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Price Elementary Students Celebrate America Recycles Day

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Students at Anaheim’s Adelaide Price Elementary School learned about compost and recycling in observance of America Recycles Day on Nov. 15. 

The school highlighted waste reduction methods in observance of America Recycles Day

Students engaged in lessons and activities facilitated by representatives from the Orange County Department of Education’s (OCDE) “Inside the Outside” program and OC Waste & Recycling.  The program provides natural and environmental science curriculums for local teachers.

Students learned about compost and recycling at booths hosted by Inside the Outside and OC Waste & Recycling, as methods to divert organic waste and plastics away from landfills. 

Students learned about vermiculture compost and how worms, food and soil can create nutrient-rich compost, according to a feature article by the OCDE Newsroom. Composting redirects organic food waste away from landfills and into the soil to ensure soil and plant health.

By redirecting recyclables to recycling centers to be made into new materials, recycling can reduce waste in landfills and communities. Price Elementary student Noah emphasized the value of recycling in a video on the OCDE Newsroom. 

“It’s important to recycle because we have lots of cans and bottles going into places where they shouldn’t be going, such as beaches and other unnecessary spots. But, if we recycle them and bring them all together, we can take them to places like recycling centers instead of being thrown away,” Noah said.

Composting and recycling can also protect wildlife. One booth presented students with a garter snake and giant African millipedes to explain how reducing waste in landfills can help preserve habitats and food sources. 

Recycling is a regular practice at Price Elementary. For the past 15 years, students have brought their recyclables to school every Thursday, according to teacher Ray Vidales. The students’ recyclables are gathered and taken to a nearby recycling center. 

OCDE Newsroom captured students during a recyclables-drop-off on a Thursday morning. The students stood together, held banners and cheered.

“Who recycles? We recycle! What do we recycle? Bottles and cans. Bottles and cans,” the students chanted.

Through the recycling program and a newly adopted composting program, Price Elementary administration encourages its students to celebrate and practice sustainable habits. 

Dr. Monica Munguia Valencia, principal of Price Elementary explained the value of practicing sustainability to OCDE Newsroom. 

“It brings the textbook to life,” Valencia said. “We are to connect the standards to real world practices, and they are able to go home and share with the families … [The students] get to play a small role in making a greater impact in their community.”

Beatrice Lee is a City News Intern for the fall 2022 quarter. She can be reached at beatrirl@uci.edu.