7 Zero Waste Tips for Playtime

No matter what age, little steps go a long way and there’s nothing more convincing than when the little tips come from our kids!
So, this #plasticfreejuly we are handing over the mic to our #gaiafighters Philip, 9, Sienna, 7 and Chris, 3, who will give you a daily useful tip to how you can use alternatives to plastics and reduce waste in general. Find their videos on YouTube HERE, on our Facebook and Instagram pages and get the tips here:

Week 1 will be tips for when on the go AWAY from home,
Week 2 in your HOME,
Week 3 when on HOLIDAYS and
Week 4 when PLAYING.

We hope this will inspire you and your family to make the #smallchanges in your lives. Take the challenge to refuse single-use plastics on @plasticfreejuly and use our tips to help you on the journey.

#22 P L A Y D O U G H

There’s a lot of talk about toxins these days with slime, putty and squishy’s being top on the kid’s favorite activities. In some countries many products have been banned and it’s hard to know whether or not to trust the toy brands in looking after our kids’ health. So, if in doubt, avoid or even better, make your own.

Benefits of making your own play dough?

  • You know all the ingredients and exactly what is in contact with your children’s precious skin!
  • Not good for us, not good for the planet either!
  • Home-made will not only give you better and more, but save you trips to the toy store for big spends!
  • Tip: Keep your homemade play dough in the fridge – it’ll last you 3 months minimum.

#23  W O O D W O R K

We like to go Plastic Free throughout the year, not just July, so let’s keep going shall we?
There are a ton of toys available and many of them end us as trash, as soon as they malfunction or your child loses interests.Ever thought of using nature for building toys?

Benefits of making your own woodwork?

  • The toys will be given a heart in the process with all the love that’s put into it!
  • Avoiding another plastic toys will make another mother happy!
  • Avoiding another plastic toy will make your wallet very happy!!
  • Tip: Parents assistance for saws and knives for kids below 8!

#24  P I C N I C

Picnic’s can be a messy affair for our planet, and often we resort to disposables for convenience and less mess. But, with a bit of preparation and consideration, we can avoid all of that.

Benefits of a reusable picnic?

  • It looks so much nicer and will make your guests stay on that blanket and enjoy the food for a lot longer.
  • Disposable cups, plates, cutlery, containers and bottles can add up to a lot of waste.
  • Why buy disposables when a bit of preparation can save you the dollars?
  • Tip: If you don’t own a pic-nic basket, creating your own is not a problem – just see below.

#25 C A R D B O A R D

A lot of our paper and cardbord gets a second when recycled, but why not build that rocket, house or car you’d always dreamed off with these perfectly good preloved boxes?

Benefits of reusing cardboard:?

  • Cardboard is durable, yet easy to manage and cut. It’s therefore super easy to create bigger crafts easy.
  • Cardboard can be hard to avoid when buying other stuff that needs to be protected, but just think you’ll get the rocket you dreamed off, made by your own kid!
  • Refusing cardboard to save our trees is preferable, but if this isn’t possible, show mother earth that you give things a second life.
  • Tip: If you don’t get too much cardboard, check out the paper/cardboard bin or ask the supermarkets!

#26  C O L O U R I N G

Coluring can be great and rewarding activity but often also quite material consuming. A ton of paper being used and perfectly good crayons being discarded. Every thought of reusing when you colour in or using erasable materials like blackboards or washable surfaces?

Benefits of doing eco-colouring?

  • We want to save our trees and we don’t need more toxins in our waters. By reducing and eco-colouring, you help this.
  • Printing paper should really be for printing, when there is no other option. Save your paper by reusing letters and other print-outs and ask friends and family for pass-down crayons and save the dollars.
  • Tip: ArtCycle collects people’s discarded paper and crayons, you can buy or rent a box from them.

#27.  S H A R I N G

Avoiding new toy buys isn’t hard if you have great friends, family or network! Sharing toys can be done in so many ways, whether is sibling re-use, hand-down or doing swaps with friends! 

Benefits of sharing toys?

  • There’s something awesome about giving a toy second life – just as the toys in toy story! Mother Earth loves it too, nothing worse than seeing perfectly good toys get incinerated, when they can be used again and again. 
  • LEGO, Hasbro and Disney like your cash, but why bother adding more to their bank box, when there’s plenty of used toys out there?
  • Tip: Think before you throw – if you’re kids are done with toys, think where they could get a nice new home with your neighbour, niece or friend. 

#28. P R E S E N T S

They have everything! Buying a present these days seems like adding to the overflow of stuff for our kids. But what can we do to change the format of an otherwise lovely gesture and appreciation? 

  1. If you’re the receiver: See if you can agree with your child on a donation to support an animal in need, sponsoring a child or perhaps planting trees? If not, ask the guests to buy your child an experience or one present together – one big thing often gives more longlasting joy than 22 little ones. 
  2. if you’re the giver: Ask the parents what the child really needs and if they’d mind preloved toys? If not appropriate, no doubt they won’t mind a wrapping from newspapers and a card from preloved paper – at least you’ve done your share. 

Benefits of considering what presents we should give?

  • Most families complain about too many toys and too much clutter, often they don’t need another doll or star wars lego set and neither does our planet. 
  • Where would you rather put your money – Toys’R’Us or WWF? Consider this with your child. 
  • Tip: Making an eco b-day party is also a great way to go – see our article on the site for Sienna’s 7th bday!

Stay tuned for #plasticfree tips all year round!


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