Image of recycling officer and contract supervisor in front of white board presentation

More than 500 pupils across East Devon have taken part in workshops about the importance of recycling, thanks to an initiative by East Devon District Council (EDDC) and their waste contractor Suez.

Led by Suez’s Recycling Officer, Jess Prosser, the school children have enjoyed games and presentations highlighting the waste hierarchy and the value in reusing and recycling material.

During the past year Jess has spoken to 525 primary school pupils who have enjoyed a series of activities to sort materials and learn how and where they can reuse material.

Feedback from the schools has been great and we are now looking to build on the success by encouraging more schools to book in visits for the new academic year.

Jess said: “We have a great recycling record in East Devon but we know how important it is to get our youngest residents on board, to help this rate continue to improve well into the future. These young children are keen environmentalists and show great enthusiasm about protecting our planet and where they live.”

The classroom-based workshops consist of three parts:

  • A presentation on the waste hierarchy (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Recover) where pupils look at real life examples such as bags for life, reusable water bottles, using charity shops or the local reuse shops at the recycling centres.
  • A game for younger children called ‘sort it’ where they are split into two groups and have to hook an item out of a box and decide which East Devon recycling container it should go in. For the older students we play a lunch box game where they have to create a wasteful lunch box and a waste-free lunch box from the items that we have given them. Wasteful items go in the red lunch box and the waste-free items go in the green lunch box.
  • The final part of the workshop is a reuse activity which involves a variety of crafts such as making dragons and dinosaurs from toilet roll tubes or bookmarks from cereal boxes for nursery students.

Cllr Geoff Jung, Portfolio Holder for the coast, country and environment added: “Our recycling team is doing great work, from our crews on the streets to our staff in the depot and those going out into the community. It’s great to hear our local schools are benefitting from these visits and the children are engaged and learning about the importance of recycling.”

Feedback from the schools is positive with repeat visits often booked in.

Following their event, teachers from St Peter’s Primary School, Budleigh Salterton, said: “Thank you so much for coming in last week. I've had so many children and teachers tell me how great the workshops were.”  Since the visit Jess has been invited back to the school to judge their Earth Day competition.

To book a visit in to your school please contact