Recycling Teacher Resources
Find Recycling educational ideas and activities
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New! Classroom Paper Recycling
After reading about the history and recycling of paper, creative crafters collaborate to think of a new process for making recycled paper. A complete teacher's guide and student worksheets are included. There is no written procedure for the young scholars in making the paper; it is an exercise in design and critical thinking. You will, however, need to instruct learners on how to use mesh wire and wooden blocks for drying recycled papers.
Lesson: Recycle, Repurpose, Recreate!
Before youngsters use items from the recycle bin to create unique repurposed sculptures, they should analyze some art. Here, they learn about Francis Nnaggenda, an assemblage artist from Uganda. They analyze one of his sculptures, discuss recycling, and then create lovely art from recycled materials.
Tell Me More about Composting: Nature's Recyclers
Does your class know about nature's recyclers? The class is introduced to three types of composting, how it works, and why it is good for the environment. They will go outside in search of five items: a dead tree or log, a live tree, a live leaf, a dead leaf, and a mushroom. They'll make careful observations as to the types of earth and insects found near each item. Additionally, they take samples of earth and leaves which they will use in a class experiment. Pupils also construct a Berlese funnel to see exactly who is helping nature complete her composting. The lesson is amazing and totally worth checking out!
New! Recycle Today!
Explore different types of recyclable materials in the second activity of this three-part series. First, discuss and brainstorm different metal, plastic, glass, and paper products that can be recycled rather than thrown in the trash. Young conservationists then make posters displaying each category to support recycling in their homes. Finally, the class develops and implements a plan for reducing trash at school. A resource to use during Earth Day that encourages children to take an active role in preserving the planet.
Recycling Lesson Plans
Students can learn about protecting the environment through these recycling lesson plans.
Recycling Starts With You!
Students participate activities related to recycling in this unit. They examine how recycling is good for the environment and how to make their ideas heard.
New! Using Recycled Materials
What happens to our recycling once it is hauled away? In the third of four Earth Day lessons about recycling and reducing our impact on the world's natural resources, learners explore where recycled materials go and what becomes of them. After a quick overview, kids work in pairs to research a product from its original form (natural resource) to its typical disposal. Groups are challenged with finding a way to reduce the amount of products that end up in landfills. As an extension, each child can create his own project, taking an item that would be bound for a landfill and repurposing it (e.g. making jewelry out of old CDs).
Sorting Plastics For Recycling
First, young chemists practice polymer identification by density and flame tests. With the data collected, they propose a method of separating polyethylene from other plastics and determine what property makes it desirable for recycling. This laboratory activity is ideal when covering polymers in your general chemistry class.
New! What We Can Recycle
In the second of a four-part lesson on reducing one's impact on the environment, kids look at local recycling posters to determine which items are recyclable and which should be reused. For homework, each child takes inventory of his/her refrigerator to figure out how many containers are recyclable. While the lesson is based around the city of Tucson's recycling program, most recycling programs are similar. If your local recycling program does not have similar literature, you can still use the included handouts. These could be great Earth Day activities.
New! What You Can Recycle
Go hunting for recyclables in the second lesson in this series on conservation. Using the included scavenger hunt worksheet, learners search their homes for paper, glass, metal, and plastic items that can be recycled as well as food waste that can be composted. Their findings are shared during a discussion that explores the wide variety of items that can be recycled. A fun Earth Day activity that helps children develop environmentally friendly habits.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Students brainstorm and share opinions about products that can be reused or recycled after reading the article, "Seattle's Recycling Success Is Being Measured in Scraps." They then investigate, analyze and evaluate articles on recycling to create an article for a newsletter.
Recycling and Composting
Students investigate the reasons for and processes of Recycling and Composting. In this environmental instructional activity, students learn to identify renewable and nonrenewable resources and then practice recycling by making recycled paper and composting organic materials.
Recycling and Composting
Students study the value of renewable resources, composting and conservation. They watch computer based video before completing a composting activity and making recycled paper.
Recycling Who cares?
Students participate in activities to understand the feelings of the community about recycling. In this recycling lesson, students look at opposing views on recycling.
The Economics of Recycling
High schoolers investigate Japanese legislation. In the recycling laws lesson, students discuss Japanese laws that require people to pay a recycling fee for large appliances. High schoolers discuss how this effects consumers, the government, and supply and demand. Students brainstorm ideas on how to reduce the waste.
In this recycling activity, students write a recycling plan for curbside and for drop-off recycling and complete a word search. Students write 30 answers.
Reducing, Reusing, and Recycling
Students investigate how to reduce, reuse, and recycle, and ways to biodegrade and compost items. They explore a website and complete an online Treasure Hunt, and create a poster, or a television or newspaper ad.
Snakes: Recycled Art
Make snakes with your class to demonstrate how recycled materials are perfect for art. Learners use colorful plastic cups, pantyhose, paper fasteners, and fishing line to make articulated snakes. This project would be great when learning about reptiles or assemblage art.
Twig Construction: Recycled Materials
Construction projects of any kind require learners to use spacial reasoning, creative thinking, and critical analysis skills. They design and make a twig/leaf structure out of natural and recycled materials. This project would be great after reading about basic engineering or ancient dwellings.
Sustainability and the Recycling of Words
Recycling and green living isn't just for the environment anymore. Studying the use of metaphors and metonymies, especially in reference to environmental sustainability, this presentation provides viewers with plenty of food for thought. It could be used in a semantics class, language arts lecture, or in an environmental or earth science course.