Here’s How You Can Celebrate World Earth Day With Your Kids
Mirabelle D'Cunha a.k.a Halla Gulla Aunty is the creator of India's first dance along songs for kids with fresh Indian content that is child-friendly and dance-tastic. Use it at home, in schools and for birthday parties and whats more its free! When she's not flying with an idea for a song, you can find her storytelling or practising yoga or taking a walk on the beach with her 5-year-old.
There was a time when religion was a way of life that brought people together. In our day and certainly in the days of our children, self-preservation will be a need that will bind us together and all religions, spiritual and non-spiritual traditions will make a halla gulla about saving the earth. Our kids are sensitive beings who come up with the most baffling questions and if given a chance will espouse a theory on everything. Yes, black wires are roads for crows who lose their way home and are not electricity lines! (What does a 5-year-old really understand about electricity anyway?!)
The opportunity to preserve and nurture their inherent need for goodness is a gift for us as parents. Often it is we who have lost our way and with a heart full of good intentions and semi-conscious behaviour cause them to loose theirs. On the occasion of World Earth Day, Halla Gulla Aunty takes the opportunity to share a few resources and experiences that can support our need to respect our earth.
1. Nature Trailblazers
Draw attention to birds and animals and look for their homes. Have kids notice how they live from day to day hardly ever storing/hoarding food or other resources like we do (except for a ants and a few others).
When you are in a quiet place or early in the morning, draw attention to the calls of birds and ponder over how hard it must be for them to hear each other over the noises of traffic.
Take a walk in nature
and observe patterns. Talk about yantras you have at home, rangoli designs, kolam, mandalas and symmetry in our own bodies. Gather some flowers and leaves and twigs and make nature mandalas. This is also a beautiful way to calm the mind down for both adults and children (most of us need to slow down as much as we feel our kids need to be less restless.)
Take them organic farming. There are plenty of opportunities in every city. Check out Green Sprouts and Urban Leaves in Mumbai.
2. Read Read Read.
Here's a super special curated list of books on the environment.
Let's Plant Trees by Vinod Lal Heera Eshwar- published by Tuilka.
This beautiful purse sized book has the most simple yet gorgeous illustrations and comes with large seeds of the Pongamia tree that bring a call to action. A line connects all the illustrations breathing a sense of continuity just like the books of Laura Ljukvist.
Let's Catch the Rain by Vinod Lal Heera Eshwar- published by Tuilka
Again some simple but beautiful illustrations with words that leave us with the message of the treasure that rain water is.
Under Earth, Under Water by Aleksandra Mizielinski, Daniel Mizielinski
Halla Gulla Aunty highly recommends this gorgeous large superbly innovative book brings alive a hidden world. What lies under land? From mines to sewage systems to burrows of animals the book takes you deep under the surface. What lies under water? Oil rigs and blue holes and the evolution of diving suits and submarines in pictures. This book is a keeper for life!
Eco People on the Go by Jan Gerardi
This book is for pre-schoolers. Halla Gulla aunty even used this on her daughter when she was 6 months old. It's never too early to start with the good stuff!
3. Music Speak
Music, as we know, gets most of us in the groove much faster than books.Unfortunately, recycling isn't made that much fun for kids. Kabaad Se Jugaad is an original dance-along song for Indian kids that shares the joy of recycling. The song has a funky rock kind of feel and in each verse shares the story of how a child recycles something. Much thought and research has gone into the song. The first verse features practicality of recycling, the second an imaginative way to recycle by repurposing during play and the third a creative and crafty way of recycling. The song can be found on Halla Gulla Kids
and is a great tool to use at home or in schools.
4. Nature Police
Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle- it all starts with us. Kids don't often feel empowered to make decisions because we usually have authority over their actions. So allow your kids to stop you from taking plastic bags and buying styrofoam. Let them be your eco-police and see how empowered and proud they feel in this role. And it kind of forces us parents to walk the talk, something we always intend to do, but loose in the hurried pace of life.
Image source: walldream.com