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20 Recycled Crafts, Activities & Home Decor That Teach Our Kids About Recycling

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There’s no better day to talk to your family about recycling than on Earth day.

Every time my six-year-old son says, “I’ve been recycling mom,” I have to brace myself, wondering what is  going to come out of his little pockets or backpack.  Believe me we  have seen some interesting things in the name of “recycling.”

He discovered the term recycling at a young age and since then he has decided to call his obsession with junk “recycling.”  The problem with his obsession is that not only does he want to pick up all the trash, but also insists on keeping it as his “treasures.”  Thankfully, we have been able to channel his energy for junk collecting towards proper recycling. He loves it and is very passionate about it.

recycled crafts, activities & home decor

Let’s inspire our children and create awareness on how we can care for mother earth.  Here are some helpful tips on teaching your kids about recycling:

1. Discuss some of the benefits of recycling: respecting and caring for the earth, conserving natural resources, saving landfill space for items that cannot be recycled, helping combat climate change.

2. Identify what is recyclable, what is not and why it is problematic to place non-recyclable items in recycling bins. If they are young, you may want to focus on a “Recycled Item of the Week” and keep adding to the list each week until you’ve gone through all the items you can recycle in your community.

3. Discuss some fun facts:

  • “It takes 250 gallons of water to grow the cotton for just one T-shirt” is sourced in many places, including the California Cotton Ginners and Growers Associations.
  • “Each year, Americans make enough plastic to shrink wrap Texas” comes from the California Department of Conservation’s Recycle publication. Download the PDF.
  • “Recycling 1 million cell phones saves enough energy to power 185 American households for a year” comes from the EPA’s Recycle your Cell Phone.”

4. Recycling can be fun:

  • Hold a Recycling Race with your family. Go to your nearby park and see how many items can be recycled.
  • Have your kids think creatively about the trash they dispose of by finding ways to make a craft by repurposing items in your home.
  • Here you can find some coloring pages to teach proper recycling.
  • This is a fun online game to teach about recycling called Garbology.

In honor of Earth Day I want to share “2o Recycled Activities and Crafts for the Whole Family”:  kid activities, home decor, recipes and more. I have spent some time perusing the world wide web for you and here are some fabulous recycled crafts to get your whole family enjoying some Earth-friendly fun.

  • Earth Day Peanut Butter Cups 1 of 20
    earth peanut butter cups

    Not only are these lovely, but they are also delicious!  from Spabettie: Earth Day Peanut Butter Cups 

  • Art Easel from a Pizza Box 2 of 20
    recycled craft pizza box easel

    I absolutely love this clever idea of turning a pizza box into an art easel from Ucreate: Art Easel From Pizza Box

  • Craft Tote from a Recycled Bottle 3 of 20
    recycled craft tote

    Make this beautiful tote from a water bottle from Inspired by Familia.  And the best part is it's no-sew! Tote From a Water Bottle

  • DIY Globe 4 of 20
    recycled craft globe

    How fun!  Throw an Earth Day party and make your own globes, from One Charming Party: DIY Globe

  • Recycled CD Coasters 5 of 20
    recycled craft coasters

    I can't wait to make these from Crafts by Amanda. Mother's day is just around the corner if you're looking for a cute idea: Coaster from Cd's.

  • Earth Day Cupcakes 6 of 20
    earth day cupcakes

    I heart cupcakes from Bird on a Cake: Earth Day Cupcakes

  • Pet Bed from Suitcase 7 of 20
    recycled pet bed

    I am amazed at how crafty people are when it comes to recycling items. This pet bed from Atomic Attic is not only enviromentally friendly but it also shouts DIVA! 

  • Drive-In Movie Cars 8 of 20
    IMG_0213-001

    These are so adorable and the perfect addition to your Outdoor Movie gathering from Kids Activities Blog: Movie Time Cars.

  • Recycled Craft: Suncatcher 9 of 20
    earth day suncatcher

    This is a fun recycled craft from A Mom Not a Pro  that your kids are sure to enjoy making. The contact paper makes it an easy craft and perfect for the sunlight to shine through.

  • Worms, Dirt and Flowers in Pot Edible Dessert 10 of 20
    IMG_3555

    This "worms and dirt" dessert is the perfect end to celebrating Earth day with the family.  And the great thing is there's no baking involved! Worms, Dirt and Flowers in Pot Dessert

  • Jean Pocket Journal 11 of 20
    recycled craft jean pocket journal

    I have so many jeans I want to recycle and this is the perfect craft for it. Life Made Creations shares her tutorial for this Jean Pocket Journal. 

  • Tin Can Caddy 12 of 20
    recycled craft Tin Can Caddy

    I love how paint can transform everyday household items into beauties. This tin can caddy from Shabby Chic Inspired is gorgeous.

  • Dyed Glass Luminaries 13 of 20
    IMG_6310-001

    These Dyed Glass Luminaries are perfect for your outdoor gathering or patio. 

  • An All Recycled Kids Work Station 14 of 20
    kids work station

    This Kid's Work Station is completely created from recycled items found in their home.

  • Recycled Flower Garden 15 of 20
    recycled art flower craft

    Create your own garden from your recycled trash. Laugh, Paint, Create shows you how to make this cute art.

  • Plastic Spoons Mirror 16 of 20
    recycled craft plastic spoons

    Don't toss the plastic spoons after your party! This Plastic Spoons Mirror craft is totally inspiring from Little Things Bring Smiles.

  • Crayon Banner 17 of 20
    IMG_1978

    Colorful crayon banner for a party or back to school class decor from Inspired by Familia.

  • Hot Air Balloons from Light Bulbs 18 of 20
    recycled craft light bulbs

    These are perfect to hang in the child's room: Hot Air Balloons from Light Bulbs from Rook No. 17.

  • Vintage Maps Wooden Blocks 19 of 20
    recycled craft wooden blocks

    A brilliant way to get your babies playing with maps from Sparkle Power.

  • Spaceship from Juice Container 20 of 20
    recycled craft space shuttle

    5, 4, 3, 2,1, Blast Off! Your child will love exploring space with this recycled shuttle from Aesthetic Outburst.

Join me each week on “We Are That Familia.” I am ecstatic to be sharing with you here on Babble.com as their newest Lifestyle Latina contributor on all things “Family” from recipes, crafts, inspirational (and not so inspirational) stories, and life as we know it. You can catch up on our merrymaking over at Inspiredbyfamilymag.com , on Facebook, on Pinterest.

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