The NRRA School Recycling Club

Northeast Resource Recovery Association

School News You Can Use – December, 2018

Working Towards a Greener, Cleaner Earth for All



  • CLUB News – Member Updates & Contest Coming in January; Travels with Cindy & Sarah; TOLDs at MMS & LES; More on Mtn. Village Charter School
  • NRRA Member News & Services –  What’s Your Sign?
  • 2019 Conference News –  Last Call – Early Bird Discount Ends 12/31/18
  • NRRA Grant News –  YIMBY! Grant Focuses on Composting; Town & Gown Webinars Ready to View; Keene School District Outreach Work; Presenting School HazMat 101!
  • NRRA SWIP News – Congratulations VT Educator Charen Fegard! White River Alliance SWD and Rutland SWAC SWIP Work 2018-2019
  • In The News – Single-Use Used the Most; Recycling in Space; Go Green Batteries with Call2Recycle; CC/KAB Bin Apps due Dec. 30
  • Contests, Scholarships & Fundraisers –  Youth Garden Grants Due Dec. 17; Carton 2 Garden Recycling Contest
  • Government News (NHDES & EPA & USDA) – Amoskeag Fishways Wins Award;  Sign up for NH DES Publications
  • Activity – Repurposing Gift, Credit and Rewards Cards, Folding a Tree Napkin; Handmade Decorations; Vintage Gift Wrapping

Click HERE to view PDF



Look at What’s Coming in January . . .

The CLUB is excited to launch our first annual CLUB Membership update in January.  Watch for our email blast!

It couldn’t be easier to update your school contact information now that we have our online Member Registration link. Also watch for additional contest information.



Travels with Cindy & Sarah





It’s been a busy couple of months for NRRA Grant Manager Cindy Sterling and School Program Special Projects Manager Sarah McGraw.




They exhibited at the New England Environmental Education Alliance Conference on Nov.1 in Fairlee, VT.

The next day they set up at the YES (Youth Environmental Summit) Conference on Nov. 2 in Barre, VT. They also hosted a workshop on Healthy Home/Clean Waters.They also raffled off a composter and free pass to the 2019 School Recycling Conference. In addition, they donated a CLUB backpack filled with goodies.

Congratulations to Anna Morris of Reading, VT for winning the composter, and to Cristina Larue of Plymouth, NH for winning the School Recycling Conference Day Pass.

Here are some pictures from both events.



Milford Middle School Hosted Their Annual TOLD


Teaching their 6th graders the rules of recycling is an annual event at Milford Middle School.  Here are some pictures:

For the full Press Release, CLICK HERE!


Loudon Elementary School Held Their First TOLD


The students at Loudon Elementary spent a very rainy election day in the gym conducting their first Trash On the Lawn Day.  Here are some pictures:


For the full Press Release, CLICK HERE!

For more pictures, check out the Loudon Community Facebook page –


More on Mtn. Village Charter School


Here’s the article from our friends at the Plymouth Record Enterprise!

Somersworth Farm To School in Action


by Wendy Berkeley, 11-19-18

Locally Sourced and Sustainable Community Dinner in Somersworth


The November 7 Somersworth Farm to School Community Dinner was a great success.  Over 150 people turned out for a delicious meal of chicken pot pie, steamed broccoli, and fresh biscuits with maple butter; the majority of the vegetables came from Somersworth’s school gardens(including the syrup for the maple butter) and donations from NH Gleans.  Local apples were featured in the apple crisp dessert, and a creamy sweet potato pudding with local cream was another treat.  In addition to being a mostly locally sourced meal, all plates, cups and flatware were compostable, with Toby from Mr. Fox donating the composting totes that are now on their way to becoming soil for our gardens Funds from our USDA Farm to School grant paid for most of the food, and donations of labor and product from local businesses such as Ovington’s, Smoke and Cream, 45 Market St Cafe, Cafe Services and Mr. Fox made the night a true community event.  Leftovers went home with families, volunteers, and School Board member Maggie Larson brought hotel pans over to our fire and police department that night.  They were pretty happy to see her come through the door! Big thanks to all the families who turned out to volunteer; it takes a village, and wow what a village we have here in Somersworth.

