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Five Ways to Teach Your Children to Go Green in Your Home

To protect our planet every individual must do his or her part to care for the environment. Children and teens greatly contribute to rising utility costs and wasted energy with their consumption habits such as, taking long showers or leaving lights on in the rooms when they are not in use. That’s why it’s vital to teach your children to go green from a young age the importance of being environmentally friendly. Being environmentally-friendly starts at your doorstep. There are many easy and fun ways your children can do their part to help keep our planet clean. Just simply educating your children on the importance of reducing, reusing and recycling in order to conserve resources can not only greatly benefit the planet and save you money but also help to make you and your family healthier and happier.

In 2011, Americans alone generated 250 million tons of trash and only recycled 87 million tons, which is the equivalent to only 34 percent (EPA). With the mounting amounts of waste in landfills space to store trash is steadily running out. Waste prevention methods such as, reducing, reusing and recycling resources  will greatly help to decrease the amount of toxic, in disposable waste. By helping to eliminate the amount of contaminated waste you are helping to maintain a safe and comfortable living environment.

You can make going green a family affair by getting your kids involved in helping the environment. There are many simple tasks you can appoint to your children to involve them in the going green process.

  1.       Reusing Resources.  Educate your children about the importance of reusing resources by having them donate items they no longer use to charity. They can donate clothes and toys to organizations such as, The Salvation Army and Goodwill. Also, allow them to purchase an item they like from a second-hand store so they can understand that used goods can be just as good as new ones.  
  2.     Recycling Resources. Teach your kids about the significance of recycling and how it benefits the environment.  Show them what items can be recycled in your home and make recycling bins easily accessible to them. Teach them to recycle plastic bags and water bottles in order to reduce the amount of plastic your family consumes. Encourage your kids to use more products that can be recycled by implementing a contest. Have your children receive rewards if they have more items recycled at the end of the week then they have trash.
  3.       Save Water.   There are hundreds of different ways to conserve water in your home. Children often enjoy playing in water and don’t understand the importance of water conservation. Educate your children on the value of water conservation in your home.  Teach them to limit the amount of water they use. Emphasis the importance of taking showers rather than baths. Set time limits on how long showers can be in your home.  Teach them to not let the water run when they are brushing their teeth.
  4.        Conserving Energy and Natural Resources. Talk to your kids about turning electrical appliances and lights off when they aren’t using them. Replace computer games and television watching by instituting a family game night or taking your kids to the park. This will limit the amount of electricity they are regularly using.
  5. Get your Kids Involved in a Fun Community Service Activity. Teach your kids to Go Green by involving them in a fun community service activity where they are helping to clean up a local park or street. Also, teach your kids about the benefits of composting and have them take part in making a compost pile in your yard. Kids love the gross aspect of composting and are fascinated once they find out how it works.

Teaching your kids to be environmentally-friendly not only helps to make your home healthier and more energy efficient but also encourages them to develop good, lifelong habits. Praising your kids on their commitment and letting them know that their actions greatly make a difference will encourage them to be environmentally friendly. By helping to maintain a healthy and environmentally-safe living environment you and your family are helping to preserve and better our planet for future generations.

For more information on home energy audits go to:

http://www.homeenergyefficiencyaudit.com/

For more information on going green in your home go to:

http://www2.epa.gov/newsroom/gogreen

Author: Jasmine Stuart

 

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