Earth Squad: 50 People who are Saving the Planet


MG & Up

Climate Justice

Historical Figures





Alexandra Zissu & Nhung Lê


For #SweetsAndSocialJustice this week, I want to kickoff what I’ve been calling in my brain an Earth Day social justice bonanza. Make sure you look for the earth icon I’ve put on the photo to be able to see the entire series of posts, culminating on a giant Earth Day roundup post! Earth Squad is an anthology of historical figures, which if you’ve been around TTA for longer than 5 minutes you’ll realize it’s my favorite genre. For this week, I made a greek yogurt strawberry layer cake with strawberry frosting and layers of strawberry jam. Fresh and springy! We might have just had cake for dinner one night this week…

Individuals that are globally recognized like David Attenborough, Wangari Maathai, and Greta Thunberg are profiled as well as new-to-me activists such as activist and hip-hop artist Xiuhtezcatl Martinez. Another environmentalist and singer, Anohni, uses her platform to talk about the devastating effects of climate change.

Something really cool about this book is how the activists are grouped together based on the work they do. Food justice, journalism, art & innovation, and science are just a few of the categories that readers can learn about a handful of folks making a difference. I also like how this grouping reinforces that there’s a multitude of ways to be an activist and whatever a person’s passion is, they can use it to ignite change. As usual, I would love to see how this could be used in the classroom. Having a slew of humans to learn about before taking a deep dive into one aspect of activist work is one of the coolest ways I could think of to create a longterm classroom research project.

This book was kindly sent by Running Press Kids, but all opinions and decision to review is my own! For the cake recipe, I played around with this recipe, and made a few changes. For the frosting, I splurged and used a real vanilla bean and then added strawberry preserves to give it a tangy flavor and light natural coloring!

Alexandra Zissu

Alexandra Zissu is a writer, editor, and content consultant. She’s the author of The Conscious Kitchen (Clarkson Potter, March 2010)—a Books for a Better Life Awards finalist—and co-author of The Complete Organic Pregnancy (Collins, September 2006), Planet Home (Clarkson Potter, December 2010), The Butcher’s Guide to Well-Raised Meat (Clarkson Potter, May 2011), and Get on Top (Atria Books, 2018). Earth Squad (Running Press Kids) is due out March 2021. 

As a journalist, she has written extensively about food, chefs, fashion, trends, pregnancy, parenting, and especially green living for many publications including The New York Times, T: The New York Times Style Magazine, Bon Appétit, Health, New York, Cookie, Vogue, Self, Refinery29, Child, Time Out New York, Yahoo! Style, Entrepreneur, and Details. The majority of her consulting work is editorial. Her office directs, manages, advises on, and reviews content for organizations, brands, and other companies to help them translate their environmental and sustainability efforts into language everyone can understand. She has also spoken about all things eco-friendly at private firms, mothers’ groups, schools, non-profits, and industry expos. She is on the board of the Albany-based organization Clean and Healthy New York.

Photo of Alexandra found here.

Nhung Lê

Nhung Lê was born and raised in Hanoi, Vietnam and formerly based in Brooklyn. Her work has been published in the New Yorker, the New York TimesEntertainment WeeklyEaterStylist Magazine, and more. She is currently enjoying the sun in Sydney, Australia.

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