What has your recycling club (or transfer station) been up to?

Send us your pictures and we’ll share them in our next newsletter!



NRRA Member News & Services


What’s Your Sign?








Did you know . . . that NH towns can get free recycling signage through NH the Beautiful? Towns are allotted a certain number of points each year which they can use for standard town or school signs.  Check with your local Transfer Station or contact for details on point status and eligibility.




Planning an Event for Spring? Reserve a Can Cage or Recyclemobile!

Thanks to the generous sponsorship of NRRA, NRRA’s School Recycling CLUB and Schnitzer Steel Industries, Inc., the Can Cages (2) are available for loan to member schools for FREE!!!

For more information CLICK HERE or contact Programs Coordinator, Gwen Erley at


Thanks to the generous sponsorship of NRRA and New Hampshire the Beautiful, Inc., our three RecycleMobiles are available for loan to NH schools, municipalities and community groups for FREE!

Please contact the NRRA by telephone at (603) 736-4401 or by e-mail at for more information and scheduling details. To reserve the RecycleMobile for your community’s event, download, complete and send in the RecycleMobile Reservation Form.




Thanks to NH the Beautiful, schools may purchase discounted recycling bins and ClearStreams.



For discounted school recycling bins, go to:


For discounted school ClearStreams™ Recyclers, go to:




We Recycled Our Theme for 2019!

Recycling STILL Rules!



Call for Speakers!

For Speaker Abstract Instructions, CLICK HERE!


Proposal deadline extended to Friday, January 11!



Mark Your Calendar!


Our 10th Annual School Recycling Conference & Expo is set for May 21, 2019 – the second day of our 2-day NRRA Conference & Expo!



Sign Up for Your Discount by December 31!


Early Bird Discount of 10% if your school confirms before 12/31/18.




Don’t Forget Your NHtB School Grant!


Thanks to NH the Beautiful, NH Schools will again receive 1/2 off their registrations in 2019, defraying the cost so that more students and teachers can attend.  Add that to your early registration for a terrific discount! For the NH the Beautiful Grant Application, CLICK HERE!



Sharpen Your Pencils!

NH Schools – Put on your thinking caps! NH the Beautiful also added a new

$500 School Recycling Innovation Grant in 2018. Start planning your essays now and maybe your school will receive a check at the next Conference!




Pre-Register Now!

To pre-register for the 2019 Conference, contact Gwen Erley TODAY at 603-736-4401 ext. 19 OR email





YIMBY! – Yes In My Backyard!

NRRA is proud to announce that we have received a new grant from USDA!

YIMBY! – Yes In My Backyard! – will focus on composting and batteries.




For all the details, see our Press Release!

Town & Gown Webinar Links Now Available!


Outreach training in NH and VT has been completed and we are pleased to present the  completed webinars for professional development credit to Operators and Teachers where applicable.

(Please note that you must register and complete each webinar evaluation to receive credit.  All webinars are proprietary and cannot be duplicated or disseminated without express written permission from NRRA.)

To access our webinars, go to our RESOURCES Page!



Presenting … School HazMat 101!

Are you concerned about your school’s health and safety? NRRA’s School HazMat 101: A Blueprint for Hazardous Materials Management in Schools was written specifically to help the entire school community benefit from addressing hazardous materials use. Funded by the USDA Rural Utilities Program, this manual provides information that improves the school’s ability to employ safe management practices.

