As a parent, it is important to instil positive values in our children. After all, they are the future, and they will be the next generation of parents steering their families into the right direction. In this article, we will focus on teaching children to be eco-friendly. While there are huge steps towards a greener future being made across the world, such as the examples highlighted on State of Green, we can still teach our kids about the environment in the place we live, from our homes to the streets outside. With the right guidance, we can preserve their future, and their children’s future, by focusing their attention on the way we interact with the world.
Here are some simple ways you can teach your children to be eco-friendly.
Set a good example – Our kids copy our behaviour, so we need to be mindful of our own behaviour. From not wasting water to picking up our litter, we should follow good habits that our children will follow. Going one step further, we should also explain why we do what we do. Letting our kids know the dangers of littering to wildlife is one example, but you can probably think of others.
Teach about recycling – This is one area which should receive priority in the home. While you may not want your kids sorting out the recycling themselves (especially when some items are dangerous to handle), you can still teach them the value of reusing objects. There are many craft activities you can do with plastic bottles and the like, and it will show your children that not everything needs to be thrown away. If your children are old enough, you can also explain how waste products, such as plastic, can be bad for the environment. Don’t worry if you’re not a great teacher as there are many educational videos on YouTube that can do the job for you.
Get out into the garden – A garden is a great place for your children to learn about their responsibility for plants and wildlife. From setting up feeders for the birds to growing their own fruits and vegetables, your children will learn a lot about nature, and how it can work to our, and other living creatures advantage. Of course, you can still grow food indoors if you don’t have a garden, and setting up a snail farm in their bedroom will give your children responsibility for other living creatures.
Donate their toys – If your children have grown out or gotten bored of particular toys, you can do more than just throw them away. Charity shops up and down your local high street are the obvious option, but you could also take your kids to the children’s wing of your local hospital, and let them see first hand how happy their toys make others feel. Not only are you showing your children the rewards of giving, but you are teaching them again how certain items can be reused rather than wasted.
It takes time and patience to teach your children the value of looking after the environment, but your effort will be worth it, both in the short-term and the long term, for both your children and the world they grow up in.
This is a collaborative post.