Heading back to school is always a busy time of year. The kids are looking for daily entertainment as the last week of summer holidays draws to a close. Meanwhile, you’re counting down the days until the chaos subsides!
While trying to organise their backpacks, stationery and school clothes for the year, the last thing on your mind might be how to purchase everything sustainably. Not to worry, Take 3 is here to help you head back to school sustainably in 2020, as every action counts!
Take 3’s Head of Education, Amanda Marechal and Take 3’s Head of Programs, Roberta Dixon-Valk have prepared their top tips to get the kids back to school sustainably this year:
- Use a good quality reusable water bottle. Purchase one with a strap that can loop onto your child’s bag so it doesn’t get lost.
- Opt for plastic-free stationery or reuse what you already have. If your child needs new stationery this year, try to purchase plastic-free items. But if last year’s pencils, rulers and rubbers are still alive, continue to reuse them instead. Reusing the items you already own is always the most sustainable option.
- Talk to your school about ‘Waste-Free Wednesday’ – a popular sustainable initiative where students are encouraged to bring lunches that have less packaging, or ideally, none at all. On Waste-Free Wednesday, swap plastic-wrapped snacks for fruit, or purchase nuts or snacks at your local bulk food store.
- Ask your school canteen to ban single-use plastic items like straws, mini sauce packets and plastic water bottles. Kids can go straw free (because straws suck!) and refill their water bottles instead of purchasing a new one.
- Name your containers! Write your child’s name on the reusable containers in their lunch box. When items inevitably get misplaced, they’ll be sure to make their way back to you, rather than in lost property.
- Choose second-hand uniforms. Your uniform office may have a second-hand clothing pool, otherwise ask around other families. It’s cheaper and far more sustainable.
- Buy second-hand school books, while choosing notebooks that are plastic-free and made from recycled paper.
- Reuse last year’s backpack, mend any holes or rips, or purchase second hand.