Environmental issues have been receiving increasing attention in recent years. Earth is facing a lot of problems, many as a direct result of human activity. With Earth Day coming up on April 22nd, this is a great time to remember to bring awareness to the issues our planet is facing and what we can do as individuals and communities to help care for our planet and keep it healthy. Have a conversation with the kids in your life about what it would mean to them to have a healthy place to live and what they can do to help make that happen. Take this day as an opportunity to show Mother Earth some love and participate in an environmentally friendly activity together. Some fun and easy ideas you may want to consider trying include: taking a walk and picking up trash around your neighborhood, planting a tree, planting a pollinator garden, repurposing unwanted items, doing a closet cleanout and donating no longer needed items for others to use, or creating an art masterpiece from recycled materials. Remember, the kindness we show our planet doesn’t have to take place on just one day. We can take steps to reduce our negative impact each day through simple acts. Supplement your environmentally friendly activity with a book that covers an environmental issue of interest. I have some nonfiction children’s book recommendations from our library that will educate and inspire kids to find ways they can help our planet and prevent issues from worsening.
Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle, Oscar! by Mary Lindeen
Sesame Street fans will appreciate the basic information given in this book that introduces younger readers to the concepts of recycling, reusing, and reducing in an effort to care for the environment. Sesame Street characters provide explanations for why we need to do these things, along with clear examples of how we can easily do them. Abby Cadabby gives readers the idea to reuse a can to hold pens, Oscar recommends eating foods that don’t have wrappers to reduce waste, and Rosita shows us a set of chairs that are made from recycled plastic. Delightful illustrations also include photographs of children demonstrating ways they help to take care of the environment.
The Last Straw: Kids Vs. Plastics by Susan Hood
Plastic is used in almost everything these days, and the amount of plastic that is thrown away is hurting the environment. The Last Straw: Kids Vs. Plastics explains the plastic problem through a clever and fun mix of informative text, nonfiction poetry, and colorful illustrations. Young activists are highlighted for their roles in bringing about awareness and change in the ways plastic is used. The back of the book provides recommendations on alternatives to using plastic, as well as resources for further research. This inspirational book will prompt readers into thinking about how they use plastic and how they can help the environment through their own actions.
DKfindout! Climate Change by Maryam Sharif-Draper
Learn all about what is causing our planet to warm up and how that warming can lead to issues like extreme weather events in this book. Loads of information on all things past, present, and future relating to climate change are covered here. The text is supported by bold illustrations to keep the reader engaged in learning about this important topic that everyone should be paying attention to. Find out about the role humans play in climate change and what we can do to improve our impact on the environment.
Let’s Save Our Planet: Forests by Jess French
Deforestation is a serious, current issue facing our environment. Readers of this book will learn about the different types of forests and their importance to our world, followed by the causes and effects of deforestation, and solutions to those issues. Appealing illustrations creatively accompany the loads of information packed into each chapter. This is a heavy topic, but there is hope! Detailed descriptions of what readers can do to help forests are included at the end of this book.
Honeybee: The Busy Life of Apis Mellifera by Candace Fleming
Readers will gain an appreciation for honeybees and their colonies through this extremely informative text that is filled with absolutely stunning and detailed illustrations. After reading all about the life of the honeybee, readers will also learn about the issues the honeybees are facing with decreasing populations and how that has an impact on crops. Suggestions on how we can help protect honeybees and other natural pollinators are provided as well.
Understanding Climate Change: Animals in Danger by Katie Free
Climate change affects both land and ocean species, putting many at risk of extinction. Readers of this book will learn in detail how human activity has affected the habitats of different species across time, and the potential catastrophic effects of climate change if we continue on the path we are on. Examples of how people are protecting animals from climate change are also provided. Readers looking for more in-depth information on the effects of climate change will appreciate this book, which is part of the Understanding Climate Change series.