Harlingen CISD students across multiple campuses united in spirit last week as part of an Earth Day celebration.
Each year, Earth Day is celebrated on April 22.
“Over the decades, Earth Day has brought hundreds of millions of people into the environmental movement, creating civic engagement and volunteerism in 193 countries,” according to The History of Earth Day on earthday.org. “Earth Day engages more than 1 billion people every year and has become a major steppingstone along the pathway of engagement around the plant.”
Harlingen students are part of the hundreds of millions of people who come together to protect the planet through recycling, awareness, lessons, and even planting trees and flowers.
Students remain at home as schools are closed for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year, but that has not deterred them from completing their hands-on activities.
A Long Elementary student designed planters for seeds from the bottom of plastic bottles. Those planters were then painted and arranged throughout her home. A Wilson Elementary student created art showing how much he loves the planet.
Last week, students in Beatrice Cruz’s class at Zavala Elementary were taught about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, an area of the ocean where there is an extremely high concentration of debris due to pollution.
Students learned that this debris can easily be consumed inadvertently by marine life living in the ocean. This can cause choking and starvation for the marine species, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
“Earth Day is important because we have to take of the animals and make sure our plant is clean,” said Ana Gutierrez, a 5th-grade student in Mrs. Cruz’s class.
Mrs. Cruz and her students, like Ana, meet each morning on Zoom to talk and learn, including about important subjects such as Earth Day.
Ana decided to make a bird feeder out of plastic that came attached to a toy. Her classmate Lily Bishop also learned about the importance of preserving the environment.
“Earth is the only planet where we live and breathe, so we have to protect it,” Lily said. “I love how beautiful it is.”
Mrs. Cruz feels excitement and joy each time she gets to see and speak with her student via Zoom, an online video platform. Her class and other classes throughout Harlingen CISD will continue meeting together online throughout the remainder of the 2019-20 school year.