How Big is Your Footprint?

June 14, 2017 at 8:16 AM

If we actually stopped to think about how much rubbish each of us generates, would we change our ways? Our Year 4 boys certainly have a clearer understanding of the enormous task of disposing of Auckland’s waste after a trip to the Waitakere Transfer Station yesterday. As part of their topic of inquiry, ‘Where our rubbish ends up and what happens to our waste products,’ they were shown the process behind recycling and rubbish disposal, and what each of us can do to decrease our carbon footprint.

During the visit, they spent time in the classroom learning about recycling and how to sort our rubbish into the correct bins. Around half of all we throw away is food scraps that can be turned into reusable compost. By composting, not only can we improve soil quality, but in so doing, we also reduce the amount of methane gas created at landfills and, therefore, help to counter climate change. The boys had a good look at successful worm farm and were not shy about digging in the dirt to find worms!

With hard hats on, they also took a tour around the transfer station to see what happens to the huge amount of rubbish that is trucked in every day, five days a week, every week of the year. Seeing up close just how much Aucklanders dispose of, and the hard work and infrastructure needed to keep the city spick and span, gave the boys a true understanding of the scale of the issue! They also saw first-hand how other people’s rubbish can become someone else’s art with some cleverly constructed ‘garbage sculptures.’

With awareness raised, ‘Reduce, Reuse and Recycle’ has become the boys’ new mantra. Through their newfound knowledge about how much of the world’s pollution is caused by methane and carbon dioxide, the boys are now on a mission. If each can convince just one person to change the way they recycle, and they pass it onto one other person, then we can say that Year 4 from Saint Kentigern Boys’ School are making a difference!


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