As a parent, you probably hope for your child to grow up sharing your values, particularly your values concerning environmental stewardship. Our advice? Start ‘em young. It’s never too soon to start talking to your kids about the importance of caring for the planet, particularly recycling.
To be fair, your little one probably won’t sit still long enough for you to explain the finer points of the circular economy, nor go over the latest science regarding climate change. Rather than bombard them with facts and figures, you can educate them through hands-on, interactive activities. In this post, we’ll share some of our favorite examples.
Make Your Own Robot
Most families have cardboard boxes, cartons, paper towel rolls, and yogurt containers pile up in their recycling bin. Before you haul them to the curb, use these raw materials to build your own robot (or another structure of your choice). Get crafty and creative, while also seizing the opportunity to talk to your child about the importance of reusing rather than discarding.
Build a Bird Feeder
This is a variant on the previous suggestion: Recycle materials to make a home for birds and allow your child the opportunity to color or decorate it as they see fit. Explain to them how it can often be cheaper and easier to reuse and recycle than it is to buy something brand new.
Paint the Recycling Symbol
Get out the arts and crafts supply and have your child recreate the recycling symbol. Take a minute to explain to them what the symbol recognizes and encourage them to look for it while out and about.
Make a Recycling Bin
Another crafty idea: Allow your child to make or decorate their own recycling bin. Keep it somewhere in the basement or garage and let them practice sorting out recyclable materials.
Pack a Waste-Free Lunch
Invite your child to join you while you pack their school lunch. Use all recycled (or reusable) packaging and explain to them why this is so important.
Do Some Cleanup
One way to educate your child and serve your community: Head to a nearby park or public area to do some trash cleanup. You can turn it into a game or scavenger hunt, challenging your little ones to find as many recyclable items as they can within a certain time frame.
There are so many ways to teach your kids about recycling, including not just these hands-on activities, but also books, online videos, and more. Be intentional in instructing your kids on the value of environmental stewardship. Play your part in raising up the next generation of recyclers. And with any questions about waste and recycling management in your community, reach out to WasteXperts directly.