Many people are accustomed to using hazardous materials in their everyday lives and have become desensitized to the potential health and environmental risks. They also may not fully understand the short­ and long-term health and environmental consequences. NRRA’s School HazMat 101: A Blueprint for Hazardous Materials Management in Schools reveals how hazardous materials can be used safely by raising awareness of the role hazardous materials play in their lives and the associated risks. This manual informs school personnel how to be pro-active in protecting themselves, the students, the environment, and by taking a leadership role in their community.

For grant reporting purposes, we are asking that schools contact NRRA individually and sign a Terms of Use stating they will not share their password. We want to track interest areas and demographics. Once we receive your signed Terms of Use, we will send you the password and link for School HazMat 101. Please send your signed Terms of Use to


Concerned about your school’s air quality? If you would like to have an assessment done at your school, you may order our Technical Assistance Training – Green Cleaning & Indoor Air Quality Assessment. For details, check out our MENU or contact Gwen Erley at


Keene School District Recycling Program

The Keene School District has contracted NRRA’s School Recycling CLUB to provide analysis, programming and equipment to facilitate effective and cost-saving recycling throughout the District.

Phase One was completed in 2017 with Star Assessments being done at each school.  Surveys were sent to staff at all seven schools to gauge their current recycling efforts.  Programming and recycling equipment will be provided this coming school year.

In preparation for this programming, a Star Assessment Training was held on Sept. 14 for representatives from each of the Keene schools. (See Press Release.) Each representative (along with several Girl Scouts) learned how to collect the field data needed to provide a comprehensive evaluation of their school’s current recycling program. The representatives will collect their data in October and send it to NRRA for analysis and a final report.

For more information, please contact Gwen Erley, Programs Coordinator at

Teacher Resources Available for Purchase!

Classic K-12 Recycling Activities with

21st Century Standards


Thanks to grant funding through USDA-Rural Development, NRRA’s School Recycling CLUB is proud to offer the newest editions of their school curricula 3R’s of the Common Core: A Teacher’s Resource Guide to Solid Waste and Recycling and Teaching Toxics: Creating Solutions to Household Pollution.  These references are divided into age appropriate lessons for K-3, 4-6, 7-8 and 9-12. Schools may select from hard copy or PDF versions.

In addition, four classroom workshop modules have been updated and are available in PDF versions only.  They are:

  1. Garbage Guerrillas
  2. Back to the Earth
  3. Healthy Home/Clean Waters
  4. Waste = Global Climate Change

Anyone else interested in purchasing these resources should contact NRRA Programs Coordinator, Gwen Erley, at

  • For the Pricing Guide, click HERE.
  • For the Terms of Use, click HERE.
  • For the Curricula Descriptions, click HERE.




Congratulations to VT Educator and State Representative-Elect, Charen Fegard!

Charen will be busy for the next two years but we are hopeful she’ll make a guest appearance for The CLUB in her “free” time.  For more information about Charen, check out:



White River Alliance Solid Waste District School Outreach Continues for 2018-19 School Year

Workshops and Technical Assistance Available

Vermont – We have completed our first and started our second round of outreach to schools in the White River Alliance Solid Waste District in Eastern/Central, VT. We will be working with two schools in the 2018-2019 school year.

School outreach consists of four workshops and two technical assistance trainings. These are being paid for by the Alliance so there is no cost to the schools.

Alliance communities include:  Barnard, Bethel, Granville, Hancock, Pittsfield, Rochester, Royalton and Stockbridge.

For more information, please contact The CLUB at

Rutland County SWAC SWIP Outreach

Ramping Up for 2019

Vermont – NRRA’s School Recycling CLUB has completed our school outreach efforts for the 2017-2018 School year on behalf of the Rutland County Solid Waste Alliance Communities (RCSWAC). We met with two more Rutland County schools in April. Our goal is to assist with Act 148, Universal Recycling compliance.

Fair Haven enjoyed a presentation on Healthy Home/Clean Waters through our USDA Town & Gown Grant.  See the PRESS RELEASE for details.

