Getting Kids Involved in Nature by Teresa Palmer
It’s important to talk to your growing children about minimizing our carbon footprint for a better tomorrow for ourselves and future generations. There are so many ways in which we can do this.
At our house we like to talk to my 7 year old stepson Isaac about ways in which we can help the environment. We love singing the song “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” it’s super catchy and helps teach them the importance of being eco conscious. Isaac has also grasped the concept of how recycling works, and really makes an effort to remember what goes in to what bin. He also knows the importance of turning off the water when we brush our teeth to save water and he even doesn’t flush the toilet sometimes because he wants to help save water (haha!) we have told him that whilst that’s a really beautiful gesture that it’s okay to flush dirty toilet water, especially when Bodhi likes dropping things in the toilet! But so far, so good, it seems like our kids are in tune with the importance of taking care of nature and that makes us happy.
Other good ways in which the kids can help ensure we are being our most eco selves is by going on “Power Missions” as we call them in our household. It basically means Isaac races around the house and unplugs the things that we are currently using (besides our digital clocks!) “Phantom Power” accounts for 5% of each persons electricity bill which means that our devices that are plugged in but are not in use are still drawing power. Isaac finishes his mission out of breath and feeling like a nature warrior.
Another great idea is to create your own organic garden in the backyard. You can start small with beans and peas then work your way up to berries. Eating from your own garden is also a wonderful way to show kids how we can be environmentally conscious and it also helps to establish healthy eating habits with kids. So it’s a win win! Also watching the kids take care of the garden it pretty magical too. It teaches children how nature works and emphasizes the importance of being kind to the environment and valuing Mother Nature. Giving kids the responsibility of caring for a plant goes a long way.
Lastly we ensure that Bodhi spends plenty of time outdoors in nature, the more time he spends there the more I notice him smelling flowers and making rhythms from sticks and stones. He is interacting with nature and seems both at peace and in awe of it. I can tell he already has an appreciation for the outdoors and it gives me hope that this passion will continue on. I always ask that he is gentle with flowers and the older he has become the more this seems important to him too. It’s beautiful to witness the sensitivity towards nature in our children. It makes me feel very proud of my boys.