By Dr. Karen Bell, Keep Liberty Beautiful.
It is getting cold outside, and one thing I like to do with my grandson Bryce is starting a fire in the fireplace and read a good book.
The wintertime is an excellent reading opportunity and helps children maintain their reading levels and stretch their imagination. Below you will find some of Keep Liberty Beautiful's favorite fun environmental- themed books.
Once in a while, Bryce would say to me, “Nana remember when you read that funny book to me?” and he would have the biggest smile on his face. Reading is something we at Keep Liberty Beautiful like to do when we visit the Liberty County Pre-K classrooms or act out a book at one of the elementary schools. Since COVID-19, we have recorded our readings or done some virtually. We cannot wait until we can go back into the schools to share our love for the environment. I hope you get to read “Green” with your children or grandchildren and make some beautiful memories.
Here are some of our suggestions and some recommendations from librarians for your children’s wintertime reading pleasure and maybe yours, too.
• “Baby Loves Green Energy” by Ruth Spiro, illustrated by Irene Chan The latest addition to the “Baby Loves Science” series manages to present global warming so that even babies can understand: just like Baby, Earth has a blanket, and it’s made of air! When greenhouse gases get trapped beneath the blanket, Earth gets too warm. Luckily, there are green energy options and little things Baby’s family can do to help Earth stay at a comfortable temperature.
• “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” by Rozanne Lanczak Williams This book provides questions you can ask your child before you read, during, and after you finish reading. This book is short and does a beautiful job explaining to a little one why it is important to recycle.
• “The Adventures of a Plastic Bottle: A Story About Recycling” by Alison Inches It is sometimes complicated for kids to understand the importance of recycling and where that waste actually goes once it leaves your recycle bin. This book does a great job of bringing the journey of a plastic bottle to life. Told from the bottle’s point of view (complete with diary entries!), the story follows the bottle from its creation, through its life, to its recycling transformation into a fleece jacket.
• “Michael Recycle” by Ellie Bethel A sort-of superhero comes to life when a flash of green crash-lands in the local garbage dump of the messy, trash-filled town of Abberdoo-Rimey. Michael Recycle has a plan to save the city and the world!
• “The Day the Trash Came Out to Play” by David M. Beadle A boy named Robin carelessly tosses a candy wrapper on the ground. He starts a chain reaction of events that eventually teaches him — and his community — about the problems with litter and the importance of taking care of his neighborhood. You will never see trash the same way after reading this funny little story.
• “10 Things I Can Do to Help My World” by Melanie Walsh This super child-friendly book has beautifully die-cut pages filled with ways that even young children can help the environment, from planting seeds to turning off the lights when they leave a room.
• “Julian Rodriguez: Episode One Trash Crisis on Earth” by Alexander Stadler This is a hilarious paperback for adolescents. Alien Julian Rodriguez is disguised as an eightyear- old boy on Earth. It is up to him to avert the trash crisis and save us all from annihilation!
• “Bag in the Wind” by Ted Kooser, illustrated by Barry Root Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Ted Kooser’s first picture book is a beautiful story of a plastic bag that’s been thrown away. Still, it is then blown into the wind and travels from person to person, all of whom find new uses for it.
So whether you and your children are sitting in the front room or hanging out in a park, or just getting that last little snuggle before bedtime, I hope you will try out some of these delightful message-themed books that we can all treasure. For more ideas on reading green, check out Keep Liberty Beautiful at www. keeplibertybeautiful.org or visit our office in the Liberty County Community Complex in Midway. Happy Reading Green!
Don’t forget to recycle your live Christmas trees on January 8, 2022, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Hinesville Recycling Transfer Station on East Oglethorpe Highway (Highway 84) and Fraser Drive, across from McDonald’s.