Earth Day Language Lesson with Verse
What is Earth Day?
Earth Day has taken place every year on 22nd April since 1970. According to earthday.org, the mission is to ‘diversify, educate and activate the environmental movement worldwide’. It’s been very successful, mobilising over a billion individuals and over seventy-five thousand partners to take positive action to protect our planet and our future. A perfect occasion for you to get involved with this young learners Earth Day language activity.
Why teach an Earth Day Language Lesson?
As a language teacher, you are part of a worldwide educator community working with diverse groups of young learners. Therefore, shouldn’t part of your role be to empower learners, who are already facing the consequences of the climate emergency, to take and demand positive action to protect their futures? This involves protecting the more than human world, or environment, on which this future depends!
“International Mother Earth Day recognizes a collective responsibility to promote harmony with nature to achieve a just balance among the economic, social and environmental needs of present and future generations”– The United Nations
Your students are likely to come to class on this day with their schemata activated on environmental matters due to Earth Day events, so don’t miss the opportunity to bring it into class.
There’s no excuse not to!
Sorry, but some half-baked excuse like ‘I’m too busy preparing my students for their exams’ just does not wash as a reason not to engage with the climate emergency in the language classroom. That’s because environmental matters are the biggest threat to their future. Neither does the reason that ‘my job is just to teach language’. That’s because as educators we help learners prepare for the best possible future we can help them achieve, and not helping empower them to repair our planet would be an absolute failure in this regard. By the way, if you teach adults or teenage language learners, you will love this lesson!
OK, I want to teach the Earth Day Language Lesson. Tell me more!
This lesson was created collaboratively. Jasmine Melchior came up with the lesson idea, Stefanie Ritch wrote the PowerPoint version for her assignment when she was a participant in the online course ‘Language Teaching for the Planet’. Alice from aliceinmethodologyland.com created the genial.ly slides.
This Earth Day Language Lesson is ideal for teenagers and adults B1 above. In this lesson, students will:
- Learn about Earth Day
- Engage with a poem by spoken word artist Prince Ea
- Discuss ways to celebrate Earth Day
This activity has been designed with Earth Day in mind, but for us, every day is Earth Day and you can use this lesson on any other day of the year too if you wish! The slides are in google slides and you can download them and modify them for your class needs.
Here is an interactive presentation you can use for your class:
Here are downloadable PowerPoint slides for the lesson:
How do you use verse and songs to raise awareness of environmental issues? How will you mark Earth Day in the EFL classroom? If you have any ideas, share them in the comments or via the contact page!