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Image via flickr user Tobyotter

1. Have a party!

Earth Day is definitely cause for a celebration. Besides, who doesn’t love a party? Serve eco-themed cupcakes, put out some green toys or environmentally-themed books like The Lorax, and chat with friends and family about ways everyone can make greener choices or discuss recent environmental news. If you aren’t averse to a multimedia show, coordinate a viewing with some other families of one of the Planet Earth movies, and prepare to be amazed. We aren’t huge proponents of technology, but these documentaries are so impressive and educational (and demonstrate the amazing array of animals and plants on this planet) that we are willing to make an exception!

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2. Make an Earth Day commitment list.

Get together as a family and make a list of goals that you all want to accomplish that relate to the environment. Kids can be in charge of decorating the list and then choosing where to place it for all to see. The refrigerator or family room or anywhere your family ends up congregating is a good option. Check in every few weeks or months to see if you have been able to keep up the changes. Another fun idea – make an Earth Day time capsule. Place important environmental news stories or goals in the capsule as well as art, such as the eco-friendly car of your child’s dreams (or maybe even your dream!). Don’t forget to pull the capsule up next year to check on your progress.

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3. Do an eco-friendly art project.

Even if April’s showers ruin a plan for outdoor Earth Day events, you and your family still have plenty of opportunities to create inspired art projects. From basic crafts like making collages with paper from the recycling bin or fabric scraps to more elaborate projects such as making your own pop-up book. Use eco-friendly art supplies, and the Earth Day message will shine even brighter! A few of our favorite past ideas:

+ 7 Arts and Crafts Projects That Encourage Recycling and Reuse

+ 5 Easy Crafts Projects That Reuse Orange Juice Cartons

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4. Celebrate with a meatless meal.

The production of meat requires a lot of water and land use, not to mention all of the greenhouse gases it produces. Do Mother Earth (and your family) a favor  and serve a delicious veggie meal, and consider making it a more often occurrence (such as Meatless Monday). With older kids, you can even bring up other environmental food issues such as the organic versus local debate and talk about how shopping at the farmer’s market and other local stores effects the local and global economy.

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Image via flickr user Our City Forest

5. Take Earth Day to school.

We sincerely hope that Earth Day is being celebrated at your child’s preschool or daycare. But in the event that the staff there didn’t get the Earth Day 2013 memo, offer to help with a special program such as planting seedlings, starting a school garden or recycling program, or doing a nature scavenger hunt around the playground. Whether you help out on April 22nd or another day doesn’t really matter; hopefully, you or other like-minded parents can help other families see the value in going green!

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Image via flickr user Drew Coffman

6. Get outside.

Getting kids outside in nature is one of the best ways to celebrate Earth Day. Eat a meal al fresco, walk to the park, play catch, just get the whole family out there. Enough said!

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Image via flickr user Palos Verde Library District

7. Check out all the cool Earth Day gatherings in your areas.

Check your local family geared sites for Earth Day events and celebrations in your area. It truly doesn’t matter how big the event you attend will be: you’ll be planting the seed of stewardship of our planet in your kids regardless. If you live near the ocean, check out our feature: 8 Ways Your Kids Can Help Save the Oceans.

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8. Make Earth Day every day.

We know, we know: everyone always says this. It’s easier said than done, but making small changes is a way to ease families into making more substantial ones. And don’t knock the little achievements: remembering to recycle, taking that one second to turn off the light, doing carbon offsets for travel, purchasing products from eco-friendly companies all make a big difference in the long run!

Lead image via flickr user Palos Verde Library District