„Collect casually instead of throwing anway uncool” – students at elementary school Stiftgasse know how to do it right
From November 19th to 21st 2018, three school project-days took place in the elementary school Stiftgasse in Vienna on the subject of “correct collection of used electrical devices and batteries”. This initiative was initiated by the Austrian coordination body for waste electrical and electronic equipment (EAK) in cooperation with the MA 48 and also supported by Mr. KR Roth from Saubermacher AG. For three days the pupils were able to find out about the correct collection and recycling of used electrical appliances and used batteries. The used electronics and batteries school kit with valuable teaching materials developed by the EAK was used in the workshops with the students.
Environmental educational school project
Enthusiastic students described their impressions of one of the numerous workshops: “Right at the beginning, during an exciting workshop, we learned that a mobile phone contains gold in addition to copper and that used electrical appliances should not be thrown away in the residual waste”. An important, educational tool was the electronics and batteries school kit developed by the EAK together with Austria’s waste consultants in 2014. 160 of these school kits are in use during the workshops of the waste consultants throughout Austria. Another 30 school kits can be borrowed for free by schools at the colleges of education for aspiring teachers. The school kit contains samples of shredded metals and plastics in addition to age-appropriate, descriptive teaching materials. The astonishment of the students was great when the waste consultant explained that one ton of used mobile phones contains up to 50 times more gold than one ton of gold ore. A washing machine contains about 60 percent iron, 11 percent plastic, 5 percent glass and 3 percent non-ferrous metals such as copper or aluminum. All together valuable metals that can be recycled. “Therefore it is very important that used electrical appliances and old batteries are disposed of at one of the 2.000 municipal collection points in the country for professional and environmentally friendly treatment and not, under any circumstances, be given to illegal collectors.”
Great result during the collection of mobile phones
The highlight of the project-days was the collection of mobile phones, organized especially for this school. For this purpose, the MA 48 provided the school with the required containers and trained personnel. On this day pupils, parents and teachers were able to bring in their used mobile phones. The “collection- campaign” was a big success. More than 500 mobile phones were collected! On average each pupil has collected two devices. The three winning classes, who collected the biggest amount of cell phones, were rewarded by the EAK and by Mr. KR Roth from Saubermacher. In sum the amount of the price was € 500. The winner was the 2b-class with 114 collected mobile phones, second place the 3c with 91 and in 3rd place the 2a with 80 collected mobile phones.
The deputy district-head Isabelle Uhl took part of the award ceremony. She praised the commitment of the school and of the EAK and emphasized that in the district of Neubau environment-awareness e.g. for waste separation and waste prevention is a very important topic: “The awarness about the collection auf used appliances is important even for pupils. It makes me happy when pupils learn about sustainable behavior not only theoretically, but also practically”.
“With this environmental project, we would like to draw our students’ attention to the importance of a careful collection of used electrical appliances and used batteries,” said Ms. Strouhal, principal of the school .
A school project also means a lot of fun
The numerous workshops of waste consultants of the MA 48 were professionally supervised and accomplished. “The exciting thing about this three-day project is the interaction of the individual workshops”, described Susanne Fallmann, the head of waste management at MA 48. “This colorful mix makes it possible to inspire the students for the separate collection of used electrical appliances and used batteries,” said Mrs. Fallmann.