This may be a bit of a “soap-stand” post, but as moms with children in school, I believe I may be speaking to a wide audience of readers that have the same concern and the same ability as I to do something about it.
Often I see schools try to engender patriotism, pride, or concern in their students with a display on the schools’ fences. You’ve seen it too: plastic ribbons tied onto the gate or plastic Silo cups wedged into the spaces in the fence. As inspiring as these may be, doesn’t it seem ironic to express love and devotion and patriotism in non-degradable plastic?
Display of Patriotism outside our elementary school using
9 plastic ribbons and 94 plastic cups.
Each of us can suggest alternatives to our schools’ principals or PTO or PTAs so the children can still express themselves in a more earth – friendly way. Of course, the school’s intentions are good and they are probably using plastic because it is cheaper and convenient. If you find the idea is opposed because “plastic is cheaper”, it may help to suggest this could be a learning experience too about taking care of the earth. Here are some alternative suggestions you can propose:
1. Cloth ribbons. These could even be reused from old clothes the children bring in.
2. A painted sign
3. Painted sticks arranged to shape a word or expression
4. Cups made from a renewable source like these from Styrophobia
Often it takes one voice to match with another person’s thoughts to create change. If your school creates plastic displays, may I encourage you to speak up and suggest a better way?