Recycling is a simple way your pupils can have a positive impact on the planet.

As well as reducing the amount of rubbish that goes to landfill, recycling saves energy and helps conserve natural resources like trees and metal.

By recycling in school your pupils can earn one point on the Green Tree Schools Award.

What can my school recycle?

There are lots of opportunities to recycle in schools. Talking to your local council is a good place to start as they can tell you what services are available in your area. The Recycle Now website also has lots of helpful tips.

Here are some items you might be able to recycle:

  • paper
  • plastic
  • glass
  • ink cartridges
  • batteries
  • mobile phones
  • electronic equipment
  • clothes

You can even recycle food waste by building a compost heap for fruit and veg peelings, teabags and grass cuttings. It’s a fantastic way to teach pupils about decomposition, and the compost can be used in your school grounds!

Credit: Ranplett /

Get your whole school involved

Ask your pupils to think of ways they can encourage both students and staff to recycle. They could design posters to display around recycling points, write an article for your school newspaper, or do an assembly to spread the message.

How to claim your point

This challenge is worth one point on our award. To claim it, tell us about your school's recycling efforts.

Email with the subject line 'Recycling'.

We’ll add one point to your account after we receive your evidence (usually within two weeks).

How we use quotes and photos

We like to use comments and photos from schools to inspire other teachers and young people about outdoor learning. With your permission, they could appear on our award materials, website, press releases and social media.

You can find out more about how we use and look after your personal information in our privacy policy.


If you're happy for us to share your quotes and photos as outlined above, please include the following permission statements in your email:

  • We confirm we have permission from the photographer to submit these photos and use them for the purposes stated.
  • We confirm we have permission from pupils' parents/guardians to share their photos, comments and names and use them for the purposes stated.

If you'd rather we didn't share them, please include the following statement in your email:

  • We would prefer that our photos and comments are not used for the purposes stated.

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