the ones featured here.  Post a comment on our blog to let us know which of these are your favorites.  If we receive your comment by midnight on Earth Day, Thursday, April 22, you’ll be entered into a random drawing to win a collection of science-related resources. One lucky reader will win! (Update: congratulations to Linda, who won the collection of science materials. Thanks to all those who posted comments!)


Challenge your students to make new inventions out of trash! The Design Squad, part of PBS Kids Go! is hosting the Trash to Treasure competition. Students’ inventions must be made from at least two repurposed items and must fit one of these categories: inventions that move things or people, inventions that protect the environment, or inventions that can be used for indoor or outdoor play. The contest is open to students ages 5-19. Entries will be accepted until September 5, 2010. Get all the details at PBSKIDSGO.org/designsquad/contest.


Smokey Bear and Woodsy Owl are back! See the latest Smokey and Woodsy educational items—and learn how you can place your order—at www.symbols.gov. Use code 20252 for a 25% discount!


Motivate students in grades two and up to learn about threatened species and habitats—and to raise money for conservation projects—through the National Audubon Society’s Pennies for the Planet program. Get a free kit, which includes a poster, educator’s guide, newsletter, and more. It’s all at www.penniesfortheplanet.org.


More than 1,000 teachers have vowed to go paperless on Earth Day! Visit http://teachpaperless.blogspot.com to find out how you can take the paperless classroom pledge. Click here!


Even your colored pencils can be Earth friendly! Max Colored EcoPencils from Faber-Castell are made from reforested wood and feature extra-thick lead for fewer broken pencil points. Faber-Castell products are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council; the wood comes from renewable and sustainable sources. Find out more at www.fabercastell.com.


With resources like these, going green will be easier than ever this year! Enjoy!


PS: Want to continue your focus on the earth and its creatures? Mark your calendar: the second annual Save the Frogs Day is coming up on April 30. Hop on over to www.savethefrogs.com/day to learn more.

4 thoughts on “Everything Earth Day!

  1. My students will love the idea of making an invention out of trash! I think the categories are wonderful. I also plan to take the ‘no paper’ challenge, and include my students in that challenge. Thanks so much for the great ideas!

  2. I love the idea of the “trash to treasure challenge,” and it goes along nicely with my class’s “Earth Day Challenge” where they are asked to create something new out of “trash” or something old they find around the house. I also would love to implement the Pennies for the Planet program at my school next year! We currently participate in Cool The Earth, as well as Pennies for Patients sponsored by the Leukemia and Lymphoma society. It would be great to add the Planet to our list of benefactors for coin collection. Thanks for the tip!

  3. I was around for the very first Earth Day celebration,which really makes me feel “old”!
    Our students do a mass cleaup of our schoolyard.
    I also have them decorate grocery bags to use as
    containers for trash we find. With gloves on,we
    sort the “treasures” into cateories,like plastic,
    paper,etc. This time of year we’re also cleaning out
    extra things in the classroom,so lots of spare papers,like construction paper or unused worksheets, are doled out to eager recyclers!

  4. Wow I love the idea of the trash to treasures and I plan to use it.
    This year we have been recycling everything we can and I am astounded at how much trash we used to just throw away. I am very proud of how my little ones have learned to recycle at school. Especially when I hear one say no that can be recycled.

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