We use a knife in this quick project, make sure an adult is around to help you cut into the lid, as well as being caeful with any old "leaky" batteries.
My Dad recycles ev-ery-thing, ..I mean it, everything, & he even writes awkward letters to the council saying "hey, we can recycle polystyrene, or at least landfill it in 90% less space, so why aren't you allowing us to?
You'd think that we'd always use re-chargeable batteries!? ..depending upon the equipment that isn't always possible, & then there are also button batteries, ...lots of different varieties, & new items bought often include batteries now!
We still surprise ourselves at how many we get through in a year (& even rechargeables die eventually ..some of ours are even older than me & they are still working).
SO, sick of forever trying out batteries to see if they have juice in them or not we decided to make a battery bin, ..I think it was the day after dad had SO many used batteries stashed in his pockets that his shorts fell down around his ankles ...not a pretty sight! ..but REALLY funny!
What could we use? ..dad has been saving candy floss pots for paint, sorting screws out, cleaning things in.. they have lids & a clear see through tub, & a tough handle ...so were ideal. (besides he already had plans for the Nesqik tubs elsewhere.
We grabbed a sharpie pen, & a steak knife & a variety of dead batteries, including a PP9 ..the oblong sort that go in smoke alarms.
Put the lid on the candy floss container (you could do the same with an empty nesqik container)
Then we traced round the PP9 battery & used the knife to trace cut a bit bigger than the markings on 2 long sides & 1 short side, leaving 1 short side intact, (see picture).
We removed the lid & popped in some papiermache egg tray to absorb any leakage, just in case.
Now it hangs up in the kitchen full of batteries, the most commonly used varieties,"AA, AAA, P9 & button cells" slide straight in there, larger batteries such as "C" & "D" cells fit if you pop the lid off & place them inside.
Whats more, there is little chance of battery leakage if the container falls over, because of the absorbent egg tray, & the fact that the hole is in the middle so it is nearly impossible for any long term battery leakage to escape even if a full homemade battery bin is rolling around in your car on the way to the local recycling centre.
You could take this design one step further by asking your parent or carer to buy a small battery tester & use some green plant tie wire to keep it connected to your battery bin, then your whole household knows to test them & stick them back in kit that needs batteries to work, or straight into the battery bin,...no more uncertainty!
BUT this is also a lesson to nag yourself & grown-ups to change, re-chargeable batteries work out at about 1.5p per full charge & can be used hundreds, or thousands of time if you look after them & know how to use them.
About the only thing my dad insists on normal batteries for is the carbon monoxide detector for our woodstove, & for his avalanche transceiver for on the mountain use.