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April 18, 2012 Every Day Is Earth Day! By Andrea Spillett
Grades 1–2

    Instill the love of reading and of the environment by sharing these books and ideas about Earth Day with your students! They will surely take away the concept that Earth Day should be celebrated and honored EVERY DAY!






    Miss Fox’s Class Goes Green

    Written by Eillen Spinelli
    Illustrated by Anne Kennedy

    I love this humorous and thought-provoking book! What a terrific story to introduce the concept of "Going Green." The characters provide examples of how anyone can contribute to keeping our earth a "greener" place to live. From Miss Fox riding her bike to school to Mouse taking shorter showers and Possum turning off the lights when he leaves a room, the idea is playfully reinforced.




    Here's an activity to go along with the book that uses the Scholastic Printables graphic organizer My Favorite Things. This organizer empowers students by giving them a choice about what they want to write about. The students get to choose if they would like to write about their favorite character, favorite word, or favorite part of the story.




    Earth Day Birthday

    Written by Pattie Schnetzler
    Illustrated by Chad Wallace

    This beautifully illustrated and creatively written book will mesmerize your students while they are engaged in singing the text to the tune of "The 12 Days of Christmas." The book exemplifies the importance of respecting animals and keeping them in their natural environment.




    Another way to engage the students with this story is to have them draw a picture of one of the pages. In a readers-theater type setting, have the students "sing" the page that they drew. Another way to display this book is to take a picture of your students and their drawings with a green screen behind them. Use a program like PhotoKey 3 to give a background. Here are a couple of examples from the story:

    an eagle in a blue sky,

    two grizzlies sleeping,

    three panthers creeping,

    and four salmon leaping.


    The Lorax

    Written and illustrated by Dr. Seuss

    I’ve been reading the timeless classic The Lorax to my students since my first year of teaching. The book provides so many vital messages about what will happen to our environment if we don't take care of it. The students see first-hand how harmful pollution is to our air and water quality. They experience the sadness of how the animals and nature are affected by others' greed. My favorite part of the book is the ending because it sends a clear message to the children that by taking care of the earth, they are our hope for the future.


    After reading the book, have your students make their own Truffula trees and write what happens at the beginning, middle, and end of the story. I hand drew patterns of the Truffula treetops for the students to trace and cut out. They can cut and color their own tree trunks using any scraps of yellow paper. The mustache is optional!





    Earth Day (Rookie Read-About Holidays)

    Written by Trudi Strain Trueit

    Students enjoy reading and listening to fictional books about real issues in our society, but it is also important to expose them to nonfiction books, too. In the Rookie Read-About Holidays series, Earth Day provides photographs of real children doing different things to improve the environment.





    Using the "Random Acts of Environmental Kindness" Scholastic printable, have your students write about the ways they can promote environmental kindness.





    Michael Recycle

    Written by Ellie Bethel
    Illustrated by Alexandra Colombo

    Who doesn't love to read a story about a recycling superhero? This creative rhyming text provides giggles for your students with an important message about the necessity of recycling and taking care of the environment. The bright and bold illustrations will keep your students engaged and make them think twice about how they can be proactive to reuse, recycle, and reduce waste in their community.




    To reinforce this point, use the Scholastic printable "An Important Point" to discuss the topic and the main details about the story.




    Please share with us how you embrace Earth Day with your students!


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Susan Cheyney