Project Overview

Four Simple Steps

Project Starter Kit

Four Simple Steps

1.  Borrow. Contact a local grocery store that uses large paper grocery bags. See if the manager will let you "borrow" enough bags so that each student in your school can decorate one. Let the manager know about the project and its environmental education message, of course! grocers usually get these bags in "bundles" of 500.

2.  Decorate. Have students at school decorate the bags with pictures of the earth, environmental messages, the name of your school, etc. Be creative! DO NOT allow students to write their last names on any bags.

3.  Deliver. A couple of days before Earth Day you and/or your students return the decorated bags to the grocery store - with many thanks to the manager! The store then distributes these bags (full of groceries) to happy and amazed shoppers on Earth Day. 

4.  Report. Fill out the guestbook on the project web site with a count of how many bags your school made. Be sure to include the name of your school and where you are. Please, only one report per school. All of the reports will be posted on the Earth Day Groceries www site at:

You do not need to sign up or register, just have a great time with the project! For more information, check the FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) at


Note: If you are unable to locate a grocery store in your area that uses paper grocery bags, but have found a store manager willing to distribute your students' decorated paper bags on Earth Day, you can request a supply of bags (free) from the Paper Bag Council of the American Forest & Paper Association. To place a request, E-mail Colleen Shine at: Be sure to provide the following information

  1. Number of bags you need
  2. Your complete mailing address (no P.O. boxes)
  3. Your phone number (for UPS delivery)

As community relations is an important part of the Earth Day Groceries Project, teachers are encouraged to secure bags from local grocers wherever possible, and to use this request as a last resort.


You've Made a Difference

Thanks to thousands of environmentally-minded teachers and youth, the project is growing bigger every year. In 1999, students at more than 1,200 schools nationwide decorated nearly 400,000 bags, and in 2000, participation was even stronger. Each decorated bag is a reminder that kids care about and are doing their part to protect our planet.