Teaching your kids to respect animals is an incredibly valuable life lesson.
Not only will it help to strengthen their personal skills by teaching them to care and respect other people, but it will also teach them compassion and consideration for all living creatures.
Living Things, a mobile zoo who work with schools nationwide have put together the following advice to help teach children to be kind and respectful to all animals…
Learning to care for animals and treat them with kindness is a valuable lesson for all children. However, you don’t need to have your own pets in order to help your children learn how to respect animals. One of the best ways to introduce children to wildlife is in your own back garden or at a local park. This gives children an opportunity to observe creatures in their natural habitat.
For younger children you could plan a bug hunt. This involves keeping a close eye on the magnificent mini beast world in your garden and watching what they get up to. Where do they live? How many can you count in one place? Record these observations in a ‘bug journal’ and watch your child’s insect appreciation grow!
If your child prefers a fluffier kind of creature, then perhaps you can arrange for them to meet a friend or relatives pet? This is a great way to teach them how to care for a pet, how to approach animals and how to gently handle them.
Another important way to teach children how to care for animals is to encourage them to care for the environment too. Explain how humans are harming wildlife with pollution and litter. Discuss how a large amount of plastic waste is ending up in the ocean and causing harm to many sea creatures. Hopefully this will encourage them to care for their planet and help to keep all creatures safe.
If you are considering a new family pet, you could visit a local animal shelter. Many of the animals at shelters have been abandoned or neglected, due to a lack of care or understanding. Although this can be upsetting, your children will learn the importance of properly caring for animals.