BGCA’s Lesa Sexton can’t stop won’t stop writing ClubX Blog posts filled with incredible educational ideas!
With many of us stuck inside these days, we are gaining a newfound appreciation for the outdoors. What we wouldn’t give for a hike in the woods, a picnic in the park, or another chance to dip our toes in the sand!
2020 marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, always celebrated on April 22, and while we may not be able to celebrate with clean-ups, tree plantings, or hiking adventures, there are still plenty of ways we can celebrate from the comfort of our own homes. How, you might ask? Well, have I got some suggestions for you!
There’s no time like the present to let your creative, innovative mind thrive! While you may not have all the supplies needed for a full-fledged art closet, you’d be surprised at what recyclable crafts you can do with just a pair of scissors and some glue!
Those rolls of toilet paper you hoarded? There are LOTS of nifty activities you can do with the empty roll! Binoculars, gift boxes, napkin rings, and more!
Did you know that you can grow food from scraps? It’s true! I remember doing this when I was younger with avocados and potatoes, but you can also try it with celery, garlic, and tomatoes! Be warned – depending on the plant, this might be more of a long-term project.
Make your own zoo from recycled egg cartons! Check out this site for a how-to of egg carton penguins, turtles, and chicks (THE IRONY LOL).
Bring the outdoors to a screen near you! It’s not quite the same as marveling at the beauty of Earth in person, but it’s definitely the next best thing.
Planet Earth might have left Netflix, but there are no shortage of other great nature docuseries available on the platform. Give Our Planet (narrated by David Attenborough, the same soothing British voice on Planet Earth) a try, or check out their latest, Night on Earth.
For those of us in more urban settings, you might be missing the sounds of nature, but never fear, PARKTRACKS is here! Press play, close your eyes, and fall asleep to the soothing sounds of rain falling, birds chirping, and breezes blowing. Want more? The Natural Sounds and Night Skies Division of the National Parks Service (COOLEST DEPARTMENT EVER PS) has a whole gallery of nature sounds.
Explore NASA’s Earth Day website, where they are posting episodes of their new podcast Curious Universe, broadcasting a live Q&A with astronaut Chris Cassidy, and sharing photos of this rock we call home.
Embark on the Ultimate Journey
Ultimate Journey is one of BGCA’s oldest and most successful STEM programs designed to engage youth in fun, experiential, environmental education activities. The newly redesigned curriculum includes units on wildlife, ecosystem services, heritage, and more and comes with handy supply lists, activity passports, and certificates of completion. (Not Boys & Girls Club staff? We’ve posted free activities from UJ here and here!)
If you are doing virtual programming, in BGCA’s Virtual Club Session Schedules you can find Ultimate Journey activities that have been adapted to use live online. Week 3 includes an activity in which youth learn about the National Parks System, and Week 4 includes an activity about heritage. Youth can also earn the Ultimate Journey badge by completing activities on MyFuture.net.
Remember, we only have one Earth. Let’s take care of it.
Happy Earth Day!
How do you celebrate Earth Day at your Club? How are you adapting special days you’d usually celebrate together for virtual programming? Let us know by commenting below, on the BGCA Youth Development Facebook page, or by emailing ClubXBlog@bgca.org.