Press Release: Symonds Elementary Hosts Recycling Workshops

Keene, NH –The fifth graders of Symonds Elementary School learned the basics of recycling through a class waste audit on February 20. About 50 enthusiastic students participated in three Garbage Guerrillas workshops. The workshops were conducted by Education Manager Heather Herring of Northeast Resource Recovery Association (NRRA). NRRA’s School Recycling Club (The Club) provides recycling education and outreach to K-12 schools.

Garbage Guerrillas is a workshop designed to raise awareness of recycling possibilities by examining the current waste stream. After a presentation and discussion on the growing waste problem and the shrinking number of available landfills, the students gathered around a tarp while Ms. Herring displayed several examples. Using a typical sampling of both classroom and home trash, the students reviewed the types of recycling and how to identify and sort out recyclables and compostables from actual trash. At the end of each classroom presentation, the students could see for themselves how much material could have been recycled from the waste. Topics of special interest included proper recycling of lithium batteries and how to reduce food waste. Ms. Herring left them with a lesson plan on redesigning product packaging for greater sustainability. The students learned that they can make an impact on companies by the product choices they make every day.

Special thanks to Fifth-Grade Teacher Christine Callahan for setting up these workshops. Additional thanks to Symonds School Principal Richard Cate for his support.

Thanks to funding provided by the Joint Procurement Initiative between the City of Keene and the Keene School District, these workshops were free to the school.