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Earth Day Activities for Upper Elementary

Earth day offers you and your students a great opportunity for some text-to-real world connections. Whether your students are learning in-person or distance learning, Earth Day activities help them engage with the environment and Earth. The annual event, which started on April 22, 1970, provides tremendous teachable moments while empowering your students with knowledge and comprehension of the climate, environment, and what else...the Earth! Here are 5 Earth Day activities for Upper Elementary that are sure to have your students “over the moon” with excitement to learn all about Earth Day.

Home Sweet Home

The Earth is the third planet from the sun but #1 in our hearts as our home planet. Make learning about the Earth’s location, size, planet type, atmosphere and all things Earth a fun, engaging, and interactive "out of this world" activity. Students explore the Earth with a few clicks of the mouse in this Planet Earth Secret Message Activity in Google Sheets. Shhh, don’t tell the students but while they are decoding a secret message. Their critical thinking skills and reading comprehension skills are activated as they learn about the Earth’s location, size, planet type, atmosphere, layers of the Earth, rotation, continents and oceans and solve the secret message! Your students will learn so much about our planet while solving a puzzle and having fun!

Secret Mission

Next, send your students on a classified, secret mission to learn all about Earth Day. Engage your students with an escape room! This Earth Day Digital Escape Room activity will take students on a secret mission through two 360° VIEW rooms! It's all ready to go for you. There's no prep involved! Save your time while your students learn and have fun! Students are challenged with decoding interesting facts about Earth Day, recycling, and the environment. There is a secret bonus for the teachers too! Your students must read and answer the quiz questions correctly to crack the codes! This makes sure that your students are working on their reading comprehension skill set. If you have struggling readers and you’re looking for an option to differentiate, there is also a “read to me” option which allows the students to hear the passage read to them. Escape rooms are a great way to engage your students whether they are on-line learners or in the classroom face-to-face. Check out even more escape rooms for every unit in your science and social studies classroom!

Earth Day Blog PinOut of this World

Whether you’re teaching face-to-face or virtual, an interactive slideshow can be the difference between your students tuning in or tuning out. Get your students tuned in with this Digital Earth Day Interactive Google Slides Presentation with self-checking questions. This activity hones in on reading comprehension, vocabulary acquisition, and critical thinking skills while teaching students about Earth Day. One of the best parts of this lesson that make it out of this world is the self-checking questions. This allows for the students to take ownership of their learning.

Using interactive slide presentations in your social studies and science instruction are perfect for engaging in-person and distance learners in your classroom! Use these presentations throughout the year to help your students learn and grow in their content areas.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Reduce your prep time, reuse without wasting paper, and recycle this lesson year after year! This Recycling Escape Room provides a hands-on learning environment that encourages problem solving skills for your students while they learn all about recycling. In addition, there is a digital formative assessment to check for understanding after the students escape! This activity is easy to implement for in-person learning as well as online, distance learning. Talk about an environmental win! Try out some other recycling activities to use as Earth Day activities in your classroom!
  • Color by Number Recycling Activity
  • Recycling Secret Message
  • Recycling Interactive Presentation
  • Of course, you can also promote Earth Day activities involving recycling by encouraging your students to reuse materials in the classroom. Use the backsides of paper for copies, have a scratch paper pile, and find creative ways to use old classroom materials. What crafts can you make by "up-cycling" recycled materials?

    A Sustainable Learning Environment

    With these five Earth Day activities, you’re sure to create a fun, engaging, and active learning environment. Your students will sustain all the information and knowledge of Earth Day while enhancing their reading comprehension, critical thinking, and teamwork skills. Your students will want to take action after learning all about how to make our planet a better place to live. Celebrate the planet with these Earth Day Activities for Upper Elementary! How will you celebrate Earth Day in your classroom?
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