Do your kids understand and appreciate what it means to be energy conscious? How the little things we do day to day can make a serious environmental impact over a lifetime? Here are 4 fun activities you can do with your kids to help reduce energy consumption and teach them sustainable practices.
Arts and Crafts Reminder Signs
Plan an arts and crafts days with your kids to make cute signs out of things around the house or some inexpensive items from the craft store. Create them with sayings like “Don’t forget to turn me off!” or “Only use me to before and after brushing!” And place them around the house on light switches, to remind the kids to turn off the lights when leaving a room, and on mirrors, to remind them to turn off the water while they brush their teeth to save on water. Explain to them that the earth has finite, limited resources and that by taking these little daily steps they’ll be conserving them for future generations.
Homemade Draft Guards
During another arts and crafts day try creating some draft guards using fabric and foam rods from the arts and crafts store. Get some white or light colored fabric so your kids can you can draw and color on them to decorate them as they desire. Once they’re done decorating, it’s time to create the foam rod sleeves. If your kids are mature and skilled enough you can have them sew them into place, or if that’s too much of a challenge you could have them use super glue instead (be sure to use gloves, that stuff is extremely sticky!). Once the sleeves for the draft guards are completed, slide the foam rods in, then slide them under doors to stop drafts from getting in or out. Explain to your kids that this will help the environment by saving on electricity by keeping the temperature inside your house more consistent, meaning less energy used to regulate it.
Kids and Composting
Start a compost pile with your kids in your backyard or balcony, where every day after meals, your family discards all leftover food and waste into the pile, where it will eventually decompose and become a useful fertilizer. This will teach your children that even things that appear to be trash can actually become something useful and life giving.
After your compost pile has turned into fertilizer, designate an area in your backyard and have your kids start a small garden with it. This will not only teach your kids farming skills, how to be sustainable and self-sufficient, it will also give them a sense of responsibility and accomplishment. It will show them how things go full circle, from food on your table, to scraps, to fertile land and back to food again.
Try growing some kid favorite carrots, tomatoes to make some homemade ketchup with or if you have enough room, grow some potatoes and make some homemade fries or chips with your kids. Explain to your kids that by growing these things yourself, you will conserve the energy it takes large farmers to produce, package and ship the food to stores. After your kids are done farming, opt for a 5 minute shower over a bath, with an energy-efficient shower head; it will use half as much water as a bath.
Instilling energy conscious values into your kids at a young age will be helpful throughout their lives and if you truly insist on doing these fun, fulfilling and character building activities, they may very well pass them along to their own families when they have them. Do you have any unique resourceful activities for kids to do to help them appreciate the environment more?
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