Earth Day is arguably one of the most important and overlooked days of the year. It’s easy to see the declining health of our planet when we simply look at the news. So, what more can we do to change that than to be an example ourselves and inspire the next generation to be mindful and actionable about this issue? Educators are given the perfect opportunity to do this every year in our classrooms! So, let’s take advantage of that!
Below I have listed five incredibly helpful and engaging Earth Day read alouds! These books teach lessons that relate to the world they are living in today and how they can make the world a better place physically and socially. I always wanted to find resources that didn’t just teach my students about the subject but also inspired them to take action. Thankfully, these books do just that. They give ideas on how to reuse and recycle items daily in the classroom, reconsider littering, and what they can do to lessen pollution.
A few activities you can tag with these resources are graphs of classroom sustainability ideas, experimenting with making your own resources in a science center, and writing steps to what they think would happen when just one community stops littering and starts recycling (domino/butterfly effect). Your class can even do big projects like participating in the Crayola ColorCycle Program to recycle markers in your classroom! Talk about taking action!
(Pssst! I also included an Earth Day Center at the end, too!)
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Earth Day Read Aloud: What If Everybody Did That?
Teach your students not to pollute! Just one candy wrapper on the ground may seem harmless, but what if everyone did that? This book teaches a valuable lesson and opens the floor to discuss the growing pollution problem our precious Earth is experiencing. It also touches on the Social Emotional Learning subject of respect.
Earth Day Read Aloud: I Am Earth: An Earth Day Book for Kids
You can read this book to give your students ideas for clean living and recycling. They will also learn amazing facts about our planet and some science fun! The well-designed graphics keep students engaged throughout the book as well!
Earth Day Read Aloud: Dear Earth…From Your Friends in Room 5
When you write a letter to planet Earth, you don’t expect to receive a letter in return, right? Well, the students in room 5 did, and this is their open letter about how we can all help treat our home a little better. With this book, you will also find a poster on the inside of the jacket cover with 12 months of fun and interactive Earth Hero activities! These projects encourage your students to be active in protecting our planet, not only on Earth Day but every day!
Earth Day Read Aloud: This Class Can Save the Planet
This read creates an actual domino effect! It encourages students to make an environmental change and helps them bring their ideas to life that support sustainability in everyday life inside the classroom and out. Students are bursting with ideas on how to make a real difference in their community after reading this book! I highly suggest starting an idea graph and writing down the inventive ways your students come up with for reusing and recycling items!
Tip: You can also use this book as a resource in a center and experiment with one of the real, actionable ideas provided in the book!
Earth Day Read Aloud: One Earth
This simple book is useful for all ages as you count the many beautiful things about Earth and nature! “One sweeping sky, two honey bees…” and a countless list of things we LOVE about our planet! It also counts the many ways you can recycle unneeded materials once you are done with them to spark inspiration for unique purposes those plastic bags can have then just throwing them away.
I guarantee your students will enjoy these fun, informative, and interactive books! If you are looking for even more Earth Day-themed material, I’ve linked the perfect resources below! An interactive lapbook perfect for teaching all about this important day and a measuring center for math practice!