As we get closer to Valentine’s Day, here are 5 ways that toddlers, preschoolers, and even kindergarten kids can give a Valentine to the Earth. After all, the planet could certainly use some love.
- Bottles seem to collect in dark corners waiting to be recycled. Kids can help take bottles back to the recyclers. Refund money can be donated to an animal shelter or wildlife rescue center.
- Kids can notice if there are any lights that can be turned off. If no one is in a room, turning out the light saves electricity.
- If possible, walk or take the bus when you have to go somewhere instead of using the car.
- Pack lunch with reusable containers instead of plastic ones.
- Spend some time playing outside. That way the Earth gets to play too.
Children are often better at reducing, reusing, and recycling than adults. Their enthusiasm and motivation are contagious. In order to develop an appreciation for nature, kids need to spend time with the trees, grass, wind, and sky. In urban areas, sometimes we have to look for nature in small spaces. Balconies and sidewalks can have nature in pockets.
Giving a valentine to nature is really giving one to ourselves. There are so many reasons why a connection to nature is beneficial for kids. Time in nature increases children’s problem-solving, creativity, and concentration. It promotes observation, a sense of wonder and supports imaginative play. It decreases anxiety and obesity.
As children take care of the planet and play outside, they are developing a relationship with nature that is life long. We are not above nature, we are part of nature, and so are children, especially with being so much closer to the ground.
There are many more ideas for Valentine’s for the Earth. These are only a few for starters. How could you and your child give a valentine to the planet?