Tips for Children

Put the Wrapper in the Trash

We are fortunate to have organized city services that collect and handle our trash. These services prevent trash from getting into our waters. We need to do our part as citizens to place any trash we handle in trash cans where it belongs. Even small things, like bottle caps and candy wrappers, can create a big problem when birds and sea creatures mistake them for food and eat them.

Kids can help create a Clean Water Future by helping make sure that litter and trash, no matter how small, gets placed in trash cans and handled by our city services.


Food Packaging Litter Washes into Stormwater

Single-use plastics, like candy wrappers, are a major source of litter, and since our area is very rainy, the litter is washed down storm drains and into streams and the bay.

There's Too Much Plastic in the Ocean

A recent high-quality study found that there is a huge amount of plastic trash in our oceans. This plastic pollution makes our waters unsafe and unsightly.

Plastic Recovered from Dauphin Island Beach by Caitlin Wessel

Top Cleanup Item

Plastic film (primarily single-use plastic bags and snack and candy wrappers) was the most abundant item found in a 2011 Friends of the Los Angeles River trash cleanup effort (Tyack, 2011 | Algalita, 2015)

Things You Can Do

Wrappers in your pockets

Put gum and candy wrappers in your pockets or backpack and throw them away at home.

Photo by: Petr Kratochvil

Make A Trash Bag For Your Car

Make a trash bag for your car like this one (see more ideas on our Pinterest board).

Pick Up Trash

Whenever you see trash lying on the ground, pick it up and place it securely in a trash can.

Photo Credit: Vicky Somma CC2.0

Buy in Bulk

When you can, buy snacks in the bulk food section of your grocery store and take it with you in reusable containers.

Photo Credit: Ann CC BY 2.0

Attend a Litter Cleanup

Attend a litter cleanup with your friends or family, they happen throughout the year. List of Area Cleanups

Use The Water!

Getting out on the water is not only fun and great exercise, the more you use the water, the more likely it is you'll think about protecting it. So go ahead, go for a swim, get your fishing pole, take a boat for a ride, or attend a water festival near you. More Ideas

Suggest a tip
Commit to making a Difference Commits
Commits 7
Goal 50


Coloring and Activity Book

Activity book from NOAA Marine Debris Program and Office of National Marine Sanctuaries for K-3

Be An Ocean Guardian (PDF)

Activities and Games

The NOAA Marine Debris Program and its partners offer free, downloadable education and outreach materials for people of all ages to learn about marine debris including school curricula, kids pages & books, apps, Marine Debris Tracker, and more.

Marine Debris Program


Cucu and her friends learn about the importance of keeping their homes and neighborhoods clean.

Cucu helps with Cleanup
Follow Create a Clean Water Future's board Car Trash Cans on Pinterest.