Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

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December 12, 2013

NDES fifth graders saving the world, one recycle bin at a time

GREENSBURG – Fifth grade students at North Decatur Elementary School (NDES) are on a mission- to clean up the world, starting with their own school.

After participating in the Energizing Indiana program by Duke Energy, the students in Kristen Whipple’s and Jenni Shoettmer’s fifth grade science classes started brainstorming ways they could conserve natural resources and be more energy efficient.

Madelin Hoover, NDES fifth grader said, “We got into the idea after Energizing Indiana. It’s basically about saving our natural resources.”

The students decided to hold a recycling program at NDES. The fifth grade split into groups and thought of ways to promote the program and get the whole school involved and excited about recycling. Whipple said the entire effort has been student-led, from idea to reality.

NDES student Kaitlynne Huffman said, “We started the recycling program so people can recycle and our world doesn’t get trashed.”

Some groups made posters detailing what can be recycled, some contacted WTRE to do a radio advertisement, some made business cards and some decided to contact the Daily News, leading to this article. Students also wrote their own statements that were used during morning announcements, including one student’s recycling rap, among various other efforts.

“We made flyers and set up bins in every classroom,” student Breydon Hausman said.

Best Way Disposal and Decatur County Solid Waste provided 60 recycling bins that were placed in every classroom at NDES, as well as the teacher’s lounge. The first week there was a contest to see which classroom could collect the most recyclables by weight. The two winning classrooms received popcorn and soda as a reward for collecting the most pounds of recyclable items. The students told the Daily News that the contest got a lot of kids excited about recycling.

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