After discussing how much trash we generate and where it ends up, we also discussed wasting other resources in our home such as electricity and water. This is a huge issue for me, because I have an internal reminder (that probably comes from my mom who grew up in East Germany) that dings every time the water is running for no reason or a light has been left on.
The first thing we did was make "Energy Police" badges. Then we put bright green light switch covers on our most-used switches that read "TURN OFF." Then I asked the kids, "What uses more water, a bath, or a shower?"
They both said, "shower." So Friday I had them both take showers, but we plugged the tub so that the water would collect in the tub. My son went first, and he took a REALLY long shower. The tub filled up, even more than if he had taken a bath. So when it was Anna's turn, I decided to time her shower. Even though we have a fairly low flow with our Showerwise shower filter [shameless plug] I was amazed to see that after only ten minutes, the tub was at the same level that she would normally take a bath.
This was a great way to show the kids how much water is used for showers. Our rule generally is that if you plan on taking a long shower, take a bath. If you just want to get in and get clean, take a shower. We also conserve water by not flushing the toilet every time. This is not on purpose; this is because the kids are afraid it will overflow on them, so they don't flush!
P.S. We did visit our recycling center but I haven't blogged about it because I forgot to bring a camera. When I have pictures to share, I'll write about our visit. This week: How our choices affect things outside our house (we have discussed the water cycle and will be focusing on the rainforests starting tomorrow.)