The 12 Eco-Days of Christmas

In the fall of 1996, I held a brainstorming session with students from kindergarten to second grade at Santa Monica Alternative School House about their concerns for the world. Thus came to be “The 12 Eco-Days of Christmas:”

On the twelfth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me,
towering redwoods,
safe spotted owls,
homes for the homeless,
food for the hungry,
produce organic,
no cauliflower,*
seas I can swim in,
air I can breathe,
all solar power,
no rush hour,
good guys on TV,
and a world where all people are free.

Two years later, in the summer of 1998, documentary filmmaker and fellow parent, Bill Guttentag, committed this signature song to film—complete with bathing suits, sunglasses, and wool hats. After targeting several venues for performance, the kids landed the biggest gig imaginable: President Clinton’s annual Christmas reading to children. This was the first time a group was ever invited to perform at this White House event; the kids were being given a face-to-face opportunity to voice their concerns directly to the President of the United States and First Lady (future Secretary of State).


This project has been a volunteer labor of love from the start, and we are grateful to all who have made this film possible. We share it with you now in hopes of a better world for our children.

Ping Ho
Founder & Director, UCLArts & Healing

*By the way, we love cauliflower. This lyric was intended to add levity, as it was one of the “concerns” expressed by the kids. Feel free to change that lyric as you see fit.

“The 12 Eco-Days of Christmas” lyric adaptation and choreography by Ping Ho

Photograph by Marina Brodskaya 


Submit Your Performance Recordings!

We welcome you to bring “The 12 Eco-Days of Christmas” into your home, classroom, or organization. Have a recording you would like to share? Submit your video, per the instructions below, to be featured on our website and social media.

Video Submission Instructions

  • Name of Submitter
  • Name of School or Organization (if applicable)
  • Date of Recording
  • Format of Footage (.Mov or .MP4 preferred)
  • Any Attributions or Credit Notes
  • Send to with subject header: 12 Eco-Days Recording Submission