Fun Ways to Teach Future Generations About the Importance of Recycling

recycle-shredded-paperIt’s important to teach kids about recycling, because future generations of adults should be taught at a young age to live environmentally-conscious lives. Here’s a few ways to make learning about trash and recycling fun for children:

Take a field trip: A visit to the local city or county recycling center, shredding service or landfill (or a combination thereof) is a real eye-opener for children and adults, alike. Anyone who takes part in a safely-monitored tour of their local dump will see tons of garbage being bulldozed into the earth as gulls swoop in circles overhead and scavenge for rotting food. Kids love field trips, and learning about garbage is gaining knowledge about something familiar to them, and a new and exciting adventure.

Ask what they see, and children will scan the heaps of trash and shout, “A couch! A chair! A bike! Toys! Clothes! Cardboard! Plastic Bags!” See the look of surprise when they’re told that much of the trash being buried in landfills is paper products. That’s when you emphasize the importance, and ease, of always making an effort to recycle paper.

It’s almost a guarantee that several kids will wrinkle their faces and plug their noses at the smells emanating from the piles of garbage. Landfill operators can provide parents or tour group leaders with startling statistics about the amount of garbage being thrown into landfills every day, along with information about how reducing garbage can lengthen the limited lifespan of a landfill.

Emphasize the Three Rs: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Lay the groundwork by teaching the three Rs. They’re easy to remember, especially if you provide children with examples and quiz them about how they can Reduce, Reuse or Recycle items in their daily lives. Their answers may surprise you.

Play with Trash: There are many online resources and books that show fun ways to use recyclable items for craft projects. Household objects which are normally tossed in the trash can be transformed into toys, decorations for their bedrooms, or musical instruments. With a little glue and scissors, cereal boxes can be crafted into trucks. Ice cream pails can become drums. With a few twists of a pipe cleaner, plastic grocery bags can be transformed into flowers. Kids have fun creating something from “nothing” and the experience fuels their creativity.

Contact us for more information about our Community Shred events where we increase the public’s knowledge about the importance of paper shredding, identity theft, and making our communities a safer place to live.