Teachers Tips by Ann-Marie McEvoy
10th October 2016
Hi there, I’m Ann-Marie McEvoy, Infant teacher and Green Schools co-ordinator in Lawrencetown National School, Co. Galway.
On September 9th this year, my school was presented with a special award from WEEE Ireland in recognition of its support of the ‘WEEE Pledge Battery Recycling Programme’. Lawrencetown pupils managed to collect 100 kgs of batteries for recycling as part of this programme AND…the batteries are still rolling in, as we have fully committed ourselves to ‘WEEE Pledge 2’.
Lawrencetown N.S. is by no means a big school. This school year we have 57 pupils on the Roll, with 4 teachers. So how did we do it? Read on for some tricks of the trade!
- Get informed and get involved-it’s FREE.
Ever heard the phrase: ‘It doesn’t have to cost the Earth’? Well, if you take the pledge, it won’t cost the Earth, you will help save it! It’s not going to cost your pocket either! It’s completely free to take the WEEE Pledge. Simply, go to www.weeeireland.ie for information on how your school can take part. The website is great for recycling tips in general and there’s a special link for schools where you can request battery boxes to start your collections.
- Show and Tell.
Put your battery box on display in a busy part of the school, such as, in the corridor , so that parents and others passing through your school are continuously aware of your involvement in the programme. Constantly displaying the box reminds others to keep collecting. You could even give each family the smaller cardboard collection box to take home and return it when full. Give them extra for grandparents and neighbours too.
- Inform the whole
Spread the word about your involvement in the programme. Tell pupils, staff and parents at school via school assemblies, parents night or text-a –parent and for the wider community, put memos in your local newsletter, download WEEE Pledge posters from WEEE Ireland and put these in local shops and amenities such as the playschool, creche or community centre. Ask local businesses to take a battery box and collect for you. You will be amazed at the huge level of community spirit you will conjure up.
The WEEE Pledge Programme can be integrated so easily into school life. Obviously, it is a huge part of your Green Schools programme, but if your school is not already involved with Green Schools, then there are many other ways to integrate it such as, Science: Energy and Magnetism/ Environmental awareness and care, Geography: Caring for my locality, if you are keeping track of the number of boxes you collect, then that integrates well with Maths: Counting/Data and as WEEE Ireland are partnered with ‘Laura Lynn’, it also links with S.P.H.E: Myself and others/Developing Citizenship.
I hope these tips are helpful and to finish, I urge other schools to take part. It’s only right to help the environment anyhow but there’s also the added bonus of knowing you are helping the brilliant LauraLynn- Ireland’s only Children’s Hospice. The charity is not funded by the Government, so this makes the pupils even more determined to collect batteries and raise money through recycling in aid of other children.
Since the award, our school has featured on local radio, national t.v. and in regional newspapers. The feedback has been amazing and it motivates us to keep collecting.
So what are you waiting for??? Go online now and order your battery collection boxes and whether your collection is 1kg or 100kgs, you can be proud you are doing your part for the Earth and LauraLynn, Ireland’s Children’s Hospice. Remember: “Every moment matters, every battery counts”.