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“Bins from Benny”

Middle School Winner
Creators: Greydon, Maggie, Sayli
Middle School Students from Mouse Design League (DIIT) @ Battery Park City School
Type of Project:
  • Coding,
  • Product Development,
  • UX/UI Design
Themes of Project:
  • Community Advocacy,
  • Education/Schools,
  • Environment/Sustainability
Bins for benny picture

About this Project:

The cafeteria staff asked for help with decreasing food wastage and increasing the cleanliness of the space. Students need to do a better job cleaning up after lunch including discarding waste, recyclables, and intact food in proper receptacles. We (eighth-grade Fab Lab Elective students) designed a new disposal station that is going to be manufactured in collaboration with a local company. We also needed a way to teach students how to use the new disposal station and why is it important to recycle, waste less food, compost, and dispose of everything in their proper places.

The design process started with the interviews of the cafeteria staff. At first we thought to just have the app at the disposal station, and during research and brainstorming, we decided that an app that students can download onto their phones will help to better educate them about the issues. During the ideate process, we came up with an idea to include our school’s mascot, Benny the Bull, as a “host” of the app. We knew that it was important to make this educational device engaging.

The app will work in two ways. It can be set into a cafeteria mode that will loop through an animation showing what goes into which bin (recycling, liquids, compost, waste, and intact food). This mode will be used on the screen in the cafeteria. The app also can be used on a cell phone. After downloading it, students will be able to watch the animation or click on buttons to get information about recycling, composting, and food waste. This will include the same information from the animation as well as facts about these topics from reputable sources, and ways to help. We also hope to include a game that would teach sorting disposed materials. Another extension would be to develop QR codes that would be placed on all the recycling and trash bins at school that would connect to information about what materials can go inside them

Project Media


Share this project:

Community Feedback:

Great Design
Makes Me Think

Feedback from the Judges:

👏 Instructional Design Manager at Mouse — Emoti-Con Judge
I think this is a phenomenal idea! It seems your group has a great plan for the app and its uses in real time. Benny is super cute and the addition of in-app games to further educate students on properly discarding trash will help keep them engaged while giving them the knowledge they need to make a difference when it comes to food waste. Brilliant work!

👏 Adjunct Professor, Computer Science and Information Systems at University of the Potomac — Emoti-Con Judge
This project was executed in an excellent way; you mapped out your steps and drew a very informative flowchart.

👏 Finance & Operations Manager at Mouse — Emoti-Con Judge
This concept is incredible! You all saw something in your school that needed changing and took steps to hypothesize the best solution for the students in your school. I love how clean and simple your app is, it make the steps very clear! Overall great work, you are not only helping your school but allowing the students to be conscious of their environment.

👏 Head of Delivery (Recruitment /Talent Acquisition) at Audeliss (sister company: INvolve - The Inclusion People) — Emoti-Con Judge
Phenomenal design, graphics, AND topic! Children should learn at a young age what recycling means and how important it is to our world. You did a great job outlining the types of recycling, too. I could see schools worldwide implementing your app as part of their daily learning.

Benny is fun given it's your school's Mascot. Perhaps, each school to change this part to match their school's respective Mascot.

Overall, you should be proud of the work you've put into your project. It is award worthy!

Feedback from the Community:

👏 a Parent and/or Guardian from Ew York
I think this is a fantastic Idea.
👏 a Teacher and/or Educator from PS/IS 276
Is this app friendly enough for even our youngest kids to use (kindergarten). Will our middle schoolers now be encouraged to use just the screen in the school cafeteria and maybe the app on their phones for outside of school now that the Yondr pouches are in use?

Great idea, congrats!
Sayli 👏 a Middle School Student
This is pretty cool, had fun making it!
👏 a Parent and/or Guardian from New York
This is a great idea to remind and assist people to be more conscious about sustainability.
Jennifer 👏 a High School Student
I think this is a very great idea to teach students about the importance of recycling and avoiding wastage. This app can make the learning interesting and keep the students entertained.

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