3 Must Haves for New School Year | Eco-Friendly Parenting

Washington (GGM) Analysis | July 27, 2020 by Sarah J. Kings

As August nears, so do thoughts of sending your children back to school.  If it were any other summer, you would be budgeting for clothes, scheduling haircuts, and debating with your kids about why they don’t need the latest Louis Vuitton Supreme sneakers.  Instead, due to the global pandemic, you’re reading and re-reading governor briefings and state guidelines for re-opening in the fall and wondering about the efficacy of remote learning.

No doubt, things will be different this school year. Your child may return to school in the fall using a hybrid model, or they might be 100% remote.  No matter what avenue is taken, you still need to prepare.  As an earth-conscious parent, we know how important it is that your back to school list is sustainable. 

We talk about plastic a lot, but one of the biggest offenders of the climate crisis is our paper consumption.  According to the Environmental Professionals Network (EPN), each person in the U.S uses 749 lbs of paper per year, resulting in massive deforestation. Adding insult to injury, so much of this paper does not get recycled.  Paper waste makes up 26% of landfills, resulting in the production of methane, “greenhouse gas with 23 times the heat-trapping capacity of carbon dioxide.” Because of this, the reMarkable 2 should be the first item on your shopping list. 

This next generation “paper tablet” is wildly versatile.  It looks, feels, and even sounds like a pencil and paper, offering your child the creative experience they are used to.  It is ultra-lightweight and compact, and all of your child’s notes will be automatically uploaded to the cloud.  So, finally, everything will be organized, and nothing will get lost!

Twitter – @Ayo_d10

The next item of the list, of course, is cellphone related.  Nowadays, if you have a school-age child, the chances are that they have a mobile device.  Without a doubt, they will be looking for a new case for the start of the school year.  For this request, consider buying your young one a Pela phone case.  Pela cases are nonsynthetic and are Certified Climate Neutral.  These stylish accessories are plant-based and made from recycled materials, making them completely biodegradable and compostable!  With tons of styles that fit AirPods, iPhones, Samsungs, and Pixel phones, your child will be excited to make this eco-friendly switch.

This last item was definitely not on your back to school list last year: a face mask.  Disposing of single-use face masks is posing a real threat to marine life.  To combat this dangerous trend, try switching to a reusable mask made from upcycled materials.  Lumily is an ethical brand that focuses on sustainability as a part of their business model.  They offer a variety of CDC certified reusable masks made from 100% responsibly sourced cotton.  An added bonus: Lumily will donate a mask to someone in an underserved or vulnerable community for each mask purchased!

Twitter – @craigtimes

With these three small changes to your back to school shopping, you and your kids can make a big impact on the globe!

Come back every Tuesday for more Eco-Friendly Parenting tips!

Tl:dr

  • Concerns about COVID-19 will most likely affect the way your child returns to school in the Fall
  • Try to keep sustainability at the forefront of thought when curating your child’s back to school list
  • Each person in the U.S uses 749 lbs of paper per year
  • Paper waste makes up 26% of landfills, resulting in the production of methane
  • Methane in landfills has 23 times the heat-trapping capacity of carbon dioxide
  • Try limiting your family’s paper waste with the purchase of a reMarkable 2
  • Try replacing plastic phone cases and AirPod cases with a compostable Pela case
  • Face masks, gloves, and other PPE are posing a major threat to marine life
  • Purchase a  CDC certified reusable Lumily mask, made from 100% responsibly sourced cotton

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