What is Sustainable Living?
Sustainable living is living in a way that limits our use of the Earth’s natural resources to help reduce our carbon footprint and create a brighter future for the earth and our children. Sustainable living can be practised in a number of ways such as limiting or altering transportation methods, changing your diet, or reducing your energy consumption.
How Can You Teach Your Child About Sustainable Living?
While the most important way you can teach your child about sustainable living is through modelling the behaviour below are a few other tips for how to educate your child about sustainable living, its importance, and how they can help do their part.
Build an Organic Garden
Have your child help you build a small organic garden of vegetables and herbs to use for your meals. This will help them learn the process of planting and growing food as well as teach them the importance of hard work and being able to see the fruits of your labour.
Take Your Children to a Local Farm
Your child will most likely enjoy some time with the animals on the farm, and many farmers are happy to discuss the process of raising and caring for their animals and how their farm is an integral part of the daily lives and nutrition of many families.
Take Them Along for Some Environmental Volunteer Work
It is good to show your child how to give back and what better way to have them volunteer their time than taking them along to do some environmental volunteer work. Even simple volunteer work like helping to clean up litter can teach your child to respect the environment as well as the importance of taking care of the earth they live on.
Show Them How to Recycle
Implement a recycling system in your home and have your child participate in making sure that all of your house waste gets properly recycled. While showing them how to sort items for recycling, explain to them how reusing material can prevent the filling of landfills.
Practise Good Energy Saving Techniques
While it may be impossible for you to solve the world’s energy crisis in this lifetime, you can teach your child the importance of everyone doing their part to preserve energy and natural resources that we use every day, Teach them to turn off lights and electronics when not in use and show them how to conserve water while getting their everyday tasks completed.
Show Them Alternate Forms of Transportation
Discuss with your child how vehicles use fuel to power themselves and how limiting the use of this resource when they can will help preserve those reserves for longer and also reduce the amount of pollution in the environment. When going short distances ride bikes with your child or enjoy a nice walk so they can learn that they do not need to depend on their vehicles to get everywhere, they need to go.
Read Them Books That Discuss Sustainability
There are many great children’s books that address the issue of sustainability and convey it to children in a way that they can understand the importance and what it means to live a sustainable lifestyle.
Teach Your Child About Composting
Discuss with your child about food waste and how the leftover inedible scraps from food can be used to help plants and trees grow perpetuating the circle of life. Build a compost pile in the yard and incorporate it into part of their chores. Once you have used your food waste to create a good compost, show them how the compost can then be used as fertiliser to help your garden or other plants in your yard grow.
Whether it is energy conservation, changing the way they look at food waste, or teaching them about recycling, making sustainable living part of your child’s life lessons is a great way to make them an active participant in their own environment and instill good habits in them so that they can help create a healthy earth for themselves and the generation that follows.