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Celebrate Earth Day with Knut and Music for a Green Planet

April 21st, 2008

Happy Earth Day! To celebrate Earth Day I’ve got two earth- and child-friendly products for you on today’s Daily Dish. One is a great read and the other a great listen. Together they’re a wonderful way to help children become more aware of the world around them.

KnutKnut: How One Little Polar Bear Captivated the World is a true story about Knut, the young polar bear who was abandoned by his mother and raised by his zookeeper (something animal rights groups were less than happy about). Knut received his share and more of media attention and soon became the unwitting—and cute—symbol of environmental awareness. Because the author co-wrote the book with his two young daughters, the book is easy-to-read for younger children and yet teaches them about important environmental issues (e.g. the impact global warming has on the natural habitat of polar bears).

KnutMy girls read and this book the moment I unwrapped it. The next day my oldest daughter asked if she could take it to school to show her class. Of course Mom said yes, and it’s a good thing as the class “LOVED” it (emphasis added to show exactly how my daughter said it—LOL). I’m just glad my girls came away from reading the book with their eyes a little more open to the world—and animals—around them. By the way, the author and his family are the writers behind the popular Owen & Mzee series.

Music for a Green PlanetNow for the good listen. Let me start off by saying I’m not a big jazz fan. I’ve tried to learn to appreciate this style of music but have not been successful. Having said that, I may be on my way to appreciating jazz after listening to Music for a Green Planet. Hayes Greenfield, who is an acclaimed jazz musician and creator of the multi-award-winning Jazz-A-Ma-Tazz, created Music for a Green Planet as a “musical celebration of green consciousness for the whole family.” And let me tell you, non-jazz-lover that I am, I celebrated right along with Greenfield and the other top singers on this sophisticated yet fun mix of “green” songs.

Music for a Green PlanetI mellowed out to “The Things We Throw Away” sung by Carly Sonenclar, the eight-year-old “Les Miserables” star, and rocked out to “This Little World of Ours” sung by Shayna Steele, a Broadway veteran. I also loved “Little Bo Beep Goes Green,” a very eco-friendly version of the old nursery rhyme. If you want your kids to experience “green consciousness” then there’s no better way to learn than through music, and no better music then Music for a Green Planet.—Emily

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