Earth Day – best recycling crafts

Teens Recycle Bin

It is estimated that up to 75% of all the waste can be recycled or repurposed according to As we approach Earth Day, teaching children how to recycle is not only good for the environment but it’s also good for a child’s development.

There are simple ways to recycle items in your own home to cultivate a resourceful attitude in your little one. Lee Scott, childhood development expert and chair of the educational advisory board for The Goddard School, is available to discuss fun ways to upcycle home objects with your child to promote environmental stewardship, teach your child how to give new life to objects and tap into their curiosity and imagination.

  1. Turn a cardboard tube into a napkin ring. Enhance your dinner routine by dressing up your dining room table with beautiful homemade napkin rings. Cut a few cardboard tubes (from paper towels or toilet paper) into 1 ½-inch wide sections. Younger children can decorate the rings with paint or crayons, while older children can glue on beans or beads to make fun designs.
  2. Create gardens and habitats for our smallest creatures. Butterflies love stones and sand to rest on. Your children can decorate the stones and place them near flowers in the yard or patio. Turn a broken clay pot on its side and add natural items around it such as sticks and leaves creating a safe haven for a toad. Place it in a shady spot.
  3. Create a beautiful milk jug flower pot. Cut an empty milk jug in half and place heavy tape or felt around the edge of the opening. Poke a few small drainage holes in the bottom. Paint or decorate the outside of the jug any way you like. Add some small rocks to the bottom, fill with soil and plant your favorite flowers or herbs!
  4. Make a windchime out of old cans. With empty soup cans, insert a hole in the bottom of the can, through which your little one can string the cans together and hang in your porch or backyard. Kids can decorate the cans in any way they like, then listen to the noise they make as the seasons change.
  5. Design your own noisemaker with plastic water bottles. Take recycled bottles and combine them with natural elements like pebbles, stones and sand to create a noisemaker for kids to shake. This stimulates multiple senses and encourages children to find useful elements in their own environment.

By creating a “construction zone” in your home for your child to take upcycled objects like old socks, magazines, boxes and art materials, kids can begin to understand the value of things and make them last through different uses, versus throwing them away. You never know what a child may find a new use for!

By The Goddard School