No impact week was something new to me. I think we are all accustomed to our little environmentally killing habits, so to try to abstain from them takes a lot of energy and will power. As I’m working on my website to try to teach 1st to 6th graders how to consume water in a more environmentally-friendly way, I can’t help but ask myself, If it took me, an 18 year old in college, this long to finally do an No Impact Week in order to change my consumption and utilization of things, how do I expect 7 to 12 years olds to do the same? You guys have already seen my posts about Water day and Energy day, but the other days were not as easy as I thought they would be. Waste day was easy, because I had already been accustomed to recycling my things as well as putting my food in the compost bin. However, at times, we often find ourselves asking, What exactly is recyclable/compostable/waste? One would think that the labels and little pictures on the trash bins would be helpful, but you have to actually take the time to go through your trash (maybe do a little research) to find out what would be best to recycle. Transportation was not a problem at all because I walk to class anyway, and when I do leave campus, it’s on the shuttle bus. However, one thing I had to take into consideration when thinking about transportation was, what other types of transportation are there that go beyond cars? For example, an elevator transports you from one floor to the other, and in the process it uses a lot of energy. We all know that all every aspect of No Impact Week is connected, so I decided to stop using the elevator, and saw it as a combination of saving energy and not using transportation. Food day was probably the hardest day for me, for I had initially aimed to stop eating meat this week, but that failed. Instead, I ate food in small proportions, limited my breakfast foods to cereal and fruit, ate more vegetables than meat. As the days went by, maintaing this “diet” became easier. Seeing as I don’t use a lot of products, I decided to reduce my use of these products.
All in all No Impact Week was not easy, but it was do-able. The combination of everything on Saturday wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be, because I had already gotten into the “groove” of doing everything each day through out the week. No Impact Week was all about behavior change, and I honestly believe that my behavior has changed in one way or another. So to answer the question, If it took me, an 18 year old in college, this long to finally do an No Impact Week in order to change my consumption and utilization of things, how do I expect 7 to 12 years olds to do the same?, the simplest answer would be to teach them how to go about it step by step over a period of time, in the hopes that it either becomes a habit or it makes them more aware of their habits.