Companies across North America are going green and opening their doors to teach school and youth groups about living sustainable lives!
Every month, not just April, is the perfect time to reflect on the impact we are having on our environment. Humans put a lot of demands on our home planet and we should stop and ask if these actions are sustainable. More and more companies are asking this question and stepping up to address environmental concerns. They realize incorporating sustainable practices into their businesses not only helps the bottom line but it protects the planet and its resources for future generations. With future generations in mind, organizations are hosting field trips for students and other community members to share the importance of purchasing local foods, providing responsibly-sourced seafood, redirecting waste away from landfills, and conserving energy.
Companies are proud of the steps they are taking to reduce their environmental footprint and they should be. But just what can children learn from companies that are practicing sustainability?
Inspire children and their families to practice sustainability at home
Kids on these field trips learn about how stores are using energy-efficient LEDs and CFLs to light their stores, which can lead families to purchase these types of bulbs for their own homes. Ralphs grocery stores in California show kids their composting area and explain what they do with the foods that go bad or expire. Things you don’t really think about with so much food displayed on fully stocked shelves. But seeing composting in action can inspire kids to compost their own food waste at home.
Understand responsibility and consequences
With so many products to choose from on the shelves, the concept of choice really hits home for kids on field trips in a grocery store setting. Kids learn that some products are healthier than others – each with their own consequences for their own health and that of the planet. Students discuss the benefits of eating locally-sourced foods or choosing green products that cause less harm to precious water sources.
Field trips to Lowes Foods stores focus on local food and how it reduces the amount of fuel used to ship products across the country. It is a much more sustainable way of eating and is good for local farmers.
Be appreciative of what they have and what the earth has to offer
We all know that fish is a healthy food source. But everyone might not know that some fish species are being caught at a faster rate than their populations are being replenished, and there are some fishing practices that can cause harm to other species in our oceans. More grocery stores are offering seafood that is sustainably harvested so there is healthy fish for generations to come.
ComEd, northern Illinois’ electric utility, opens their training centers to share lessons on energy efficiency and ways to conserve electricity. Using less electricity, which we all rely on greatly, ultimately means using less of Earth’s non-renewable resources.
The following free Field Trip Factory programs either focus or touch upon sustainability activities in their locations. Visit the Field Trip Factory website to learn more about each program and to find locations near you!
- Speak Out It’s Your Earth! (Ralphs)
- Smart Energy Hub and Powering Lives (ComEd)
- Be a Smart Shopper (Ultra Foods, Fry’s, Giant Eagle, Copps, Metro Market, Mariano’s, Pick ‘n Save)
- Kid Healthy Ideas (Stop & Shop, Giant, Giant Martin’s)
These field trips help students understand that the actions taken in their community affect everyone. Being able to experience sustainable practices first-hand can have a lasting effect on how kids view their role in the world. Thank you to the companies that are helping to ensure that role includes protecting the planet!