Parents have the greatest influence on their children, so it’s up to them to create a more eco-conscious youth. Taking steps to developing this awareness may be difficult, but they are vital to ensure a more sustainable future. Here are some of the ways you can take charge of creating a more environmentally conscious mindset among your children:
1. Start Early
Just like learning a language, teaching your children to be aware of their environment needs to start at a very early age. The more exposure they have to this awareness, the more they will integrate it into their future lifestyles.
2. Lead by Example
Don’t just tell your kids what to be aware of, teach them through example! Recycle whenever possible, create litter-free lunches (for both you and your children), buy less food that comes in plastic wrappers, conserve water and explain the importance of these actions.
3. Get dirty
Kids these days tend to be naive to where their food comes from. Starting a vegetable garden in your backyard or community gardening center can be a great way of getting your children interested in their diets. Have them dig in the dirt, play with some worms, plant seeds and see how their food grows. Even just some pots around the house can be enough, as long as they are getting dirty.
4. Reduce Clutter
For many families, it’s inevitable that junk will continuously build up in their homes as their family grows. To prevent this, consider recycling unneeded devices, toys and furniture, or reusing them in an innovative fashion. Old toys can be donated to local shelters or children’s hospitals, or they could be used in some kind of arts and crafts project. There are many ways of decluttering your home, just make sure to do so in an environmentally-safe way.
5. Get Outdoors!
The last, and maybe one of the most important steps to take to ingrain environmental awareness is to get your kids outside! Let them explore the environment they need to preserve. It’s also good to have them off their technology for part of the day so they can appreciate their natural world. There’s always something to do outdoors, so get your kids involved in as many outdoors activities as possible. Have them try out a wide range of sports, go on hikes or walks, ride bikes, go on picnics, and maybe even volunteer at a local farm.
More than ever, public schools are teaching our children the importance of conserving the environment, but how much has our environment improved? Awareness and care starts at the home, so be the parent who helps create a better future for our youth.
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