The NRRA School Recycling Club

Northeast Resource Recovery Association

School News You Can Use – March 2014


  • Workshops Announced for 5th Annual School Conference
  • Nominate your School, Students, or Teachers for our Annual Awards!
  • NH News – Lakeway’s Recycling Program
  • VT News – Shelburne School
  • Grants & Contests
  • Penguin Craft and Lesson Plans




School Workshops Announced for the
5th Annual School Recycling Conference!

The CLUB, in conjunction with the Annual Northeast Recycling Conference & Expo, will host the Annual School Recycling Conference on Tuesday June 10th. This conference provides a full day of educational workshops and activities specifically tailored to school issues in recycling and the solid waste industry. The Conference & Expo is a great opportunity for students, teachers and administrators who are interested in learning more special-announcementabout school recycling, expanding their programs, increasing the efficiency of their current program, adding recycling education to their curricula, exchanging ideas, sharing philosophies, and further promoting waste reduction efforts. The Conference & Expo features workshops hosted by nationally recognized organizations and speakers, as well as hands-on activities that get students learning about recycling and waste reduction in a fun interactive way! During lunch, NRRA, and the School CLUB supporter, New Hampshire the Beautiful, present the School CLUB Recycling Awards in front of the entire conference audience.

Click here to view schedule of workshops and other information!
School Information is on page 5.

**Also, please note if you are a NH student, educator or administrator there are grant opportunities available to offset the cost of attendance. Please call Caitlin at 603.736.4401 or email**


Now Accepting Nominations for the Annual School Recycling Awards

Does your School have an individual, program or an event that deserves recognition for outstanding work in recycling? Click here and fill out the nomination form telling us all about it! NRRA and the NRRA School CLUB will be giving out awards in each category listed below at our 5th Annual School Recycling Conference/33rd Annual Conference & Expo on June 10th, 2014 at the Center of NH/Radisson in Manchester, NH. FoSave the Date School FINALr more information about the conference go to

  • School Recycler of the Year
  • Rookie Recycler of the Year
  • Best Composter
  • Most Profitable Recycling Program
  • Outstanding Recycling Fundraiser
  • 2013-14 Student Recycler of the Year
  • Outstanding Recycling Innovation in a School
  • Outstanding Community Involvement
  • Facilities Staff Recycler of the Year
  • Teacher Recycler of the Year
  • Cafeteria Staff Recycler of the Year
  • Best Earth Day/Recycling 2013-14 Event


What is your School doing for Earth Day???

Nothing? Let the CLUB help! We can come in and conduct a TOLD (Trash On the Lawn Day) or the mini version of a TOLD, Garbage Guerrillas. Both of these activities are great hands-on ways to show students that their decisions make a difference for the environment and the school budget. Read  more below or click here to learn more about what the CLUB offers.

The CLUB now offers 6 Classroom Workshops and 3 School Technical Assistance Programs. These workshops are designed for use in a standard classroom setting and most can be tailored to fit the curricular and developmental needs of any class grades K-12. The Technical Assistance programs are designed to work at a larger, school wide level and focus on big picture problems and solutions. Click here for a webinar about the programs we offer. Or click here for our menu of programs.





Cartridges For Kids One Part of Lakeway’s Recycling Program

Littleton Courier
February 5, 2014
By Darin Wipperman

Lakeway Elementary started a recycling program in 1999. Since then, the effort has grown beyond simply throwing paper into a bin. As part of the program, the school is sponsoring another Cartridges for Kids (CFK) campaign through Feb. 14.

CFK allows the school to make money by sending in empty ink cartridges, old cell phones, Lakeway CFKand other electronic items. Waste Management sponsors the national campaign, based in Loveland, Colo.

Kindergarten teacher Chris Barss has been one of several Lakeway staff members involved in the school’s comprehensive recycling effort. Both Barss and paraprofessional Evelyn McMann discussed CFK and Lakeway recycling on Thursday.

Barss noted the school’s partnership with the town’s transfer station. “It takes a team to make it a success,” she said. Transfer station staff has helped the school make the most of its recycling program, Barss noted.

Brian Patnoe, transfer station manager, complimented Lakeway’s strong commitment. “They are very good at recycling,” he said on Friday.

Patnoe added that the transfer station is especially interested in providing CFK items to Lakeway. “Any ink cartridges we get here are saved,” he said. “We give them to Lakeway.”

Companies in town also assist Lakeway’s recycling, Barss continued. This can be very helpful during CFK efforts, be-cause some larger businesses in town go through a lot of ink cartridges, she added.

Printer cartridges, cell phones, laptops, personal data assistants, and IPods are items accepted under CFK. If donated items are too damaged for reuse, the CFK website states the electronics are broken down into raw materials that are recycled in the United States.

Although focused on the period through Feb. 14, McMann noted that the school can collect CFK recyclables all the time. “Anyone is welcome to contribute to the collection throughout the year,” she said. Items can be left at the office entrance area, McMann concluded.

Simply walking down Lakeway’s halls provides evidence of the bins Lakeway uses to collect recycling. Each classroom includes two recycling bins – one for plastics/cans and another for paper and cardboard.

