Wednesday, March 9, 2011

It's (Meteorological) Spring!

March 1st, this year and every year, marked the first day of meteorological spring in the Northern Hemisphere. (This is of course different than astronomical spring, which begins March 20th.)

As the snow begins to melt, it's time to gear up for springtime Earth-saving activities. KSE has several educational materials and activities for the new season. You can bundle all these into a springtime curriculum, or use them individually.

When the snow melts, we start seeing all the litter that had blown around before the snow fell. A great activity for kids is to go on a Garbage Walk. Get outside, take a walk, experience the new beauty of spring, bring some gloves and a garbage bag and help clean up the Earth! Here's a KSE worksheet to get you started: Take a Garbage Walk! (pdf)

With the Earth's tilt moving to an angle where we can really start to feel the sun's heat, now is a great time to teach kids about Sun Power, a great, simple article to teach kids about the solar power alternative to suit our energy needs.

Speaking of alternative (and renewable!) energy, KSE's News That Will Blow You Away! (pdf) is a great article for kids to learn about renewable energy and wind power.

As spring slowly comes around, so do the birds, back from migrating south for the winter. KSE has an Eco Activity for kids to simply build their own bird feeder. All they need is an egg carton, a paper hold punch, and some yarn, twine, or string. Make Your Own Bird Feeder (pdf)

After kids have their bird feeder set up, they can observe the kinds of birds that come along and Become a Bird Buddy (pdf), a KSE program to observe, research, and report on a species of bird.

A bird feeder is a great way to create a Backyard Habitat for birds, but there are ways to create a habitat for other animals as well. KSE's original program Clinton's Backyard Habitat (pdf) is a great two-page article for kids to learn more about creating a safe and lively habitat in their own backyard! It's a great activity for the whole family to participate in.

Another activity for the whole family is taking a Trip to the Forest. This KSE-original book, available at the KSE Green Shop, provides kids opportunities to read, write, observe, and draw. When the family takes a hike through the forest, provide this book to your children to engage them in the beauty of Earth's trees, flowers, and animals.

Spring is a great time to appreciate the wildflowers that start blooming. KSE kids, clubs, and schools can join the KSE Wildflower Team. Have kids draw or take pictures of wildflowers they see, and then submit them to KSE so we can post them in our wildflower gallery!

Lastly, no discussion of spring is complete without bringing up spring cleaning. Adults and kids together can use the KSE Inspector Checklist to clean and inspect their homes to make them more energy-efficient, toxic-free, and Earth-friendly.

Spring is a great time to get outside to appreciate nature. With appreciation comes respect, and with that respect we can work together to create a happier and healthier Earth!

Do you have any other Earth-friendly ideas for the springtime? Share them in the comments, or email us at

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