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Mr. Mihalyov from Westminster MD is requesting Supplies through DonorsChoose, the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.

Our School is Green...How About our Cafeteria?

My students need 1 "Do Landfills Really Work" kit, 1 "Worm-a-Way" kit, 10 buckets with lids, and 3 other large containers to empower my students in their effort to eliminate waste produced in the lunchroom.

  • $632 goal

Hooray! This project is fully funded

Hooray! This project is fully funded

I teach an amazing group of sixth grade science students who are quickly becoming environmentally responsible citizens of planet Earth. Our service learning coordinator first introduced my students to service learning and challenged us to put the “learning” back into the process. Two of my students were so motivated that they became determined to eliminate waste in the 6th grade lunchroom because they were shocked that just over 300 students could create so much trash. Over several weeks, they investigated the cafeteria waste to answer questions about what was being thrown out and how much were we throwing away. They discovered that nearly 2,000 pounds of trash was being produced every two weeks! What’s more is that students weren’t recycling, they were throwing out entire portions of food product, and they didn’t seem to care. We tackled the recycling issue right away by inviting our county recycling manager to speak with my students about recycling. We learned what is recyclable and what trash is. Knowledge in hand, a recycling campaign began. More recycling containers were added to the cafeteria; students prepared, presented, and taught about what could go in the recycling containers and what should go in the trash, and they manned posts by the trash and recycling containers to supervise the progress. The process encouraged students to recycle more and reduce waste and it was immediately met with positive results. However, my students were still concerned about the amount of “trash” still being sent to the landfill. They had noticed that much of the waste was food scraps. We researched options about what you could do with food waste, besides putting it in the trash and my students discovered composting. They wondered about the potential of beginning a compost pile and thereby eliminating compostable food scrap from our waste stream. I understand that composting is not a simple process and I would like to do this project to educate my students about landfill alternatives, like composting using the landfill investigation kit requested. They will use their new knowledge to create a demonstration compost pile with the Worm-a-way kit. The demonstration compost bin will be kept in the cafeteria during sixth grade lunch and used to educate and build excitement about our composting program. We will grow a native Black-Eyed Susan in the soil created from our waste to show how beneficial it is. Once awareness is raised about composting, my students will introduce how our composting program will work at lunch to the rest of the sixth grade. Interested students will separate their compostable food scraps from their trash and empty it into one of the ten 3.5 gallon buckets maintained by one of my student service learners. At the end of lunch, the buckets of compost will be emptied into the large container on wheels which will be used to transport the compostable food to our compost pile. Students will monitor and maintain the pile until good soil is created. Eventually, the new soil created from our lunch “waste” will help extend one of our school’s rain gardens. Best of all, we will have eliminated tons of “waste” from being sent to one of our already overflowing landfills. During this project my students will be actively engaged in service learning that is both direct (actions are eliminating waste to help the environment) and indirect (advocating for the benefits of composting to reduce waste). Your generous contribution will be the reason my students achieve their goal of eliminating waste from our lunchroom!

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3 donors3 donors have given to this project.

This project will reach 30 students.

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Where Your Donation Goes

Materials Cost Quantity Total
Do Landfills Really Work? • Frey Scientific, Inc. $71.95 1 $71.95
Worm-a-Way Kit • Frey Scientific, Inc. $100.00 1 $100.00
Bucket with lid white 3 5 gallon • Carolina Biological Supply Company $10.95 10 $109.50
Rubbermaid® Brute® Storage Containers — Lid–44 Gallon Brute • Sportime, Inc. $29.99 1 $29.99
Rubbermaid® Brute® Storage Containers — Universal Dolly • Sportime, Inc. $65.29 1 $65.29
Rubbermaid® Brute® Storage Containers – 44-Gallon 31-1/2" high • Sportime, Inc. $59.99 1 $59.99

Materials cost


Vendor shipping charges


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Fulfillment labor & materials


Total project cost


Suggested donation to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms


Total project goal


How we calculate what's needed

Total project goal


2 Donors


Donations toward project cost


Donations to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms


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Project Activity

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