Watch your Waste Project


****NEW**** Check out our most recent Waste Reduction Education Pack here: Education Pack

go to the discussion section of this page 

ecoACTIVE are very excited to launch their ecoACTIVE SEN 3R’s TEACHER PACK

The new pack for teaching about the 3Rs in a special educational needs setting, is full of useful information, lesson plans and resources for you to enjoy with your class or community group. Get in touch and tell ecoACTIVE how waste reduction is working in your school!

You can also access our Reduce, Reuse, Recycle Pack!

REDUCE, REUSE and recycle pack. web

ecoACTIVE currently runs many successful recycling education programmes in London schools, which contribute to the increase in school recycling, and subsequent reduction in waste being sent to the Edmonton incinerator. However, recycling still deals with the consequences of waste, which can be costly and uses energy in the process. So wouldn’t it be better to avoid creating the waste in the first place?

The Waste Hierarchy dictates that there is an order in which we should look at waste:

  1. Reduce: to produce less waste in the first place (eg. opting for products with least packaging)
  2. Reuse: to use an item repeatedly (eg. refilling a mineral water bottle with tap water to drink)
  3. Recycle: to process used materials (waste) into new products (eg. borough council recycling).
  4. Landfill or Incineration: the very last option if processes 1, 2 and 3 above are not possible.

World of Difference pilot programme

In Spring 2012, Vodafone’s World of Difference programme helped fund a pilot Waste Reduction Project in 2 London Borough of Hackney primary schools: Benthal and Lauriston. As these schools were already recycling successfully, the aim of this project was to help them reduce and reuse more of their waste.

“You have fitted in a lot of things, and it seems to be going very well. We are interested in the long term results” Venti Costantini, Sustainability Co-Ordinator, Benthal Primary School 2012

Maripaz, ecoACTIVE’s Education Assistant, trialled many waste reduction activities during the project, and shared her experiences via her World of Difference blog.

“By the end of the programme, 91% of pupils knew about the Waste Hierarchy: that to ‘Reduce’ is more important than just to ‘Recycle’. This compares to just 31% at the start of the project” Maripaz de San Miguel Brinquis, Waste Reduction Project 2012

In order to assist schools in reducing and reusing their waste, Maripaz is currently writing a Teacher’s Information Pack, which will be available to download here.

Watch your Waste Project

After the success of the pilot, the North London Waste Authority (NLWA) is now funding ecoACTIVE to run a similar waste reduction project from September 2015 to March 2016 in 7 primary schools in 7 North London boroughs: Barnet, Camden, Enfield, Hackney, Haringey, Islington and Waltham Forest.

ecoACTIVE will run a 5 week programme in each school, involving baseline waste audits, pupil’s action plan campaigns to encourage whole-school waste reduction, and completion of a final waste audit around a month after their action plans have been implemented. A table of results will be uploaded to this webpage and assessed, to ascertain the success of the programme in each school.

Further support has been offered from ecoACTIVE, such as staff INSET sessions, and further sessions exploring ‘Reducing, Reusing or Recycling’ in more depth. ecoACTIVE will also be providing support via our website, with participants using the comments section below to communicate their progress whilst on the programme or discuss any queries.

We will be holding a celebration event and competition at the culmination of the project to share successes and congratulate all the staff and pupils who have taken part.

More Information

DfES, LEEF, Recycle Now, SEEd, Waste Watch

Watch your Waste Discussion Space

Welcome to ecoACTIVE’s Watch your Waste discussion space! Please use the comments box below to share your waste reduction tips, queries and general comments.


15 Responses to Waste Reduction

  1. Katherine says:

    This project has got off to a great start at Ferry Lane Primary, Haringey. We worked with year 2 and 4 on the 11 September, year 2 were getting to grips with worms and composting while year 4 designed and made some fantastic new products from waste materials as part of a Green Enterprise session. Our 5 week project begins with the Eco-Team on the 17th Sept.

  2. kath says:

    Waste audits have been completed at both Ferry Lane and Danegrove Primary Schools. Lots of rubbish and waste in the wrong bins, but some fantastic action plans in development. Drink your milk at Ferry Lane and hopefully some composting for KS1 at Danegrove.

  3. Maripaz says:

    Taking into account waste audits results, pupils at Ferry Lane and Danegrove primary schools have been thinking of ways to reduce the waste they produce at their schools. One of the things they are going to look at is paper. They have great ideas to help their schools to use paper in a more sustainable way, such as having a scrap paper draw in each classroom and promote them with posters and assemblies. I can’t wait to see their creativity and imagination fly!

  4. Jess says:

    Just completed a waste audit at Torriano Infants School in Camden. Looking forward to analysing the results and working with Year 2 to help produce their waste action plan.

  5. Jess says:

    Year 6 pupils at Hungerford School in Islington have started work on their waste reduction project. We look forward to finding out the results of their waste audit, and hearing some of their ideas for reducing and reusing waste at school.

    • Chloe and Erjon, Hungerford primary says:

      We have been thinking of ideas of how we can reduce waste at school. We are in the middle of creating a trophy for a competition. The class that has used the least rubbish wins.

  6. Zara, Hungerford primary says:

    In my eco active project I found lots of surprising things, for example recycling is not the best thing to do. Reduce is the best because recycling makes you lose energy. If you reduce you wont make any mess at all.

  7. Samiha, Hungerford primary says:

    We have been doing lots of work on recycling, reusing, reducing and burning or burying your rubbish. We have learnt that if you bury your rubbish you are causing a gas called methane. If you are recycling you are wasting lots of energy. We found out that reducing is the best thing to do.

  8. Georgie and Yahye, Hungerford primary says:

    In Hungerford we have been doing a project on waste. We have found out which class is the most wasteful in Hungerford. Which class is the most wasteful in your school? Maybe you could do a project in your school?

  9. Maripaz says:

    The eco warriors at Davies Lane in Waltham Forest have been working really hard over the past few weeks. They have come up with a lot of innovative ideas to reduce waste at their school. We hope they will share them with other schools via this website.

    • Davies Lane Year 4 pupil says:

      Working with ecoACTIVE has been very fun, specially looking in the bins and weighting the waste. I also enjoyed drawing posters to prevent paper waste. I’ve learnt a lot.

  10. Davies Lane Year 4 pupil says:

    Our school has lately been working with ecoactive doing a project to help prevent waste. We have been looking in our bins and seeing what’s in the right bin and what’s not, to see what we can reuse. A lot of our resources can be recycled rather than being wasted. We have learnt that the items we waste the most are paper and food. Everything I’ve learnt has helped me .

  11. Davies Lane Year 2 pupil says:

    We, the eco warriors, have been making posters to help us and everyone else in our school to remember to put stuff in the right bins. Also we should reduce, reuse and recycle to save the planet from pollution. We played a matching games about reducing and reusing.

  12. Davies Lane Year 3 pupil says:

    Never waste!! Eco warriors are looking in bins to see what waste is there and take further actions to reduce the waste we produce at Davies Lane.

  13. Chloe says:

    In the project I have found out that In our School We use 701.025kg of waste a year. The same size as an adult polar bear! This is why Year 6 is going to try They’re best to spread the message across which is Reduse, Reuse, Recycle.

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