Looking for a fun way to teach your kids the reduce, reuse, and recycle principles? How about challenging your kids to a Re-Use Contest?! All you need to do is select reusable or recyclable items. Arm your kids with paper and pencil, and yell out the first item on the list. Your kids’ task is to write down as many creative uses for that particular item. Here are some examples of items and creative uses (in case you need to jump start your kids’ thinking):
- Magazines: roll them up and stick them in knee-high boots to they will keep their shape.
- Empty Paper-Towel Roll: Flatten and use as a sheath to store a knife kept in a drawer.
- Small Glass Food Jars: Use to store items such as nails, rubber bands, or thumb tacks.
- Old Shower Curtain: Keep it in your car’s trunk to line it when carrying messy items such as muddy boots, paint cans, or beach gear.
- Used Coffee Grounds: Spread them over the flower beds of plants such as azaleas or rhododendrons that thrive in acidic soil.
- Plastic Gallon Milk Jug: Cut off the top just above the handle and use as a scoop for pet food.
- Foam Packing Peanuts: Use in the bases of potted plants to help with drainage.
- Plastic Mesh Produce Bag: Turn it into a no-scratch scrubber for a dirty pan. After using it, ball it up and throw it out.
- Plastic Tub: Rinse out an large yogurt or sour cream container and reuse it to store art supplies or as a travel water dish for pets.
You can let your kids have access to the internet to research even more unique ideas, if you wish. Evaluate the answers your kids provide and offer fun prizes for the most creative, greatest number of uses listed, or most useful ideas for your house. Figure out a way to recognize all good efforts! Then, if you have some of the items on hand, put everyone to work re-using them in a way that works for you.
© YesKidzCan!, 2012