Each month, members of the Children & Families team will be sharing How We have introduced aspects of our community to our children. We will cover everything from the Aether to Zeus and we invite you on our journey. We continue with How We Introduce the Environment
We did a month long Earth Day project which introduced many environmental concepts like air and water pollution, recycling, up cycling, life cycles, ecosystems. As my child was only 4 at the time it was done at a very basic level. It has led to a continued enthusiasm for the environment, we regularly go on litter picks, they regularly comment on if something ‘isn’t good for the environment’.
It enables continued conversations around looking after our planet and why it is important. Downside is they constantly want to hoard packaging because we could reuse it for art haha. We had a lovely poster of Gaia for our project and read stories around the Greenman and other nature deities / spirits. The Green man has become very prominent in our house; my little dilophosaurus regularly makes green man art (paper plates, puppets etc) and pretends to be the green man, especially if we’re in the woods and they can hide amongst the tree braces (willows are very good for this).
Manager, Children & Families Team
Caring for the environment is an important aspect of my family’s pagan life and we try to do what we can to lessen our impact by keeping our carbon footprint low. We do this in a variety of ways, by recycling, reusing and reducing, not owning a car, using a veg box scheme and trying to keep our electricity, gas and water consumption low. We keep our garden as wildlife friendly as possible, leaving grass to grow, untidy areas such as woodpiles and plant bee friendly flowers such as lavender, comfrey and buddleja. We grow some of our own veg organically and put nitrates back into the soil so as not to strip the goodness from the soil.
As well as trying to look after the environment in this way we also care for our local environment with litter picking and also by getting to know our local area. Knowing the environment we live in helps us connect to the land and also means we can tell if someone’s fundamentally wrong with the environment for example tree disease and pollution going into our local canal which we can then report. We take part in the Big Garden Bird Watch and Butterfly counts as entering local wildlife populations helps conservationists get a bigger picture of the state of the environment.
Mid-West & Wales Liaison, Children & Families Team
The environment is something I’m passionate about and definitely drives the direction of our family life. It also feeds into my spirituality, and I hope that the way I interact with my faith and my practices influences my kids, at least a little! We avoid single-use items as much as possible, which includes items on the altar or for magical purposes – and for events such as Samhain. Decorations tend to be handmade or used over and over, and even when they fall apart, they get repurposed or recycled. We compost when we can, and we get a large volume of our groceries from a food waste initiative. I like to think this gets the kids thinking about what comes out of the earth and what goes into it: avoiding landfill means less pollution in the soil, which surely has a positive spiritual outcome as we actively work to protect our gorgeous planet. On a lighter note, we also enjoy utilizing nature in the way we decorate (kids) or give offerings (me). My altar is regularly decorated with shells, stones, pinecones, seeds, and flowers. My youngest asked if she could take a fallen fuchsia to place on a Samhain altar this year, with no prompting from me at all, and I think it’s lovely that they’re already starting to learn that we don’t need plastic and mass-produced items to show respect and honour to the spiritual beings in our lives.
Secretary, Children & Families Team