Tag Archives: Whiteplainselementaryschool

Open House in White Plains Elementary School Proves that Students Change Communities

Last night, We Future Cycle hosted an informational table at the White Plains Mamaroneck Avenue School at the Back -To- School Open House. Talking to parents showed that even the K students with only about 10 days of lunchroom sorting under their (tiny) belts brought the information about recycling home and some even effected change already. It was heart warming to hear parents say how excited their kids were about being part to save the world. One mother shared with me that her son told her on day two that she needed to get another bin to sort out recyclables (which she did)

One father shared with me that the favorite word of his brand new kindergarten student is commingled and he sits at dinner and identifies the different materials he sees.

To give some background, White Plains School district hired We Future Cycle in 2015 to implement the recycling program in its elementary schools, moving into the middle schools by 2016 and now starting the HS school. Administration at MAS has been outstanding supporters of this program and this percolates through the building. Students are lining up to help at the recycling stations, students are signing up to help sweep and wipe tables, every single classroom has a recycling stations and while walking the building it was heartwarming to see that every single bin was perfectly sorted.

This proves that environmental education in schools can change communities. It teaches responsibility and personal commitment. All life long lessons. Hats off to MAS students for being the change we want to see in this world.

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White Plains Ridgeway Elementary Kitchen Staff Feeds 600 Students Almost Wastefree!

Meet the Ridgeway Elementary School Kitchen Crew. These wonderful ladies make sure that Ridgeway students are happy campers in the lunchroom. Salads, sandwiches, hot food, all is prepared fresh right on site.

Ridgeway Elementary School was one of the White Plains pilot schools to join the We Future Cycle recycling program and the entire school embraced the program with gusto.

The kitchen crew sorts all food waste into compost, all packaging material into recycling and they are also sorting all clean soft plastic into a bag which gets recycled at the local grocery story as part of the plastic bag recycling. This portion of the program is completely voluntary, and Ridgways kitchen staff is going every week above and beyond to do their part for the environment.

I was proudly shown their office size garbage can that sported after a full day of work just a handful of gloves and a few dirty soft plastic food pouches.

That is truly a wonderful example of an entire school community making a difference and going green.

We Future Cycle brings “Science of Composting” to White Plains Church St Students Learning About Healthy Soils

3ba6684d-abfe-412a-923e-0d5c14d498b8White Plains Church St Elementary Students are coming full circle. We Future Cycle just did a planting project with 4th grade using the schools own compost.

While recycling and placing their food waste into compost is now second nature to the students, the connection to what happens to that food waste and how it is used had not really been made.

Last spring, We Future Cycle implemented the second step of the program, which is tackling the classroom snack trash. Students are learning that food waste is not trash, but a valuable resource. Part of that program is to feed the apple cores and banana peels from snack also to compost. Last spring and this fall, students collected the organic snack waste in a little pail, brought it outside to the court yard and placed it into the composter, and now ….we got to harvest our first compost, going full circle.

We Future Cycle’s “Science of Compost” workshop explains the science behind food waste decomposition as well as its connection to healthy soils. Students got to examine closely different soil samples and make observation as to the fertility, ability to tilth, water retention and content of organic matter. We then planted seeds in normal garden soil, versus garden soil amended with their own compost. And now students are conducting scientific observation.

White Plains Ridgeway’s 2nd graders welcome their “new friends”

Picture1Meet the new “friends” of Ridgeway’s Ms. Vendola’s second grade. Eager students learned all about the wonders of worm composting, or technically called Vermiculture.

We Future Cycle Executive Director Anna Giordano brought her composting friends to share with the students. Primed and prepared by Ms. Vendola, Students learned in a presentation about how worms eat, breathe, live and of course….poop. The worm casting is what makes vermiculture so desirable, talking about fertilizer on steroids!

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After learning about it, students got to check things out for themselves. On wet paper towels, in a darkened room, each student, armed and dangerous with a magnifying glass looked for baby worms and cocoons. They learned how worms can move and checked out the bristles on the underside (yes, worms have an underside) of the worm that helps them to move.  Picture3

And then we built their very own worm bin and some of Anna Giordano’s “friends” have a new home now at White Plains Ridgeway Elementary School. Students will do scientific observations as to what foods are preferred by the worms, how long it takes for an apple core to be consumed and how fast the worms multiply in a friendly environment. A fascinating, hands-on experience for the students.

 

White Plains School Milk Cartons Recycled At Material Recovery Facility

DSCN2827On April 23rd, just in time for Earth day, Westchester’s Material Recovery Facility added milk cartons to their list of recyclable materials. They are actually taking not only milk cartons which are called by the industry “gable tops” a paper product container with a PET lining, but also “aseptics” which is a paper container with an aluminum foil and PET liner.

A typical Westchester Elementary school is generating around 500 cartons per day. A mix of cable tops (milk cartons) and aseptics (like juice boxes).

We Future Cycle has been instrumental pushing for Westchester to join the surrounding counties accepting this material. The We Future Cycle recycling program includes sorting the milk cartons from day one. If the material was recycled depended how the school had their waste removal organized.

There are three systems of waste removal within Westchester school districts.

A: The district gets picked up by their municipality for free or for a fee

b: The district pays a commercial carter for waste removal

c: The district has their own employees pick up the waste and feed into their municipal system.

White Plains, New Rochelle and Mamaroneck are feeding into the Westchester MRF and are all We Future Cycle schools. They are excited to be able to finally have the cartons included with commingled.

White Plains has even made adjustments to their pick up schedule to accommodate for the increased recycling amounts as well as the drastically reduced trash.

Before implementing the We Future Cycle recycling program, White Plains DPW picked up trash every day, but now with the drastically reduced waste, and the increased amount of recycling, the schedule was adjusted to twice per week recycling pick up and a reduction down to only 2 or 3 times per week garbage pick up.

Commercial carters do not feed their materials into the Westchester County Material Recovery Facility across from Stew Leonard’s, they use the commercial single stream facilities in the area. The schools using commercial carters have been able to recycle their cartons from day one.

 

White Plains Post Road School Reduces Night Clean Garbage Beyond Imagination

Can you imagine a 600+ student elementary school reducing its overall daily garbage to a total of just 27 lbs!

Well, that is the reality at Post Road Elementary in White Plains.

754bf9b0-bdff-40fc-8c3e-7e04f1af9aafWe Future Cycle implemented the lunchroom portion of the program in February and reduced the garbage from 277 lbs daily to just 5 lbs for breakfast and lunch combined.

The second step was tackling the classrooms and the building in general. Signage and bins went into place and under the leadership of head custodian Rob Dell’Orletta the night clean crew kept the classroom materials sorted and bathroom paper towels sorted so they can be streamed into recycling and composting.

Post Rd school only had 3 bags of trash, practically without any recyclable material mixed in, weighing a total of 21.5 lbs. That. Is. All!

Out of a school with over 600 students. Amazing.

That is less then 1% of the nation’s average of 4.5 lbs per person per day. Seriously….Way to go. Congratulations to the entire Post Road Team on an amazing job.