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30 Earth Day Activities for Kids

by The Artful Parent Editorial Team
February 21, 2024
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Reduce, Reuse, Recycle! Check out our list of Earth Day activities with nature and recycled art projects for kids that are fun to make AND more friendly for our Earth. 

Updated March 2024

To celebrate Earth Day next week, our team gathered together a list of 30 Earth Day activities for kids.

Through art, there exists a great opportunity to teach children to be good stewards.  Children learn to reuse lids, caps and milk cartons. To turn a cardboard box into a castle, fort, or robot. To recycle cardboard tubes and create sculptures.

The possibility to assemble and make new things while recycling or upcycling the old sparks children’s imagination as they explore these non-traditional materials.

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And a short walk outside with my son allows us the opportunity to breathe deep, soak in the sunshine and fresh air. We gather pinecones and sticks, some rocks and more sticks. Then to head home with our new treasures.

As we collect recyclables, save cardboard and consider how to give something old a new purpose, our kids are watching and learning this skill themselves. Below are some ideas that will hopefully inspire and put some of that recycling bin to creative use.

Happy Earth Day!

Earth Day Activities for Kids

7 Recycled Art Projects Using Reusable Materials

weaving
Photo by Danielle Falk

1. Make a Cardboard Loom for Kids

Learn a simple weaving activity for kids with cardboard looms and recycled fabric scraps. Then create a beautiful piece of art to hang in your home!

2. Self-Portrait Collages Using Recycle Bin Materials

Learn how to create a self-portrait collage with simple recycle bin materials. A fun and educational activity for kids that helps them explore self-identity.

3. Make DIY Costumes from Recycled Materials

Here are a few simple techniques for making fabulous DIY kids costumes with a variety of recycled materials.

toddler sorting
Photo by Catalina Gutierrez

4. The BEST Toddler Art Activities

Paint a nature wall, create a collaborative recycled wall, reuse plastic caps and lids for sensory bins & use sticks, leaves and the like for set-ups!

5. Milk Carton Sailboat

Perfect for the sailboat loving kid in your life–use a recycled milk carton to create an amazing little sailboat (from Art Camp Studio).

6. Simple Flower Crowns from Paper Bags

Kids can feel like royalty with this awesome craft using recycled paper bags. 

painted wood blocks
Photo by Danielle Falk

7. Painted Wood Blocks Sculptures

An easy sculpture project using wood scraps that’s fun to make for kids of all ages. 

14 Recycled Art Projects Using Cardboard

multimedia masks
Photo by Krista Simcoe

1. Mixed Media Collage Portraits for Kids

These adorable collage portraits are a great way to reuse a cardboard box and are SO cute. 

2. Make Cardboard Robot Puppets that Move

These robot puppets are friendly on the Earth and SO fun to play with and create. 

3. Create Monochrome Art Collages

Gather collage materials and cardboard to make these vibrant little collages.

4. Make DIY Valentines for Kids

Make adorable valentine hearts that are great for Valentine’s Day, or any day really!

miro masks
Photo by Catalina Gutierrez

5. Make Miro-Inspired Magic Animal Masks

Create wild and colorful animal masks with cardboard, paint, and a few other materials. 

6. Make a Rainbow Cardboard Sculpture

Create a colorful stacked rainbow sculpture using painted cardboard rainbows.

7. Drip Painting

Create a DIY cardboard easel and explore gravity in art with drip painting that results in unique artworks every time.

8. Make Colorful Cardboard Tree Sculptures

These cheerful cardboard sculptures look like trees and are super easy and fun to make.

cardboard masks
Photo by Danielle Falk

9. Make Cardboard Masks for Kids

Create vibrant cardboard masks perfect for imaginative play!

10. Giant Cardboard Donuts

Just looking at these giant cardboard donuts is sure to bring a smile to your face (from Art Bar Blog).

11. Make a Cardboard Castle for Hours of Pretend Play

Need we say more? 

12. Make DIY Stamps with Cardboard

Design and create your very own stamps to print with.

13. Make Cardboard Building Discs

Kids can create their own building material by transforming a box into cardboard building discs. Stack the discs to make these awesome sculptures!

cardboard forest
Photo by Eleanor Ford

14. Create a Cardboard Art Forest

Create an amazing magic forest with this easy cardboard art project for kids. Makes a fun creative play setup for kids.

8 Nature Art Projects for Earth Day

leaf hedgehog
Photo by Rachael Culbert

1. Nature Art Ideas for Kids

Try one of these fun nature art activities for young children: paint with mud, print with leaves, create a nature weaving or petal playdough!

2. Make a Nature Mobile for Kids

A beautiful craft to showcase your child’s nature treasures. 

3. Make a Magical 3D Nature Suncatcher

Use a cardboard box to create a unique and fun way to experiment with light, color, and natural materials.

4. Nature Drawing: How to Draw Feathers

Kids can make their own feather art with this great opportunity to explore some of nature’s patterns, shapes, and lines. 

nature diorama
Photo by Kiera Gladstone

5. Make a Nature Diorama

Gather pinecones, leaves and seed pods on a nature walk. Then paint and assemble these materials with this fun nature diorama project for kids.

6. Make a Flower Suncatcher

A simple and beautiful project using light and color. 

7. Try Flower Pounding

Flower pounding is such a fun process art activity! Make prints on fabric with the pigment of flowers. Then turn the flower prints into beautiful flags.

8. Or Flower Printing!

Start by gathering flowers and leaves from your garden or backyard. Then you can use just about any kind of paint you have to make gorgeous flower prints!

recycled materials
Photo by Krista Simcoe

More Spring Activities for Kids

Want even more creative ideas?

Check out our Spring Creativity pack!

Let creativity blossom with this fun bundle of art activities perfect for Spring!! This 40-page printable eBook is full of coloring pages, drawing prompts, games, and more!

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