Early childhood educators and parents have an opportunity this week to put some green knowledge in children's learning activities by celebrating Environmental Education Week from April 13-19th. Plants, animals, and learning about nature can all be part of educational activities that give children a better knowledge of their world and how to take care of it. Reading books about plants and animals, visiting parks and nature reserves, and hands-on learning activities that involve getting dirty out in nature are part of greening up children's knowledge of their environment and the necessity for taking care of it.
Sarasota Jungle Gardens is a great choice for introducing children to plants and animals in the environment. There are more than 150 native and exotic animals and plants that this popular attraction offers. Parrots, macaws, and reptiles can all be seen at the Gardens. Ducks, swans, and flamingos all live together in the lush tropical environment. Tropical plants are all part of the gardens, with both exotic and native plants available for view. The Butterfly Garden is of special interest with self-seeding plants for the butterflies.
Sarasota Jungle Gardens is located at 3701 Bayshore Road in Sarasota. Garden hours are from 10:00-5:00 daily.
Start with a book to introduce children to plants, animals, water, seeds, and birds that are all part of environmental education at an early age. It is a great idea to choose both fiction and non-fiction books for reading about the environment. Some great choices are Listed for fun read-alouds this week to celebrate Environmental Education Week.
Butterflies, and others
"Can You See Me" by Ted Lewin is a great choice for a picture books with detailed and realistic illustrations of animals that live in the rain forest. The rain forest is a fascinating environment that children enjoy learning about. This simple picture book gives them an opportunity to have an interactive reading experience with the hide-and-seek pages for spotting the animals what are using their camouflage skills. The large pictures are especially appealing to children. "Can You See Me" was published by Holiday House, Inc., and has an ISBN of 9780823429400. it is recommended for ages 3-7.
Plant a seed
"Plant a Little Seed" by Bonnie Christensen lets children explore the growing cycle of plants. Two friends plant a community garden and learn patience while waiting for their fruits and vegetables to be ready for harvest. The black-outlines colorful pictures are very appealing. This book is recommended for ages 3-7, and has an ISBN of 9781596435506.
green up with a garden
"Jo McDonald Had a Garden" by Mary Quattiebaum is a familiar fun read-aloud that children will recognize as Old McDonald had a farm with a twist to explore gardens. This book is written in rhyming text with an opportunity for an interactive reading experience in that children will want to chant along. Recommended for ages 3-7 for environmental education.