Many parents today have a focused concern about the state of the environment. Factors such as climate change, pollution, the dependence on non-renewable energy and more are factors that will affect the world that our children, grandchildren and future generations live in. No parent wants to leave behind an unhealthy planet for their kids to live in, so many are taking steps to live a green lifestyle. Through sustainable practices, you can indeed minimize your impact on the planet. While this is important, sustainable education that teaches kids how to live a green lifestyle is even more important.
A Sustainable Lifestyle
Many children grow up to lead a lifestyle that they became accustomed to in their childhood. For example, if they became accustomed to leading a sedentary lifestyle and eating unhealthy meals as a child, many will continue to carry those learned habits into their adulthood. Therefore, teaching children how to live a sustainable life now while they are under your roof is important. Making eco-friendly lifestyle changes in your home can carry forward into their adult years as well as even further with future generations.
Creating an Awareness of Your Impact
One of the basic principles associated with sustainable living pertains to minimizing the impact of your actions on the planet. Everything from the foods you eat to the clothes you choose to wear and where you get your energy from has an impact on the planet. Kids can begin learning from a very early age what impact their actions have. For instance, in a child’s younger years, you can talk to them about how putting the trash into one trash bin takes it to a landfill, but putting that trash into a recycling bin allows that material to be reused. Talk about where everything came from, and where it goes after it is used in your home. Through this regular and on-going discussion, you can raise awareness in your children.
It is not enough, however, to simply discuss sustainable living practices. Instead, you need to regularly make decisions that promote sustainable living. Choose to purchase a rain barrel to make beneficial use of rainwater. Choose to wear clothing until it is unusable, then only replace it with used clothing purchased at consignment stores. Grow foods in your backyard, and purchase other foods from a farmer’s market or that was grown locally. Invest in solar power or wind energy when possible. These are all examples of how you can lead a sustainable lifestyle, and with each effort that you make, your children will observe and learn from your actions.
Almost every decision that you make over the course of a day will have a direct or indirect impact on the environment. By making decisions that promote sustainable living yourself, you can use each of these actions to educate your children. Your actions can be used to foster an open and on-going dialog about sustainable living, and they can also be used to teach kids through their own observations. The fact is that children typically do learn lifestyle habits in childhood that will carry through their adult years, and these are lifestyle habits that they will teach their own kids as well. With your efforts at sustainable education, you can have long-term and far-reaching effects on your family’s impact on the planet.
This article was contributed to encourage sustainable education and promote sustainable practices.