Clean Air Day is a time to celebrate our environment by keeping our air clean. It’s also a great time to share walking safety skills with children, to address traffic congestion, pollution and idling around our schools, and most importantly—to spend valuable time with one another.
If you’re looking for ways to celebrate Clean Air Day, here is a new resource to get you started: Wings and Thingamajigs, an environmental picture book for children aged four to eight.
Storytelling is an important part of environmental change. Books with environmental themes can help inspire earth friendly living at an early age.
Wings and Thingamajigs is the second in a three-book series about the implications of air quality and climate change on human health. This book builds on the themes presented in book one, A Farewell to Featherwagons, particularly the impact of transportation and greenhouse gases, while introducing alternative forms of transportation such as walking.
The story illustrates that simple actions such as walking or biking to school, can have a big impact, not only on our environment but on our health and the health of our children.
The story brings back Biff, Tyto and Alba-Alba, the barn owls from the first book and introduces a new character, a feisty Screech Owl named Echo. When the owls arrive for their first day of school, they are surrounded by idling vehicles in the school drop-off zone. The pollution affects Alba-Alba, who has asthma. As the story progresses, the owls are given an assignment – to invent a non-polluting form of transportation powered with their own wings and talons. While building her project, Alba-Alba discovers that her new friend, Echo, also has breathing difficulties. Together, Alba-Alba and Echo learn that by taking action to “spare the air,” they’ll be able to breathe better and have fun along the way.
Over the next few months, copies of the book along with a complementary online Storytelling Kit, will be provided to public libraries in Halton as well as child care centres, schools, community networks and partners.
For Clean Air Day, why not walk or bike to your local library and borrow a copy of the book to share with your children or grandchildren. Then consider testing out sustainable transportation on a regular basis by walking or biking somewhere you would normally drive.
For more information or to download an electronic version of Wings and Thingamajigs, visit www.halton.ca/thingamajigs. The first 100 people who complete a copy of an online evaluation of the book will receive a free copy of the book.
Share your experience:
For more information about creating healthy environments for your family, or to share your experience, there are many ways you can talk to one of us directly:
- Leave us a comment below – we’d love your feedback
- Talk to us on Twitter: @haltonparents
- Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Dial 311 or 905-825-6000 for parenting information or to speak directly to a Public Health Nurse every Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
About this guest blogger:
Beckie Jas is an Environmental Health Specialist for the Halton Region. As an environmental media expert, she creates diverse education and marketing campaigns for children and adults.