I can think of quite a few things but since we’re staying PG here and catering to the kids let’s talk about what we can do in the dark that will inspire interest, creativity and sustainability in our children.
This year Earth Hour is on March 28th. The World Wildlife Federation wants everyone to enjoy the dark and make a statement for an hour. I’ve already signed up to turn out my lights for the second year. I first heard of Earth Hour last year and readily hopped on board.
For just one hour the earth can go dark to celebrate the natural wonders of the planet, conserve energy and support finding a solution for climate change.
2008’s Earth Hour had over 50 million participants around the globe. This year they are hoping for more. Already several major US cities have committed to going dark including Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, Nashville, New York, San Francisco, St Louis, and even sin city Las Vegas. The city of lights; Paris, France; has even pledged to take part in Earth Hour with the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame going dark. Currently over 405 cities in 74 countries have pledged to turn out their lights for 60 minutes. That’s over double of the number of cities from last year.
Earth Hour is celebrated at 8:30 pm in your local time zone. It is just like New Year’s Eve. It’ll start in New Zealand and sweep across the globe through all the time zones creating beautiful darkness for all those that choose to participate. You can sign up at www.EarthHourUS.org, there you will also find links to other countries and events participating in Earth Hour.
This year the WWF has created a site just for kids, www.EarthHourKids.org to encourage children and teens to get involved in the movement. There’s also a great tool kit for teachers and parents which includes the document 10 Things for Families to Do When the Lights Are Out. It’s pretty cool, it gives you simple ideas like having an indoor camp-out, eating dinner by candlelight, play old fashioned games (anyone remember shadow puppets with flashlights?), or go outside and enjoy the evening. It’s a great way to unplug and bond with your kids and teach them something meaningful at the same time. You can even start a family tradition by participating every year.
Turn out the lights and enjoy Earth Hour 2009 on March 28.
[This post was written by Wenona Napolitano.]