How To Get Kids To Recycle

How To Get Kids To Recycle with Pepsico and Recycle Rally

Everyone has a role to play in protecting the planet. Recycling provides a remarkable way to be more environmentally friendly.  Twenty-Seven years ago, when I was still living in New York city, recycling became the law in New York City. I’ve been doing it so long that it’s like second nature to me. Because of this, Z.E.N. learned all about recycling at a very early age. Recycling is not hard though. Once you commit to doing it, it just becomes part of your normal routine. Best of all, parents can involve their children in their recycling efforts.  Below are some guidelines on how to get kids to recycle:

How to Get Kids to Recycle

Lead by Example

Observation and imitation are tools by which most kids learn. Therefore, recycling requires parents to practice what they preach. This is exactly how Z.E.N. learned. He just saw us doing it and started doing it himself. To pique the interest of your child, you can use brightly colored garbage bins to separate your waste. The recycle bins should be used to store items like glass bottles, waste from paper, organic waste and metallic cans. Make sure your kids watch and mimic your actions until it becomes a part of their daily routine.

 Bin for recyclables.

Give Them Incentives

You children can be taught to make extra money from collecting recyclable items and selling the materials to recycling plants. In certain states, like New York City for instance, you can return a lot of metal, plastic, and glass  beverage containers back to the store for money. In New York City, it’s five cents per bottle, but the amount varies per state. I remember back in the day, I would gladly help my dad return the bottles to the store so I could keep some of the money! You could also offer your child a reward like additional play time or a candy for collecting a particular amount of materials. Providing incentives will quickly boost the motivation of your children.

Make Recycling Enjoyable

Some kids could view recycling activities as a chore and this can dampen their enthusiasm. You can turn recycling into a game to make it more enjoyable. For example, you can make up creative games that declare the child who collects the most recyclable materials as the winner. 

Corporations like PepsiCo have recognized the need to get children involved in recycling. As such, they have established an initiative to teach kids how to recycle  in schools and the wider community. 

PepsiCo Recycle Rally Initiative

Recycle Rally is among PepsiCo’s longest running recycling programs. Essentially, the company works along with schools and equips teachers and students with tools and incentives to teach kids how to recycle and promotes recycling in their communities. The initiative has a competition feature that uses a progress tracking tool and an online leaderboard that shows the efforts of all the schools involved. Based on their recycling efforts and the role they play in encouraging the wider community to recycle, schools are given the opportunity to access educational tools and earn big rewards.  

Join Recycle Rally

Want to sign your school up? Participating schools have an opportunity to win cash prizes amounting to thousands of dollars. Additionally, by simply logging their recycling efforts, schools can receive other perks like school supplies, lunch bags, gift cards and gym equipment. This initiative recognizes the importance of children making a habit out of recycling. This makes it easier for them to continue the practice for a lifetime.

Do you recycle?

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above may be “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

About the author


Diane is a New Jersey-based writer and blogger. She is a wife and the mom of a 13-year old boy. Through her blog, she wants to inspire moms to find Zen in their lives while offering practical tips and other valuable information to help families deal with everyday issues. Contact her at

How To Get Kids To Recycle

by Diane time to read: 2 min