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Get Your Child’s School or Day Care Center to Clean Green

You've made the switch to safer cleaners at home, but what about when your child is off at daycare or school?

You've made the switch to safer cleaners at home, but what about when your child is off at daycare or school? The chemicals in institutional cleaning products can cause a wide range of major health problems for children, including respiratory irritation and increased risk of cancer.

Luckily, safer cleaning products are now widely available and cost effective. As a result, child care centers and schools across the country are switching to green cleaners to improve health, increase staff performance, lessen adverse environmental impacts, reduce potential liabilities, and save money. (Yes, switching to green cleaning does have all of these benefits - talk about win, win, win.)


How do you get your childcare provider or school to make the switch?

1. Get informed. Use the resources listed below to get up to speed on the benefits of going green and the tools available to help schools and child care centers make the switch. It's much easier for them to address the "problem" if you have solutions in hand.

2. Inform others. Once you understand the problem and solution, talk to other parents, teachers, the school nurse, anyone who'll lend you a sympathetic ear. You want to have an influential group of people to help support your effort as you move forward.

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3. Talk to someone with the authority to do something. That may be your school's superintendent, a school board member or the manager of your child care center, or they may direct you straight to whomever is in charge of maintaining the facility.

4. Approach every person you talk to as an ally, not an enemy. Remember the fundamentals of How to Win Friends and Influence People - like not criticizing people, showing appreciation for their work, smiling. Trust me, you will get much farther much faster if you employ kindness, gratitude, and diplomacy. You want to be seen as an invaluable asset, not as an incessant nag.

5. Give people the benefit of the doubt that they are doing their job to the best of their ability. School and child care professionals are typically overworked, underpaid, with a lot to do and inadequate funding to get it done. Make yourself available. Keep asking "what can I do to help?"

Here are some resources to get you started:


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A Green Guide to Poison Prevention

Did you know March 14th through the 20th is National Poison Prevention Week? I am personally thankful for the many Poison Control Centers across the country.

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The Top Ten Easy Ways to Eat "Green"

Everyone's heard the cliché "you are what you eat." And, it's true - your health is intimately connected to the foods and drinks you put in your body. But, have you ever stopped to consider what other impacts your food choices may have?

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My Favorite 5 Easy Steps For Safer Cleaning

Have you made the switch to homemade cleaners yet? I know more and more parents who are – not only because it’s better for their family’s health and the environment, but also because it’s a lot cheaper.

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Moving Your Child's School Toward Greener and Safer

Back then, I was part of a very fringe minority of parents concerned about toxics in our everyday environments. Today, the movement is much larger and there are many more opportunities for creating cleaner, greener, safer school environments.


9 Better Baby Lotions and Potions You Can Make in Minutes

What you put on your skin can end up in your body, so you should choose personal care products with the same attention you give to choosing healthy foods. Better yet – make your own products by using ingredients that are safe enough to eat!


10-Minute Healthy Home Makeover

No matter how busy you are, now there are no excuses for not making a healthier home. Here’s how you can make a significant difference in only 10 minutes!


Price of Organic Got You Down? Grow Your Own

I can’t count how many times I’ve heard people say, “I’d love to buy organic food, but I just can’t afford it.” I get it. We can’t afford an all organic diet at my house either. But, eating organic doesn’t have to mean buying organic. You can grow your own.

My Eco-Sins (Confessions from a “Green Mom”)

First of all, I don’t think I’d call myself “green” so much as “trying to be healthier.” Second of all, and this is where the confessions come, I don’t always practice what I preach. I am far from perfect. Here are some of my secret eco-sins.