Students participate in the work required to collect the materials, McMann said. “It’s fun to see how many kids” are involved in recycling at the school, he added. “I think they’re proud,” she continued.

Students have also contributed artwork to promote Lakeway’s recycling program. Barss said posters were put up around Lakeway during a recent Literacy Night.

A calendar contest is another way students show their commitment to recycling. For a decade, Casella has sponsored a competition for third graders across five states. Thirteen annual winners are selected to illustrate the cover and each month of the calendar. Lakeway has had some winners in the contest through the years, McMann said.

“We are passionate about recycling,” Barss added. She expressed pride for the 15 years Lakeway’s “staff and students have made our community a better and cleaner place to live in.”



Discover WILD New Hampshire Day Set for
Saturday, April 19, 2014

CONCORD, N.H. – Mark your calendars for Discover WILD New Hampshire Day, an Earth DWNH_Archery_06Day celebration coming this year on Saturday, April 19, 2014. This family-friendly event takes place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the grounds of the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department at 11 Hazen Drive in Concord, N.H. Admission is free.

This fun day is a chance to enjoy exhibits from environmental, conservation and outdoor organizations from throughout New Hampshire. See live animals, big fish and trained falcons. Participate in archery, casting, and crafts for the kids. Explore new trends in recycling, environmental protection and check out energy-efficient hybrid vehiclesDWNH_Day_horseshoe_crab. Come Discover WILD New Hampshire with us — connecting you to life outdoors!

Discover WILD New Hampshire Day is co-sponsored by the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department and the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services. Watch for details at





Shelburne School Cuts Waste With “Table to Farm” Program

You’ve heard of farm to table. One school says it’s practicing “table to farm.”

It’s beginning to be a trend in Vermont. Students learn in the lunchroom how to separate their trash into recycling and compost. Doing so not only helps the environment, but saves money.

There was a time when lunch at Shelburne Community School was considered wasteful.

Instead of plastic milk bottles, every day kids drank from over 500 non-recyclable milk cartons and filled 6 trash bags.

Now, it’s a much different story.

“Glass goes in the recycling,” explained Kindergartner Marina Dunbar.

“If you put everything in the trash, the landfills get big,” explained Annika Rogers, 2nd grader.

For more than a year, throwing your lunch away has turned into a bit of a game in Shelburne.

Different items go in the coinciding buckets. The change is the brain child of parent volunteers Cathy Townsend and Lisa Williams.

Lisa Townsend said, “We need to do something to separate the waste and put it to better use if there’s any value.”

They’re not the only ones. 27 Chittenden County schools have similar waste programs.

“We went from being picked up twice a week with the trash to once a week and that enabled us to save roughly $240/month,” said Shelburne Head of Maintenance David Kelly.

In its first year, Shelburne saved 45 tons of waste.

“15 through collecting scraps for the farm and then 30 tons from the paper towel collection,” said Organizer Cathy Townsend.

The school also composts its used paper towels.

After separating the trash, the scraps are given to 80 chickens at New Village Farm, right down the street.

And the chickens love it.

Farmer Michaela Ryan makes the trip to school every day to pick up her chickens’ favorite meal.

She says, it saves her $80 a week on food during the school year.

You can call it the circle of life: from lunch line to child, from table to farm.

Among other awards, Shelburne Community School received the state’s Green Ribbon Award for its waste program.



State Farm Youth Advisory Board
Service-Learning Grants

About The Youth Advisory Board:
Started in 2006, the Board has funded more than  $28.6 million to unique, youth-led yab_tservice-learning projects, affecting an estimated 16.1 million people!The State Farm® Youth Advisory Board (YAB), made up of 30 amazing 17-20-year-old students from across the United States and Canada, has already stepped forward to lead this movement. State Farm pledges $5 million per year to this signature philanthropic initiative to address issues important to State Farm and communities across the United States and Canada. Now a little bit about the Board itself. The Board is made up of an amazing, diverse group of students selected from applicants across the United States and Canada. Even though they are full-time students at high schools and universities from Alabama to Ontario – (Roll Tide, Canada!) – Each member commits about 15 hours a month to the Board and participates in three face-to-face meetings per calendar year.

2014 Issue Areas

The Youth Advisory Board is currently funding service-learning projects between $25,000 and $100,000 that address the root cause of the following issue areas. You can also learn more about each area by visiting our Projects page.

