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Teaching our children to live greener

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There are many important lessons we have to teach our little ones on a daily basis. This includes sharing, being considerate, helping others, playing fair, and putting their best foot forward in whatever they do. Another very important message we need to teach them that perhaps wasn’t as relevant in our age of growing up, is to be conscious of the environment’s condition and to do what we can to preserve it. Letting them know we have to be a part of the solution and not the problem.
There are many actions that are kid-friendly that we can teach our kids to employ in helping to save our World. I start by teaching my children that if we don’t make changes and take the initiative then in the future our world will not be a pleasant place to live in, and that we won’t have the daily benefits we do today. From there I give them specific tips on how to be efficient in the areas of preserving energy, water, and other resources. This not only aids in the environment but helps with costs at home as well.

Here are some ideas to share with our children to help with the conservation of resources:

1. Collect and recycle aluminum, paper, glass, and plastic bottles.
Something the girls and I make a habit of is saving all of our aluminum cans and taking them to a recycle center to be recycled. Sure, you don’t get a lot of money from this but you get a good feeling about what you are doing, and the small amount of money we do receive I give to the girls to buy a treat or to save. All other items can be put into recycle bins.

2. Turn off televisions and lights when you exit the room and don’t plan to return immediately.
When leaving a room to eat a meal or do anything outside of that room (even for a short time) turn-off the lights, the television, and other electronics. It’s that simple but it takes some time to get kids in the habit. Keep reminding them and make sure you lead by example. I also teach them about the energy saving aspect of using energy-efficient compact fluorescent bulbs. So they know exactly why I’m gradually switching all of the bulbs out for this type.

3. Conserve water by not unnecessarily running water from the faucet, and find other ways to reuse water.
I have taught the girls to take these tiny steps in saving water which are working very well. When washing your face, or brushing your teeth, turn the water off until time to rinse. Also limit showers to around 5 minutes (after all they are kids and don’t need 15 minute relaxing showers). Don’t fill up the bathtub to the very top when taking baths (which was an old habit of theirs).
Another very good hint that they have really taken to, is when they fill water bottles at bedtime to sit on their night stands and find them still partially full in the morning, they use that water to nourish the house plants.

As parents if we want to make a change it has to start with us and then trickle down to our young ones. Be the best example possible, encourage gently with friendly reminders, and together you can get the job done of not only saving ‘green’ but by making a positive impact on the environment through living green.

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