Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Back to School Not So Basics by MCR Christine Werk

Writing supplies at the Reuse Centre
It is time to drag our children off of the playgrounds and send them back to school. While going back to school “in style” is important, so is staying green at school. One easy green option is reusing old school supplies and/or purchasing a portion of school supplies from the Reuse Centre. The Reuse Centre has a wide selection of binders and pencil cases and an impressive range of crafting supplies that can be used throughout the school year. While researching for this blog, I ran into a teacher who informed me that it may be very difficult to get children to shop for second-hand supplies. Fair enough. May I suggest turning back-to-school into two lessons: budgeting and the environment?

Michael Recycle exploring the Reuse Centre
Step 1: Figure out what the cheapest most boring selection of school supplies would cost. Share this information with the child.

Step 2: Have the child look through the home to see if they have some of the supplies already.

Step 3: Go to the reuse centre and fill in any additional supplies that are available there. Try not to get distracted by all of the trophies.

Step 4: Finally, let your child use the money they saved for upgrading the remaining school options from the boring ones to the cool ones. Perhaps this means that by finding good binders at the Reuse Centre, he/she gets the Spiderman backpack instead of the generic blue one. Little Samuel or Felicia may even be able to pick up some stickers to refurbish their binders.

When getting ready for back-to-school, consider trying this out. There are lots of ways we can teach our children to keep the environment healthy while they learn about the world and how to be a part of it.
Binders, notebooks, and pencil cases at the Reuse Centre


  1. great post!

    the reuse centre is a veritable gold mine.

    thanks for the reminder about school supplies! i wonder what it would take for EVERY single person in edmonton to make ONE trip there! i bet that would change some lives!

    happy recycling & reusing!