Pushing for Greater Sustainability at Learning Tree Albany

2019-07-05

With NZ’s single use plastic ban having started on 1st July, the team at Learning Tree Childcare in Albany has been thinking about ways to introducing sustainability to our daycare students. If you’re keen to do the same at home, here’s six tips to get you started.

1 – The First ‘R’ is Refuse

If there’s one thing all preschoolers are good at, it’s saying ‘no’! While this can be a challenge come bedtime, the teachers at our Albany childcare centre are using it to the environment’s advantage. The best way to reduce waste is to refuse things we do not need, so the next time you’re offered a plastic bag, supermarket samples or excess packaging, join your preschooler in a big fat NO!

2 – Library for Books and Toys

Books and toys are great ways to keep young children busy, but you don’t have to head to the shops every time you feel the need for something new. Make use of Auckland’s libraries and the toy libraries – these are great resources that keep costs down while keeping the planet happy.

3 – Get Outside

If we want our children to love the planet, we have to show them how magical it is. We have a wonderful outdoor area at our childcare centre in Albany and our children can’t get enough of playing with leaves and puddles, digging sands and planting gardens. It’s easy, entertaining and environmentally-friendly.

4 – Re-purposed Play

The next time you’re about to throw something in the rubbish bin, consider if it has more life in it. Repurposing household objects into toys teaches kids to look at things in a new light; anything can have multiple uses, you just need to use a little creativity.

Turn an old spice rack into a bookshelf; a mint tin can become an excellent travel tic-tac-toe toy; and a cardboard box makes a great indoor playhouse. If you need some inspiration, pop into our Albany childcare centre – we’ve got plenty more examples to get you started!

5 – Lead by Example

Kids are pretty darn observant, so you’re going to have to walk the walk. Being told to use reduce, reuse and recycle is not nearly as powerful as seeing it in action every single day.

6 – Talk about Why

Whatever you do for the planet – picking up rubbish, planting a garden, or giving old objects a new lease on life – tell your youngsters why you are doing this. Talk about why protecting the environment is so important and how every little action makes a difference. If they grow up hearing this, it will become second nature – the next generation will be shocked that their parents ever lived in a world where plastic shopping bags were the norm!

At Learning Tree Childcare in Albany, we believe that there’s no better time than early childhood to help kids discover the value of the environment and how to look after it.

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