Going green: ten tips to help your child lead a greener life

How can we lead by example to help our children tread lightly on the Earth?

Small changes can make a big difference. Here are some International Grammar School (IGS) suggestions to helping your child lead a greener life:

  1. Reduce packaging for lunch items by slicing up your child’s favourite fruit and vegetables such as carrots, capsicum, celery sticks and cucumber into a single reusable container.
  2. Reduce the waste of purchased water bottles and disposable juices by filling reusable drink bottles.
  3. Start a small home garden or keep some herbs in pots. Let your child experience the slow wonder of planting seeds and watching plants grow over time, encouraging nurturing behaviour.
  4. Discuss the best days for drying laundry outdoors or where to place clothing racks indoors as an alternative to using electric clothes driers.
  5. Celebrate your child’s efforts to care for the environment and discuss sustainability as a family.
  6. Encourage creativity by using salvaged everyday household materials such as egg cartons, milk bottle tops and yoghurt containers as craft materials. Add some masking tape and see what appears!
  7. Visit local parks or gardens and discuss council sustainability plans and park upkeep with your child as you enjoy the space and greenery.
  8. Head to your nearest library to borrow books about recycling, nature and insects. Reading with your child will help them learn about the world and how to care for it.
  9. Motivate your child to turn off lights and other electrical appliances when not in use. Celebrate energy conservation by having a candlelit dinner together. Avoid purchasing toys with batteries, or set up a battery recharging station in your home and discuss energy use.
  10. Ensure your child turns off taps while scrubbing their hands or brushing their teeth. Every drop counts!

IGS is committed to developing sustainable features within the School to minimise environmental injury. We welcome student-led initiatives to improve our School’s sustainability.

igs-kindergarten-students-in-the-peace-garden

Visitors may be surprised to learn that a multistorey school so close to Sydney’s CBD can offer so many sunny and green outdoor spaces. Nearby Victoria Park and Wentworth Park, the annual carpet of jacaranda blossoms along Kelly Street, plants near the Early Learning water play zone, the lovingly tended Garden Club balcony and ever improving Peace Garden – all play a role in keeping students and staff in touch with nature.

IGS has a community of strong advocates for sustainability. Early Learning students regularly visit a local community garden to compost their lunch scraps. The School regularly hosts second-hand uniform and textbook sales to promote recycling, and a number of our students come together to promote new ways of reducing the School’s carbon footprint.

igs-kindergarten-students-in-the-peace-garden

The IGS Sustainable Futures Group is an example of student-driven sustainability progress. The Group is fundraising to purchase a PowerTracker energy monitor for the School. 

Students can select from more than 70 clubs on offer at IGS, and may join as many co-curricular activities as they like. The IGS Garden Club is one expression of our students’ commitment to and interest in the environment. 

Members of the IGS Garden Club and Sustainable Futures Group also recently prepared garden beds and heard from horticultural specialist Gary Pajor-Markus of Kindred Gardens as they planted sweet peas and root vegetables in the IGS Peace Garden.

IGS has always been avid in its approach to appreciating the environmental, and sustainability is at the heart of the School’s culture.