Everyday Recycling

About 80 percent of what Americans throw away is recyclable, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, but we can do better!

Hatfield Township, Towamencin Township, & the Pennfield Middle School Enact Club are visiting schools in 2008 to teach 4th grade students ways they can help the environment by recycling. The brochure handed out to these students, Everyday Recycling, is available for download.

RecycleKids - What's your recycling grade?
How would you grade your family on recycling habits?

Download a Recycling Report Card, fill it out, and post it on your refrigerator. If you fill out one every few weeks you can watch your recycling grade go up, up, up!

Calculating Your Recycling Rate
On the day before trash day, collect all the trash in your house in bags and weigh them on a bathroom scale. Then weigh your empty recycling bin, put all your recyclables back in and weigh the full bin and subtract the difference.

If you don't have a scale, you can count same size bags. Put your recycling in trash bags and count how many full bags you have, estimating partial bags. Then put your recycling back in the bin, and use the bag to collect the rest of the trash in your house. Count the number of full bags of trash you have.

After using either method, calculate what percentage of your waste is being recycled.

For Example:

Weight Method


Bag of trash = 6 lbs



Bag of trash = 7 lbs
Full Recycling bin = 5 lbs
Total Trash = 16 lbs
+ Bag of trash = 3 lbs - Empty Recycling bin = 1 lb + Total Recycling = 4 lbs
Total Trash = 16 lbs Total Recycling = 4 lbs Total Waste = 20 lbs


Total Recycling (4) ÷ Total Waste (20) = Percentage of Recycling (20%)

Bag Method

Full Bags of Trash = 8
+ Full Bag of Recycling = 1.5
Total Waste = 8


Total Recycling (1.5) ÷ Total Waste (8) = Percentage of Recycling (18.75%)