Water Conservation 101: Start Early

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If you’ve ever traveled to a developing country, you come home with a newfound appreciation for running water (and modern toilets and warm showers…). But kids, and frankly most adults, can’t even imagine a world without some of our modern luxuries. For all they know, an endless supply of water can come out of that tap!

The average person in a household uses between 60 and 150 gallons of water a day. Of course, it’s important for everyone to follow good water conservation practices, especially in warmer months when water levels can drop dangerously low. Although little ones can’t truly understand the water cycle, you can start teaching them some good habits now and help them comprehend the value of clean water.

1. Shut the faucet while you brush

That simple act can save between 3 and 10 gallons each time, depending on how long you brush. Over the course of a year, for a family of four, that would save enough water to fill a very large swimming pool!

water splash2. Nip the drips

Remind kids to shut faucets all the way after they wash hands. A little drip can add up to a lot of wasted water. Squirt on a natural hand wash, wet hands, rub for 20 seconds, rinse, done.

3. Flush once

Teach kids that each flush of the toilet is very valuable — when they have colds, especially, some kids get in the habit of tossing one tissue into the toilet and flushing after each one. That’s a lot of wasted flushes!

By law, all toilets made since 1995 must use no more than 1.6 gallons per flush. But think about how many times you and your family will flush: in the average person’s lifetime, they’ll flush the toilet an estimated 140,000 times!

4. Read up

Read books together about water like The Magic School Bus: At the Waterworks, which teaches kids about the water cycle while just being a lot of fun, too. 

5. Show the magic of water

Grow a plant together and let your child water it when it needs it. It will help to show him just how important H20 can be to nature.

6. Keep a rain collection

Next time it rains, put a container or pot outside to collect it. Show your child how much you collected and use it to water plants! Want to do it on a larger scale? There are lots of great resources online about how to build a rain barrel for your garden (and keep mosquitoes away from it).

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