5 Earth Day Literacy Activities That Build Planet Appreciation

Do you want to help your preschoolers understand and appreciate our planet? Engage them in these Earth Day literacy activities! They’ll learn about the natural world while having fun and developing new skills. Plus, you can feel good knowing that you’re helping to cultivate future environmentalists. Here are some great ideas to get you started.…

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Earth Day Lesson Plans

Earth Freeze Game

Letter / Sight Word Identification

Teaching is a high-stress job. (Cue the dreams when your class will not listen and all of the supplies are scattered across the room. Oh, wait. That’s not a dream.)


So what we need is a stress-reliever. And we shouldn’t have to wait until after school to get some relief. And that’s why I strongly encourage…


💃 Dancing.


And you can make it educational simply by using one of these alphabet freeze games!


Scatter the Earths (that include letters or sight words) around the room on the floor. Then, start singing the “Earth Freeze” song and, most importantly, dancing. Move and groove that thang around the room until the end of the song is reached. Then, everyone must freeze by the closest letter or sight word and trace it on their recording sheet. 


Your students will be practicing letter identification or sight word identification, and you will be relieving stress and having fun. That’s a winner in my book!


Plant a Tree ABC

Alphabet Sensory Bin

On Earth Day, we’re supposed to plant trees. It’s a time-honored tradition that helps to ensure the health of our planet for generations to come. 


But how do we encourage planting trees with toddlers?


By digging up letters and pretending to plant them, of course!


Not only will this alphabet sensory bin encourage our little ones to plant more trees, but they will be building letter recognition and fine motor skills along the way.


Just set the Plant a Tree ABC cards behind an egg carton with six wells, add some brown beads or dried beans with magnetic letters, and your kiddos will be ready to dig right in with this Earth Day alphabet activity!


Trash Pickup

Earth Day Initial Sound Activity

Drove back to my hometown this weekend and my heart sank. It’s not just the amount of building that’s taking place; it’s the amount of trash we saw along the streets. 


Just everywhere.


There’s gotta be a better way.


All we can do is our part. Make sure we throw our trash away – not out the windows. Pick up trash when we’re out on walks and try to use less. 


And those are the things that we need to teach our children by setting the example. We don’t just pick up trash on Earth Day. It should be every day.


And what a better way to encourage this than through a trash pickup activity!


Crumple up and spread the trash on the floor. Each item begins with a letter of the alphabet to turn this into an initial sound activity. 


And to make this even more exciting, add in those grabbers. They could be tongs, but if you have them, those extended grabbers get the kids standing and working on hand-eye coordination. Plus, they are so much fun! 


As they pick up the trash, they unfold it and name the item. Then, they trace the beginning letter on the recording sheet with this fun Earth Day activity to practice beginning sounds.


Stick Alphabet

Letter Construction

Sticks are nature’s toys. 


Sticks transform into dueling swords, magical wands, tents, spy traps, flags, or pencils. 


And what better way to practice letter construction during Earth Day than with a toy made from nature?


By using sticks to create letters, your preschoolers will be able to see the shapes and forms that the letters make, which will help them with letter identification and formation.


You’ll need sticks in three lengths: 6 inches, 3 inches, and 1.5 inches. Then, they will fit perfectly on top of these Stick Letter cards. And when your students are ready, have them build the letters off to the side for an extra letter constuction challenge.


Rhymes in the Bag

Earth Day Literacy Activities

Forgot your reusable bag… again? 


We are in the process of transitioning to no plastic bags in Colorado, and here I am walking out of the store balancing my groceries like the Cat in the Hat. Oy vey. 


But hopefully we can instill the habit of remembering reusable bags with our toddlers before they end up in a juggling act like me. 


And we can encourage that with this Earth Day literacy activity: Rhymes in the Bag. To play, simply find the grocery item card that rhymes with the one listed on the bag and place them in the foldable, recyclable bag

Then, flip the bag over to self-check the rhyming pairs – perfect for your Earth Day literacy centers!


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MORE Earth Day Activities

Earth Day Art Projects for Kids
Solve an Earth Day Scavenger Hunt to Find the Litterbug!
Earth Day Fine Motor Activities
Earth Day literacy activities with a pick up trash activity for initial sounds.
Earth Day Math Activities
Earth Day Books for Preschoolers

It’s Earth Day, and that means it’s time to get your hands dirty! Okay, so maybe we can all hold off on the literal dirt, but getting down and dirty with some fun Earth Day literacy activities is a great way to celebrate our planet. 


And what could be more fitting for Earth Day than getting kids excited about letters and words? With this in mind, I’ve put together a few of our favorite hands-on centers that focus on foundational literacy skills. From digging up letters in the garden to building them out of sticks, there’s something here for everyone. 


So roll up your sleeves and get ready to have some fun! And don’t forget – if you want even more Earth Day centers, grab the DISCOUNTED bundle!


If there is anything you need to get this nursery rhymes theme ready for your preschoolers, just let me know, and I would be happy to help with whatever you need!

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