On Saturday, May 11, School for Children 7/8s (2nd grade) students, their teacher, Danette Lipten, and parents, selflessly volunteered to spend the day picking up trash along the shoreline of the Hudson River in northern New Jersey.
Ever since Danette began teaching the Hudson River curriculum in the 7/8s, she had been looking for an opportunity for children to participate in at least some small way in the stewardship of their beloved Hudson. Last year, 7/8s parent Lori Malloy put the class in touch with a representative of Riverkeeper, an environmental non-profit organization dedicated to the protection of the Hudson River.
Last year and this year, Dana from Riverkeeper came to Bank Street to speak with the children about pollution and Riverkeeper’s efforts to clean up the river. Dana let them know that each spring Riverkeeper has a “Riversweep.” People volunteer to clean up the shoreline at various sites.
On a cloudy morning with rain in the forecast, Danette’s longtime dream came true! She met seven of her students and members of their families at Bloomer’s Beach in Englewood, NJ to begin picking up trash. They had their rain gear on and they were undaunted by the threat of storms.
One of the children told the leader, “Our teacher told us that trash anywhere near the river can end up in the river.”
They were on a mission. For several hours, they picked up and sorted refuse. The children (and the adults) had a lot of fun and a gratifying sense that they had made