CeCe has served as Vice President and President of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (Affiliate)
Objectives: Awareness of our environment, taking turns, critical thinking, creative expression, vocabulary, small motor control, exploring our senses, sorting, measurement and data collection.
Share What Does It Mean To Be Green? Written by Rana DiOrio, this book is full of ways to help conserve. "Giving the clothes you've outgrown to someone smaller than you. Drawing on two sides of the paper instead of one." Todd Parr's The Earth Book would be another choice to get the conversation started around the circle. "I take care of the Earth because I know I can do little things everyday to make a big difference."
In the Language Arts Center, the children may each choose a valentine from a boxed set, with the teacher dictating the child's earth-friendly message. Valentines are mailed (placed inside classroom mailbox) and the messages are shared at Gathering Time. Decorating the mailbox? A classroom project. Free choice would be an ideal time for each child to add his or her creative touch.
"Ms. CeCe's Hug the Earth Song."
(Sing to tune of "Row, Row, Row Your Boat.")
Hug, hug, hug the Earth.
Show the way you care.
Share with family and your friends,
Ways we can conserve.
CeCe's Reduce, Reuse and Recycle Game
Play the 3R Game! Talk about reducing waste, reusing and recycling. 3R scenarios are written out on pieces of paper and placed in a brown sack. Children may draw from the bag. Examples? "I am using small pieces of paper to play this game. Am I reducing, reusing or recycling?" Another question might be, "I had a glass of milk, the milk is gone now. I am left with a plastic carton. Which R am I thinking about?" Another example? "I don't play with many of my toys. If I gave the toys to someone much younger, would I be reducing, reusing or recycling?"
Introduce the Language Arts Center, Cooking Center, Art Center and Dramatic Play to the children.
Materials Needed For Lessons
Language Arts Center: Boxed valentines and crayons or markers to decorate envelopes.
Cooking Center: Sunbutter, bread, knives, and heart cookie cutters.
Art Center: Small poster board for each child, materials from past classroom projects, craft glue, and shoe box (to decorate) for valentine messages.
Dramatic Play: Newspapers, magazines, empty plastic milk cartons, shampoo bottles, and two cardboard boxes for sorting.
Graphing: Poster board, and markers or stickers to use for "going green" graphing.
Language Arts Center - Valentine Message
Child chooses a valentine from boxed set, and dictates earth friendly message to the teacher. Envelopes may be decorated, sealed, mailed and later shared at gathering time.
Cooking Activity - Sunbutter Sandwiches
- Children use heart cookie cutters to make sunbutter sandwiches.
- This would be an opportunity to talk about being conscious of food waste.
Art Center - I Love the Earth Collage
Each child is given a small poster board. Present the children with recycled items from past classroom projects. Craft glue works well as an adhesive.
Dramatic Play Center - Recycling
Children sort plastic milk cartons, shampoo bottles, newspaper and magazines in the housekeeping area! You will need these items and two boxes.
An extended recycling activity in housekeeping? Bring on the environmentally friendly shopping bags and shop for these items. Role play in the housekeeping area and then sort.
The very humorous duo of Charlie and Lola "go green" in the delightful We Are All Extremely Very Good Recyclers. After reading, introduce "going green" graphing in your classroom (see Math - Graph the Week). Children may open and share valentine messages for the Earth.
Math - Graph the Week
Graph number of times class has practiced "going green" during the day. A simple poster board may be used. Gathering Time would be a great opportunity to graph. Stickers or markers may be used.
Tim Truzy from U.S.A. on December 20, 2017:
You are so insightful in this article. I love the way you develop your lessons. This lesson reminds me of how my kindergarten teacher read Dr. Seuss's "The Lorax," another environmental book, which I'm sure you are familiar with because you are in touch with your teaching and students.
Thank you for keeping me inspired with your creativity. Have a blessed Christmas and a happy New Year.