Participate in this Earth Day 2020 activity with your kids or students, and start a conversation about positively impacting the world.


  • Paper (white copy paper, or blue and green construction paper)
  • Markers or crayons (blue and green)
    • OR
  • Washable paint
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Scotch tape

Instructions (

  • Create handprints in one of two ways: 
    • Trace hands on paper. For white paper, use crayons or markers to color blue and green.
    • If using paint, cover hands with green or blue washable paint, and apply handprints to paper. 
  • When dry, cut out handprints.
  • Glue handprints in a circle to look like the world.
  • Use tape to display on windows or doors during the week of April 20.
  • Post a picture of you and your world or post one sentence about how you are #ChangingTheWorld this Earth Day. LIKE and FOLLOW us, then tag us on FB @ElmhurstCoolCities and/or Twitter @ECoolCities
  • Use the Topics for Discussion to get the conversation flowing on how individuals, families or classrooms can positively impact the environment.

Topics for Discussion


  • What does it mean to be “eco-friendly”?
    • Eco-friendly means taking steps to help, and not harm, the planet.
  • How are you a friend to the environment?
    • Areas of discussion could include water, waste, energy, transportation, food, ecosystems, etc.
      • Water: Turn off the water while brushing teeth; take shorter showers
      • Waste: Use cloth napkins instead of paper napkins; refuse straws
      • Energy: Turn off lights when leaving rooms; unplug electronics when not in use
      • Transportation: Walk or bike to school; ask your driver to turn off the car rather than letting it idle while stopped for trains
      • Food: Start a vegetable garden to reduce trips to the store; compost food scraps rather than putting them in the trash (click here for more information on the City of Elmhurst’s composting program)
      • Ecosystems: Plant a native garden; build a bird feeder
  • During this time of social distancing, you’ve made changes in your daily life. Of those changes, which ones also benefit the environment?
    • Examples could include: driving less/biking and walking more, taking fewer showers, growing vegetables in the backyard, buying less stuff, wasting less food, composting food scraps, etc.
  • How can you continue to “change the world with your own two hands” and reduce your environmental impact?
    • Examples could include: eat less meat, compost food scraps, go strawless, buy what we need vs. what we want, take shorter showers, use a rain barrel to water the garden, recycle, use a reusable water bottle

For further discussion:

Climate Change facts for kids from National Geographic

How Can Kids Help Prevent Global Warming? from the American Museum of Natural History


Join Earth Day Live. From April 22 to 24, young people and adults will come together for a three-day live stream event focused on climate action. With training sessions, performances, and appearances from scientists, celebrities, politicians, and youth activists, this 72-hour live stream and online mobilization aims to engage people across the country and the world in collective action to protect their communities and the climate. RSVP to participate.


Learn what you can do right now to help reduce the worst effects of climate change in the months and years to come.

Additional resources:

Social Distancing: You Might Be Fighting Climate Change, Too

COVID-19 Is Not a Silver Lining for the Climate