Looking for Earth Day Speech Therapy Activities to try with your students? It seems like this topic is more important than ever before. If you’re a busy SLP who needs some inspiring speech therapy activities and ideas for Earth Day, look no further. This blog post was written for you!
In this blog post, I’ll be discussing
- ideas for explaining what Earth Day is to your speech therapy students
- Earth Day books for speech therapy
- Earth Day facts to share with your speech therapy students
- my favorite Earth Day activity for speech therapy
- an Earth Day sensory bin idea
- and free Earth Day decor for your speech therapy room!
Explaining Earth Day to Your Speech Therapy Students
This National Geographic Kids article breaks down Earth Day for students.
It explains the history of Earth Day, which is celebrated each year on April 22nd.
It also suggests a few ways that your students can celebrate Earth Day- such as planting trees, learning how to recycle, and not wasting water.
Youtube is another great source of information for explaining Earth Day to your students! Here is one example of an informative Earth Day video you could show your speech therapy students.
Earth Day Books for Speech Therapy
One recommended Earth Day book for speech therapy is “The Pout-Pout Fish Cleans Up the Ocean” by Deborah Diesen. I’m a huge fan of the Pout-Pout books for speech and language therapy! In this story, Mr. Fish realizes there is a HUGE mess in the ocean. It’s overwhelming! He realizes he needs to team up with his ocean pals to solve the problem and clean up the mess. At the end of the story, they talk about new habits they can start in order to keep the ocean clean.
Another favorite Earth Day speech therapy book discussing the topic of climate change is “The Magic School Bus and the Climate Challenge” by Joanna Cole. Leave it to Ms. Frizzle to explain what climate change is, and how we can pitch in to protect the Earth!
Earth Day Facts for Speech Therapy Students
Before getting started with an Earth Day speech therapy activity, I like to share some important facts with my speech and language students. These facts really help put things into perspective for my speech therapy students!
- Cardboard (like a roll of toilet paper) takes two months to break down. A plastic bottle, however, can take over 450 YEARS to break down. One reusable tote bag, however, can prevent the use of 600 plastic bags (kids.nationalgeographic.com)
- Billions of trees are cut down each year. Trees release oxygen and provide shelter for animals (kids.nationalgeographic.com)
- Turning off the faucet when you brush your teeth can conserve up to 8 gallons of water each day (kids.nationalgeographic.com)
- Ocean pollution is a huge problem. Ocean animals are eating plastic that is dumped in the ocean- then we eat those ocean animals! (reference: https://kids.earth.org/life-in-the-water/facts-about-ocean-plastic-pollution-for-kids/)
It’s honestly overwhelming to read these facts- but I do believe even doing little things can make a difference! Teaching our students about this important topic is one of those things- let’s get the conversation going.
Earth Day Speech Therapy Activity
This Earth Day Speech Therapy activity offers an engaging, interactive way to target a variety of language and articulation goals with your students. It’s a craft and activity- all rolled into one!
You’ll want to grab some green and blue paint for this activity- but you can use crayons or markers as well. Whatever you have on hand will work. I like to start this activity in one session- we paint the Earth, then watch an Earth Day video, read an article, or read a book. We start to discuss the importance of Earth Day.
While our Earth is drying, we work on some of our targets. The other cut-out pages target a wide assortment of speech and language objectives. Some of the language areas targeted include WH-questions, vocabulary, pronouns, main idea, and conjunctions.
Some of the articulation speech sounds included are k, g, p, b, m, t, d, s, s-blends, r, vocalic r, and l. Articulation targets were chosen carefully, and are all Earth Day themed to allow you to discuss this important topic in speech therapy.
After your student has worked on their specific speech and language objectives, and the Earth piece has dried, you can cut out and staple the pages together to create an Earth Day Speech Therapy flip book!
These were super fun to make- and I used them to double as speech therapy decor.
You’ll be using the resource every April!
Earth Day Sensory Bin for Speech Therapy
Working with younger students?
My preschool students absolutely love using sensory bins in speech therapy.
I really liked this idea I found on Youtube for “planting a tree” as part of an Earth Day-themed sensory bin. It doesn’t hurt that music in this video is pretty nature-inspired and calming, too! It would require a little bit of prep, but you could certainly store the trees you create and use them over and over again. Plus, this sensory bin is perfect not only for Earth Day but the entire spring season!
If sand is impractical for your speech therapy room, you could try using dry pinto beans. My coworker has a dried pinto bean sensory bin, and I loved it so much, I had to borrow the idea!
SLPS can easily model Earth Day-themed verbs during an activity like this! Here a few ideas:
Earth Day Speech Therapy Decor
Speaking of awesome Earth Day speech therapy room decor.
To pair with the Earth Day speech therapy flip books, I created this bulletin board decor freebie. These are colorful, informative signs that explain when Earth Day is and provide some sad- but true- facts about pollution and other related topics. This Earth Day decor also has posters with suggestions for what students can do to help take care of the Earth- such as planting a tree, or turning off the faucet while brushing their teeth.
Talk to you next time! -Karen