Even virtual worlds for kids are finding ways to communicate environmental issues. In Dizzywood, a free virtual world for kids ages 8 through 12, when you plant a virtual tree to reforest a damaged area within the online world of Dizzywood, a real tree is planted on Earth. Working in partnership with the Arbor Day Foundation, Dizzywood lets kids make a real world impact by doing this virtual activity.
Kids who join this virtual world create their own avatar and find things to do within this world by joining in ongoing stories. In honor or Earth Day and Arbor Day, Dizzywood introduced an in-world event where villain Emperor Withering has destroyed a large tract of Dizzywood's forest. All children entering the Dizzywood world are encouraged to plant tree seedlings to help restore the wrecked forest. By playing a minigame, kids earn a seed to plant. And when they plant it in Dizzywood, kids see the effect on Dizzywood's polluted sky as it slowly begins to clear.
“This is a wonderful activity to teach children about how planting trees and rehabilitating a forest can clean the air by reducing air pollution, provide habitat for wildlife, help prevent soil erosion and clean our water,” said Kevin Sander, director of corporate partnerships of the Arbor Day Foundation. “Empowering kids with the ability to make a real impact such as this reforestation project, instills a love and appreciation of nature – which is invaluable.”
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