So it’s the last week of the holidays and everybody is out shopping for the new school year. But do you really know what you are buying for your kids? Cheap and cheerful may be your number one priority but what about green and healthy?
Do you understand the hidden problems with those bright shiny, plastic lunchboxes or those every so plastic back packs, and really have you looked at all your money saving options before rushing out to buy new?
Here’s a green way at looking at those Back to School shopping trips.
Reuse & Recycle
First before you rush out and start spending that hard-earned cash, take a look around and check what can be recycled and given a new lease on life for the new school year. Binders can be recovered with recycled wrapping paper or some of your kids favorite stickers, or even a favorite T-shirt that’s too small this year.
Same goes for the backpack: give it a revamp, get your kid involved, sew on badges and redecorate it. This is a great way to teach your children about reusing and recycling and how much fun it can be. They will truly have their own unique, hip backpack for a minimum cost.
If you really do need to buy a new bag, take care to find one that is PVC-free. Why introduce unwanted chemicals into our children’s environment such as phthlates which have been linked to respiratory problems? Look for canvas bags, just like we used to use when we were kids; they can be jazzed up with colourful badges, and these strong bags usually last past the school year.
When you do a search of the house, you will be surprised at just how many pens and pencils you have lying around, more than likely enough to fill up the pencil case.
Buying rolls of plastic bags for your kids’ lunch is not healthy for your children or our planet. Greening our kids’ lunchbox is easy and cheap. Cloth sandwich bags are popping up everywhere and kids love them, these ones from Native are great as each one is unique, being made from recycled fabrics. Also look for reusable drinks bottles.
Native Sandwich Bags are available at Tinok Yarok.
As yet I haven’t found recycled paper supplies here in Israel so look for locally made instead. Best of Luck!