You may remember a post I wrote back in January about saving energy when you live with teens. NetMums teamed up with British Gas to produce some handy hints and tips to help parents get the most out of the energy in their homes and I shared some of our ‘challenging teen moments’. The site is very useful with energy saving tips for every stage of family life. 

I particularly like their idea to get children thinking about where energy comes from and how it is made in the first place. ‘The Powerful Story’ is a story created by schoolchildren from 12 different regions in the UK and author Ciaran Murtagh which focuses on energy in the past, present and future. Children were challenged to come up with their own ideas about energy now and imagine what it might be like in the future, I think this would be a terrific thing to do with children over the Easter holidays!

This month NetMums and British Gas are focussing on the importance of teaching children how to be energy conscious from an early age with lots of tips and ideas to encourage them.  As Mother’s Day is fast approaching I think it’s a perfect opportunity to pull on their heart strings while they are all keen to help and, as you are putting your feet up and they are doing all the chores, instil some energy saving habits!

To celebrate this, British Gas and NetMums are helping families take more control over their energy with Hive Active Heating™, a heating device which allows you to control your heating and hot water on your smartphone, tablet or laptop, wherever you are in the world and they have five to giveaway, fully installed by a British Gas engineer and worth £199! For a chance to win one enter the competition here and fill in your details before 6th April 2014. I’ll be having a go – I love the idea of being able to control the hot water and heating at home while we’re sailing – the number of times I’ve come home to a cold house and no bath water is now uncountable!

energy saving

Here are my top tips for a perfect Mother’s Day encouraging energy saving habits in children!

  • Once they have finished watching early morning TV or playing on the Wii so that you can have a nice long lie in, tell them not to leave gadgets on standby but to switch them off completely. Same goes for lights when they leave a room – switch off and save!
  • While they are making you that early morning cup of tea for your breakfast in bed (with Dad’s help if necessary) explain that they only need boil the amount needed for the number of cups they will be filling. A full kettle takes longer to boil, uses more energy and that lovely left over hot water goes to waste.
  • When they are cooking you a delicious lunch tell them that it is a very good idea to pop the lid on the pan. It will come to the boil quicker and, hey presto, more energy saved!
  • When they pop out into the garden to pick you a nice bunch of daffodils tell them to shut the door to keep the cold out and the heat in – Hurrah, more energy saved – we’re on a roll!

Bonus Boy loves a reward chart so he can point out to us how utterly marvellous he’s being and NetMums and British Gas have handily put together these energy saver reward charts just for this! I’m thinking of challenging them all to see who gets the most rewards – I suspect it will be my smallest! Why don’t you set up an energy saving competition in your house and reward your energy savers with a special day out with the money they’ve helped you save – it’s much easier to show children than just tell them!

What would be your top energy saving tip and how would you encourage energy saving in your children (other than asking them to sit still for 5 minutes!)?

Written in association with NetMums and British Gas.

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