Epic Repic Reporter

This month: David Griffith, Head Teacher from Greenmount Primary School

I’m the head teacher at Greenmount Primary School in Bury - a happy, creative school in Lancashire. We are a busy, but friendly school with 16 different classes.

Nowadays children have lots of gadgets and toys at home that depend on batteries - games, toys and TV remotes - so it’s really important that they understand how to use them responsibly and dispose of them correctly.

I think it’s important at a young age to try and give children as many messages as we can about how they can help save the environment. If they learn when they’re younger, they’ll take this information with them as they get older and looking after the environment is something they’ll do as part of their daily life.

Batteries are everywhere! You can find them in almost every room in the house. But like electricals, they aren’t always recycled properly…

The battery was first created back in 1800 by an Italian called Alessandro Volta. 215 years later and every person in the UK uses on average 10 batteries a year. We use them in lots of different gadgets around the house from remote controls, toys, mobile phones and doorbells, even cars use batteries!

The way batteries work hasn’t changed that much since they were created but going forward there’s definitely one thing that has to change: how we dispose of them. Batteries come in all shapes and sizes. Some are smaller than a 5p coin, others as big as 10,000 double decker buses! But no matter what size they are, all batteries need to be recycled properly.

Each year we dispose of 600 million batteries instead of recycling them – did you know that adds up to 22,000 tonnes that we throw away? Batteries contain chemicals that can be harmful if absorbed into our soil, ground water and air and affect the environment in a bad way.

At the moment only 35% of household batteries are recycled – but 95% of battery parts can be recycled. You can take them to local shops, schools and supermarkets where they have special recycling bins to make sure they’re taken care of safely.