  • Access to Higher Education/Closing the Achievement Gap
    Every 26 seconds, a child drops out of school. By developing innovative strategies for empowering students to care about and take control of their education, our grantees hope to reduce and eliminate this crisis. To learn more about this issue area, please visit our projects area.
  • Financial Literacy (and Economic Inclusion)
    The need for a greater understanding of finance is clearer than ever in light of the ongoing financial crisis. Equipping students with the skills they need to be successful and informed about their current and future finances is the vision of our financial literacy grantees. To learn more about this issue area, please visit our projects area.
  • Community Safety and Natural Disaster Preparedness
    The issues of community safety have received unprecedented attention in the wake of school shootings such as at Sandy Hook Elementary and Virginia Tech and hurricanes such as Katrina and Sandy. As these diverse yet equally exigent disasters unfold, the State Farm Youth Advisory Board recognizes the importance of keeping our communities safe from natural disasters, social issues, and acts of violence.
  • Health & Wellness
    Nutritional imbalances across the country, the high rates of obesity among both children and adults, the increasing prevalence of mental illnesses, and the growing rate of sexual transmitted diseases and sexual assault, demonstrate the significance of health and wellness issues in all communities. The State Farm Youth Advisory Board encourages projects within Health and Wellness that address, focus on threats or challenges to, and promote mental, physical, and sexual health.
  • Environmental Responsibility
    From global climate change and environmental education to wildlife conservation and land preservation, our grantees create and implement powerful service-learning projects that improve both our local and global environment. To learn more about this issue area, please visit our projects area.
  • Arts and Culture
    The arts is multifaceted and an interdisciplinary form of expression,the general perception is that arts is not a necessity. Yet, at schools, where youth spend the most time when away from home, it is crucial for subjects such as art to be taught. If not, art organizations in the community require financing. According to Edutopia, the case for arts sponsors various aspects American parents desire for their children: “academic achievement, social and emotional development, civic engagement and equitable opportunity.” The related impacts to art demonstrates the potential art education can create for youth and the community.

Use these guiding documents to help your application process:

Grant Supplemental Information (PDF) provides more perspective on the research that the YAB has done in various issue areas, and what types of approaches the YAB looks for in that particular issue area.

Grant Budget Template Sample (Excel) provides an actual copy of the budget that the YAB requires with grant submissions.  Feel free to fill out and practice inputting the numbers!  DO NOT WRITE IN THE GRAY BOXES

Grant Application Sample (PDF) gives you an idea of what the actual application looks and feels like.  Feel free to download and print!

Grant Application Sample (Word Document) give you a chance to actually fill in your answers as practice, if you prefer working from a hard copy.

Have a question?  Check out the FAQ page:  Click Here

Key dates to remember:

  • May 2 – submissions close
  • May 3 through late August – YAB members review all grant applications
  • Early September – winners are notified, and grant funding is received.




The Plastic Bag Challenge

Trex sponsors the Plastic Film Recycling Challenge each yearpbc in schools and communities all across the United States. The challenge brings to life for children the importance of recycling and keeping plastic film out of our nation’s landfills. Schools compete against each other to collect the most plastic film, such as grocery bags and case over wrap, which will eventually be recycled and made into beautiful Trex wood-composite decking and railing products. Youth get excited and interested in recycling early and Trex is happy to make possible a program that encourages recycling and community involvement. Click the link below for more information.




Penguin Craft & Lesson Plans


Total Time 1 to 2 hours
Ages school-age
By Joy Howard

What you’ll need

  • Black and white glossy acrylic paint
  • Plastic soda or water bottles (we used 12-ounce, 1-liter, and 2-liter bottles)
  • Styrofoam balls (2- to 3-inch diameter)
  • Black and yellow craft foam sheets
  • Tacky glue
  • Masking tape (optional)
  • Butter knife
  • Googly eyes (we used 3/4- to 1-inch diameter)
  • Funnel
  • Sand
  • Small doll accessories (optional)

  • Child’s socks (optional)
  • Permanent marker
  • Plastic lawn sign, 15 by 19 inches or larger (we got ours at an office supply store for $5)

How to make it

  1. For each penguin, pour two parts black paint and one part water inside a bottle (we used 1 to 4 tablespoons of paint depending on the size of the bottle). Screw on the cap and shake the bottle to coat the sides. Remove the cap and save it for later.images33
  2. On the outside of the bottle, paint a white oval from the spout to the bottom. Dry overnight (the inside may be slightly wet in the morning).
  3. Coat a Styrofoam ball with black paint and let it dry.
  4. Cut two wings from the black craft foam and a beak and feet from the yellow craft foam (you can download our template. Glue the wings and feet to the bottle as shown and let them dry. If needed, use masking tape to hold the wings in place as they dry.
  5. With the knife, bore a hole in the Styrofoam ball big enough to fit the neck of the bottle. Glue on googly eyes. Make a small slit below the eyes, insert a few dabs of glue, then slide the beak into the opening.
  6. Funnel sand into the bottle to weigh it down (we used 1 to 2 cups depending on the bottle’s size). Replace the cap and press the Styrofoam head on top.
  7. If you like, dress the penguin in doll accessories or use kids’ socks to make your own. For a hat, snip a 6- to 8-inch length from a sock and knot one end. For a scarf, cut a 1½-inch-wide loop from a sock, snip it open, and fringe the ends.
  8. Write “Penguins wanted, apply within” on the lawn Antarctic Penguin Craftsign, then arrange it and the penguins in your yard as shown.
Courtesy of FamilyFun Magazine






The NRRA School CLUB always loves to hear what its members are doing to recycle and help the environment so we can share it with our other members. There are so many different things being done, and you are our best source of information and 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!

Caitlin Meaney

1.603.736.4401 ext 17