As the summer holidays draw to a close and the familiar hum of back-to-school preparations fills the air, it's the perfect time to consider how you can make this school year not only a successful one for your children, but also for the planet. Embracing an eco-friendly approach to back-to-school shopping and routines can significantly reduce your environmental footprint. Here are some of our tips to kickstart your sustainable journey as you and your kids head back to school.
Opt for Reusable Supplies 🌿
Before you dash off to buy a bundle of new notebooks, pens, and other supplies, take a moment to assess what you already have. Reusing last year's partially used notebooks or repurposing scrap paper for note-taking can significantly cut down on waste. When you do need new supplies, look for products made from sustainable materials, such as notebooks made from sustainably-sourced materials or pens made from recycled drinks bottles!
Choose a Durable Backpack🎒
Invest in a sturdy, high-quality backpack that can withstand the test of time. Rather than opting for trendy, inexpensive bags that might fall apart before October half-term, go for a durable option made from eco-friendly materials. A well-made backpack will reduce the need for replacements and ultimately lessen the demand for new materials.
Pack Eco-Conscious Lunches 🥪
Packing your lunch in reusable containers not only saves money but also reduces the need for single-use plastics. Choose a lunchbox made from stainless steel, rice husk or BPA-free plastic, and fill it with homemade meals or snacks using ingredients with minimal packaging. Ditch disposable cutlery and straws for reusable alternatives, and don't forget to carry a refillable water bottle to stay hydrated throughout the day. One of our top tips is to use one of our top-selling Reusable Sandwich Wraps for your sandwiches, and a Beeswax Wrap for wrapping snacks and other items!
Embrace Second-hand Style 👕
Clothes shopping is often a big part of back-to-school preparations, but it's also an area where you can make a significant environmental impact. Consider shopping for gently used clothing at charity shops, local online selling groups or on dedicated pre-loved site such as the fabulous Second Snuggle. Embracing second-hand fashion not only reduces textile waste but also supports a circular economy.
Green Transportation 🚲
If feasible, opt for greener transportation options such as walking, biking, carpooling, or using public transportation instead of relying solely on individual car rides. Not only will this cut down on greenhouse gas emissions, but it also promotes a healthier lifestyle.
Reduce Paper Waste 📚
In the digital age, there are numerous ways to minimise paper usage. Take digital notes whenever possible, submit assignments electronically, and opt for e-books or online resources instead of printed textbooks where possible. This approach not only conserves trees but also reduces the energy and resources required for paper production.
Encourage Eco-Friendly Initiatives 💚
Encourage your children to initiate or join environmental clubs or groups at school that focus on sustainability. Working together with like-minded individuals can amplify the impact and foster positive change within the school community. Organise events such as litter clean-ups, tree planting, or awareness campaigns to inspire others to adopt eco-friendly practices.
Practice Energy Efficiency 💡
Make a conscious effort to save energy at school and at home. Turn off lights, unplug chargers, and use energy-efficient devices whenever possible. Encourage your school to adopt energy-saving measures like using LED lighting and optimizing heating and cooling systems.
Recycle Responsibly ♻
Ensure you're familiar with the recycling program at your school and follow the guidelines for proper recycling. Encourage your peers to do the same by raising awareness about the importance of responsible recycling practices.
As we gear up for another academic year, remember that every small action you take can collectively make a big difference. By adopting eco-friendly habits and promoting sustainability within your school community, you're not only contributing to a healthier planet but also setting a positive example for others to follow. This back-to-school season, let's aim for success that goes beyond the classroom—success that embraces and supports our beautiful planet Earth. 🌍