Marshall School Students Featured on CBS2 for Great Crayon Cleanout

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Mrs Rotundo's 1st grade class participates in the Great Crayon Cleanout.

Mrs Rotondo’s 1st grade class participates in the Great Crayon Cleanout.

Students from the South Orange-Maplewood District’s Marshall School were featured in a segment last night on CBS2 for their participation in Bedtime Math and The Crayon Initiative’s The Great Crayon Cleanout.

Watch the segment here. Several students, First Grade Teacher Stephanie Rotondo and Principal Bonita Samuels are interviewed.

The Marshall first graders are among thousands of elementary school kids in New Jersey working to save the environment and give back to children’s hospitals through The Great Crayon Cleanout, an effort organized by Bedtime Math Foundation in partnership with The Crayon Initiative.

CBS2 Marshall School Crayon Bonita Samuels

Elementary schools across New Jersey were invited to register to be a part of the action. Students gather up used crayons and crayon stubs from their homes and classrooms. A free kit from Bedtime Math guides teachers and students through math exercises, in which the kids will count, sort and weigh the crayons to learn basic statistics. Top-collecting schools vie for one of 10 grand prizes (to be announced later this month).

It’s expected that participating schools will donate more than 4,000 pounds of crayons – not 4,000 crayons, as mistakenly reported in the segment.

Mrs. Rotondo with her 1st graders.

Mrs. Rotondo with her 1st graders.

“Every pound of broken pieces of crayon saved from the landfill can make 40 fresh new crayons, instead of becoming non-biodegradable sludge,” said Laura Overdeck, founder of Bedtime Math. “The Great Crayon Cleanout is a great way to get kids thinking about numbers in a meaningful way, while saving the environment and helping other kids. It’s the perfect blend of number sense and good citizenship. We’re proud to make this happen in our home state, and hope to expand beyond the Garden State next year.”

CBS2 Marshall School Crayon

“Crayons are a building block of childhood creativity. In order for kids to grow, they need to have the freedom to express themselves through art,” said Bryan Ware, founder of The Crayon Initiative. “We are excited to partner with Bedtime Math to expand our efforts in New Jersey. Together we’re providing more children with the tools they need to unlock their artistic potential while reducing waste in landfills, and rolling in a little math at the same time.”

CBS2 Marshall School Crayon

Crayons from across the state will be consolidated by a sponsor’s employee volunteers during the week of June 19. The Crayon Initiative will then melt down the discarded crayons to manufacture new packs, which will be donated to the following New Jersey children’s hospitals:

  1. Children’s Specialized Hospital
  2. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital at Jersey Shore University Medical Center
  3. Saint Barnabas Children’s Center Saint Barnabas Medical Center
  4. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital
  5. The Bristol-Myers Squibb Children’s Hospital at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital
  6. The Children’s Hospital at Monmouth Medical Center
  7. The Children’s Hospital at Saint Peter’s University Hospital
  8. The Children’s Regional Hospital at Cooper
  9. The Goryeb Children’s Hospital
  10. The Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital Hackensack University Medical Center
  11. Voorhees Pediatric Facility

Bedtime Math Foundation is a Summit-based nonprofit organization that seeks to “put the fun and discovery back into learning math.” For more information, visit

The Crayon Initiative is a Northern California based-nonprofit devoted to promoting the arts for children by providing them access to the resources they need. For more information, visit

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