In the previous post, I have talked about how to talk to your kids about climate change. if you have missed the post, read here.
In today’s post, I am sharing some amazing age-appropriate activities to teach kids about climate change. read the post to know more!
Amazing age-appropriate activities to teach kids about climate change!
Kids 0-6 years old (toddlers and young children)
Kids aged 0-6 years old are not old enough to understand the complex terminology or scientific events related to “Climate change”. However, on the brighter side, this is the perfect age to build a firm foundation for the generation who knows the importance of living an eco-friendly life and do their best to save the planet.
Here are some examples of simple activities for kids aged 0-6 years to teach them about climate change and cultivate a love for nature and preserve the environment.
Get outdoors and make them closer to the natural world (birds, plants, animals, etc.)
This one is the perfect activity option for young kids. Young kids have an immense curiosity about different things. They love to explore the natural world and leant a lot just by watching or observing things. As a first step, try to get them outdoors and develop a love for the natural world.
Perform simple yet interesting nature theme activities
Young kids enjoy playing and being around nature.
To make their playtime more fun, you can plan various “Nature theme” activities for them. Such as
- Plant a seed and observe the plant life-cycle.
- Learn about different parts of the plant.
- Talk about different seasons and explain the changes which each season brings.
- Explain the migration of birds and animals as the season change.
- You can also create beautiful crafts by using natural things (leaves, pebbles, flowers etc.)
- Paint the rocks or create some art inspired by nature.
- You can make a nature collage, a nature sensory bag or can create a nature journal with small kids to cultivate a passion for natural things.
Reading is an essential activity in a young kid’s routine. And you can take the advantage of this amazing activity to increase “environmental awareness” in kids. Here is a list of books that will help young kids to understand climate change:
- The lonely polar bear by Khoa le
- The magic school bus and the climate challenge (magic school bus series) by Joanna Cole and Bruce Degen
- The curious garden by Peter Brown
Watch videos or movies together
Young kids have a strong affinity toward visual media. You can take the help of educational videos and movies to explain them some basic concepts of nature and climate change.
Use the power of story-telling
Story-telling is an amazing art. It helps in entertaining young kids and also encourages kids to learn new things. You can narrate interesting stories related to the natural world and can explain their responsibilities towards nature in a fun and lighter way.
kids age 7-11 years old (school-age children)
Kids aged 7-11 already have pretty good exposure to climate change and they might have heard a few disturbing facts regarding environmental issues. Before starting any conversation with this age group of kids, it is important to gauge how much information they already know? After that, you can discuss more complex topics with them.
Here is a list of activities that you can perform with kids aged 7-11 years old to teach them about climate change.
Start with basic concepts related to climate change
You can start by explaining some basic concepts to your kids related to climate change, such as:
- Explain the difference between weather and climate: this could be the conversation starter with school-going kids. Explain them the weather is a condition that describes the temporary or short-term atmospheric conditions like snowy, sunny or rainy days, while climate means a long-term atmospheric condition or changes in a specific region.
- Teach them the basics of the global warming effect: you can talk about different factors like no-stop burning of fossil fuels, increased use of fertilizer, and extra use of electricity and gas that increase the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and results in a global warming effect.
- Explain them how our lifestyle and other habits put a direct impact on climate and can help in preserving the environment in longer-run: you can talk about how our lifestyle habits like using alternate modes of transportation or avoiding wasting natural energy resources put a direct impact on climate and can help a lot in preserving the environment.
Play games (related to climate change, environment, etc.)
Kids at this age love playing different games. Digital or physical both games are great options to teach kids about the climate changes and their impact on our life. Climatekids.nasa.gov has an impressive collection of climate theme games and activities that you can use to teach kids about climate change and its impact.
Create a science project and participate in a science fair
You can perform various interesting science experiments with kids to explain how nature works? And how things are changing in the environment at a faster rate. To make this process fun and challenging, your kid can take part in a science fair and may create charts, demonstrating models that explain these basic principles well.
Here is a list of some amazing science experiments that can help in teaching complex natural phenomena.
- Meet the greenhouse gases.
- Perform a climate change word search.
- Make edible greenhouse gases.
- Explore how melting ice affects sea level and sea animals.
- Take your carbon prints.
- And water plants with acid solutions.
Activities for kids aged 12-14 years (Preteens)
Kids aged 12-14 years will be more interested in the process of self-learning and exploring facts and information on their own. If you want to help your pre-teen kids, it is important to change your attitude and actions as per their age. At this age, they will need a quick direction and a supporting hand from your side rather than any detailed step-by-step instructions.
Start teaching them about finding trustworthy resources
In this digital era, there is plenty of information available on each topic. A constant overflow of information might be confusing for pre-teens. As a responsible parent, you can teach them strategies about how to find trustworthy resources, if they want to gather any information on climate change or other environmental issues. In fact, you can share a list of useful resources with them to make their learning journey easier.
Know their personal interest and encourage them to take action from their side
Pre-teen kids have their personal interests and concerns related to climate change. Some kids might worry about the ocean crisis, while some may want to support the save the wildlife campaign. As a supportive parent, you can talk with your kids about their personal concerns and can encourage them to take action or support the cause.
Inspire them to be a part of campaigns and join volunteering organizations
Nowadays, there are various ongoing campaigns and organizations out there that work towards a cause and provide great opportunities for teens to be a volunteer. Your teen can be a part of these campaigns and can contribute as a volunteer to support the cause.
Activities for kids age 14 and above (Teens)
Kids at this age have their own experience and knowledge related to climate change and other environmental issues. So, be ready to listen to them and learn from their experience. If your teenage child is passionate about any environmental concern and wants to start any campaign or other group activity to raise his concern, then as a parent, it is your responsibility to support his initiative. At this age, kids need a more friendly kind of support from your side. So, you can be his driving force on his individual journey.
These are some amazing activities for kids of different age groups to teach them the climate change, its impact and ways to offer support from our side.
I hope you liked these ideas. in next post, I will share some amazing activities for teaching sustainability concept to kids. stay tuned.
If you are looking for some amazing easy science experiments for kids to perform at home, do not forget to check out our science for kids series.