Gemini Middle School Uses “Trick or Trash” Education Campaign to Help Students Recycle Their Halloween Candy Wrappers

Earlier this month, Rubicon, a technology company born in the waste and recycling industry, launched its very first “Trick or Trash” Halloween campaign, a free recycling-awareness program for educators across the United States. The idea was to provide teachers and educators with a recycling and circular economy lesson plan, as well as a Candy and Snack Wrappers Zero Waste Box through TerraCycle to keep Halloween candy and snack wrappers out of landfills by diverting them into recycling streams. According to industry data, Americans purchase nearly 600 million pounds of candy for Halloween.

It was smashing success. The free program had more than 450 teachers in 49 states plus the District of Columbia sign up in less than a month.

One of those schools in Illinois was our very own Gemini Middle School in Niles. Seventh-grade teacher Beverly Mendoza, who signed up for the “Trick or Trash” program, said “I was taught to recycle from a young age, but more recently I’ve noticed that there are many cities and neighborhoods that still don’t provide recycling, and that is a shame. There are over 1,100 sixth, seventh, and eighth graders in my middle school. Students chew gum daily. They go through tons of wrappers within a week, and most of those wrappers end up in the trash. We do a lot within our school to recycle paper, plastic bottles, and are even collecting bottle caps to send to a company that will create a bench out of them for the school. This Trick or Trash program from Rubicon is a great extension of our existing recycling and sustainability efforts and we are excited to be a part of it.”