How To Get Your Children Thinking More Eco-Friendly How To Get Your Children Thinking More Eco-Friendly
The best way to teach your children green living is to model the lifestyle yourself. Here are some eco-friendly reinforcement tips to keep the whole family thinking and living green.
Tip 1 - Drive Less and Walk More
Plan walking outings, either around the block or down the street to the grocery store.
- Bring along plastic bags to pick up the trash along the road as you go. Talk about each item's contribution and consequential effects on the environment. Notice and discuss the natural elements on the walk as well.
- Discuss why you are walking more and driving less. Talk about carbon emissions and the value of hybrid and electric cars.
- Coordinate a car pool program with for school drop offs and pick ups. Use the gas money saved to give to a local non profit green organization.
Tip 2 - Let Your Children Shop
Before shopping, discuss with them the specific strategies of shopping green. Bring your own bags, and allow them to search for packaging that is specifically labeled eco-friendly. Discuss the difference between glass, paper and plastic and how they all effect land fills. Point out the items that can be recycled, reused or returned. Some other ideas are:
- Identify cleaning agents that are organic or bio-degradable.
- Take them to a farmer's market and point out and compare organic fruits and vegetables with the bulk items.
- Have them look for Energy-Star appliances and explain the significance of using them over the standard appliance.
- Take them to a thrift store to pick out school clothes or to donate their clothes that no longer fit.
Tip 3 - Coordinate a Green House Party
Schedule an event where every one explores the house to look for ways to promote eco-friendly living. For example:
- Change out light bulbs from Incandescent to CFL's (Compact Fluorescent Light bulbs) or LED's (Light-emitting diode) bulbs. Explain to the young ones that if every home in America replaced just one incadesenct light with a CFL, it would save enough energy to light over 3 million homes in just one year.
- Check the toilet water levels. Place medium sized tupperware type containers filled with sand or pebbles in your toilet's tank to minimize the amount of water used to flush. Do not use bricks, these can start flaking over time and may cause damage. Check for dripping faucets and leaking toilets.
- Explain how easily it is to waste energy by leaving the lights, television or radio on in the room when no one is inside. Plan a "No Electricity Day" for the family. Turn everything off, with the exception of the refrigerator, and enjoy an evening of games by candle light.
Tip 4 - Make a Visit to the Library
There are several children's books available presenting the benefits of an eco-friendly life style in a way that you may not be able to explain.
- Let them explore and find a book of their choice and have them give a book report on it. Encourage them to come up with their own way of implementing what they have learned.
- Organize a field trip that relates to the subject matter they ingested from the books.
Going green can be a fun activity that simutaneously brings the family closer together and improves the environment.