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Teaching Our Kids About Being Energy Efficient with Ruby & the Powerpals


My husband says I’m a bunny hugger. I think of myself as a bit of a flakey armchair conservationist/environmentalist/slactivist. The thing is, like most of us, I am aware of my carbon footprint, I’m aware of how my being here and how I choose to live my life impacts on everyone around me and on my environment and what I think makes me flakey and my husband thinks makes me a bunny hugger, are the things I choose to take control of.

For example, I’m not vegetarian. Uh-uh! No way, not giving up meat, even though I am aware of factory farming and impacts on the environment. But I am pedantic to a point about things like recycling and energy saving. And I’ve chosen to educate my children about what small steps we can take to reduce our carbon footprint, to reduce our negative impact on our environment. So for example, we recycle, we have a recycling bin and I’ve taught my girls what goes in which bins. And we choose free range produce over factory farmed wherever possible. We don’t litter and we pick up and throw away our rubbish, we are conscious of being water wise and of course, we are also aware of being energy efficient.

Like most parents, I feel like I spend a large portion of every day repeating myself to my kids…. are you finished in the bathroom? Then turn the light off? Did you pour juice? Then close the fridge door!  

And now Ruby has come to the rescue to help me teach my kids and you teach your kids about being energy efficient!


This charming picture book introduces children to Ruby, a sweet little girl who learns about ways to save electricity by engaging with animated appliances in her home. The stories take place in different situations that affect her awareness and her behaviour as she uses her imagination and intelligence to absorb the messages.

Each story reveals a simple way to save electricity and frames it within Ruby’s experience. The messages are presented in four delightful rhythm and rhyme tales in picture and verse.

Parents and teachers can read the book aloud to children to expand their literacy and comprehension. In time, the children will be able to recite the book, retaining the messages and begin reading it for themselves.

Ruby and the Powerpals is a collection of stories aimed at children and developed by Eskom as part of their energy efficiency education programme and is aimed at increasing awareness of energy efficiency issues in very practical ways amongst children.

It’s available in various formats to so that it can be enjoyed by kids whether in the form of a story, a video, a collection of songs (this is the format my girls enjoyed the most) or in the form of a movie and can all be downloaded for free here: Ruby Downloads

Ruby Formats

The program has also been developed to include educators and with materials that can be incorporated into classrooms for learners from Grade R to Grade 6 and include fun activity sheets, e-classrooms and projects to help educate our kids from a young age about the importance of being energy efficient.

This is a great initiative to teach our children in a fun and interactive way how to be energy efficient and the importance of energy efficiency.

For more information, you can visit Eskom’s website to get more information.

And to end off, here is a video that gives more information about the program and how you can incorporate Ruby and the Powerpals in the classroom or at home:

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