Unfortunately most of us take the view that being green is somebody else's responsibility. The stark truth is that we all have to do our bit. The responsibility for being green is shared among all of us. But rather than become overwhelmed with macro issues such as carbon footprints, why not just do some really simple things which can be very effective if only we all do them? Why not teach students how to be sensitive to their environment? It makes so much sense to teach them these important habits while they are young.
5 Thing Students and Teachers can do
Begin with everyday items such as aluminum cans and plastic bottles. Don't throw away cans and bottles. Put them in the recycling containers your school has for that purpose.
2. Change Your Water Drinking Habits
Changing any habit takes thought and effort. But the new habit quickly takes root, if you will just give it a chance. Rather than drinking bottled water, use the school's water fountains. Forget the nonsense you hear about drinking fountains being a source of germs. You don't need to lick the spigot. You will probably pick up more germs from a door handle anyway.
If you are a teacher, invest in a filtered water pitcher like the ones Brita makes.
3. Use Mugs and Glasses
Use a mug for your hot beverages. Eliminating styrofoam cups and containers for hot beverages will reduce non-biodegradeable waste which has to be carted off to landfills. Coffee grounds and tea bags can go in the compost heap.
Use a glass for cold beverages such as lemonade, iced tea and water.
4. Bring Your Lunch and Snacks
Making your own lunch and packing snacks can be fun. It does take some planning and effort, but the payoff is eating healthy and not creating more container waste. If you pack a plant-based lunch, you will do even more to reduce global warming.
Keeping a container of snacks such as nuts and raisins in your locker or desk is also much more economical than purchasing packaged snacks from a vending machine.
5. Recycle Paper
We waste enormous amounts of paper in our homes, schools and business. Keep a container for sheets of waste paper in your classroom. Encourage your students to use both sides of a sheet of paper. Plan crafts activities which use recycled paper.