How to explain ecology to children

I have long tried to explain ecology and the importance of preserving the Earth to children in a simple way. However, this is not an easy task all the time. So I explained this concept in the form of a story. Children are little creatures with a vivid imagination, they like it when we use puppets, songs... to explain things more easily.

Here are my suggestions to explain this new concept to children between 2 and a half and 5 years old. It can be done like this; "Being green is about taking care of our home and our favorite park. Just as there are things that are not good for you, there are also things that are not good for the planet. For example, leaving the water running too long, throwing garbage on the ground, using single-use things..." The important thing about this explanation is that the child can associate a new word with concrete actions that he or she can do. This way, it will be a little easier for them to understand the concept behind the word.

We can also have a puppet that looks like the Earth or can be the Earth's friend. If the child doesn't seem to understand the concept yet, that's totally normal. Sometimes, when these are new and a little more complicated topics, it takes some time to become familiar.

The important thing is to use the right words without trying to replace them with easier words, as it could get mixed up later in his language development. If the word seems too complicated, you can mention the word and then give him a simple explanation, as we saw in the example above.

If you are not the puppet and song type, no problem, you can settle down with him calmly and explain by asking questions. For example, "ecology is a funny word, what do you think it means". Then go on to explain it in a short explanation with pictures. You can also use books on the subject, stories, TV clips or even games.

Once ecology has been explained, it is advisable to bring small gestures related to this new concept into the child's daily life and to take advantage of this to make short reminders. In this way, he will be able to associate the gestures with ecology and this concept will be easier to understand.

Here is a small list of simple and easy gestures to do with your minis;

- Choose fruits and vegetables with them at the grocery store without unnecessary packaging.
- Make a box with toys he no longer uses to give to another child (let him choose the toys he would like to give and congratulate him to encourage his autonomy and self-esteem)
- Turn off the tap water when brushing teeth.
- Stick pictures on the different bins (garbage, recycling, compost) to help children sort their waste.
- Pick up the garbage you see on the ground during your outings at the park.

To conclude, ecology is not a simple thing to explain. We each have our own definition and it is a concept that changes and is refined over time. It is therefore normal to have difficulty explaining this concept to children. The important thing is not to put pressure on ourselves. The main objective, when we want to explain ecology to children, is that they understand that we can all take care of the planet by doing good things. Once you have understood this, you have succeeded in your mission to introduce your child to this concept. All that's left to do is to adopt small gestures like those mentioned above and to fly over the word ecology again and that's it.
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