Teaching Recycling in Schools Is More Important Than You Think

  • June 2014
  • Posted By JohnnyG

While Earth Day has passed, it is important that we teach our children that every day should be Earth Day. It is more important than ever before to be teaching this in school at an early age, so that by the time that our children have graduated high school they are in the habit of the three big R’s, Recycle, Reduce, and Reuse. Why is it important?

There are numerous reasons why teaching our children about recycling is important. Let’s start with just the basics. Glass, plastic, and metals are something that isn’t created out of thin air, it takes resources to create these items. Our natural resources are dwindling, we must consider using alternatives, as well as creating products from renewable materials. It also takes energy to create these items from scratch. Let’s take glass for an example. Not only do you have to have the raw materials, but you have to heat these materials at extremely high temperatures for long periods of time until they melt into liquid glass form. On the other hand, crushed glass only takes a short period of time to melt down. The same goes for other recycled materials.

Another reason it is important that children learn about recycling is that they can be more creative about reusing the things they buy and use. For an example plastic soda bottles, no matter what size can be reused to hold water, as well as made into planters for flowers and vegetables. The same is true for plastic milk jugs, and these can have colored led light bulbs put in them to create a cool outdoor winter affect.

In addition to teaching recycling, teaching “don’t waste energy” is another important step children need to learn, in school, and at home. There are many ways to teach about wasting energy. Wasting electricity is one of the biggest, since there is a lot of waste in each and every home. Children are often the biggest culprits, leaving the lights on when they leave the room, not turning off the television, radio or computers. However, in many cases they do this because parents also do the same, showing a bad example. Parents leave lights on, leave the water running while brushing teeth, or shaving. It isn’t just about that either. As adults we waste a lot of energy driving all over the place, even if we could walk or ride a bike.

One of the ways you can start to teach children about conservation is to start recycling at home. Set up a bin just for aluminum cans, bottles and plastics. Start implementing saving energy by purchasing power strips for electronics, and go through a routine every night where everyone goes around shutting these off before going to bed. Instead of using those energy wasting incandescent light bulbs, buy LED lights instead.

It is important that kids learn these things. We grew up thinking that our resources were going to be around forever, which we found out as adults that this simply isn’t true. If we don’t start recycling, reducing our energy usage, and reusing the resources we have, our children and their children will be the ones holding the bag. They are the ones who will have to pay ten dollars a gallon for fuel, and left with limited resources. By teaching them now, at a young age, it will start to break this cycle, and help the planet. The aforementioned ideas are just a small part of the ideas you can use to help the planet. You can find an abundance of resources online.


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