Each year as a tradition to myself and this green movement website, I write on the events of Earth Day (April 22nd) this year is no exception. I will focus more on some new ideas and representations of our planet Earth. The symbols of Earth Day have been similar throughout the years, including an image or drawing of the Earth itself, a tree, a flower or leaves depicting growth, or the recycling symbol (which is on our website as well). The colors used are natural colors such as green, brown or blue. There is also an “Earth Flag”, which was designed by John McConnell, and this has been described as a “flag for all people”. Earth Day promotes environmental awareness and calls for the protection of our planet.

A good way to celebrate Mother Nature and the holiday would be to introduce the younger generation to our planet, while having fun with arts and crafts. Not only will this start a tradition, but it will show the kids that it doesn’t take a lot of money to have fun. I thought of some creative ideas, here are just few. Melt some blue and green crayons to make some earth colored heart shapes; make blue and green cupcakes, shirts, etc.; upcycled bird feeders – recycle an old milk carton and make new feathered friends (my favorite due to my love of birds) with this creative nature craft. Plantable paper for Earth Day, made from recycled materials, this homemade paper has added seeds so that it can be planted. Catalog Flower Garland Tutorial – a fun flower made out of a catalog with a pictured tutorial on how to make it. These are just some of the ideas that can be done. There’s also many treats such as dirt and worm cups or Earth Day cake pops, (cute and ever so yummy looking, like mini-earths).

Earth Day can also be a day that leads us into depression, kind of like our birthdays, (a reflection of how much we have to do and the challenges that lie ahead). We can focus on appreciating how much knowledge we can gain from the Planet, be more productive, and thus, happier. There are some new and innovative toys and gadgets on the market now that are Earth friendly and educational. MuddWatt; a science experiment/toy was created by a young engineer to show that kids can take a scoop of mud and turn it into a battery. It’s the tiny microbes in our soil that actually generate power. Incredible Plate Tectonics are a hip comic book to talk about the most scientific aspects about the Earths geology. Giftsland Lokta Paper Garlands are gorgeous in design, and the garlands are almost alive as they can literally affect the level of energy and light going through a room. Geek and Co Grass Head; this toy shows us that plants are a huge part of the living Earth which do not have eyes, faces, or voices. The silliness is part of the plan in getting kids to connect to nature, because giving Grass Head as a periodic haircut is a delightful sensory ritual. Many new toys and gadgets are available locally and online that may strike your interest.

Earth Day has become a worldwide event. Not yet a true holiday, but one we can respect and pay honor to. Earth Day Network’s year-round mission is to broaden, diversify and activate the environmental movement worldwide, through a combination of education, public policy, and consumer campaigns.