Recycling doesn’t come naturally, we need to be taught the best way to handle our refuse. We must learn how we can reduce our pollution, preserving our environment for future generations, and teaching our children to do the same, for themselves and for their children, leaving their children with a legacy that they will enjoy: a clean environment. We cannot do it alone, we need our children to understand the importance of them knowing and understanding why we do these things. We need to continually look for ways to encourage our children with reducing, reusing and recycling. We need to teach them in ways so that it becomes a normal part of their life. We need to continually be making more effort on conservation awareness, and directing some of our time promoting recycling to our kids.
So, where do we start? Usually the best place to start is at home. We can begin by example and encouraging our children to be aware of what items can be reused, what items can be recycled and what items we have to throw away. We can teach them things like: everything we throw away becomes garbage and goes into landfill and contributes to our pollution. We can encourage them to look for ways to reuse items. Recycling for kids is all about them becoming aware of how best we use our natural resources.
They will learn that the pollution that we produce becomes a threat to, not just ourselves, but also to the birds that fly in the air, the animals that roam on the land and the fish that swim in the oceans. We have to educate them on the causes of pollution, and how we can change our habits so that we do less harm to our environment. Our piles of garbage need to be reduced. Talk together about events that happen in our world, such as oil spills and piling trash in the rivers and the effect that it has on us and our food supply. So it should be no one else’s responsibility but ours, to fix the problems we have created and to avoid further ones. Thus the need for waste management programs such as recycling.
At home, you could set up bins with different colors, each assigned a specific type of waste product. Allow your child to label the bins and enjoy the process of being involved. The rubbish bins could be labelled for plastic materials, aluminum cans, glass and maybe an extra bin for paper. Also, help your child understand that the rubbish, now segregated, will be turned into something useful in the future.
You can also get your children to be involved in community projects or environmental organizations, of course at a level that can be comprehended by his capabilities. Aside from that, social interactions may play a great part in making your child enjoy his work. They may also find new friends and share ideas of recycling. Or if you’re able, you could start your own small community-based projects involving recycling for kids. You can invite fellow parents and your child’s friends and playmates, making the community more environmentally aware and earth-friendly. Lastly, no other people can be better examples to your children than you, their parents.
You should lead by example. We need to show our children that we are the ones inspiring them, rather than creating a problem for them to clean up. Let them know that you throw your own rubbish into the right colored garbage bin. After all, these efforts of promoting recycling for kids would be in vain if we didn’t do it ourselves.