Children of today are surrounded by conversations and the threat of climate change, so how can we empower them to help without causing alarm?
The term ‘sustainability’ has gained a lot of momentum in the last decade, and for good reason. As the media have come to report more and more about the ever-looming threat of global warming and climate change, society has come to expect a level of responsibility from individuals and businesses alike.
While a lot of the information can be overwhelming and disheartening, everyday practices can make a big difference. As Sir Attenborough says, there’s certainly still hope.
But how do you imprint this on to a little one, without causing stress or alarm? Sustainability is key to a bright future and has always been a part of our DNA at Footprints. Here are some tips that may help you teach your child about this important concept.
1. Show them what they’re protecting
The best way to help your child understand the beauty and importance of nature is by spending time in it. Our veggie garden is great for this, as it demonstrates the power of the earth and natural cycle of life. If possible, go for family hikes on weekends or spend time at the beach. When humans connect, they protect.
2. Read books with sustainable and environmental topics
Children’s authors have a magical ability to distill complex concepts into engaging and impactful stories. The Climate Council has a number of recommendations for classic books about the environment, such as Where the Forest Meets the Sea by Jeannie Baker and The Lorax by Dr. Seuss. Not to mention, reading stories to your children is a wonderful way to spend quality time.
3. Talk openly about sustainability at home
One of the greatest ways to instill positive sustainable behaviours in your child is by making it a regular part of your dialogue at home. This can include simply verbalising what goes to waste when the tap hasn’t been turned off correctly, or the recycling bin hasn’t been used properly. It can also be welcoming conversations about bigger issues your little one may have heard about in the news with an approachable, honest and optimistic way.
Tackling environmental issues with a young child is no easy feat but incorporating these simple everyday habits into their lives can help build a strong foundation of understanding. If you’d like to discuss the sustainability practices we implement at Footprints, we’re always very happy to chat.