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Toddlers turn trash into art treasures

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Toddlers at Stepping Stones Nursery and Preschool have been turning trash into art as part of an initiative to improve how the environment is treated in Bermuda.

Stepping Stones is aiming to become the first preschool on the Island to earn the international accreditation of an Eco-School through an international programme run locally by Greenrock.

Eco-Schools are recognised by the United Nations as a model initiative for education for sustainable development.

The children used common household objects such as milk cartons, yoghurt pots and cereal boxes to create their “junk models” in the hope of encouraging the community to reconsider what it believes to be waste, while reducing their own waste consumption.

In celebration of Earth Day, Stepping Stones will be displaying their models, which range from cars and aeroplanes to castles and robots, at the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute and at Nest Maternity and Baby boutique.

The junk modelling was secondary to first reducing the amount of packaging and new materials they used.

Following the Eco-School model, the school conducted a two-week waste audit to understand their baseline and to identify areas that required improvement.

They discovered that they were generating as much as 40lbs per week, much of it coming from lunch boxes and art projects.

The school's Eco Committee decided to run a few campaigns to engage families in the effort to reduce this amount by 25 per cent.

The Department of Waste Management states on its website that all the truckloads of residential trash collected in Bermuda over the course of a year would be more than 28 miles long.

Waste management education officer Vanese Flood Gordon helped the young students with composting and invited families to send in any food waste. Starting its Eco-School journey more than a year ago, Stepping Stones first achieved Green Seed status by taking on the Healthy Living pathway. The motto for the second pathway is “Reduce the waste to improve our space”.

Teacher Christina Camara said: “Stepping Stones has really come together to reduce our waste footprint on the community.

“Not only have we been working to reduce the waste the school produces, but we have also given parents tips to reduce their waste at home as well.”

The junk models will be on display today at the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute and at Nest Maternity and Baby, which is located at 44 Reid Street.

Caring for the planet: Children at Stepping Stones Nursery and Preschool show off their trash art (Photo by Sarah Lagan)
Jasmine Heinz fills up the compost bucket at Stepping Stones Nursery and Preschool (Photo supplied)
Miguel Leite and father Victor create trash art at Stepping Stones Nursery and Preschool (Photo supplied)
Charlie Law makes his trash art at Stepping Stones Nusery and Preschool (Photo supplied)
Children reusing trash at the Stepping Stones Nursery and Preschool (Photo supplied)
The Longtail class at Stepping Stones Nursery and Preschool (Photo supplied)

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Published April 22, 2015 at 9:00 am (Updated April 22, 2015 at 9:14 am)

Toddlers turn trash into art treasures

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