Living a green lifestyle is very rewarding, but it can be hard to get children to see why it’s so good. This is especially true with the huge amount of video games, junk food and overall laziness that many children have. While it might be difficult, you can get through to your children with some simple encouragement. It’s best to start this when they are very young, and to continue it throughout their teenage years.
Part of the green lifestyle is being active. Cars are definitely needed for long distances, but you should walk and bike anywhere that you can to save gas and reduce carbon emissions. Take your children on bike rides as often as you can to show them how fun it can be. This will also be a great source of exercise for everyone.
This will get children to understand that biking is fun, and that it’s much better than driving to stores and other locations that are fairly close.
Public transportation releases a lot of carbon dioxide into the air, but the overall impact of each person is lessened. This makes public transportation a greener option than driving. You can teach your child this lesson by using trains and buses if they bring you to your destination. Aside from showing them that public transportation is useful, this will also help your children be around new people.
While you shouldn’t overly inconvenience yourself, this is a great option for traveling longer distances and still maintaining the green lifestyle.
Part of the reason why people are hesitant to buy from farmers’ markets is because they have been conditioned to visit supermarkets for food. This is because most parents buy exclusively from supermarkets, and the child is never exposed to real farmers.
Not only is the produce at farmers’ markets typically less expensive, but it’s also much fresher. This also allows you to talk with the food’s producers, rather than store representatives. Your child will be exposed to new foods and a greener market for produce.
This isn’t saying that toys are bad. Children need toys to explore their world and imaginations. The problem is that the modern child has tons of action figures, video games and other toys that can be distracting. A child raised with this lifestyle might learn that happiness is found through having more things, and that it’s fine to leave toys to collect dust because there’s always a new one.
It’s often a better idea to have fewer toys. They should also be high-quality toys that are durable and fun. If you are worried about your child getting too many toys for Christmas or birthdays, then talk with your family members and tell them about how you are raising your child and what you want him or her exposed to.
Farmers’ markets are definitely green, but is there anything greener than growing your own food? Most families don’t have enough room to grow everything, but they can grow a few herbs and vegetables. Make a family garden and involve your children. Ask them to weed and tend the garden. This will also show them how rewarding it is when they can eat the fresh produce.
One of the backbones of the green lifestyle is conservation. If your child can use as much water, power and resources as he or she wants, then it might be hard to break this habit later in life. It’s better to encourage conservation by telling your child to turn off the water while brushing his or her teeth, dimming or turning off the lights after a certain hour and understanding that finite resources should be used sparingly.
You should also tell your child why this is important. It will reinforce that conservation is a serious matter that will help the planet.
Encouraging your child to live a green lifestyle isn’t as hard as you might think. It’s all about exposing him or her to this lifestyle and explaining why it’s important. While other children might have a hard time turning off their TVs and games, your child will understand just how important it is to unplug.
Sandra Marino is a ‘go green’ enthusiast and loves spending time helping others learn how they can help the environment with green tips from Green Geek Tips.