Meet Patrick

October 10, 2019

My name is Patrick, and I am currently a 5th Grader at Frankford Township School in New Jersey. This school year we have been learning a lot about protecting the planet and recycling. I knew that I wanted to reuse something to make my merchandise. I looked for a few weeks, but I really couldn’t find anything good to reuse until I found a pile of my Mom’s old Altoid containers. Now that I finally had something to reuse, I had to figure out what I wanted to make out of it. I am not really sure where the idea came from, but I decided to make it into a candle. That is where I came up with my company name “RECYCLE the FLAME.”

Now I had a name, an idea, and containers.  When I searched online, I learned that you need wax and wicks. I also saw how some people used crayons and old candles to make new ones. I thought it was great that they reused stuff to make something new. I was even more excited that I could reuse more stuff to make my candles. I started to gather old broken crayons and candles from the teachers at school, and I soon had enough supplies to make my candles.

I laid out all of my Altoids containers on the kitchen counter and started to melt the crayons and candles in a pot on the stove. I even added some cinnamon to the wax, so it smelled like an Altoid. My Dad helped me fill the containers with the hot wax. When we were done, we made 50 candles.

After all of the candles cooled, I was able to wrap them up with some old newspaper twine and I had my finished product. I also saved the cardboard from toilet paper rolls and created fire starters. This idea came from watching my Mom trying to start the fireplaces in the wintertime. I knew that lint from the dryer was flammable, so I reused the lint and newspaper along with the cardboard tubes to create an easier way to start a fire. I had “Recycled the Flame” and I was ready for the TREP$ Marketplace.

When I got to school my Mom helped me setup my table because she writes really neat and makes stuff pretty. I liked the way my table came out with all the cool signs but as people started to come in, I started to get nervous. When the first few people came in, I told them about my idea, and they loved it. Once they got excited, I wasn’t nervous anymore. I had a lot of fun at the Marketplace selling my candles and seeing all the stuff that my friends made. I was really proud that I made my products out of all reused materials. I am already gathering stuff to reuse next year.


Note: Patrick participated in the TREP$ entrepreneurship education program as after-school enrichment,  right at school. This extracurricular activity is a PBL (project based learning) experience that helps kids gain an entrepreneurial mindset, financial literacy and life skills to prepare them for and improve their futures.

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