Recycling heroes

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Young students show how easy it is to reduce, reuse and recycle

Year Five students from St Aloysius Primary School near Maitland are setting up their own plastics recycling centre, to help reduce plastic pollution in their local community and turn the waste into new products.

An old demountable building will be used to house the collection service, which the school hopes to kit out with locally designed tools and other equipment to shred and re-cast the plastic into new items they can use in the classroom.

“We’ve asked students from the University of Newcastle to help us design tools, molds and equipment that is safe for 10-year-olds to use,” teacher Bek Stokes said.

“There are so many items that the school buys to help the students learn – like dice for maths. We want to make those ourselves from the plastic waste the students collect.

“It was our students’ idea to turn the waste into products we can use ourselves. Even 10-year-olds could see that it’s better to re-use the plastic at the school, instead of buying new materials.”

These young recyclers are a practical demonstration of the circular economy in action.

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