Saving energy is something we should all be looking to do. It puts a little bit extra back into your household budget, helping you to concentrate on family matters. Each family member consumes energy simultaneously in the home, so it’s going to require the efforts of everyone to really make a difference. With a little experimentation, getting your kids involved in saving on your energy bills doesn’t have to be a chore.
To really engage young members of your family when saving energy, you’re going to have to think outside the box. To get you started, we’ve listed five quick and easy ways to get kids involved in energy saving.
These days, before you know it kids are picking up smartphones and turning on games consoles as second nature. The uptake in technology as a typical child’s hobby means one thing for your household energy use and the price of your bills – it goes up.
To counter this, encourage your kids to reduce their screen time and pick up something that’s a little kinder on your energy bills. For example, get the whole family together for some quality time with your favourite board game. Alternatively, books are another great example of an indoor activity that doesn’t put any strain on your energy use.
What other fun family activities could you adjust to make them a little more energy-friendly? Are you and your son or daughter big on baking? If so, why not try some no-bake treats like cheesecakes or flapjacks.
Offer some gentle encouragement to your kids by introducing a timeslot specifically designed to cut down on energy. Begin by putting an hour aside every week where the whole family switches off from technology. Call it “turn it off time” and try some of the activities mentioned above.
See how you all get on before slowly increasing that time. Could you expand the number of days turn it off time occurs each week? How about doubling up and making it two hours? The more time your family can spend away from electricity-hungry devices, the more you’ll be able to cut from those energy bills.
A great way of increasing a child’s interest in anything is by converting it into a game. Energy saving is no different.
An idea to get you started: I-spy. At home, ask the kids to point out places where energy could be saved. Is the oven light on without anyone using it? Is the TV in standby mode?
You could take this one step further and use your energy usage as the basis for an exciting challenge. First of all, monitor your current energy use around the house (using an app or home display unit). To convert this idea into a competitive challenge, set your kids an energy target for the day, gradually bringing your energy use down.
It’ll allow them to learn what the most energy-hungry parts of the home are, plus the best ways to bring that usage down. Competition is a great motivator, and rewards for helping save money around the house could add an extra incentive. How about using some of that extra money you’ve saved to treat your kids and keep them motivated?
You don’t have to stick to the confines of the home either. Encourage your kids to get out on their bikes, or down to the park for a game of football with their friends. Without knowing it, they’ll be contributing to less energy use in the home.
The more you can get your kids out and about, the more they’ll contribute to your attempts to save money. How about encouraging them to join a school sports team? After all, the more energy you can get them to use outside the home, the quicker they’ll be soundly asleep when they do come back inside.
There’s one final way you can cut down on your kids’ energy use, but this one doesn’t actively involve them. You can make a few quick and easy energy savings in their bedrooms, helping them to cut back without them even knowing.
Start with any light bulbs, replacing each one with an energy-efficient bulb. After that, you can insulate the windows, do some basic draught excluding, and ensure any TVs and games consoles are switched off at the plug at night.
Creating an energy-efficient home that can cut your bills and save you money requires the efforts of the whole family. If you follow these tips, engaging young people to help cut household energy costs can not only be made easier, but it can be a fun-filled way to spend some quality time with your loved ones. Why not give it a try?