The Importance of Teaching Kids About Sustainability

Humans need a healthy and safe Earth on which to continue living. Working to protect and sustain the Earth – known as sustainability – is not just for adults. By teaching the concept of sustainability, as well as hands-on lessons for putting it into practice, you prepare your children to continue these precepts into adulthood 3.

Defining Sustainability

Children who understand the basics of sustainability usually realize how important it is to take care of the Earth. Tell your children, “The Earth is our home, so we need to take care of it, not only for ourselves, but also for your kids and their kids, who won’t be born for many years to come. Sustainability means taking care of the Earth’s resources, such as water, to help keep them clean and natural.”

Love the Earth

As you strive to teach children about sustainability, instill a strong love of the Earth so they understand what they are working to preserve, advises an educational brochure published by the Clemson University 2. Take your children into natural settings where they can experience the Earth’s unrefined beauty, such as parks, rural landscapes and undeveloped areas. Allow children to witness nature living in an undisturbed setting so they catch the spirit of preserving this beauty through sustainability. Once a child feels motivated and enthusiastic about his love of the Earth, he can make a positive contribution to help preserve it.


With an understanding of sustainability and the Earth’s need for help from humans, you open the door to increase your child’s awareness of these environmental issues 2. One beauty of practicing sustainability is that even the youngest children can make a difference for the Earth’s benefit. For example, by teaching children about recycling certain trash items, they can make a difference in the amount of refuse that does not reach landfills, offers Campus California, a nonprofit organization that supports sustainability projects worldwide 3.

Knowledge is Power

Children who grow up understanding and practicing sustainability within their family units and locally in a community can have a powerful impact on everyone’s future, according to the Nationwide Education website 24. Proactive children who take sustainability seriously can teach others about reducing consumption, recycling and reusing items to preserve the Earth’s resources and to stop harming the Earth 2. Children can also set a positive example for others when they practice sustainability.