Earth Day Activity for Kids Using the Outdoors

Earth Day Activity for Kids Using the Outdoors

Inside: Earth Day Activities for Kids and preschoolers

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Need a quick and easy Earth Day activity?

You’ve come to the right place.

Truth is, I was trying to get a multitude of ideas your way, but they had me all thinking. - Are these Earth Day ideas actually taking care of the Earth? Or are they cute ideas that use toxic chemicals that pollute the Earth? I am not anti paints. But on Earth Day, that just didn’t feel like the right choice.

Allow me to simplify things for you and your family.

Here, we used the book, A Little Bit of Dirt by Asia Citro. Come follow along, as the majority materials are right out your door. Items you find on the Earth. Items that are perfect to explore for Earth Day.

RELATED: And if you love going outdoors like we do, you can find a variety of ideas on our Alphabet Activity Cards.

Earth Day Activity for kids and preschoolers

Many times, my preschoolers take the lead.

The other morning, my preschooler grabbed, A Little Bit of Dirt, and flung himself onto the couch.

Mom, I am going to find us an activity to do today. 

And he did. I promise you, my best posts come from my preschooler's variation of what I originally had in mind. Yet again, a sweet reminder to go with it.

This is the age for exploration, not drill, practice, repeat. No worksheets. Now is the time we want hands-on learning.

So as he thumbed through the pages, I knew he was a boy on a mission and I was going to follow his lead.

RELATED: Read more about how kids learn and play here.


Our Earth Day activity began with something simple.

Go outside and collect items from the Earth.

Sounds simple, doesn’t it? We headed outdoors to see, touch, listen, and engage with every element of the outdoors. Here we had a chance to talk about the Earth and what we found.

I wonder why sticks are important. What do you think?

You found a rock. Is it smooth or rough?

Yikes! That pinecone is sharp! Why do you think a pinecone is sharp? Is there anything on it that makes it sharp?

What I love most about A Little Bit of Dirt is that almost every activity begins with an exploration.

You preschooler must begin by searching outside for their materials, rather than through the aisles of Hobby Lobby. Now, I love me some Hobby Lobby, but it’s Earth Day! We should be outside.

RELATED: 51+ Ideas for Spring

Earth Day Activity for Preschoolers

Why Explore the Outdoors? 

  • Sensory

  • Fine Motor

  • Independence

  • Vitamin D

  • Problem solving

  • Screen free

  • Gross Motor

  • Creative thinking

  • Predictions

  • Exploring textures

  • Exploring sounds

I could go on forever!

By Kindergarten, children of the Common Core will be asked to, with guidance and support from adults, recall information from experiences or gather information from provided sources to answer a question.

Heading outside to gather the supplies needed will enable your preschooler to better recall the information from the activity, along with make future connections from self to text in books they read.

RELATED: Want to get your sensory play outside ready? Take a look at our outdoor storage bin.

Earth Day Activity

Bring your Earth Day activity back inside to classify.

Why Sort and Classify?

By Kindergarten, children will be asked to classify objects into given categories; count the numbers of objects in each category and sort the categories by count. 

We can begin to do this now in ways that interest our children! Those that cannot get outdoors will love this indoor classifying game using colors.

Notice above that I kept the classifying up to my preschooler by providing different sections without any labels. I wanted to see how he sorted each object on his own terms.

Supplies are simple!

You can find many extensions for the outdoors with the same book we used to gather our ideas.

Ready to extend your Earth Day activity?

Place each natural resource in a jar of water and watch it decompose.

Draw pictures of what you notice as the days pass.

Earth Day Activity using outdoors

Grab your bucket and head outdoors.

When will you get started on this Earth Day activity for kids?

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