Our students are avid consumers. They shop at the mall and online, and they influence family purchases. Inspire them to think beyond the price tag. The following activity encourages reflection and discussion about the impact on people and the environment created by the things we buy.
Build Consumer Awareness
When you are shopping, it is a good idea to purchase items from companies that are interested in more than just making money. Instead, support businesses that behave ethically and responsibly. Do they support workers, protect the environment, help communities, and make the world a better place?
Consider an item that you would like to purchase. Visit the company website that manufactures or sells the product. Look for links that will tell you about corporate responsibility, sustainability, or community involvement. If you cannot find anything on the website, it may be that these issues are unimportant to the company.
- Look at the bottom of the company Home page.
- Refer to the Site Map.
- Search for keywords: About, Company, Environment, Sustainability, or Community.
Name of Company:
Check off each statement that applies to the company:
☐ Power facilities using renewable or clean energy.
☐ Conserve resources such as water or power.
☐ Use eco-friendly materials.
☐ Reduce waste with a recycling program.
☐ Package or ship products so they minimize environmental impact.
☐ Use suppliers that are environmentally and socially responsible.
☐ Care about worker’s health and safety.
☐ Support global or community organizations.
☐ Sponsor or participate in fundraising or charity events.
☐ Promote education with training, internships, scholarships, or school programs.
Add the checkmarks. Should you spend your money with the company or shop elsewhere?
Buy it Now! 7 checkmarks or more
The company cares about more than profits. They help people and the environment.
Go ahead! Make a purchase.
Shop Around! 4-6 checkmarks
The company is making efforts to help people and the environment. However, they could do more. Is there another company that makes or sells the product that you could support instead?
Keep your Cash! 3 checkmarks or less
The company cares about profits. People and the environment are a low priority. Do not spend your money. Shop somewhere else!
This activity is from TechnoBudget, a TechnoKids computer project to teach money management skills to middle and high school students using Google Sheets and Docs or Microsoft Office.