By Joel Dreher
Conserving and recycling should become habits for all family members, including the children. The younger generation will be the most affected by today's practices, so they should play an active role in green living. Teaching your kids to be eco friendly can be fun if it is approached in the right manner.
There are websites that contain information and games to help children learn about conserving natural resources, eating healthy, and engaging in environmentally friendly practices. Look up some of these and pick those that convey the most important lessons, sharing in the education whenever possible. Local zoos, science centers, and museums have other great educational tools and the family can make a day trip out of visiting one of these.
Children tend to mimic the actions of their parents, so in order to get the youngsters to reduce, reuse, and recycle, the parents should do it. Let the children place the recyclables in the proper bins and have them help carry the containers to the curb on trash day. Allow them to pick organic and environmentally friendly foods at the supermarket or help plant fruits and vegetables in the home garden.
Make sure that children turn off lights, appliances, and electronic equipment when these are not in use. Make it part of their chore charts and reward them with stickers or small treats when they engage in these practices. Have them help sort clothes that no longer fit and take them to a thrift store where they can be resold.
Teaching your kids to be eco friendly involves including them in the practices in which the adults already engage. Recycling, conserving, organic diets, and repurposing clothing are just a few ways for the family to engage in green living. Children have great ideas, so listen to them, because they may come up with even more environmentally friendly practices.