Why I Train My Children To Be Mindful and Conscious Energy Users
by Elayna Fernandez - The Positive Mom
I grew up in extreme poverty, so having water and electricity was a luxury. Even though my children have always had access to these resources, I’ve made sure they don’t take them for granted.
As a mom of four daughters (ages 18, 17, 7, and 18 months), I train each of them to be mindful and conscious energy users, so we can make and keep our home as energy-efficient as possible.
Besides being an example, we can make energy efficiency fun to train our children from a very young age!
3 Simple Ways to Train Your Children to Be Energy Efficient
Conscious Narration: Long before I considered being a parent or having the title of “mom,” I was a “storyteller.” I’ve learned that stories can add meaning, context, and purpose to everything we do. It’s important to let children notice what their parents are doing, and make them aware of why you are doing it.
I practice this with my youngest daughter. As she gets ready to start transitioning from using diapers, I tell her that we help “la naturaleza” (nature) when we flush only when it’s necessary and when we let the water run only as we wash our hands - just as we do when we brush our teeth!
Hands-on Activities: Using coloring pages, matching card games, mazes, word searches, crossword puzzles, spot the difference games, and other fun activities to incorporate all the senses and different learning styles.
As your children learn about energy efficiency and fighting climate change through play, be alert so you can answer their questions - you don’t have to know all the answers, you can even look up the ones they stump you on together!
Mindfulness Practices: One of my favorite tools to teach my daughters about protecting the planet and caring about the environment and everyone living in it is through positive affirmations and visualizations.
My seven-year-old daughter loves her daily “Save the Earth” cards and recites the words as she goes through her day. It’s an interesting age because when her older sister was seven, she decided to become vegan in order to help save the animals and the environment. When my oldest daughter was around this age, she wrote a poem in which she visualized a world where everyone cares about Earth and she made a speech about it in school.
Affirmations and visualization can help your children truly internalize these teachings and develop a true passion for energy conservation. Plus, it’s something you can do together, or they can do on their own.
As your children get older, you will start seeing how their love for the planet and their desire to reduce energy use show up in their choices and behavior. They may even inspire and challenge you to be more conscious about your carbon footprint - I know mine do!
How do you train your children to be energy efficient? Share some of your tips to help children reduce energy use and remember to take the pledge!