On Friday the 5th of March, our whole school went out to clean up our school environment. Each class was given a bucket of gloves and plastic bags and allocated an area in and around the school grounds. Strict rules were set by our classroom teachers as we headed out to clean our environment.
Room 14 worked hard to clean up the outside boundary area. What surprised us was the amount of cigarette butts and broken glass that we picked up, extremely carefully. The collected rubbish was then sorted into basic categories for recording purposes.
As a whole school we collected:
- Glass: 1323 grams plus one beer bottle
- Metal: 895 grams
- Paper: 571 grams – including cardboard, papers, junk mail- all very light materials
- Plastic: 606 grams- plus one big plastic drink bottle- including plastic bags, food wrappers, straws- this is a lot for such light objects
- Cigarette butts: more than 124.
We were so shocked by the number of cigarette butts, collected outside near parent parking areas, that we did a mini research on the effect on our environment. Did you know that it may take up to 500 years for a cigarette butt to break down? They are made of plastic particles and turn into micro plastics. They are still investigating these effects because cigarettes have not been around long enough to know the exact details.