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Fun Ways to Teach Kids About Saving Energy at Home

By: Matt Chittock - Updated: 3 Oct 2010 | comments*Discuss
 
Fun Ways To Teach Kids About Saving Energy At Home

The chances are that when you were a child, if your Dad yelled at you to turn your TV off, he was more worried about the cost of electricity rather than its draining effect on the planet’s resources.

These days, we all know that conserving our energy is essential to slow down damage to the environment. But it turns out that Dad was right too. For many parents living through an economic downturn, saving cash by turning off unwanted lights is just as appealing as helping save the planet.

In an increasingly technologically advanced world it’s natural that children have access to power for items like computers and mobiles. But it’s also important that they don’t take that energy for granted. Teaching kids about conserving energy is essential if you want them to grow up green – so take a glance at our tips below and start them on the road to cutting energy (as well as your electricity bill).

Teach Kids Where Energy Comes From

Together as a family, search in an encyclopaedia (or on the net) for answers about where your energy comes from. Do they know how coal is produced? Do they understand what kind of energy the cooker uses? Find out together – then let your children know that some energy supplies are finite, and they’re running out fast.

Family action point: If you haven’t already – switch your energy to a green supplier. While many energy companies claim to use renewable resources, others can offer 100% green coverage.

Talk it Out

Call a family meeting and discuss practical ways that you can save energy around the house. Put a big piece of poster paper in the middle of the table and get your kids to write down their ideas in magic marker. Afterwards put the poster on the kitchen wall so everyone can see it. Remember that this includes adults too! So, if your kids resolve to shut down the computer an hour early, promise to leave your mobile off for an extra hour every night, then see if everyone can keep their energy-saving promises - and if so celebrate with a fun family treat.

Family action point: Don’t promise too much to start off with! It can be more difficult than you think to wean yourself off some addictive energy-guzzling devices.

Have a Switched Off Evening

If your average evening sees you working on your laptop while the kids are in the front room texting on their mobiles and watching TV, then the chances are that you could do with a carbon detox. As a family, commit to one night a week where you all pledge to switch off the TV and shut down other energy-guzzling equipment. Try and choose a family-friendly activity you could all do instead. Maybe it’s the perfect time to offer a ‘homework forum’ where you can help the kids with your homework. Though they may miss the TV, don’t forget that a story read aloud as a family can be just as bewitching.

Family action point: If it’s still warm outside then why not eat in the garden or go for a family ramble. Both are fun – and the only energy you use will be your own!

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