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Sustainability – learning to protect the environment

Page 3/7: Topic A: How can you inform children about sustainability?

Topic A: How can you inform children about sustainability?

Here you find a short children’s story that you can read aloud to your child group.

It is about two houses; a green and a grey house. They symbolize a sustainable lifestyle and an unhealthy lifestyle. It is written in a simple language, using examples the children can comprehend. We suggest that you read the story a couple of times before reading it to the children. You are welcome to make your own version of the story by leaving something out or adding elements that you find relevant for your situation/culture/religion.



The flower: Four steps in creating change

The flower symbolizes the four steps in a process for positive change. The order to follow the first time is:

  • FOCUS: Find a focus of what you want to change
  • OBSERVATION: take a tour around the house, inside and outside, and notice things that make the children feel like they are in the gray the grey house
  • IDEAS: help the children generate a bunch of ideas and suggestions of how the grey things can be turned into green things
  • CHANGE: make the actual changes.

After the first time, you can work more with any of the steps by choice.


The circle of realistic optimism: focus only on what you can change now!


The purpose of this tool is to show that there are some things you have the power to do something about and then there are things you cannot change. Things inside the circle include for example: how you react and behave, what you say and do, how you perceive the world. Things outside the circle include the weather, the political situation and the financial situation of the institution. The point is that if you focus on the things outside the circle, on things you do not have the power to change, you will feel helpless, frustrated, angry and/or sad. If you focus on the things inside the circle and make an effort to change the things you can, you will feel powerful, strong and motivated. Your projects should be inside the circle.