If you desire a green home life for your family, the natural extension of that desire is hoping that your kids will see the value and the practicality in working towards green goals. The values and priorities you hope to impart to your offspring are done best when they’re young and when they see you actually implementing the things you’re talking about. Teaching them about the environment is a very good thing, they will learn very good things, like using electric vehicles instead of gas ones. Like scooters, so help them find electric scooter for children.
This is definitely an area where do as I say and not as I do will not hold up in the long-run
Not only is it a smart lesson, it can create a more balanced workload within your home. If the right setting is crafted, kids can be the most natural of helpers. If things are engaging to a kid, they’re engaging. Period. Even if the task seems arduous to the adults in the room. Successfully participating will allow them to feel capable of something.
Teach Them Ideologically
For the young and old alike, principles stick when we believe in their value. This means it’s not enough to just tell them to recycle, at least not if you want the instruction to stick. For it to stick, they need to see why (That is their favorite question after all.).
If you want them to understand the importance of recycling, grab their favorite book about the ocean and explain how 91% of plastic isn’t recycled, and that huge amount of plastic often ends up in the ocean where it can harm sea creatures.
You can explain why we need to conserve water by showing them a globe, and then explaining that only 2.5% of that is fresh water, and only 1% of that is accessible.
It’s all about helping them understand the gravity and implications of all of our choices so that they can see that this is not simply a matter of doing as you’re told, but of changing the world as well.
Teach Them Practically
While the lessons on green living we teach our kids do need to start at the ideological level, we also need to show them what it looks like on a practical level. If you believe in the value of doing things differently, what age appropriate actions can your kids take?
This is where the connections happen, this is where your kids are able to see that the conversations you have about specific problems have specific solutions that even they can apply.
A good tactic would be to take them to specific areas of your home and point out the problem areas where they can look for issues that they can then communicate back to you.
In the bathroom, talk to them about leaks and spotting excess water, as well as about the length of their showers. In your kitchen, have easy access containers that your children can use to sort waste into the proper categories. Talk to them about things like turning off the lights and securing windows and doors at the proper time of day to conserve energy.
You can also include your children in brainstorming sessions where you discuss what types of alterations or even environmentally friendly products you can add to your living space. Include them in the decision making. Those types of conversations will set your whole family up for green success.
Beyond just seeing the issues, take the time to walk them through how the solutions work. They’ll be even more critically interested if they have some grasp of why certain light bulbs or washing machines are actually great ways for saving energy.
Teach Them Enthusiastically
The most important component by far, is showing your kids through your own example that you believe what you’re saying. If you approach the effort needed to run a green household with a positive attitude, they will be far more likely to do so as well.
This approach can definitely go beyond just your demeanor. Take it even further, and make the process a literal game and motivation booster. Set a goal of collecting X amount of recyclable objects, and when they reach the goal use the objects to complete a fun craft with your kids.
Even if you can’t use the exact items you’ve recycled, you can still create feasible goals, work towards them, and then allow those realized objectives to create the mood to enjoy an eco-friendly activity.
This Is the Worthwhile Footprint to Leave
In this specific area, there’s value in leaving a mark. It is likely that with the right approach, your children will be committed to preserving the eco-friendly lifestyle that you pattern for them.
This is certainly not the easiest road to take. Humans as a rule complicate things, and children are no different. Bringing them into the equation is not about things being as straightforward as possible. Ultimately, this is about educating the most important people in our lives about some of the most important principles in our lives.
It’s about seeing beyond just ourselves so that we can positively impact not just our moment in history, but the ones to come as well.
By Brooke Faulkner