Three Ways To Get Your Kids Engaged In Recycling

If you've made recycling a priority in your household, you're not alone. Households across the country have steadily increased their involvement in recycling; the most recent numbers indicate that more than 90 percent of Canadian households engage in some form of recycling. One of the best ways of ensuring that your family actively recycles is to visit a recycling depot with your children. There, you can show your kids how the items they put in your blue box end up being sorted and, eventually, recycled. Once you return from your visit, keep the focus on recycling by using these three methods to further your kids' involvement in this environmentally conscious initiative.

Provide Personal Recycling Bins

School-aged children produce plenty of items that can be recycled, including scraps of paper left over from school assignments and juice boxes enjoyed as an after-school snack. Provide each of your children with his or her own recycling bin to keep in the bedroom. This way, each child won't have to descend to your garage or backyard to toss their recyclable goods into the family's bin. You can buy a standard blue box-style bin at any big-box store or get a container adorned with each child's favorite sports team or TV show.

Introduce Some Games

Many children respond favourably to friendly competition, so introducing some fun games for your entire household can encourage your kids' desire to recycle. Playfully challenge your children to see who can produce the most recycling and the least about of trash each week by weighing their bedrooms' recycling and garbage bins over the weekend -- the winner can get out of a household task such as doing the dishes for one evening. Or, pit the kids against the adults to see who can divert more refuse to the recycling bin instead of the garbage can. Introducing these games can incentivize your children to make recycling a part of their daily routine.

Use Books And Videos

Your local library branch and bookstore are full of child-aged books that extol the virtues and importance of recycling. Getting one or two of these books and reading it to a young child or encouraging an older child to read the book on his or her own reinforces the important message of recycling but in a fun manner. You can also look online to find kids' videos about recycling -- for example, look for a video that follows the path of a bottle in a home's blue box all the way until it's on the store shelf again.

Try taking the kids to a recycling centre like Uptown Bottle Depot so they can see recycling in action and learn first-hand.