This year, back to school supplies are greener than ever. Here are some of the cutest, smartest, and just downright coolest green gadgets we found for back to school and year-round.
1. No-Staple Staplers
See Jane Work
A new trend in staplers is to go staple-less. These ingenious staplers work by punching a hole in the papers and binding them together using the paper itself, which cuts down on used staples that end up in landfills. Plus, they're safer because little fingers cannot get into the slot. The only drawback: They only allow 4 to 5 sheets of paper to be fastened together.
Adorable cat and dog staplers are available through See Jane Work. $10.00 at seejanework.com.
Another option is the Arvee EcoStapler, which comes in a beautiful bright green color and looks more like a sleek piece of modern desk art than a mundane stapler. $5.00 at onesmallstep.com.
These journals are made out of recycled paddy paper and elephant pooh (yes, really). The pooh is from elephants in Sri Lanka, which are killed because they interfere with local farming. Making use of elephant dung helps save these elephants by making them a source of income. The journal covers are colorful and cute, and -- fear not -- the paper does not smell like pooh. $8.50 for a 50-page journal at globalexchangestore.com.
Here's what you can call good news: TreeSmart pencils are made out of recycled newspapers. TreeSmart also has pens that are made from biodegradable plastic, bamboo, and recycled paper, as well as rulers that are manufactured from biodegradable plastic and newspaper. $9.50 for a set of 24 pencils at treesmart.com.
Grassroots Environmental Products
These vibrantly-colored quick-drying markers are colored with natural plant and mineral pigments. Gorgeous, kid- and environmentally-friendly, and completely non-toxic. $5.99 for a package of 4 markers at clementineart.com.
The handles on these stainless steel blade safety scissors are made out of 70 percent post-consumer recycled plastic. Lightweight and sized just right for little hands. $6.09 for 7-inch size at thegreenoffice.com.
Goodbyn lunchboxes do not contain BPA, lead, or phthalates. They feature compartments that are perfect for kid-sized portions of sandwiches, fruit, crackers, dips, and other kid-favorite lunch options. Goodbyn lunch boxes come in a variety of colors that can be customized by kids with stickers that are included. $24.95 at goodbyn.com.
These stainless steel water bottles take the worry about BPA and other chemicals out of packing water with your child’s lunch. They’re compact and lightweight, making them perfect for school lunchboxes. $16.95 at kleankanteen.com.