Outreach will resume next spring for the 2018-2019 school year.  School outreach consists of an NRRA Star Assessment and ANR School Recycling Scorecard.  There is no cost to the schools thanks to RCSWAC grant funding.

RCSWAC Member towns include:  Benson, Chittenden, Fair Haven, Middletown Springs, Pawlet, Rutland Town, Shrewsbury, Sudbury, Tinmouth and West Haven.

For more information, please contact The CLUB at




‘Single-Use’ Used the Most

From our Friends at


Collins Dictionary Names Single-use 2018 Word of the Year

Think single-use plastic straws, plastic baggies and those pesky shopping bags that cause headaches for MRFs.

Waste360 Staff | Nov 08, 2018

Collins Dictionary has chosen “single-use” as its 2018 word of the year. And it’s not really a surprise considering more and more companies and groups have made—and continue to make—commitments to ban single-use plastic straws and other products that end up in oceans and landfills.

Single-use refers to products, most commonly made from plastic, that are manufactured to be used one time and then thrown away. Think plastic straws, plastic baggies, cutlery, packaging and those pesky plastic shopping bags that cause headaches at materials recovery facilities (MRFs) and contaminate the recycling stream.

The Guardian has more details:

Recycling in Space

From our Friends at


A 3D Printer with a Recycling Device is Headed to the International Space Station

November 18, 2018

The International Space Station’s first 3D printer with its own recycling machine is en route to the orbital laboratory aboard a Northrop Grumman spacecraft. The Cygnus spacecraft launched early Saturday morning aboard an Antares rocket, carrying 7,400 pounds of supplies to aid dozens of investigations and research projects conducted on the space station, NASA said in a news release.

The load includes the space station’s first all-in-one 3D printer and recycler, known as the “Refabricator,” NASA said. It will be able to take plastic materials and old 3D-printed parts on the space station and recycle them into new 3D-printer “ink” that will allow astronauts to make new tools in space.

For the whole article, go to:

From our Friends at


Coca-Cola, Keep America Beautiful Accepting Grant Applications

Applications for the 2018 Public Spaces Recycling Bin Grant Program will be accepted through December 30.

Waste360 Staff | Nov 20, 2018

National nonprofit Keep America Beautiful and The Coca-Cola Foundation on America Recycles Day announced the opening of the application period for the 2018 Keep America Beautiful/Coca-Cola Public Spaces Recycling Bin Grant Program. In its 12th year, the initiative is designed to increase access to recycling in community public spaces across America. Grant applications will be available online through December 30.

For the past 11 years, The Coca-Cola Foundation has supported the program, which has donated recycling bins to more than 1,000 communities in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Over the history of the program, more than 36,000 public space recycling bins have been awarded, providing opportunities for recycling on the go to more than 2 million people daily.

For the whole article, CLICK HERE!



From our Friends at Call2Recycle

Go Green This Holiday Season

Turn the holiday shopping season green by recycling your old batteries! The best way to check ‘help the planet’ off your holiday list: make sure your Call2Recycle boxes are full when you ship them back.


Looking for more materials or to access battery safety information? Visit our refreshed homepage for all your battery needs. Wishing you a green and joyful holiday season!


From our Friends at

Simple Tips to Make the Holiday Season More Environmentally Friendly

Photo courtesy of Pinterest


Posted 11/28/18-With parties, decorations, gift giving and travel, Americans generate 25 percent more waste than average between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day – equating to almost 1,000 pounds of trash per household. Learn More>





Recycling & Environmental Game Links

In our internet travels, we have found several links to recycling and environmental games and activities that students might enjoy:



As the weather forces us indoors, are you concerned about your school’s indoor air quality?

For technical assistance, please consider The CLUB’s Indoor Air Quality & Green Cleaning training. For an overview, you can view our recorded webinar located on our Resources page. Just scroll down to Webinar 13.

For more information about scheduling an evaluation for your school, please contact


Contests, Scholarships & Fundraisers


It’s Not Too Early to Think Spring!


