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Teaching Kids Water Conservation

June 8, 2012

Are you looking for activities to do with the kids this summer that are both fun and educational? Why not teach them about water conservation?

Why teach your kids about conservation?

There are many benefits to becoming a water-wise family, including saving money, but there’s more to it than that. Conservation is a community effort and learning begins in the home. By teaching your kids about conservation you teach them to look beyond themselves—to see the beauty and wonder in the world.

Did you know?

  • Each time you water your lawn you can be using up to 3,000 gallons of water
  • An average American family of 4 can use 400 gallons of water a day
  • Standard toilets use about 3.5 gallons of water per flush
  • A typical faucet uses about 2 gallons of water per minute

Conservation Tips

Here are some easy ways for your kids to get involved in water conservation:

Outdoors:

Have your kids help you check your sprinkler system. (Any easy excuse for running through the sprinklers is a good one, right?)

  • Make sure that your sprinklers are not watering the sidewalk, driveway, street, or house
  • Look for leaking or broken sprinkler heads
  • Try the screwdriver test. Have your kids stick a screwdriver into the grass, if it goes in 6 inches with minimal effort there is no need to water. If they struggle getting the screwdriver into the ground it may be time to water again
  • Use a hose-end nozzle when washing the car instead of letting the hose run
  • Have them remind you to use the rain delay option on your sprinkler system timer/controller when it rains

Indoors:

  • Turn off the water when brushing teeth
  • Check for leaks and work on fixing them together
  • Shower instead of taking baths
  • Stop using the toilet as a waste basket
  • Use only one cup to drink out of throughout the day
  • Put a container of water in the fridge so you always have cold water (without having to run the tap)

Activities

One way to really help your kids understand how much water we use is to do some activities with them.

  • The Human Faucet. This do-at-home experiment shows kids how much water they use when they let the tap run while brushing their teeth. You can find detailed instructions here.
  • Visit your local water plant or nearby natural history museum to learn about the water cycle.
  • Interactive games and websites. Check these out:

Go for it!

Next time your kids tell you they’re bored, don’t stress about what to do. Take it as an opportunity to have fun and learn how to become a water-wise family together.

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