Once a week at Valley View Elementary, a group of trusted students take to the halls with one goal in mind: To save the Earth.
Equipped with a cart and no shortage of enthusiasm, the students cruise from classroom to classroom, emptying boxes of paper as part of a recycling effort that’s not only beneficial for the environment, but also for the students themselves.
Through a partnership with Green For Life Environmental Recycling, students are able to earn money for the school based on the amount of paper they recycle.
A recent collection in February netted nearly $90 for the school’s student fund, according to fourth-grade teacher Joanne Martin.
“Earning money was not the purpose of the recycling but is definitely an added bonus,” Martin said, noting the funds will go toward end-of-the-year field trips.
Martin began researching recycling programs last fall after noticing how many plastic water bottles were being thrown away at the school. She was unable to find a vendor that would accept plastic but came across GFL’s Paper Retriever Program.
The free paper recycling initiative rewards schools for hosting a paper recycling bin, dispersing funds each time paper is collected.
“I feel it is important to teach about recycling to inspire students to care about the planet, to examine the resources that we use to make our world sustainable, to look at the consequences of using resources and generating pollution and waste,” Martin said. “Schools help to shape the habits that we continue as adults.”
Martin’s fourth-grade classroom began participating in October, but as the program has continued select students have been entrusted to complete the weekly recycling.
“I really didn’t ask to (be involved),” fourth-grade student Nicholas Marzouq said. “Ms. Martin just called me and (classmate R.J. Stout) up and then she was…
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