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An Earth Day illustration on April 22 on a calendar.

Earth Day STEAM activities can teach children that they can play an integral role in making the planet healthier.[1] Since 1970, people of all ages have celebrated Earth Day every April 22nd.[2] As our planet continues facing water scarcity challenges, climate change, and more, Earth Day's message is more important than ever.[2]

Earth Day activities provide fun and engaging opportunities for kids to become passionate about finding solutions and preventing damage in the challenges facing our world. In this guide, we cover four free Earth Day-themed activities for kids to do with their Sphero robots.

1. Participate in an Oil Spill Challenge

In this activity, students will learn how to design and build an oil spill cleaning tool. The Oil Spill Challenge activity shows students how to use their Sphero BOLT robot to motorize this tool.

The materials you'll need for this STEAM project include a beaker, cheesecloth, cloth, craft sticks, cotton balls, graduated cylinder, recycled materials (plastic bottles, cardboard, egg cartons, and more), robots, and scissors. Using video and text instructions, students follow specific criteria to imagine, plan, and build their designs.

2. Learn About Sea Turtle Rescue

STEAM activities for Earth Day extend to protecting wildlife. In this Sea Turtle Rescue activity, students will investigate what to do with a box of baby sea turtles.

Kids and an instructor doing a classroom activity with a Sphero Bolt robot.

You'll need a Sphero BOLT robot, cardboard tubes, cotton balls, large plastic cups, masking tape, paper clips, pipe cleaners, popsicle sticks, rubber bands, small cups or containers, straws, and string. This activity teaches students about sea turtles, what to do when finding them, designing a feeding system if they're sick, building and automating the design, and reflecting on this project.

3. Sphero Goes Green

The Sphero Goes Green activity turns recycling into a fun and engaging game. This game's objective is to use a number variable to count the number of items students recycle.

Sphero Goes Green for Hour of Code activity.

This activity guides students through exploring the difference between recycling and using a landfill, number variables, skill-building by creating number variables, creating loops and incrementing variables, and challenging them to build the ending sequence.

4. Create an Environmental Sign

Students can use this Environmental Sign activity to learn about protecting a national park by designing and building an eye-catching rotating sign.  Use materials like construction paper, decorative embellishments, drawing materials, glue, scissors, and tape to create a unique park sign. This lesson also integrates well with the STEAM Student Set.

In groups of 2–3 students, they build, test, and customize their inventions. Break this activity into seven timed segments, including:

  • 10 minutes to set up the project
  • 10 minutes to introduce the project
  • 20 minutes to create
  • Five minutes to play
  • Five minutes to customize
  • Five minutes to share
  • Five minutes to reflect on inventions and close the project

5. WORLD - Ocean Food Webs

In this activity, students will explore an underwater forest! Create a food web using Sphero BOLT to show the transfer of energy within an underwater ecosystem. Find out what sea otters eat and what eats them. Discover the importance of sequencing when designing food webs and writing algorithms.

6. WORLD - Costa Rican Sea Turtles

In this activity, students will combine computing, geography and creativity to save the turtles! Learn about Paso Pacifico's ingenious conservation solution of decoy turtle eggs. Program your own Decoy Sphero robot to fool the poachers and make it to the safety of the sea!

7. WORLD - Endangered Animals

In this activity, students will learn about Boolean logic by playing Guess Who with Sphero BOLT, then use the logic to search for endangered animals.

8. WORLD - Ugandan Water

During this humanitarian engineering project students will design a pulley system that could be used to source water in Uganda where sanitation is a major problem.

Celebrate Earth Day With Fun STEAM Activities

Earth Day STEM activities are a fun and exciting way to teach students about the importance of protecting the earth while learning STEM-related fields.[1] Educators, parents, and students can explore these beginner and advanced robotic activities to learn how they're preparing students for the future of coding, designing, and inventing. Check out Sphero's collection of STEM kits and programmable robots  today!




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