In a recent survey conducted by the Center for a New American Dream, 91% of college students and 88% of parents stated they would be likely to purchase earth-friendly products if they were available at the stores they shopped at. If you have a preference for environmentally friendly products, here are some green tips for back to school shopping.
Shopping the Goodwill and thrift stores can uncover interesting and eclectic finds-perfect for teens looking to set themselves apart from the crowd. Give used clothes a hip edge by embellishing them with colorful beadwork, sequins or sewing on patches.
Suggest ways that you and your child can become involved in the protecting the environment at school (e.g. starting an elementary school eco patrol, campus green club, or parent-run environmental committee). If your school doesn't already have one, speak to teachers and school board members about starting recycling or composting programs. If your school district is considering upgrades to classrooms, speak up about incorporating alternative energy into the plans.
About The Author: Ellen Brown is our Green Living and Gardening Expert. Click here to ask Ellen a question! Ellen Brown is an environmental writer and photographer and the owner of Sustainable Media, an environmental media company that specializes in helping businesses and organizations promote eco-friendly products and services. Contact her on the web at http://www.sustainable-media.com
Read feedback for this post below. Click here to post feedback.
Where did the author come up with $574? I guess I am well below average, never having spent near that crazy amount, nor will I. I don't even spend that much over a 3-year period to clothe my 2 children (and yes, I do keep track).
Shopping ahead of time, at leisure, is key. I shop thrift stores all year round and get most of our school supplies this way. I keep a box in the basement to store supplies in and we always have some on hand. Then in the fall, I just supplement whatever we have with a few extras they may need.
This year, the boys needed new sneakers and socks. I also bought a couple binders and filler paper. One needed a new backpack, which I had already purchased a year ago, from a thrift shop - new with tags still attached and so much cheaper. That's it. Maybe I'm lucky to have boys who don't care what they wear and keep wearing their summer t-shirts and shorts into the school year. Now I have time to peruse my local thrift stores for pants for the colder weather, if needed.
With my kids getting older and the waste that I have seen from working in a school, I like to eyeball the recycle bins at the end of the previous school year for binders/folders/supplies that are otherwise tossed.
Its gotten to the point that the kids have started to care a bit more between having what they need and saving --money and the earth--from the good find in the trash. We decorate with markers, contact paper, whatever is available to cover last years artist's designs and usually get 1 if not 2 more years out of the binders that way.
It's amazing to me that even folders are tossed without a thought, so we go for those too, we just make sure there is no personal info from anyone on them.
I have a few more sorry I am late suggestions for BACK TO SCHOOL.
1 Preshop on your computer .get an idea what your children would like to have.
2.after you preshop go to you local paper and chainstore websites online to find the best prices and to save energy running around the area.
3,Besides School shopping you might consider doing other shopping afterwards.
4. Consider taking a brake at a local park to eat your homemade lunches.
5.Reconsider anything that wasn't bought on your shopping trip before you again try to go out and buy it .
6.Consider adding decals or pockets to your new bought clothes to even make them more special and functional.
7.recycling old school equiptment like solar calculators .backpacks refillable pens or notebooks.
All these can be made to look new and even unique.
8.Consider using both sides of your printing paper either for scrap ofr for homework assignments .
9,School lunches- when you pack have your children decorate their lunch bags.if they be paper drawings ,writing of phrases would be great.
if plastic bags have the children design the size and style of the bags so that they barely resemble store bags.
10.use cereal inside bags to wrap those lunches and encourage you children to fold them up as small as they can and bring them home to use again.
Make a game on how small they can make their used lunch bags.
Anyway here is hoping this school year is special to all.
Add your voice to the conversation.