Are you aware of the current air quality issues in our world? The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has found that air quality can be affected by pollution from both stationary and mobile sources, which can affect the health of anyone who steps outside.
This includes the health of your children, so why not come up with some simple ways of teaching them about air quality and protecting them in the process? That’s exactly what we’ve done for you. Below you’ll find three ideas to make your kids aware of air quality issues that can protect the well being of your whole family.
Check the U.S. Air Quality Summary
This is something you can do with your kids when you are planning an outdoor activity, check to make sure the quality of the air is safe for outdoor exposure. Whether it’s getting the kids in the neighborhood together for a pool party on a warm summer day or planning to take your children to the cider mill on a crisp fall afternoon, knowing what the air quality will be like is beneficial for the health of everyone.
Checking the U.S. Air Quality Summary is a great habit for you to start with your kids because of its simplicity. It’s color-coded and easy to use, check it out when you have a moment at www.airnow.gov. Make it a regular practice in your household to only spend days outside when the air quality is safe!
Ask your kids if they know what global warming is
To your surprise, your children might not know exactly what global warming is. Taking a moment to define it for them could make a world of a difference.
If you are in need of ideas on how to instruct your kids about climate change and the greenhouse effect, the EPA has a great place online called the Climate Change Kids Site (http://epa.gov/climatechange/kids/index.html), where there are some really helpful tips and activities geared toward kids.
Engage their thinking caps
Using crossword puzzles, trivia games and even scavenger hunts, you can come up with some creative ways to remind your children about air quality issues. For example, the EPA has created a UV Radiation Crossword, which can be found online at www.epa.gov. There are numerous places on the web where you could even create your own crossword puzzle or word search for a fun Saturday afternoon activity to keep your child’s brain engaged in environmental subjects.
Jennifer Griffin, Contributing Writer and Public Relations, GreeningDetroit.com
Jennifer is pursuing a degree in Journalism and English from Wayne State University, and she is also a Contributing Writer for The South End.