Many studies have shown that children form habits by the time they are 9 or 10 years old. That means there is a relatively short window of time to ingrain good practices in our kids. While it’s important to teach good manners, healthy eating and personal responsibility, it’s also a smart idea to teach kids why and how to care for the environment. The earlier they start recycling and engaging in other sustainability practices, the more likely they are to carry those habits into adulthood.
To encourage at-home learning as we head into the new and different start of the school year, SWACO has created a page on its website just for kids between the ages of 6 and 12 years old. It’s called “Kids Corner,” and it features four online games designed to teach children how to reduce, reuse and recycle. SWACO vetted the games carefully to ensure they’re fun, educational, age-appropriate, easy to play and relevant to Franklin County’s recycling program. The games are:
- Steel Driver – Kids help clean up the city by by collecting recyclable materials made of steel and adding them to the recycling truck.
- Litter Critters – Four little critters teach kids to sort materials into four categories: recyclables, compost, electronic waste and landfill waste.
- Recycle Roundup – Kids help Gus the gorilla clean up a park by sorting the trash people left behind into three categories: trash, recyclables and compost.
- Recycle City – This game encourages kids to visit different parts of a fictional city to see how people and businesses reduce, recycle and reuse waste.
SWACO encourages parents to introduce their kids to the new Kids Corner page. Kids can play the games alone or with their parents. Either way, kids will learn about the importance of diverting waste from the landfill, a message that is so important for kids to learn at a young age. Our hope is that once kids learn about recycling online, they’ll adopt the practice in real life, and recycling will become just another part of families’ daily routines. SWACO hopes to add more games and activities to our Kids Corner page soon.