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Eco lessons inspire school children to recycle

12 June 2019

Reception class in front on bin collection truck.

Most of us don’t give much thought to what happens to our waste once it’s thrown away but children at a local primary school are learning about just that.

On Monday 10 June 2019, pupils from Healey Primary were treated to a special visit from our recycling officers who arrived in true style – in a bin lorry.

Reception class teachers from the school requested the visit ahead of teaching lessons on what we can recycle, how waste is collected and what recycling can be turned into.

5 year old George Cornall from Rochdale was especially thrilled by the visit as his dream is to become a bin collector when he grows up. George and his classmates had read Michael Recycle by Ellie Bethel ahead of the visit and learned all about the caped crusader and why recycling is important.

Child sat in a bin lorry.

Pupils from the school were eager to learn about the recycling process and were lucky enough to get their hands on the controls in the lorry cab. They spoke about how they wanted to recycle to save the planet and how they would show their mummies and daddies what to do when they got home.

We already run a Recycle4Schools campaign which aims to help increase awareness of recycling and encourage everyone in the borough to recycle more. Recycling officers visit every primary school and teach a one-hour lesson to year 5 children, educating them on the importance of recycling.

Recycling only the right items in bins is really important so they can be turned into new products, like new paper, compost, plastic bottles and aeroplanes. Recycling right saves us all money, enables us to spend more on essential local services and reduces the pressure on the world's limited resources.

"Our recycling rate has jumped to over 50 per cent"

Councillor Neil Emmott, our cabinet member for environment, said: "It's always good to hear when children have an interest in recycling and tackling environmental issues. It’s the young people in the borough that are going to really change the world when it comes to recycling.

"Since our switch to 3 weekly collections in 2015, our borough’s recycling rate has jumped from 37 per cent - one of the lowest in Greater Manchester - to over 50 per cent last year. But, there’s always more that we can do and if everyone of us here in Rochdale recycled one more deodorant can, it would save enough energy to power a typical primary school for 79 days.”

Reception class teacher, Mrs Rahman, said: “Thank you so much to Rochdale Borough Council for visiting us today. At Healey, we believe it's vitally important to teach our children how to be eco-friendly citizens of the future, even at such a young age.

"The children were enthralled and engaged throughout the session and learned all about how to recycle, and even got to sit in the recycling truck. Andy and Nigel made the session interactive and fun for all.”

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