It’s only a few weeks until the Plastic Free July challenge.
In 2013 over 4,000 individuals, schools, businesses and organisations participated in the challenge.
Let’s make 2014 even bigger!
What is Plastic Free July?
Plastic Free July was developed in Perth, Western Australia and since its inception in 2011, has spread across Australia and Internationally.
It aims to raise awareness of the amount of plastic in our lives by encouraging people to eliminate the use of single-use plastic during July each year.
Did you know that Australians alone discard 1 million tonnes of plastic each year? And in America, 28 million tonnes of plastic waste ends up in landfills. Once there, it can take up to 1,000 years to decompose! And in addition to the plastics in landfills, it’s estimated that there are 100 millions tons of plastic debris floating around in the oceans threatening the health and safety of marine life.
How can you get involved?
There are loads of ways your school can participate in Plastic Free July. Some big, some little, but all voluntary and fun!!
You can get involved as an individual, a family, a business, a group or a school. For schools, Plastic Free July has teamed up with the amazing team at Waste Wise Schools and come up with a curriculum linked Activity Guide.
The guide is divided into three sections: Foundation to Year 2, Year 3 to Year 6 and a secondary school leadership package. Each section includes four activities teachers can complete according to their own planning timetable.
You can register and/or find more information at Plastic Free July.
Some ideas include;
Have a nude food day
Nude food lunch days are days when students (and parents!) try their best to pack a lunch box without single-use disposable plastic. You could have a nude food day per week or if you’re up for it, a whole month of nude food.
Conduct a bin audit
See just how much single-use plastic your school has been using. You could take a photo of the plastic in your bin or even get your class to count/weigh the waste if you are keen.
Create a class dilemma bag
A dilemma bag is where the students and teachers place the plastics they found hardest to avoid. You could create graphs to see which plastics show up the most.
Celebrate and share
Make sure you celebrate your school’s efforts!!!! Host an event and encourage students to bring along their dilemma bags and share their stories.
You can also check out my blog post Recycling Plastics for more information about plastic and how to reduce, reuse and recycle.