With the start of school just around the corner, send your kids off in the greenest style possible with a few of these back to school eco-tips.
- Think Outside the Lunch Box. Instead of brown-bagging your kids’ lunches, opt for a reusable, washable lunch box. Invest in a PVC-free, thermally insulated lunch bag, one made from recycled materials, or from organic cotton. Instead of using baggies and plastic wrap for sandwiches and snacks, use reusable storage pockets that are easy to clean and use again. For beverages, instead of sending your kid with bottled water, choose a BPA-free reusable canteen.
- Take Alternative Forms of Transportation. Try walking to school with your family or even riding your bike. It’s a great way to spend some extra time with your kids. Plus you get some exercise and cut down on emissions from driving yourself. If the school is beyond walking distance, opt for your child to take the bus or plan a carpool with other families in the neighborhood. More and more districts are now purchasing hybrid buses to help reduce their carbon footprint and better the environment.
- Reuse your child’s school supplies. Not only is this the most economical choice, it is also the greenest decision by preventing the most waste. If new school supplies are a must, look for products made from recycled goods or entirely eco-friendly materials.
- Cover your textbook in recycled paper. Rather than having to purchase brand new covers for your child’s textbooks every year, use materials from around the house. Old wrapping paper, comics, or even brown paper bags from the grocery store could be used. Simply flip the wrapping paper, where the design is on the inside to have a completely blank slate for your child to decorate their textbook however they choose to.
- Donate or recycle last year’s clothes and supplies. Look for a clothing donation center or Goodwill to donate everything from last year instead of just tossing it out in the trash. All of the items can change a person’s life. Just remember that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure!
Want to educate your kids more on renewable energy? Be sure to check out Green Mountain’s Enviro-kids site for plenty of fun and easy to understand activities and games to help your kids learn how to take care of our Earth.
August 9, 2012