April is a huge month regarding our planet and the entire science behind it. In honor of this great happy month I wanted to share a few ideas I have in mind to celebrate these two international holidays with my little three year old. There is no age to start teaching the importance of these holidays.
Astronomy (Space) Day is Saturday, April 21st. Being an amateur astronomer this day is a huge thing for me. I’m trying to teach my daughter little by little about the universe without overwhelming her at such a young age. However she can point out the moon, the stars and a few constellations for you with her naked eye. This makes me so proud. Here are some ideas I have gathered for this months astronomy celebration..
Astronaut Paper Helmet
Most kids at a young age already know what they want to be when they grow up. Some say a doctor or a teacher, my daughter says an astronaut! We thank my brother and sister in law for gifting her an astronaut Barbie doll that now she wants to be completely like. Who says girls can’t be astronauts or scientists? Any who, for this craft you will need a paper plate, scissors, markers or crayons. These are steps for a parent or for a big kid who can safely use scissors. Cut out a rectangle shape in the middle of the paper plate perfect for the eyes to be peeked through. Now decorate your helmet, adding U.S.A., an American flag, stickers whatever your child wants on their helmet. Now they can wear it by holding it up to their face and pretending to fly off in a spaceship!
Space Exploring Sensory Bin
This is another great sensory play bin using space as a theme! Here I used construction sand, and space toys from amazon. My daughter had so much fun feeling the “moon sand”, and creating different scenes with her toys.
Oreo Moon Phases
This one is fun and edible! Using Oreos to create different moon phases. Explaining to your child the different moon phases and why the moon changes so often. This picture above provided by optics central is an amazing thorough explanation for you as a parent to discuss with your child!
Earth day is celebrated Sunday, April 22nd. In our family everyday is Earth day for us. I make my highest effort to recycle, not to waste too much water during bath time and to plant as many things as I can fit into my little garden. To water my garden we use leftover water from water bottles that have been siting out too long, or rain water is my daughters favorite. March was a great month for rain here in Southern California and we collected a great amount of water. My daughter loved watching as our jars filled up with this water falling from the clouds. Here are a few ideas you can do as a family with your child to teach them the importance to take care of Mother Earth..
Earth Day Sensory Play
This earth day sensory play is made by using only a big tub, white shaving cream, green and blue food coloring and little sea and land animals.
With this sensory bin you can teach your children which animals belong to the sea and which belong on land. These are great cognitive skills. Also explaining what the green and the blue mean, describing that’s how our planet looks. When all this play is done, your child can begin touching and feeling the shaving cream with their hands and fingers. Noticing the texture and how it feels. Ask questions like how does it feel? Does it feel soft or squishy? Does it feel hot or cold? These are great sensorimotor skills.
Peanut Butter Bird Feeder
This one is quite messy but very fun for the little ones! Having life in our backyard is a great way to be Earth friendly. Inviting little flying guests over is definitely exciting to see. Being earth friendly also means taking care of life on earth so this is a great idea to do as a family. You will need toilet or napkin paper rolls, peanut butter and bird seeds. Depending on what birds you’d like to attract you can choose your seeds accordingly. Using a fork or spoon or anything you have, spread your peanut butter evenly onto the toilet paper roll. Roll or sprinkle the seeds onto the peanut butter evenly covering it all. We’re using the peanut butter as an edible glue for the seeds. Stand it up to dry. Tie some ribbon into the roll to hang on a tree in your back yard. Watch as you get a lot of little friends over to snack.
One last idea is to simply plant any seeds in your back yard. My daughter and I have a garden filled with herbs, flowers and strawberries. Watering them and watching them grow is a lot of fun and earth friendly.
I hope you enjoyed these ideas I gathered for you today. Comment below if you try any of these ideas. Remember everyday is Earth Day!