When we mention environment we mean everything around us. We tend to link it only to nature and its problems of pollution, waste, or climate change. However, environment is a concept that also includes humans, their way of relating, their values and culture.

Children, who are very receptive, sensitive and committed to what we teach them, know this very well. They see the world without prejudice and with unusual desire to understand it in its entirety. They also see their problems, and want to be firefighters or doctors or vets or teachers to change what they do not like. And that enthusiasm passes on others, children and adults, to participate in a real change. It is therefore important to instil from the earliest age values of respect and love for nature.

7 tips to stimulate children’s respect for the environment

  1. To appreciate anything we must know it first. Make kids look through books about fauna, flora and other cultures, read stories about nature, draw and take pictures of their surrounding area, stimulate their desire to investigate and discover nature through internet.

  2. Encourage them to watch nature programmes.

  3. Take a family stroll outdoors.

  4. Children love to help and put their hands in the soil. Prepare a flowerpot with different seeds and make them responsible for their care.

  5. Visit nature classrooms, environment interpretation centres, farms or botanical gardens…

  6. Dedicate a day to pick up rubbish from beaches, forests, river banks… they will help not only to keep the environment clean but also to become aware of what it means throwing something on the ground.

  7. Cooking is fun. Prepare together your own yogurts and custard, your muffins and cakes, ice creams or even your own sweets.

It is imperative that children learn, in a natural and funny way, the value of water, earth, air… As teachers, parents, or adults, in general, around them we exert an important role in their learning. That’s why we must set an example.