2011 Winners

Chartwell Green Team

"A Garbageless Christmas"

School: Chartwell Elementary

Votes Received: 117

This year, Chartwell’s Green Team has been spreading the message about reducing waste! Together, we brainstormed about the most wasteful time of year: Christmas! Every December, people buy tons of new toys and presents. These presents come in lots of packaging and are wrapped in rolls and rolls of wrapping paper and new gift bags. When Christmas is over, families have garbage bags filled with these materials and they all end up in the garbage can and then the landfill! So, the Green Team decided to go on a mission to create “A Garbageless Christmas!” Our first step was to invite Amanda Vantol and the North Shore Recycling Program to Chartwell to help us. Amanda challenged our entire school to be part of the “Mission: Zero Waste” program. So, for the months of November and December, Amanda came in to each of our classrooms to talk about waste reduction and what all students from Kindergarten to Grade 7 could do to reduce their waste in our school. After this campaign, Chartwell reduced its garbage by 20 percent! During our “Mission: Zero Waste” campaign, each class created a wasteless Christmas project. Some classes made presents; they made necklaces out of magazines and creatures out of toilet paper rolls. Others made ornaments; they made Rudolphs out of paint stir sticks and stars out of old Christmas cards. To spread the message to our parent community and reinforce the message to all of the students, we decided to hold a Christmas Swap Meet. We made announcements, created posters (on recycled paper, of course!), sent e-mails, and even posted details about the event on our class and school websites! At the Swap Meet, families donated gently used toys, games, books, and other gift items. Students then had a chance to purchase these used items and have them wrapped at our wrapping station. These gifts were wrapped with recycled wrapping paper, reused gift bags, and other reused materials. Almost every Chartwell student went home with at least one recycled present to put under their tree. This meant that fewer students purchased new gifts, fewer students threw out old gift items, less packaging was thrown out on Christmas morning, and much less wrapping materials were used by Chartwell students! Thank you for learning about the Chartwell Green Team’s “Garbageless Christmas” project. We hope you have gotten some ideas about how to make Christmas in your home waste-free and Green!

Mentors Consulted

North Shore Recycling Program and "Mission Zero Waste"


Sustainable Development

© Science World British Columbia 2011