Our student-led recycling efforts are flourishing at John Glenn Middle School. During advisories classes students have really stepped up and taken charge of recycling a wide variety of materials throughout the middle school. Ms. Ferri and Ms. Scaltreto, two 8th grade science teachers at JGMS, help coordinate our recycling program as students collect, sort and recycle materials such as paper, cans, plastic and glass.
During advisory each week, student volunteers focus upon a different aspect of the middle school recycling effort. Typically on Mondays, a group of students collect the large blue wheeled plastic recycling bins and also the smaller sized grey bins after they are emptied and place these recycling receptacles around the school. The students met earlier in the year to determine the best locations to place these recycling bins and even mapped the locations with signs. Each bin has a numbered or lettered sign that matches up with the specific location. Then on Tuesday in advisory classes, student volunteers in small groups go to these numbered and lettered locations throughout the school and empty the paper. Then on Thursday, students instead focus upon the collecting the cans, plastic and glass recycling. The grey bins are also set up around the school to collect these materials. Lastly, on Friday, half of the student volunteers go to a designated rinsing location to help sort and rinse collected cans and bottles, while the other half of students return all recycling bins to the proper locations. The recycled materials are then collected by waste management to be properly recycled, with the exception of items with a bottle or can deposits, which are collected by students to raise money.
Students are clearly excited about their participation in the JGMS recycling program. Billy Helms, an 8th grader who is helping out with this recycling program stated, "We raise some money by collecting cans and plastic bottles for the deposit. This money goes to help with field trips". In addition to raising money to lower the cost of field trips, many students reported that recycling has other purposes. Faith Fombu-Atwood, another 8th grade student said, "This makes a difference because it help us know more about where we live and the resources we use".
Aidan Duncan said that the most exciting recycling event was when his entire advisory recycled out-of-date textbooks because they could not donate as the textbooks were damaged beyond repair. In his advisory, students ripped the textbook pages from the damaged books. Aidan voiced his enthusiasm, "It was so much fun! We took the pages out of old textbooks because the bindings aren't recyclable. We then recycled the paper." Thank you to all the student participants in the JGMS recycling program and to Ms. Ferri and Ms. Scaltredo for helping lead our student-led recycling program. Nice job!