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Welcome to the Sustainability Lesson Clearinghouse

Here, you can find free sustainability lessons to use in your class and upload your own lessons to share. Be sure to rate the lessons you use and leave comments for your colleagues!

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Sustainability Lesson Clearinghouse

Reusing or Recycling

Lesson Description:
  • Identify and describe the difference between recycling and reusing materials.
  • Identify and describe how an individual’s action in regards to waste management can affect change and improve the environment.
  • Make oral presentations related to the topic of study.

Lesson Type:
  • Other

Sustainability Topic:
  • Waste Reduction

GEF Program Category:
  • Waste Reduction Challenge

Time Needed:
Two 45 minute in class sessions, additional outside of class time for each group
Standards Addressed:
Geography Standard 16: Understand the changes that occur in the meaning, use, distribution and importance of resources.
  • Benchmark # 5: Know advantages and disadvantages of recycling and reusing different types of materials.

Geography Standard 18: Understand global development and environmental issues.
  • Benchmark # 2: Know ways in which resources can be managed and why it is important to do so (e.g., conservation practices, recycling non-renewable resources).

Technology Standard 3: Understand the relationship among science, technology, society and the individual.
  • Benchmark # 4: Know that new inventions reflect people’s needs and wants, and when these change, technology changes to reflect the new needs and wants.
  • Benchmark # 5: Understand that technology may affect the environment both negatively and positively (e.g., the introduction of plastics).

Language Arts Standard 8: Use listening and speaking strategies for different purposes.
  • Benchmark # 3: Respond to questions and comments (e.g., gives reasons in support of opinions).
  • Benchmark # 5: Use strategies to convey a clear main point when speaking (e.g., express ideas in a logical manner, use specific vocabulary to present information).
  • Benchmark # 7: Make basic oral presentations to class (e.g., use subject related information and vocabulary; include content appropriate to the audience; relate ideas and observations; incorporate visual aids and props; incorporate several sources of information).

Materials Needed:
  • Cards with waste items recorded
  • Empty container or plastic bag
  • Pencils and paper
  • Empty plastic drink bottle
  • Sample of waste materials to be reused (see list provided)
  • "What Are We Wasting" Worksheet provided below
  • Pictures of items made from recycled and reused plastic water bottles
  • Magazines showing ways to reuse materials
  • Internet access

School or Group:
Green Education Foundation (GEF)
Contact Email:
service@greeneducationfoundation.org
Lesson Documents:
application/pdf what-are-we-wasting.pdf

The Sustainability Lesson Clearinghouse is brought to you in partnership with

Center for Green Schools