As the mother of a four-year-old, aunt to sixteen children and godmother to two other children, I have been lucky to be surrounded by beautiful angels for many years. It is our responsibility as conscious beings to pass on what we have learned to the next generation. Most children have awareness and wisdom and do not want to harm themselves–or animals. When offered good information about health and ethics from a young age, they will make wise decisions as they grow and mature. We know that children soak in all kinds of knowledge. I believe the following suggestions are some of the most important ways we can share knowledge and raise consciousness.

Live by Example

Our children learn how to be in the world from their caregivers’ actions, so live in alignment with what you teach. Educate yourself about ways to help protect our earth—and follow up by taking concrete action in your life. The movie “Cowspiracy” (free on Netflix) and other similar resources are a great starting point. It’s harder to teach kids to “be kind to the cat” if you are eating animals on the dinner table. Check in with yourself: Are you living in alignment with what you teach? If not, what could you do differently that would set a better example?

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Educate your children about recycling trash, and where it ends up if it doesn’t make it to the recycling bin. Children love activities where their creativity is challenged; consider asking your child to find reusable alternatives to disposable household items and turn your trash into treasures. For example, use empty toilet paper and paper towel rolls to make a musical instrument by putting rice or beans in the roll and taping off both ends. Talk to your children about the importance of minimal packaging and how to recycle and reuse.

Gardening

There’s not much that is more magical than seeing a child plant a seed, nurture it, and watch it grow. Planting seeds helps them understand that all living things must work together in order for everything to thrive. As they watch their plants grow and develop, children will feel proud and excited to spend time in the garden. If you do not have land to grow a garden, you can give your child a few pots to plant herbs, veggies or flowers in. That’s what Ever and I do at home now that we live in a high rise. A child who has nourished, grown, and made a connection with a vegetable will also be more likely to eat it.

Spend Time in Nature

Spend as much time as you can outdoors with your children. Simply sit, have a picnic, take a nature walk, or maybe visit the beach. Allow your children to see the beauty that the earth contains, and help them learn about the interconnection of all living things. This will help them to consciously care for our planet and keep it beautiful.

Spend Time with Animals

The simple connection between species can remind us of how happily we naturally coexist. Children learn responsibility and compassion and come to respect living beings by spending time in an animal’s presence. It is critical that our little ones see animals in their natural state—not tied up or trapped in a cage. Rather than observing these beautiful creatures in captivity, watch them as they wish to be, with their families or lovers on a tree. Practice silence and presence as you enjoy this moment together. Be sure to take this time during your child’s early development.

Get Dirty

Remember playing outside as a child and having the best time swinging in the park, swimming at the river, or chasing butterflies in the bush? Let your children walk barefoot when they play outside. Let them get dirty. Research has shown links between connecting to the earth’s natural energy and enjoying vibrant, balanced health.152 The more time spent outside—and the less time inside watching television or using iPads and smartphones—the better.

 

The above is taken from the book I authored:

HEALTHY, SEXY, VEGAN MUMMA.

Your plant-based family guide.

It will be available in the coming months.

For now be sure to join our Facebook group of Healthy, Sexy, Vegan Mummas: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1050011558373753/?ref=bookmarks

Xx,

Donna