Happy Earth Day! Today is a great day to get started on some spring projects AND work on some speech and language skills. Earth Day celebrates being environmentally friendly and respectful of the earth. Some great ideas to enjoy this day include, taking a walk outside, planting a flower or tree, picking up trash around the neighborhood, or recycling/repurposing old toys and clothes.
Language stimulation during these activities:
1. Language expansion – if you have a young toddler using 1-2 words, model longer phrases: “I see red flowers”; “dig in the dirt”, “pick up trash”
2. Language concepts – if you have a preschooler, compare and contrast flower colors and sizes or sequence steps to planting a flower.
3. Sorting – cut out pictures of “earth friendly activities”(e.g, parkland, trash pick up) and “non-earth friendly activities” (e.g, pollution, smog).
4. Problem solving – take a toy that your child isn’t using anymore and see if he/she can come up with a new way to use or play with it. For example, infant stacking cups make great planters to grow bean seeds or flowers.

Book Recommendations:
1. It’s Spring! – this book talks about the transition from winter to spring and what to look forward to in spring.
2. The Curious Garden – this book tells the tale of a boy who starts a garden on an old railroad line and turns an smog-filled town into a beautiful oasis.
3. The Bus Ride – a little girl takes the bus for the first time and has an adventure. (public transportation is earth-friendly!)

Easy Craft Activity:
1. Water bottle vases – recycle/repurpose old water bottles by decorating them with paint or tissue paper. Add flowers from your own garden and display!

Favorite Earth Day and Spring toy:

Build a Bouquet

This toy is not only fun, made from recyclable materials, and made in America, but can be used to follow directions, discuss language concepts, and increase language expansion.

Happy Earth Day!