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How to Teach Your Younger Kids to be More Eco-Conscious

written by: Shamrockcon•edited by: Niki Fears•updated: 1/25/2009

Teaching your child to live "green" is important, but not easy. With this article, you can help your child to being more environmentally aware.

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    It is important to start your child on the path to being eco-conscious at a young age. If you and your family live greenly, bring your child in on it.

    The first thing you must foster in a child is a love of the planet. Shows like “Planet Earth” show a child that our planet is beautiful and has many other creatures in it other than humans. It is also important to stress that if we continue producing and using our resources that he/she may not be able to enjoy parks, clean water, or even gas for the car.

    Take him/her to the recycling center and talk about recycling and why it is important for us to do it. Discuss what the landfill does and how much garbage your family produces. Try to make your child understand that we are filling our beautiful world up with garbage.

    Make changes in your child’s life that reflect your eco-conscious words and views. Instead of new tupperware, reuse containers and help your child understand why it is crucial to reuse things instead of throwing them in the garbage. This also saves you money, so it’s doubly beneficial. Use a reusable lunchbox instead of a new bag every day, and tell your child that by doing this you are keeping waste out of the world.

    Teach your child to do things like using fewer sheets of toilet paper, taking shorter baths, and turning the lights off when he/she leaves the room. He/she should be praised for doing things like this.

    Encourage carpooling by offering to participate with other parents. Tell your child that by carpooling, you are polluting less and keeping the world clean.

    Read books about the environment to your child, or simply about the joys of nature. A child who does not know why he/she should care is certainly not going to be eco-conscious.

    The most important thing you can do is include a child in conversations about the environment and being environmentally friendly. If he/she is exposed to the issues in an intelligent way, without being baby-talked, then he/she will have a better understanding in the future.

    If you are inclusive and talk to your child a lot, it should be fairly easy to teach them to live “greenly.” Hopefully, you can change their life and the world for the better!