From our Friends at


Carton 2 Garden

Open to public and private schools, Carton 2 Garden will award fifteen innovative garden creations featuring creative and sustainable uses for repurposed milk and juice cartons – including a $5,000 grand prize! Register today and get exclusive lesson plans to integrate your project with your classroom.

Entries are due by Monday, March 25, 2019 by Midnight PST.

You can access the online entry form at:

From our Friends at Waste360 Daily Wire

Schools Nationwide Participate in PepsiCo’s Recycle Rally Program

September 4 to April 26

By Cristina Commendatore

As the 2018-19 school year kicks off for students and teachers across the country, every school that participates in PepsiCo’s Recycle Rally program has different goals when it comes to recycling. Some schools are focused on making Recycle Rally an educational and developmental experience for the students. Others integrate the program into a broader environmental sustainability program at the school. And many schools just want to increase recycling because they are disappointed every time they see recyclables being unnecessarily added to landfills.


Here is the link to all the rules from our friends at PepsiCo Recycling Support:


From our Friends at

Youth Garden Grant

The 2019 Youth Garden Grant is open to any nonprofit organization, public or private school, or youth program in the United States or US Territories planning a new garden program or expanding an established one. If your program serves at least 15 youth between the ages of 3 and 18, we encourage you to apply.

A total of 25 programs will be awarded, with the top 5 programs receiving award packages worth $2100 in cash and gardening gear, and 20 programs receiving packages worth $500! Applications are due December 17, 2018.

For all the details, go to:


From our Friends at National Wildlife Federation

Young Reporters for the Environment

NWF is looking for candidates for their 2018-2019 Young Reporters for the Environment Competition. Keep the following dates in mind:

  • February 22, 2019 – Entries due
  • April 10, 2019 – National winners announced. 1st place winners progress to international level.
  • June 5, 2019 International winners announced (World Environment Day)

For more information on this competition, CLICK HERE!

Other School Grant Opportunities



From our Friends at NH Audubon and NH Fish & Game

Amoskeag Fishways Wins Env. Ed. Award


Amoskeag Fishways staff with 2018 Maria Pirie Environmental Education Program Award presented by the New England Environmental Education Alliance for their Urban Wildlife Program. Left to right: Holly Groh, Kathleen Neville, Callie Ficek and Helen Dalbeck.

Congratulations to Amoskeag Fishways “Urban Wildlife Education Program” for winning the Maria Pirie Environmental Education Program Award! Their program is funded by NH Fish and Game and the Moose Conservation License Plate Fund.  For the full article, go to:



A Reminder From our Friends at Upper Valley Lake Sunapee Regional Planning Commission


Sign Up for NH DES Publications

NH Department of Environmental Services publishes a number of very interesting and useful newsletters and bulletins.

Here’s a link to sign up for DES publications:


EPA’s WasteWise encourages organizations and businesses to achieve sustainability in their practices and reduce select industrial wastes.

WasteWise is part of EPA’s sustainable materials management efforts, which promote the use and reuse of materials more productively over their entire lifecycles.

To learn more, go to WasteWise Fact Sheet.

As part of EPA’s Food Recovery Challenge, organizations pledge to improve their sustainable food management practices and report their results. The FRC is part of EPA’s Sustainable Materials Management Program (SMM). SMM seeks to reduce the environmental impact of materials through their entire life cycle. This includes how they are extracted, manufactured, distributed, used, reused, recycled, and disposed.

To learn more, go to:  EPA FRC




From our Friends at


Creative Repurposing of Gift Cards, Credit Cards, & Rewards Cards

Patti Roth July 20, 2018

You’re probably sporting a few of them right now in your wallet. Or they’re stacked inside a random kitchen drawer. Flat and featherweight, these plastic rectangles pile up. You use them for shopping. For banking. Gifts. Earning rewards points. You may even receive blank versions in your junk mail.

