What better way to insure that the environment remains in good shape for subsequent generations but to teach your children about all the values and insights that proceed from “going green.” The following are some tips for teaching your children about the importance of protecting our Earth and doing things in an environmentally conscious way:
Plant/Tend a Garden with your Kids
Planting a garden and harvesting it when it is ripe is one of the most time-honored environmentally based family activities. This is something you can do with children of virtually any age. It will teach them all about how plants grow and give them a respect for and interest in the process. Once they deal firsthand with plants they will realize how important and wonderful they are.
Green Outings and Vacations
Parents and kids can go on green vacations together. Eco tourism is huge industry and there are many such vacations possible. You might think in terms of going through an ecologically aware travel agency or just designing green trips of your own. Almost anything that deals with the outdoors in a way that does not hurt the environment can be considered a green outing. Visits to other countries and planting trees there, hiking trips where you teach children not to litter or harm flora and fauna, nature walks in ecologically responsible wildlife preserves, the possibilities are almost endless.
Use Green Cleaning Products
Doing the dishes and other sorts of household cleaning are activities that kids often become involved in as they do their chores (perhaps for an allowance). You can buy all sorts of green soaps and cleaning products and explain their value to children as the family does routine cleaning activities.
When you go shopping with your kids, whether at the supermarket or some other type of store, point out organic and environmentally responsible products. Explain how these foods and products were grown or produced and why it is important to buy these types of products when possible. Shopping excursions are a great way to familiarize children with environmental issues because they often find shopping interesting and fun.
Conserving Water and Electricity
Teach your children about conserving water and electricity around the house. You can even make this fun by turning it into a kind of game. You can, for instance, give a reward to children for turning off the most lights or remembering to fill up the sink when washing dishes rather than letting all the water run down the drain.
Walk or Bike Together
Walking or biking to locations where you go with your children is a lot of fun and teaches children that there are other ways to get around than motor vehicles. Be sure and explain to your children how these simple modes of transportation help the environment.
Recycle and Reuse
Teach your children all about recycling – the how and why of it. In addition to simply having bins or boxes for things like cans and bottles, you can also try fun ways to simply reuse items. For instance, paper bags can be used for lunch bags or even drawing or writing paper. Nice looking bottles can become candle holders or paper weights. Jars can be used as drinking glasses or you can put homemade jam in them.
Food Prep and Cooking
Children love to help their parents make things in the kitchen. A great way to teach your kids about green living is to make natural, perhaps vegetarian, meals and snacks with them. These can be made from organically grown ingredients or ordinarily produced fruits and vegetables. The point is to emphasize that cooking and making snacks for yourself is much better for the environment than buying junk food snacks with their wrappers, artificial ingredients, and big business origin.
You can have great fun teaching your children about how to go green. As you do this on a regular basis, your children will not only learn facts and points of view but will get into environmentally conscious and responsible habits. They will thus grow up to be green conscious adults just like you and the great legacy of saving and protecting the planet will continue and proliferate, helping to give your children the kind of world you would want them to live in.
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