4 ways to raise a young change-maker

Raising our kids to care deeply and passionately about the health and long-term sustainability of our planet should be one of our top priorities as parents.

Image by Coleen Hodges

By Rebecca Lane | globalguardianproject.com

Every single one of us can do something to make a difference. And collectively, we can change the world.

We all have a unique role to play in the journey towards sustainability and environmental stewardship. While climate change, pollution, and threats to biodiversity can feel like overwhelming problems, the reality is that small changes add up to seismic shifts. We all affect change in our own orbits, and parents are in a unique role to facilitate understanding that will lead to compassion and then to action.

Here are four ways to spark a flame in your young change-maker:

1. Reading and watching films are fundamental.

Young children will delight in and grow to care for animals, plants, and the natural world through video and text.

A subscription to National Geographic’s Little Kids magazine is an affordable starting point for the 3-5-year-old set and audiences of all ages will be mesmerised by film series like Planet Earth with its stunning visuals and insightful commentary.

Global Guardian Project’s Learning Capsules are perfect for older children needing a mix of hands-on activities and informative content.

2. Press reset by spending time in nature on a regular basis.

The Japanese have this concept worked out — forest bathing is a national pastime with no goal other than reaping the health benefits of quiet contemplation among trees! Not only is this a positive model for stress relief, it's also a great opportunity for the whole family to learn the names and characteristics of local plants, trees, and flowers.

3. Adopt a cause as a family.

Whether you’re passionate about conserving grasslands, fostering an orphaned elephant, or protecting the grey wolf, the whole family can decide together on a cause to support. Trade the consumption of a typical birthday party by giving up your birthday for charity, help the kids with seasonal fundraising events like a lemonade stand, and discuss news from your chosen charity as part of your regular dinner time conversation.

4. Make advocacy part of your life and stand up for sustainability when it's under political threat.

Even young children will be happy to colour a postcard that can be sent to your members of congress. Older kids can write their own letters to government officials or to the local newspaper editor. Sign up for advocacy alerts about causes you care about and teach teens to use apps like Resistbot which will convert text messages into faxes sent automatically to your government officials.

We all know that we need to take better care of the Earth and better care of each other. We know we should be empowering our children so they can change the world for the better. Resources like the Global Guardian Project can be a platform for parents, caregivers and educators to teach children just that.

Want a FREE Ocean Conservation capsule?

Rebecca is kindly giving away this Ocean Conservation capsule from Global Guardian Project to anyone who reads this article. Pretty awesome, hey! Want to claim yours?

Jenny Diaz

Rebecca Lane

Contributor

Rebecca Lane is the founder of Global Guardian Project, and an artist and social entrepreneur whose passion for global education has sparked each of her art brand creations, all focused on environmental and social responsibility. A gypsy at heart, she created Global Guardian Project as a way to educate her children first hand, and to offer her family’s experience to parents who are raising their own earth warriors.
Instagram - @globalguardianproject

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