My most important identifier is Melia’s Papa. Melia is my 14 year old daughter.. When she was 2 weeks old, her mother laid her on my chest. Melia inched her head up into the crook of neck. I smelled her sweet baby smell. She felt like the sweetest puppy, nuzzling me. A pulse of energy went through my entire body and I knew at that moment that this was the most important relationship of my life.
Soon thereafter, it came to me that when Melia is a young adult, I need to be able to look her in the eyes and tell her I did everything to make this a better place.
I had no idea what I was getting myself into.
This was my call to transformation – the moment that inspired my first steps along the path of self-literacy and mastery that I think of as my awakening journey.
Last year, my environmental children’s book was published. Inspired by my daughter, Pacha’s Pajamas: A Story Written By Nature is the Environmental Awakening story of a Latina girl. When Pacha goes to sleep, the plants and animals on her pajamas guide her on a dream adventure to learn more about herself and her connection to the natural world. The book reminds children that we are all connected, we have everything we need within ourselves, and we can create the world we want to live in.
In addition, it is the first-of-its-kind “Animated” or augmented reality book. Hovering the optional Pacha Alive app over illustrations in the book brings them to life with short animations featuring celebrities like Cheech Marin and Mos Def that make kids want to read.
- Making reading fun for today’s kids – it is written for 7-12 year olds and the augmented reality makes it irresistible for digital natives
- Interesting kids in climate and environmental issues
- Fostering a love of the natural world as well as a feeling and understanding of our interconnectedness.
This kids environment book contains fun facts, songs lyrics, Pacha’s priority list of environmental and youth leadership organizations, and the Connected Dance Challenge. We also have a companion musical album that won 9 awards including People’s Choice in the Independent Music Awards for Children’s Music.
Pacha, like all little kids, has the innate ability, that grownups often lose, to see the problems in the world and use their creativity to address them. Like Pacha, the children in your life can learn to help the world around them one simple step at a time while inspiring others to do the same. Here are three things you can do to celebrate Earth Day as a family with awareness and action.
1. Help Children Realize Their Impact
Leading up to Earth Day, we recommend that parents have a conversation with their little ones about their impact. This may be one of the most important realizations that a child may ever have. They have an impact on the world both positive and negative. Sit down with your child and go over some of the ways that they can make a positive impact on the environment. You can discuss with your child…
- Turning off lights when they are no longer in a room.
- Having a day free from electronics.
- Getting a reusable water bottle.
- Being in charge of recycling at home. If you do not already have a system in place, allow them to create one. Then let them be in charge of bagging up the recyclables or taking them to the recycling center.
2. Make Positive Change as a Family
On Earth Day or whatever day your family will celebrate, we recommend that the family commit to making at least one positive change. When Pacha awakens from her dream, she is inspired to tell the world that we are ALL connected. Earth Day (week or month) is a perfect time for your family to make at least one positive change that will impact your community. There are many different ways that you and your child can make an impact and the pride that your child will feel is a beautiful bonus. Your child can…
- Plant a tree on Earth Day. Some possible places to plant a tree include your yard, a local park, your child’s school, a local church or in a neighbor’s yard. Have your child ask permission and explain why they want to plant the tree on Earth Day. Get your Pacha’s Pajamas Tree Kit here.
- Do a clean-up! Kids may not like cleaning their room but they will enjoy cleaning-up the local park. This is an important activity that really makes an impact because your child can see with their own eyes what their actions have done.
- Make Earth Day a non-electric day. Eat dinner by candlelight, hang your sheets up to dry and unplug everything electric in the house that is not necessary to be on. Explain to your child that just a small impact can make a world of difference.
- Spread the Word- Encourage your child to use their most important tool, their voice, to make a difference. Children love to help and they love to show-off. This lets them do both while encouraging others to make a positive change.
3. Plan a Green Fundraiser
Speak to your PTA, school, or enrichment program about doing a Green Fundraiser later in the year. Pacha’s Tree Kits are the greenest School Fundraiser ever! They’re also a socially responsible and sustainable learning activity that lasts a lifetime. Ask your local community to grow trees with you and raise the funds your school needs. ForestNation will plant matching trees in developing countries. Find out more about doing a Green School Fundraiser.
No matter how your family chooses to celebrate Earth Day, the important thing is to plant the seed of awareness in your child. That seed will blossom into amazing things.