JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – East Elementary in Waynesville, Hermann Middle School, and Cross Keys Middle School in Florissant were the winners of the 2016 "Yes You CAN Make Missouri Litter Free" trashcan-decorating contest. They were among 53 entries from Missouri elementary, middle, and home schools involving more than 775 students who helped fight litter by participating in the annual contest.
The Missouri Departments of Conservation (MDC) and Transportation (MoDOT) sponsor the contest as part of Missouri's "No MOre Trash!" campaign to raise awareness about litter and discourage littering. The contest encourages classes from kindergarten through eighth grade to join the fight against litter by decorating and displaying a large trash can with the "No MOre Trash!" logo and a litter prevention message using a variety of creative mediums.
The winning school from each of three competition grade categories (K-2, 3-5, and 6-8) receives a $200 award. First-place winners are then eligible for a $600 grand prize and a trophy. Entries are judged by a group of staff at MDC and MoDOT.
Congratulations to teacher Gail Forsyth and her 14 students in the Second Grade Recycle Club at East Elementary in Waynesville for their winning entry, "Box-up your recyclables, Missouri's State Reptile: 3-toed Box Turtle." They won the K-2 Grade Category and also the Grand Prize.
The recycle club decorated their trash can as a three-toed box turtle, Missouri's state reptile. He really is made out of a box, one with the bottom removed that fits over the trash can. The shell is made from recycled pizza-slice containers, with the outer edge made from recycled hot-drink sleeves. The legs are made from an old sheet, and stuffed with shredded paper. The toe claws are made from a recycled plastic milk jug. After decorating the trash can, the students created posters with the computer program, KidPix. The posters emphasized the No MOre Trash! theme and included information on Peanut the turtle, the No MOre Trash! mascot. Peanut is a red-eared slider whose shell was deformed by a discarded plastic six-pack holder.
Forsyth wrote in her entry, "We had a lot of fun, but at times everyone was sad as we learned more of how trash is harming our animals and world."
The trashcan will be part of the East Elementary Second Grade Recycling Club’s art exhibit from April 27 through May 11 at St. Robert City Hall. The exhibit promotes the Community Partnership for Recycling, a joint partnership between St. Robert and Waynesville to increase awareness of recycling.
Congratulations to teacher Rose Branson and the fourth and fifth graders at Hermann Middle School for winning the 3-5 Grade Category with their entry, "Pick it up, clean it up, put it inside... Keep Missouri beautiful and blooming with Pride!"
The trash can was donated by Loutre Market Grocery Store. Flowers were created by upcycling aluminum soda cans. The centers of the flowers and the leaves were made of plastic craft sheets, which were collected by a parent who found them discarded at a local garage sale. Dowel rods for the flower stems were found outside a dumpster of a factory that was going out of business. The green grass was upcycled from artificial turf previously used in decking of a classroom trailer. The recycled tissue-paper sun was part of a discarded window display from a local florist. The bugs were created from pipe cleaners previously donated supplies for summer school classes.
Congratulation to teacher Amanda Eye and the 8th Grade Science Lab at Cross Keys Middle School in Florissant for winning the 6-8 Grade Category with their entry, "CKMS Cougars Pounce on Trash."
The nine participants began the process of trash-can design by each designing a trash can and slogan. The students then voted on their designs, with the winning design being a cougar to represent the school mascot, Cross Keys Cougars. The students then found and incorporated nearly all recycled materials, including an unused trash can in the building. The head of the cougar was 3-D modeled and cut from discarded yard signs. For paper mache, they used recycled newspaper and old classroom handouts. The paint was all extra from a different project.
See images and information on all entries online at nomoretrash.org/trash-can-contest.
All Missourians can help clean up litter through the annual No MOre Trash! Trash Bash sponsored by the Missouri Department of Conservation and the Missouri Department of Transportation. The month-long event runs through May 15 and encourages schools, individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities to pick up litter, educate others about litter, conduct litter-free activities, and encourage friends and families to participate. For more information, visit nomoretrash.org/trash-bash.