One of the most important aspects of parenting is teaching children values and helping them become strong, independent, and well-adjusted individuals. While building a character, kids also need to understand their role in society.
Kids have an innate empathy for Mother Earth and love for all living creatures. If your children feel or believe that they can make a difference, they will get into the idea with a sincere enthusiasm. With a proper approach and dedication, you can help them embrace an eco-friendly attitude. From recycling to gardening and playing in the park, there are plenty of fun ways to encourage green lifestyle. We’ve rounded up a couple of activities that will make green living entertaining for your kids!
Be a real-life example
The best way to teach your kids sustainable behaviour is by practicing it yourself. Kids, especially younger ones, perceive their parents as role-models. If you raise a child in a nature-friendly environment, green living will become like a second nature to them. Later on, they will pass their knowledge to their friends, colleagues and even their own children someday.
Green practices for adults:
- Use eco-friendly and homemade products.
- Conserve energy – turn off the lights and unplug electric appliances when not used.
- Minimize your waste. Use all food leftovers. Turn kitchen scraps into a compost.
- Pick organic and fresh products.
- Take your kids with you to the farmer’s market.
- Buy items of recycled content.
- Shop at second-hand stores or purchase quality products that will not wear out quickly and will last longer.
When your kids ask you why you’re doing this, you can simply explain them the importance of sustainability and green lifestyle.
The easiest way to introduce kids to sustainable living is by teaching them recycling. Toddlers and younger children love to collect, sort and organize stuff. Recycling is good not only for the environment, but also for kids’ learning and motor skills. This practice will help them understand concepts such as matching, comparing, weight and size and to develop sense of shape and space.
Recycling activities for kids:
- Toddlers and younger children can help sorting the garbage. Always be around to assist them and to prevent inadvertent injuries.
- Transform the baby food containers into homemade blocks
- Upcycle the glass jars by turning them into jar lanterns. Plastic jars can become magical glow in the dark fireflies’ jars.
- Make colourful puzzle out of the cereal boxes.
- Teach your children numbers with this easy-to-make egg carton maths.
- Play recycling race game and see who will sort more.
There are many benefits to planting and growing your own fruits and veggies, especially for your kids. First, you and your family will have a supply of fresh and healthy food. Second, your children will learn about where their food comes from. You can explain them the benefits of eating organic fruits and vegetables. Children are naturally curious about the surrounding world. Gardening provides a great opportunity to explore their environment and to learn more about plant life.
Gardening activities for kids:
- Start with indoors projects like growing beans on cotton balls.
- Choose easy to grow plants like herbs, baby carrots, beans, radishes, pumpkins and wildflowers.
- Make an egg shell succulent garden.
- Let children help with composting and watering.
- Plant brightly coloured fruits and veggies like berries, tomatoes, red and yellow peppers and red leaf lettuce that will drag the attention of your kids.
If garden maintenance is not your thing then you can come up with other outdoor activities. Spending time in the open air will allow children to develop special connection with nature. This is a great way to instil love and to care for the environment in their behaviour. Make time to go in the park with your kids, even if you are only taking a walk. Engage in outdoor recreation such as cycling, hiking, running and camping.
Make a trip
Consider taking your kids to farms or to petting zoos to introduce them to animal life. These institutions provide opportunity for children to interact with different domesticated animals such as goats, sheep, alpacas, llamas, rabbits and ponies. Petting farms are particular appealing to smaller kids that can see, feed and touch the animals.