From a young age (although it’s never too late to start) you should begin to lead by example certain habits for your children. You’ve probably already led by example in teaching them about eating vegan, but what about living a more ethical and environmentally sustainable lifestyle? Here are 10 eco-friendly habits that you should teach your children.
Always use a reusable tote at the store
It’s easy to forget to bring a reusable bag, but when I do my rule is that I must do without a bag or buy another reusable bag (because you can never have too many) Set a good example by always keeping a spare bag in your purse, a few in the car, and by the front door so you don’t forget them.
(Disposable) Straws suck-bring your own
Plastic straws are one of the worst things for our oceans and can take many years (about 200) to decompose. Encourage using reusable straws (stainless steel or bamboo work great) whether you’re having smoothies at home or eating out. One of the most important eco-friendly habits to teach your kids.
Reusable water bottles over “recyclable” ones
With brands like HydroFlask and Swell making steel based water bottles look cool, it won’t be hard to encourage your little one to proudly showcase their reusable bottle. Also, always carrying a water bottle will encourage both you and your child to stay hydrated.
You don’t need to have a green thumb to do minor gardening and to share the benefits of it with your child. You can start simple with planting herbs or carrots to show the process of growing your own food. Try checking out local events to see if you can find a kid-friendly gardening workshop within your community.
Walk, bike, or use public transit when possible
Depending on where you live, you might be able to walk or bike where you need to go almost all year long. If not, public transit is a great option to show your children a simple way to reduce their carbon footprint. Try taking the bus together to go to the store and familiarize them with the route.
Support independently owned small businesses-they are usually cheaper and better ethically compared to a large business. Shopping locally may mean going to the farmers market or buying handmade jewelry from your friend’s new business.
Repurpose before tossing out
If you can give a new life for an item instead of throwing it out, do it. Reuse mason jars as containers for nuts, oats, or rice. Turn cardboard boxes into a fun family project. Turn an old stuffed animal into a chew toy for your dog. The possibilities are endless.
Support ethical brands
Buying cruelty-free and ethically sourced products is a great habit to teach. Have a conversation on what makes a product ethical, where you can find them, why you should shop cruelty-free.
If it’s broken, try to fix it
We live in a society where many objects are made quickly with bad quality and at a low price point. Instead of spending money on a replacement, if it’s fixable, try to fix it. Teach your children (once they are old enough) basic skills in fixing items such as sewing a button, fixing a loose screw, or using a hammer.
Have no shame in second-hand items
A second-hand item can be just as good as one which is brand new. Eliminate the stigma around lightly used items being less desirable and embrace reducing and reusing items that may have previously gone unused in somebody’s garage.
The original article appears here: https://raisevegan.com/10-eco-friendly-habits-to-teach-your-children/
by Gabriella Anaya