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Raising Environmentally-Conscious Kids (Part 2)

11-09-2017 09:00 AM | Aastha Dogra

Raising Environmentally-Conscious Kids (Part 2) | My Indian Dream

“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” Very true, isn't it...

“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” - Benjamin Franklin

Yesterday we learned how children should have a direct interaction with the environment on a daily basis. This increases their awareness and they start appreciating and valuing the environment more. Today, let’s discuss how to teach values like conserving water, using resources judiciously, not wasting food and doing charity, to the future drivers of our society.

“[Kids] don't remember what you try to teach them. They remember what you are.” - Jim Henson

  • Children copy whatever adults do. Take a keen interest in the environment and develop a love for nature yourself. Your child will sooner or later catch the same spirit.

  • Replace paper napkins with cloth napkins in your child’s lunchbox. Do not serve in paper cups and plates on her birthday. Children learn what they see.

  • Make it a point to turn off the lights and electronics when not in use.

  • Cook food in limit, serve it in smaller quantities and finish whatever is served.

  • Minimize the leftovers. Reuse the leftovers in meals the next day or donate them to the needy. Place a compost bin, put food scraps in it and make fertilizer at home. Use it in your kitchen garden.

  • Use water judiciously. Do not throw away the water left in glasses. Use it to water the kitchen garden or fill the dog’s water dish with it.

  • Involve the kids in sorting out books and clothing. Take your child along and donate old clothes and books in the orphanages. Let her feel that she has “achieved” something by donating to the needy.

  • When you go out, do not throw trash on the streets. Carry it back in your pockets and throw in the dustbin at home.

  • If possible, walk or bike to work, instead of depending on the car. Prepare a list of things that you need to buy before going to the market so that you can buy everything in one trip. Avoid wasting petrol on multiple trips. Children will imbibe this and do the same when they grow up.

  • When you drive past a public dustbin, show it to your child and explain that the more we waste the more it will grow. Visual experiences like these do leave a long-lasting impression on the child’s mind.

  • Teach children the value of money. If they ask for something, let them earn it through good conduct. Or ask them to save from their pocket money.

Encourage your children to write about the environment, participate in speeches and debates on the same so that they remain updated about the environmental issues. Challenge their brains, create a sense of wonder, help your children grow into well-rounded, sensitive and aware adults. As William Arthur Ward puts it, “The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.”

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