Energy conservation is one of the simplest things that individuals and families can do in terms of living an environmentally conscious lifestyle. Every day, people across the country consume energy to some degree, whether they are consciously aware of it or not. Even while asleep, for example, families continue to consume energy from numerous sources, such as electrical devices in the home. Conserving energy at home is most effective when it is easy to do and when every member of the household understands why it is necessary. Adults must not only learn new habits, but they must also make a concentrated effort to implement changes. When it comes to children, parents can teach them how to conserve energy so that it becomes a positive habit. Changes in the home may also be made to bolster energy-conserving behavior and make it simpler for everyone.
Teaching Energy Conservation to Kids
Embedding good habits early is key when it comes to teaching kids about energy conservation. This is not, however, the only time that parents can teach their children how to use energy wisely. Even older kids can be taught how to conserve energy around the home. Depending on the age of one's children, parents should explain the reasons why energy should not be used in a wasteful manner. To do this, they must explain the difference between energy sources that are renewable and non-renewable. In addition, parents should explain how energy production and use impacts the environment. Projects or activities that show renewable energy sources at work are also a fun way to teach kids about conservation and can help develop a lifelong interest. Parents can use DIY instructions for building functional models of wind turbines, build a solar oven together, or play games that teach children about conservation.
Understanding the need for energy conservation is just part of what it takes to teach children about conservation. Kids must also learn how to take action on what they have been taught by developing habits that limit the amount of energy that they use. Often, neglect can lead to large amounts of energy wasted. Simply teaching kids to turn off lights when leaving a room and turning off televisions and computers when not in use can be very effective. Even teaching kids to close the refrigerator door when getting a snack is an important habit that they'll carry for the rest of their lives. In doing chores, kids generally use appliances such as washing machines and dishwashers, so they should be taught to run them only with full loads. Although children may not be allowed to use thermostats at a young age, they should know to keep windows closed when air conditioners or heaters are in use to reduce wasteful electricity usage.
Even when children and adults have been taught how to conserve energy, home improvements can further help improve the home's overall energy efficiency. Some of the very projects that parents use to teach their children can be implemented on a greater scale to conserve energy in the home. Energy-conserving home improvements may include changes that allow one to take advantage of renewable sources of energy. The addition of solar panels and water heaters, for example, can allow one to use the sun as an energy source and reduce the home's reliance on the city's energy grid and non-renewable sources. Wind turbines may also be used as an additional and alternative power source. Other home improvements that can help families conserve energy include replacing single-pane windows with double-pane windows. Less expensive improvements include adding or replacing insulation and filling any areas that may be causing leaks.
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