Tag Archives: parents

Experts say that it would only take one generation to save the planet. If that generation grew up being taught the right skills and knowledge, imagine the amazing things we could achieve. Children are never too young to start learning better green habits and one group of special kids is a shining green example for the next generation.

Brisbane’s Bulimba State Primary School is teaching gardening and recycling as part of their curriculum and trying to make the school greener for the community. 40 to 50 students volunteer everyday to water trees and flowers, weed gardens and pick veges. The school boasts many flowers, worm farms and gardens with vegetables, fruit, herbs and has planted over 200 native trees around the school.

By 2010,  the school also:

  • Installed solar panels on the roof, feeding back into the electricity grid.
  • Built a self-composting bush toilet.
  • Installed a 250,000L water tank for use in gardens and some toilets.
  • Put a paper recycling bin in each classroom. Kids also bring in newspapers from home. Recyclable paper is sold to a business that makes insulation, earning the school $120 per tonne, which goes back into environmental projects.
  • Uses food scraps for compost and mulch for the gardens.
  • Encourages kids to use less packaging for their lunches, reuse containers and not waste food in their lunchboxes.
  • Started the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program.
  • Was awarded a $69,000 grant from Boeing to help other schools develop environmental projects.

Every change you make to be greener, however small, makes a difference to your planet and your health.

Everyone is at risk from chemical overload, but children are at risk the most. Over 100,000 human-made chemicals surround us in daily life. Another 1,500 chemicals are produced yearly. All these chemicals are increasingly making their way into our environment and posing health problems for our kids. In recent years, diseases such as type II diabetes, asthma, developmental and reproductive problems, and diet-related cancers have more than doubled. Leukemia, brain cancer, behavioural problems and obesity have also increased.

Children’s growing bodies don’t yet have the ability to detoxify and excrete chemicals the same as adults, so chemicals and toxins remain in their bodies longer, causing a lot of damage in the short and long term. Kids are also closer to the ground, so they are exposed to more fumes and chemicals at ground level, such as from cleaners and pesticides, etc. Unborn babies also absorb chemicals from their mother’s perfumes and cosmetics. Chemicals enter our bodies in three ways: inhaled, absorbed through skin and ingested in food and drink.

What can we do?

  • Eliminate household chemicals and use natural products.
  • Have indoor plants around your home.
  • Opt for fresh air and essential oil burners instead of chemical air fresheners.
  • Choose natural, organic foods and drinks without artificial preservatives and additives – better still, grow your own!
  • Be extra fussy and strict if you are pregnant, avoiding all fumes and exposure to anything unnatural.

For more info please visit www.chemicalfreeparenting.com and grab a copy of Dr Sarah Lantz’ book Chemical Free Kids: Raising Healthy Children in a Toxic World. Sarah is a child health researcher at the University of Queensland.

Every change you make to be greener, however small, makes a difference to your planet and your health.