Wood Smoke Burning Respiratory

Wood Smoke During Summer:

Air quality can be bad during the summer. While we are all doing our part to limit ozone air pollution by carpooling, riding our bikes, turning off lights and planting trees, there’s another air pollution danger that you need to know about:  wood smoke, but its official name is Particulate Matter 2.5.

Whether it’s lighting a campfire to toast marshmallows, or gathering around the backyard fire pit on a cooler summer night, these activities create wood smoke, which contains some of the same harmful things found in cigarette smoke.

Wood smoke particles are very small, so they don’t get filtered by our nose or lungs. Instead, these small particles end up deep inside our lungs where they can stay for months. This can hurt your lungs and even increase your risk for illnesses like pneumonia.

It’s important that you encourage your family not to burn wood on days when the air pollution is bad. Share these tips about how to reduce wood smoke pollution and protect your family’s health:

  • Tell your parents to make sure the chimney gets cleaned
  • Make sure your parents use dry wood when making a fire
  • Try not to inhale any smoke – if you are sitting around a camp fire and the smoke is blowing towards you, move to a different spot
  • If you burn wood in your fireplace at home, consider switching to an electric or gas fireplace
  • Don’t burn garbage or wrapping paper in your fireplace or fire pit
  • Do not leave a fire burning if you are going to bed

Help me reduce wood smoke pollution! I would love to hear tips from you, too!  Send me your ideas at scooterthesparetheairdog@gmail.com. I also like to get out and meet new friends and I might be in your area soon.  Check out “Scooter’s Calendar” on the right side of this page to see where I will be next.

DIY Gummy Popsicle

Hi friends! The beginning of a new school year is such an exciting time and also a big change. We are making new friends and learning new things. We are waking up earlier and getting ready to carpool or walk to school. We are getting home later and running errands with our parents as they link their trips to save time and help Spare The Air.

Saying farewell to summertime is never an easy thing, but with these awesome DIY gummy bear popsicles, you will feel like you’re on summer vacation all year! So finish your homework, and ask a grown up if they are ready to put the “pop” in popsicle.

All you need are: popsicle molds, white grape juice and of course, gummy bears! Follow the easy steps below and enjoy the refreshing taste of summertime anytime you want.

If you’re missing an ingredient, don’t worry – just get creative. I also like using lemonade, fruit snacks and ice trays. Let me know how yours turn out by sharing a picture of your popsicles on my Facebook.

Step 1

Fill your popsicle molds with your juice and gummy bears.








Step 2

Place your popsicles in the freezer until they are frozen solid.









Step 3

Enjoy your sweet gummy creation and make sure to share with your family!


Back to School with Scooter


I hope you are as excited to go back to school as I am! There are lots of things you can do this school year to help Spare The Air, including:

  • Bring a refillable water bottle every day to school 
  • Recycle your paper, plastic, and cans
  • Reuse your backpack from last year
  • Ride a bike, skateboard, scooter (my favorite) or walk to school
  • Ride the school bus or share a ride to school with a neighbor or friend

Helping Spare The Air is important for our health and for our environment. When you’re a kid, your lungs are still developing, and breathing poor air quality can damage them. Have a grown-up download the Sacramento Region Air Quality app on their phone to receive notifications when the air quality is poor and help you avoid the harmful effects of air pollution. Tell your teachers what you have learned from Scooter’s World and share these awesome Spare The Air games and activities with them by clicking here:  http://www.aqmdscooter.com/index.php/activities/