While climate change is actively affecting us today, its effects will be multiplied for future generations – which is why we need to teach our children about its potentially irreversible impacts. As with most lessons in life, the best way to teach something is through action.
Tim Jarvis is a huge advocate for this, and regularly takes his out for camping holidays and weekend bushwalks. “It’s never too early to speak with your children about climate change – and it’s a lot easier than you might think,” he says.
“Show them the things they can do in response, like growing native plants in the garden, using less electricity and making lifestyle changes like walking or riding a bicycle to work. While the scale of the challenges we’re facing is vast, it’s reassuring to show your children that we are acting. Get creative, approach the topic in a positive light and be proactive with solutions you can implement as a family.”
It’s a sentiment echoed by Ian, who once promoted his daughter to the “recycling leader in the house”.
“Kids love responsibility,” Ian explains. “After putting my daughter in charge of recycling, she became very passionate about what was right to throw out, and what to recycle. This taught her how to handle responsibility and educated her about sustainability at the same time. Our children constantly monitor our behaviour and they’ll follow your actions as they grow up – so it’s up to us to be positive role models for them.”