Practicing energy efficiency has many benefits from protecting the environment to to lowering your expensive toldedo edison utility bill. Since bad habits can be hard to break it is important to teach your children the importance of energy efficiency at a young age. Children tend to abuse their energy usage because they might not know about the effects that it can cause. Since paying bills is that last thing on a little one’s mind you might need to get creative to teach them the value of mindful energy use.
Teaching the importance of Energy Conservation
Teach them what it means to conserve energy and why it is important. Conserving energy might be a difficult idea for your children to wrap their heads around since they are not paying the bills so you will need to explain why it is important to do so.
First and foremost, you need to practice what you preach, if your children see you doing it they might be more likely to follow in your footsteps. Some simple conservation lessons that can last a lifetime are:
- Conserving water in the shower – many parents have had success with teaching their children water conservation by introducing a timer to shower time.
- Turning off lights and switches when you leave a room
- Closing blinds to reduce heating and cooling costs
- Only running a dishwasher or washing machine for full loads – make your children a part of this routine, it will not only be a time to bond but it will teach them a great life skill.
- Becoming unplugged; Spending less time in the front of screens – this might be the hardest one for children to stick to and in order to make it worthwhile they will need something to replace their time spent behind their electronics. It can be a trip to the park, board games, family bike rides or a good book, etc.
- Conserving water when washing dishes or brushing teeth – teaching about turning off water when not in use.
A great way to teach your children the value of conserving energy and being more energy efficient is by implementing a reward system for good energy efficient practices. Your children will be more likely to be successful if they are being rewarded for good energy efficient behavior than if they are being yelled out for “turning off the lights!” The rewards can range from getting a new book, an outing with the parents, a pizza party with friends.
Teaching about how to use natural resources to minimize energy use
Using natural energy is a great way to protect the environment, save energy and money. Some ways that we can conserve energy is by using natural sunlight rather than artificial lights. Not only will you be saving money on your lighting costs but there are also many psychological benefits from natural sunlight. Your HVAC system accounts for the majority of the energy used and accounts for most of your energy bill so another great way to reduce energy costs is to use the outside air on a nice weather day. Raise the temperature on your AC a little and use the nice crisp air to cool down your home. Another large component of your energy bill is dryer usage so instead of drying clothes using electricity, you can teach your children how to line dry your clothes. This will not only decrease your energy bill but it will help preserve your clothes.
Bad habits are hard to break and learning to be more energy efficient will take some time. Don’t bite off more than you can chew; you are more likely to be successful if you start small with simple achievable goals.