In honor of earth day, following are a few specific things we do around our house to reduce, reuse, and recycle the resources we use. Our children see us taking these simple steps every day. It's not anything special; it's just what we do. We also make sure to take the opportunity to talk to the Agents about why these actions are important. Even Agent A knows that certain items get put into certain bins. It's never to early to learn!
|I can help with this|
2. We shop with reusable grocery bags. We started doing this about four or five years ago, and it was such an easy switch I don't know why we didn't do it sooner. The initial cost per bag was maybe 50 cents? We lost one bag along the way, but the others have held up remarkably well. The biggest issue here is actually remembering to take them to the store! (Hint: If that's a problem, just put them back in the car after you unload groceries.) Now we also use them for transporting our giant stack of library books each week.
3. We reuse at art time. Agents E and J go through a lot of paper with the amount of coloring we do around here. Of course we always print on both sides, but beyond that we find creative ways of using materials from other sources. The round cardboard that comes out of the pizza box is great for painting. Old shoe boxes hold myriad supplies. Leftover paper the movers left lying around did not go to waste. We cut up old boxes no longer sturdy enough for reuse into small "palettes" for them to use while they paint. Toilet paper rolls become mini-telescopes or cute animal characters.
|A little after dinner reading|
5. We recycle paper, glass, metal, and plastic. Even with the best laid plans for reducing what comes into our home, we end up with a lot of paper products, glass bottles, and metal/plastic food containers. We are fortunate to be in an area that recycles just about everything. It saddens me when I go past trash dumpsters on base and see them overflowing with obvious recyclables. The little extra effort to bag up materials to be recycled and take them to the drop off spot is well worth it.
What do at your house to teach your children about caring for the environment?
- You are a Child of the Earth - Using the Earth as their classroom, Patti from Canadian Unschool teaches her 4 children their spiritual connection to the Earth and she accepts that loving the Earth can get really, really messy.
- Cutting Out Paper - Jorje of Momma Jorje shares how she went from curiosity and concern to actually cutting out the use of paper towels in her household. She is proud to be "greener" as each Earth Day passes.
- The World is Brown - Debra Ann Elliot of Words are Timeless believes in keeping the Earth green, but because so many people inhabit the Earth it is turning brown because people aren't doing their part by reducing, reusing, and recycling.
- 7 Child And Eco Friendly Activities To Honor The Earth (Plus Some Environmental Books For Kids) - Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama shares her favorite books that help children become more aware of the importance of respecting and caring for Mother Earth. In addition, she hosts a guest post outlining seven child and eco friendly activities to honor the earth.
- 5 Ways We Teach Our Children To Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle - Valarie at Momma In Progress shares a few tips for encouraging young children to care for the earth.
- Little Changes - Big Results - Meegs at A New Day talks about how sometimes it’s the little decisions and changes that can lead us to find big results, and how she's baby-stepping her way to a more environmentally conscious lifestyle.
- Inspiring the Next Generation - aNonyMous at at Radical Ramblings hopes to inspire her daughter to live a green and sustainable lifestyle, in the same way she was inspired by her high-school science teacher, and talks about the changes her family are making towards this vision.
- Eco-Friendly Cleansers: Safe For the Environment, Healthy For Every Body - Rebekah at Liberated Family writes about safe and natural alternatives to toxic, household cleaning products..
- Lightening My Footprint with Cloth Nappies (Diapers) - Christine at African Babies Don’t Cry shares the biggest eco-choice she has made so far, and why she is so passionate about it.
- Clutter Free for a Cause - At Living Peacefully with Children Mandy's penchant for decluttering and simple living cuts down on consumerism, taking less of a tole on the Earth.
- Eco-Parenting: Homemade Bug Spray - Kerry at City Kids Homeschooling shares a homemade bug spray recipe that helps her family to enjoy the natural world while taking precautions against bug bites.
- Let the Scales Fall From My Eyes...Just Not Too Quickly - Kelly at Becoming Crunchy talks about the discomfort of no longer being able to live in denial over how her choices affect the world around her.
- Fostering Love of Earth - Justine at The Lone Home Ranger instills a love of nature in her daughters by embarking on their first backyard vegetable garden together.
- Being in Nature - Carrie at Love Notes Mama knows that just being in nature is more than enough.
- 5 Ways to Pass Down Environmental Values to Your Children - Charise at I Thought I Knew Mama shares how easy it can be to instill environmental values in your children.
- Viva Portlandia - Amy at Anktangle writes about the place she lives and loves in: Portland. She describes the ways this green city makes it easy for her family to take care of our earth, and also the steps she's taking to further lessen her family's environmental impact.
- Conspicuous Conservationism - Jenn at Monkey Butt Junction examines the phenomenon of eco-conscious behavior as a status symbol.
- Time for Radical Sustainability - Terri at Child of the Nature Isle ponders how she can model a truly sustainable lifestyle for her children and raise them in a way that their environmental consciousness is as natural as breathing!