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Earth Day Activity Guide (for wherever you are)!

Updated: Apr 16, 2021

Looking for some COVID safe activities for Earth Week? Here are some ideas!

Self-Guided Activities

Learn and Teach About the Environment and Climate Change

Earth Day isn't about just one day - it can be a time to learn, educate, and brainstorm long-term and collective actions to help the Earth. We published a list of Sustainability Books for Youth, categorized by age level and with topics such as gardening, climate change, and intersectional environmental justice (fiction and non-fiction!). We have resources on how to teach elementary-aged kids about Climate Change (for elementary-age). We also put together a list of Gardening EBooks for Adults! And, we did a three part workshop series that you can watch about Food, Waste and Climate (virtual series). You can also engage in our 8 guided lessons on Food Justice: In the Community.

Do Some Earth Day Scientific Research:

Take a nature walk and observe local wildlife. While you are out, turn off all power in your home to conserve energy. Anyone can be a citizen scientist: volunteers, students, and professional scientists all collect data and submit it for scientific analysis--providing critical data, enhancing community engagement, and contributing to research. We compiled some fun ways people of all ages can get involved in citizen science!

Food Scraps! Start a Compost Bin or Grow a Garden From Food Scraps:

Not sure what to do with those leftover food scraps? Don't throw them out, this Earth day you can show your love for the planet by easily starting either an at home compost bin or your own scrap garden! We made a beginner guide to composting as well as a guide to start a food scrap garden. You can also start re-purposing your coffee grounds, eggshells, and other vegetative waste back into the soil. Here is a fun homemade fertilizer recipe.

Indoor Gardening:

Stuck at home and can't garden outside? No worries! Gardening indoors can be even simpler and just as rewarding as planting outside. This Beginners' Guide to Houseplants shows the 10 best houseplants for beginners to turn their thumb green.

Another route is to grow your own mini produce garden by planting sprouts or microgreens. They can easily be planted right on your windowsill and the yield is perfect for sandwiches and salads! Read our guide to microgreens!

Help Local Wildlife

Plant native plants to attract wildlife, especially pollinators, and better the ecosystem. Check out resources below to support pollinators:

Another fun idea is to make a DIY bug hotel out of scavenged fallen branches and recycled wood/cardboard. You can also make DIY birdfeeders with pinecones, peanut butter, and assorted bird seeds (but make sure birds also have a constant food source of natural plants as well!).

Scouting for Spring Birds:

This guide to NYC Spring Birds includes most of the birds that you should be able to spot in parks, from windowsills, and backyards citywide. A great activity that you can do with your students or family to get a breath of fresh air outside!

Eat Local! Smoothies, Drinks, and Veggie Chips:

Eating locally when possible helps the environment by reducing the amount of fossil fuels needed to transport food. With spring just arriving, a refreshing drink is the perfect way to relax at home and use your early spring season produce. Click here for healthy and tasty beverage ideas for your fresh spring berries and fruits, or click here for a guide on how to make delicious smoothie blends with farmers market produce! Don't know what to make with the leftover farmers market or winter produce? Veggie chips are a quick, healthy, and easy solution! Click here for a full guide to veggie chips or here for delicious kale chips.

From Our Partners: Live Virtual Opportunities

From Our Partners: In Person Opportunities

Please note that GrowNYC is not hosting any of the events below--they are facilitated by other organizations and entities:

Look up your nearby community gardens, parks, compost sites, neighborhood associations and community-based organizations for opportunities near you! Or, organize your own socially-distanced clean-up or planting day with your neighbors.

Whatever you choose to do this Earth Day and beyond, we hope it is restorative for you and the Earth we inhabit together!

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