When no longer needed, credit cards, gift cards, and other plastic cards often pose a disposing dilemma. They usually don’t belong in mixed recycling. And if you’re protecting your personal information — and the planet — you probably won’t want to toss them in the trash.

So, instead of retiring them to that drawer in the kitchen, put them to work. To spark your imagination, we’re highlighting an assortment of no-fuss, artistic, and innovative approaches to repurposing your old cards.

For the entire article, CLICK HERE!



For a really festive table . . .

From our Friends at Pinterest


Christmas Tree Table Napkin


Watch a video on how to fold this amazing tree napkin!





Short on cash for decorations? Make them yourself!


From our Friends at


Rustic Star from Twigs


For all the instructions, CLICK HERE!









From our Friends at Pinterest

Folded paper wreath

Michele Made Me folded strips of magazine pages into accordions and then wrapped several of the strips around a frame. The result is this amazing wreath that could be customized to fit any holiday. I totally love it!

For all the instructions, go to:




From our Friends at

This image courtesy of

Most Beautiful Medallion Paper Snowflakes

By: ChiWei Ranck from

Make a gorgeous detailed paper snowflake this season. The Most Beautiful Medallion Paper Snowflakes are intricate paper crafts for Christmas or winter. If you want to learn how to make a paper snowflake step by step, you are in the right place! These snowflakes are so impressive when you unfold them, and they can be used for a variety of purposes! Hang several in your home to emulate the snow outside or turn them into Christmas ornaments for your tree. Use your imagination! Paper snowflakes are awesome crafts for winter.

  • Estimated Cost: Under $10
  • Time to complete: Under an hour
  • Primary Technique: General Paper Crafting
  • Occasion/Theme: Winter
  • Project or Page Size:5 inches x 11 inches

Click here for the free paper project


From our Friends at Pinterest



Tiny Gift Boxes



For all the instructions, CLICK HERE!





And finally . . .

From our Friends at

Vintage Christmas Gift Wrapping Ideas

By: Christina Dennis from

This image courtesy of

If you’re a sucker for the romance of thoughtful gift wrapping ideas, then you’ll fall head over heels for this shabby chic inspiration. Lacey, flowery, and oh-so-pretty, these Vintage Christmas Gift Wrapping Ideas will help you provide the perfect touch to that precious gift. Christmas wrapping ideas like this are just one more way to make the holiday even more special for your loved ones. With these unique gift wrapping ideas, you’ll have a Christmas you’ll never forget.

Click here for the Christmas craft

  • Estimated Cost: $11-$20
  • Time to Complete: In an evening
  • Materials: Mixed Media, Paper
  • Primary Technique: Paper Crafts




03/18/19 – Global Recycling Day – The second annual celebration from the Bureau of International Recycling!  For more information, visit:

03/22/19 – World Water DayTo plan your event, visit

04/22/19 – Earth DayTo plan your event, see future newsletters and visit

04/26/19 – Arbor Day – To plan your event, visit

05/08/19 – Bike to School Day – To register your school event:

05/20-21/19 – NRRA’s 38th Annual Recycling Conference & Expo

05/21/19 – School Recycling CLUB’s 10th Annual School Recycling Conference (the Conference within the Conference); Registration assistance available for NH schools through NH the Beautiful. 10% discount if your school confirms by 12/31/18!

06/05/19 – World Environment Day – To plan your event, visit

06/08/19 – World Oceans Day – To plan your event, visit





mailboxWHAT IS YOUR SCHOOL CLUB UP TO? The NRRA School Recycling CLUB always loves to hear what its members and other schools are doing to recycle and help the environment so we can share it through our newsletter. There are so many different things being done, and you are our best source of information about what is working in your school. It can be a new program, a long-term project that’s been proven over time, a field trip, etc. Always feel free to contact me or submit something and you may see it in the next School News You Can Use! – Gwen Erley, 1-603-736-4401, Ext. 19