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As a guy in my mid 20’s I’ll feel a lot of the pain, but it’ll be those much younger than me who bear the brunt of the damage we’re inflicting today — and all because we’re just lazy.
In celebration of Earth Day, I was extended the privilege to speak to a couple of 3rd grade classes at a local elementary school.
I really enjoyed getting to speak to the 3rd grade classes at Rutland Elementary School!
In the words of Master Yoda, “Truly wonderful the mind of child is”. (If only you knew how wicked my Yoda impression is!)
Talking With Kids About Living Green
I started off by asking the students what they thought living green meant.
Here are some of their answers:
- Eat green stuff.
- Plant more trees.
- It’s about recycling.
Even though I had some green markers with me, none of the kids bought that it was about coloring ourselves green and living life that way. Bummer, I was really looking forward to that. Ha.
When I asked them what are some ways we can live green, they said:
- We can save trees.
- We can build homes with bricks.
- Start recycling.
- Ride your bike instead of driving cars.
We also talked about the huge impact they can make on our planet by:
- Using their own BPA free water bottles.
- Taking their parents on a ghost hunt at home to reduce phantom power draw.
- Encouraging their parents to use reusable shopping bags and CFLs.
Another incredible activity we were able to do (because this school is better technologically equipped than many in my area) was to participate in an online carbon footprint calculator for kids!
The calculator we used was the Bobbie Index. This is an incredible tool for kids, parents, and teachers! In the interactive tool you walk Bobbie through a normal day, making choices from what he will eat for breakfast, to how he’ll pack his lunch, what he can do at school to save energy, and how he can live green when he gets home from school.
Even though the kids made some wonderful decisions for Bobbie, the calculator still revealed a need for 1.7 planets if we all lived by the choices they made. Even though one student noted that we’ll soon be colonizing Mars (and no, I’m not making that up), the others realized that 1.7 planets is .7 more planets than we have access to!
Every Day Is Earth Day For Kids
Want to know how to get grown-ups to recycle, convert to CFLs, ride bikes, and live green?
Get their kids interested in it!
If the youth of our world could learn and care enough about changing our planet and world, the adults would have no choice but to follow suit — because we all know how persistent and stubborn kids can be when they want something.
Making A Difference
After my talk to one of the 3rd grade classes at Rutland Elementary School, I returned the next day to speak to the second class there and found — guess what — several boxes in the front of the room for the class’ new recycling program!
Now do you believe that the change would be better off to start with our youth?
Truly wonderful the mind of a child is. We could all learn a bit from them as well… if we’d only watch and listen.
How did you celebrate Earth Day?
I think every little step toward living green is an awesome one… but eco-snobbery sucks! My goal is to help newbies learn the most important steps toward living green — individually and collectively. Personally, I strive to have as little impact as possible on Planet Earth while I'm here.