6 Recycling for Kids Tips

I know that many of you want to learn more about wasting less and PlanetArk have kindly shared some recycling for kids tips and recycling facts for kids here.

Since my kids were very small, we’ve been encouraging them the importance of recycling and wasting less. Luckily, their daycares and school also are brilliant at teaching them recycling ideas too.

School, in particular, do a lot of recycling activities for kids, encouraging them to bring in recyclable items sometimes to use in Science projects.

If your kids have been asking you why should we recycle and you want to learn some recycling for children ideas, I’m handing over to PlanetArk now:

6 Easy Recycling Tips for Kids

If you or your children have ever found yourselves hovering over the waste and recycling bins, wondering which one to put an item in, you’re not alone.

In fact, Planet Ark research shows 98% of Australians make at least one mistake when it comes to recycling[1].

Nine in ten want to the right thing when it comes to recycling[2] but sometimes it can be confusing. So here are six tips for the whole family to make recycling easier.

1. Look for the label

The variety of product packaging in shops is mind boggling so Planet Ark helped develop the Australasian Recycling Label.

It is a proven system that shows you on pack which bin each piece of packaging goes in. More and more companies are adding the label to their products.

2. Easy to recycle

Most council recycling collections accept materials like paper and cardboard, steel and aluminium cans, glass jars and bottles and plastic containers.

3. Check locally

What’s accepted in the recycling bin can vary between councils along with bin lid colours. Check your council’s website or Planet Ark’s RecyclingNearYou to find out what is and isn’t accepted in the recycling bin.

4. If in doubt, leave it out

Many people ‘wish-cycle’ by putting an item in the bin they hope will get recycled without knowing if it’s accepted or not.

The reality is it could ruin your good efforts and contaminate legitimate recycling (which really is a waste!). With a few exceptions (again check with your council) keep the following out of the kerbside recycling bin:

  • All soft plastics like plastic bags
  • Food waste
  • Liquids
  • Polystyrene
  • Nappies
  • Clothing and textiles
  • Drinking glasses and crockery
  • Batteries, light bulbs and any electronics
  • Anything oversized – no broken plastic washing baskets!

5. Drop it off

There are a whole range of items that can be recycled for free at local drop-off sites that aren’t accepted in the kerbside recycling bin.

For example, your council may offer an e-waste drop-off day or a food waste collection service. Other schemes include:

6. Get paid to recycle

Most states now have a container deposit scheme which is great for big and little kids.

By collecting beverage containers like glass bottles, aluminium cans, cartons and plastic bottles, you can take them to a drop off point and collect 10c per item.

This could be used as a fundraiser for your school or to encourage the kids to pick up litter and start saving. It provides a financial incentive to reduce litter, leading to cleaner beaches, waterways, parks and streets.

Recycling for Kids Tips and Further information


Claire Bell, Recycling Campaign Manager, Planet Ark

[1] Planet Ark commissioned research by Pollinate 2015

[2] National Recycling Week Research Report 2018, From Waste War to Recycling Reboot

Read next:


Teach the kids about recycling with these recycling for kids and families tips from PlanetArk. Read recycling facts for kids and recycling activities for kids here now. Love from Mim #recycling #recyclingforkids #planetark #recycle #wasteless #ecofriendlyfamilies #ecofriendly #sustainablefamilies

I hope these six recycling for kids tips have given you some ideas and thank you to PlanetArk for sharing them.



  1. Kate Tunstall, The Less-Refined Mind
    / 5:56 pm

    I’m feeling very conscious of our responsibility to be greener. Thanks for the tips x

    • Mim
      / 7:43 pm

      Aren’t they good :) And yes the same here – I want my two to more conscious and it keeps me accountable too :) x x

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