Kids and School Resources

Improve Recycling

Print a lunchroom poster of what can be recycled. (Or, call 410-313-6444 to get a full size printout)

Here are guidelines to improve recycling in schools.

What happens to all those things we recycle? Watch a quick video of the recycling processor.

Want to do more? Check out our What Should I Do With? webpage.

Check out our brochures too.


Coloring Pages

Did you Know? Howard County held a coloring book contest for grades 3-5 in 2010 and 2013. Click on the year to print at home, if you would like a copy of the 2013 book, please call 410-313-6444.


Neat Resources!


Recycling/Fundraising Ideas:


Just for Kids:


Recycling Websites for Teachers and Adults:



FAQs for HCPSS students and faculty

What's the scoop on the new paper lunch trays?

    HCPSS is going green by using molded-fiber (similar to cardboard) lunch trays. These trays are better for the environment and better for health! The trays are certified biodegradable and are intended to be composted, but most of the schools do not have the ability to do so. Since they are similar to cardboard, they can be recycled in the blue bins at school IF they are clean. What's clean? No food, condiments, grease or other stains. Why? Similar to pizza boxes, once grease and food are absorbed into the fiber tray, its very hard to get back out. Here's a flier and poster.

White lids on recycling containers say "Cans Only"...Why?

    The schools use single-stream recycling, where all recyclables (paper, cardboard, plastic, cans and glass) go together in the same bin. It's just like the students have at home! A memo was sent to custodial staff to modify the lids so they are less confusing. If your lids still say "Cans Only", please consult your custodial staff to make the necessary adjustment to avoid confusion.

How can I get more containers for my public school?

    For additional outdoor containers (carts & dumpsters), please contact your custodial staff. For indoor containers, consider using old boxes decorated by the students, ask your local community to donate old blue recycling bins they may no longer be using, or see if your PTA has funds to purchase bins. Recycling containers come in all shapes and sizes and don't have to be pretty. Just make sure they are convenient (located right next to trash cans) and are well labeled so everyone knows what they are for.

Also visit the Howard County Public School's recycling website.


Tour and Presentation Options

    WMRA Elkridge Recycling Processor

      Schedule a tour of Waste Management Recycle America located at 7175 Kit Kat Road in Elkridge. Please note this tour is only available for people 18 and older. This tour lasts about an hour. Tours are scheduled as requested and must be groups of at least 6, with a maximum of 12. If you are not able to form a group, you can be added to an existing tour. Call 410-313-6444 for a tour schedule.

    Alpha Ridge Landfill Tour

      Schedule a tour of Alpha Ridge Landfill. A Recycling Coordinator will guide your group around Alpha Ridge Landfill Residents' Convenience Area to discuss what is collected and what happens to all those items. Many things are reused or recycled, but trash is collected too. The group may also tour the Compost Demo Area and Transfer Building. This tour is great for scout groups trying to earn badges/patches. Did you know most of Howard County's trash is exported to a landfill in VA? Call 410-313-6444 to schedule.

    Pilot Compost Facility at Alpha Ridge Landfill

      Howard County has constructed a pilot project to produce quality compost. Please check our News and Upcoming Events page for dates or watch the electronic marquee at Alpha Ridge Landfill. More information about this new facility can be found on the Pilot Compost facility webpage.

    Recycling Presentation

      Schedule a recycling presentation. A Recycling Coordinator will discuss the ins and outs of recycling, as well as provide an inside look at what happens to all those things we recycle. Here's the video if you'd like to check it out! Call 410-313-6444 to schedule or fill out this form.

      For schools, we offer assembly style presentations, grade-by-grade presentations and short 5-minute cafeteria presentations to get the students thinking about what they have in their lunches that can be recycled everyday. The most efficient setup for schools is 2 assembly-style presentations with follow-up lunchroom presentations to jump start the recycling program and get everyone on board.