Green living doesn’t have to mean lining your roof with expensive solar panels, or bathing in the wilderness. It’s actually quite easy to go green with just a few simple lifestyle changes, and if you get your kids on board, you’ll find that going green can be a stimulating and bonding experience for you and the whole family. Don’t know where to begin? Here are five tips for teaching your kids about green living:
The light switch habit. Encourage children to get into the habit of turning off the lights whenever they leave a room by enforcing a light switch rule. You may do this by making it into a game of rewards and consequences. For example, offer points for turning off lights, and subtract points for leaving them on. Offer a small prize for reaching a certain amount of points, and soon your children won’t even have to think twice about turning off the lights when they leave a room.
Recycling. Recycling is easy. Simply use two garbage containers instead of one, and designate one for recyclables and the other for non-recyclables. Teach a short lesson about what is recyclable and what isn’t, as well as what the recycling process involves. You’ll be surprised at how fascinating the concept can be for kids, and at their enthusiasm to do their part to save the planet.
Reuse. Instead of throwing glass jars and plastic tubs away, reuse them for a variety of purposes. For example, the gallon ice-cream tubs with the handles make perfect toy buckets, and are a great way to organize the kids’ rooms, and small glass jars with lids are great for storing nails, paper clips, rubber bands, twisty-ties and more.
Skip the car. If you only have a short distance to go, try riding your bicycle. Or, you may even make a longer journey into an adventure by introducing your children to public transportation. Integrate map reading and time management concepts to make riding the bus a fun lesson for the kids.
Fresh from the farm. Instead of bringing your children to the grocery store to stock up on fresh fruits and vegetables, take them to a farmer’s market, where they can see for themselves that produce doesn’t just materialize in those brightly-lit store bins.
Remember that, when it comes to teaching your kids about green living, the best possible thing you can do is to live the lifestyle, yourself, and teach through example. Your children will model your behavior, and you can be proud of what you are doing for the family, and for mother earth.
About the Author: Myong Morini is a huge fan of green living and the environment. When he’s not out with his kids, he can often be fond studying the UFX markets and watching trends in environmental research.