If you are actively trying to become more aware of the environment and how it impacts on your life, then it is also vital that you try to involve your children as much as possible. The way the world develops and the resources that are available will impact on them more than anyone, so they need to know how to be as eco-friendly as possible. Here are a few tips to help you teach your kids about the environment.
Teach Them About Reusable Containers
Many countries in the world are trying to reduce the amount of plastic they use to stop it entering the seas as it has in the past. Everyone has a part to play, and that includes your kids. You need to teach them the importance of using reusable containers for water and other drinks instead of buying them new from the store. When you go out on a trip, take reusable bottles with you, so you don’t have to buy bottled drinks along the way. Many restaurants and coffee shops will also gladly refill your bottles with tap water for free.
There are many elements to reducing waste in your household and in general. One way is to teach them that food waste is not a good thing and that they need to eat everything on their plate if they can. You should also teach them about portion control, so they only take what they want and no more, so it doesn’t get wasted. It is also good to show them what you recycle and where it goes. It is more than just paper and plastic; you need to show them that there are many things around the home that they can reuse or recycle. Teach them about the value of donating things they no longer need so others can get use out of them.
Saving energy is a huge part of becoming eco-friendly, and it is also something your kids can actively help to achieve. Teach them from an early age to turn off lights when the room is empty and closing doors to keep heat in the house. Other things such as leaving the TV on when they aren’t watching and turning the heating off can also be taught and will go a long way toward saving your house energy and money. If you are considering solar panels to generate your own energy, then show them what happens and how they work. It will be fascinating for them to learn, and it will also teach them the power of the sun.
Water is fast becoming a valuable resource around the world, and many cities are implementing water conservation measures. Teaching your children the importance of saving water and reusing old water is a great way to show them that you don’t always need fresh water for every job. For example, you can use used water from the bath or the sink to water the plants. You can also show them why water butts are important and how collecting rainwater can be useful for many jobs in the garden. Other important lessons are not to keep the water running when they are brushing their teeth, and only to use enough water in the bath that they need.
Don’t Rely on the Car
Teaching your children about using the car less is vital, not only because of the environment but also because it will help them to stay fit and active. For example, if you are going to the store, then walk with them if it isn’t too far away. If it’s more than a mile or so, then why not take bikes and cycle to the store? You should only use the car as a last resort and encourage your children to enjoy the outside.
Encourage Playing Outside
Although many parents are worried about their children playing outside on their own, there are ways that you can encourage this while still being safe. Let them play in the back garden on their own but supervise them if they are at the front of the house. If they have older siblings, teach them the responsibility of helping their younger brothers or sisters and to look out for them if they are playing outside. You want your children to love being outdoors and to get a feel of nature and the wonders it beholds. You can also take them on trips to the woods or the park and show them some of the things they might miss such as caterpillars, or other insects. You can also have a bug house in your garden that will attract bugs and a flower patch for bees to use.
Helping the Community
Many communities have local environmentally active people who like to keep the area clean and tidy. They might pick up trash or plant trees and flowers in public places. These types of activities are great for teaching kids about the environment around them and how important it is to keep their area clean. Some communities also do nature days where they clear paths and clean public spaces. It can be a nice family activity as well as playing a part in your local area. School trips to local events and organizations are often used as a way to teach the children about their world. If you can, you should encourage your kids to go along and see what lessons they have learned when they get home. If they have any questions about what happened, you can then help to explain it to them.
Your children are the future protectors of the world, so the things they learn about the environment will go a long way to helping them look after the planet. It is important that you give them all the tools they need to make their own decisions and to form opinions on the environment. They can then teach their children in the same way you taught them.