Earth Day - April 22

Did you know...

The March Equinox was chosen for Earth Day in 1970 -- the first Earth Day.

The idea was not local convenience or comfortable weather -- which varies from place to place, but a day suitable for international celebration. On this day, night and day are equal. This day is a million year symbol of the balance of nature and the equilibrium we seek on Earth. Earth Day is also the First Day of Spring -- Nature's symbol of New Life and New Beginnings.

Each year since then the Peace Bell at the United Nations has been rung on Earth Day at the moment Spring begins. This is followed by silent prayer -- a time for heartfelt commitment to think and act as Earth Trustees.

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Earth Day in Canada is celebrated on April 22nd.

It reminds us to appreciate the natural beauty of our world and to be mindful of the impact that humankind has on nature. At school we encourage our students to consider how even their smallest actions may have positive or negative consequences. Turning off the tap while brushing your teeth is as important as picking up garbage!

Earth Day actually has two observances.
In 1969, at a UNESCO conference, peace activist John McConnell proposed a special day to foster worldwide participation in working for peace, justice and the care of the earth. The Spring Equinox (March 20-21) date was chosen for its meaning in many cultures. U. N. Secretary General U Thant, Margaret Mead, John Gardner and other concerned world leaders showed their support.

The second Earth Day, founded by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson in 1970, was planned as an environmental "teach in". The date of April 22 was chosen as a "convenient date" which would maximize student and community participation. Twenty million Americans participated and it is now celebrated in 175 countries.


Learning About Earth Day

Note: In my primary level classes I have always celebrated Earth Day on April 22nd, never really delving into the history of it. In looking for websites on this topic, however, it seems that there is a controversy both regarding the date and the founder.

Senator Gaylord Nelson, founder of the first Earth Day in America, April 22, 1970

John McConnell, the founder of the first Earth Day "Nature's Day", March 21, 1970

The Official Earth Day site - celebrating the Spring Equinox (March 20)

note: expired on 04/11/2009 and is pending renewal or deletion
Earth Day Canada (April 22)
Earth Day - (April 22)


Other interesting Earth Day Sites
Earth Day Flag Community
Dive in to Earth Day... help save Earth's water too!
Play the Lorax "Save the Trees" Game
Family Network Education Earth Day activities,1156,1-5882,00.html?ssb
Rainforest Action Network - kids' section
Sally Salmon's Upstream Sprint game


Art & Drawing Activities
US EPA Earth Day downloadable coloring book


Other Related Activities - "all inclusive" websites
The Idea Box
KidsDomain Earth Day art, activities, stories.
DLTK's Earth Day online games, activities, crafts



Have you found some good holiday webpages?
Let's add them to the website!

boekhout (at)


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Spring Links


This page updated April 2009.