Daycare students get early jump on recycling education

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, July 3, 2007

SOUTH POINT — Many of the youngsters at Kids Are Our Future Daycare may have been too young to really understand what she was talking about, but Stephanie Helms visited them anyway Tuesday morning to talk about the importance of recycling.

Helms, education specialist/community outreach with the Lawrence-Scioto Solid Waste Management District, said the preschool and school-aged kids are not too young to learn about the environment and ways to protect it.

“We want to start with the young kids,” Helms explained. “Many of their parents never realized the importance of recycling. … We want it to become a lifestyle for them in the future.”

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Helms talked to the kids about the work her office does, then she showed them a short informational movie that was followed by a coloring contest.

Helms’ presentation kicked off the daycare’s new recycling program. Vivian McCartney, the daycare’s department director, said the kids and their parents will be asked to bring in their aluminum and tin cans and, possibly in the future, paper to recycle.

“We hope that the kids will start doing it at home,” McCartney said. “We hope that they will learn to keep the Earth cleaner.”

Besides helping the environment, there is another incentive for the youngsters. All of the money raised through the center’s recycling efforts will go toward a party with inflatables.

The kids said they learned a lot from Helms’ presentation.

Acrista Fryer, a fourth-grader, said she didn’t know that cardboard boxes and plastics could be recycled and turned into other things. Madeline Pierce, also a fourth-grader, said she didn’t know that pollutants from factories could make people sick.

Helms said recycling has picked up in Lawrence County the past few months. The waste management district has placed recycling containers throughout the county, she said, which has made it easier for residents.