With school starting soon, it can be easy to let our green-living habits slide during all the commotion. That makes it a perfect time to reaffirm those habits and teach our kids some valuable lessons. Here are some simple tips to stay green during back to school season.
1. Star a local carpool
If you live somewhere without busses, organize a local carpool arrangement with families who live nearby. One trip to and from school each day is better for the environment than six individual families doing it. Plus, it’s a lot less work on each parent.
(If you live somewhere with busses, use those.)
2. Skip the throwaway bags
Millions of paper bags and thrown away each year. For kids’ lunches, pick up some quality re-useable containers that can be returned home and washed.
3. Reuse last year’s school supplies
While it’s important to give kids everything they need to succeed in school, plenty of those supplies from last year are still good. I’m sure you have a half-filled notebook or pens with plenty of ink. Only replace what you need.
4. Buy smartly
When you do have to buy, look for products made from recycled or organic materials. Buy items with less packaging or no packaging at all. Also, invest in high quality stuff that will last years (like backpacks, shoes, and lunch bags).
5. Know the school’s recycling program
Ask if the school has the proper recycling receptacles available. If not, have your kids bring their recyclable trash home with them.
6. Be thrifty with school clothes
Before buying your kids a new designer wardrobe for the year, browse some local thrift stores for deals. Many places have new or barely worn items for a fraction of the cost.
7. Get involved
Join your school’s PTA and try to create some changes that steer the school into more environmentally-friendly practices, like sourcing food from local businesses, optimizing bus routes, and reducing energy usage.
8. Buy fewer books
For older kids who need to buy their books, look for alternative methods. You can save money and use less by buying used books. You could also use one of several book renting services.
9. Cut down paper waste
One of the biggest wastes during the school year is paper. Wherever possible, encourage your kids to use electronic formats for notes and messages. Younger kids usually can’t use laptops in school, so buy recycled paper for them. Older kids in college should use a computer for everything.
Written by Kim Webb, CEO and Founder of Rockin’ Green Soap
Finally it’s cool to be GREEN! Rockin’ Green is made for families that care about taking care of themselves and the Earth. As a mom Kim was fed up with the empty promises of “green” cleaning products that were not delivering what they promised… So she invented Rockin’ Green! We can all do our part for the environment while doing something good for ourselves. All of our organic cleaning products are biodegradable, and gluten and vegan friendly. They don’t contain phosphates, SLS, Parabens, or optical brighteners. All of our packaging is made from recycled materials.
Visit www.rockingreensoap.com for more information.
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