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3 "Rs" - REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE
In this lesson students will be introduced to the concepts of reducing, reusing and recycling. They will learn new vocabulary, read labels, and connect environmental concepts to their everyday experiences. Students will perform a skit highlighting what they have learned about taking action to conserve the earth's resources.
Do you know that waste products from your household can be recycled or the ways they can be recycled? Do you know where you have to take such waste products so that they can be recycled?
The waste products that we bring to recycling can either be transformed to eventually give them the same use they had (reusable bottles, for instance) or to be given a completely new use (such as drink cans being transformed to be reused as pencil holders. Waste products they can be also recycled by using the residues as the first matter for the production or manufacturing of a new product that could be the same as or different from the original one.
The general aim of this task is that students from the Lower Cycle of Compulsory Secondary Education upper get to know what recycling is and how it works and to promote an understanding and awareness of waste as a resource.
The management of the urban solid waste is one of the major environmental problems city councils currently have to face on a daily basis and, thefore, it goes without saying that effective and efficient recycling and reuse have become fundamental keys for a sustainable preservation of life as we know it.Undoubtedly, failing in managing the compelling and complex issue of proper waste management would certainly lead to a fast and irreversible consumption of all our planet resources and, thus, to a dramatic change of life on Earth.
That is the reason of the crucial importance of making the entire population grow aware of such an issue, and such awareness-raising should be started with children. One way of doing it is to start with the so-called and well-known 3 "Rs" maxim:
RECYCLING FACTS FOR KIDS
Enjoy a wide range of fun recycling facts for kids. Learn more about the recycling process so you know what’s happening next time you leave out your old plastic bottles and aluminum cans to be picked up by curbside recyclers.
Find out what kinds of objects can be recycled, how we recycle them into new products, why we recycle them and much more.
Recycling is the process of turning used waste and materials into new products. This prevents potentially useful materials from being wasted as well as reducing energy use and pollution.
Recycling is part of the waste disposal hierarchy - Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.
A wide variety of different materials can be recycled, including paper, plastic, glass, metal, textiles and electronic equipment.
The idea of recycling isn’t something new, historical evidence shows that humans have been recycling various materials for thousands of years.
There are different methods of waste collection. These include drop off centers (where waste materials are dropped off at a specified location), buy back centers (where certain materials are exchanged for money), and curbside collection (where recycling vehicles are used to pick up waste material intended for recycling along residential streets).
Powerful magnets are used to sort through different types of metals.
Recycled paper can be made from three different types of paper; mill broke (paper scrap and trimmings), pre-consumer waste (paper that was discarded before consumer use), and post-consumer waste (paper discarded after consumer use, such as old newspapers).
Recycling plastic can be more difficult than other materials and plastics are not typically recycled into the same type of plastic.
Different types of plastics are labeled by numbers (plastic identification code), for example polyethylene (PET) is number 1 and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) is number 3.
Recycling old aluminum uses only 5% of the energy used to make new aluminum.
Aluminum can be recycled from cans, bicycles, computers, cookware, wires, cars, planes and other sources.
Glass recycling is often separated into colors because glass keeps its color after recycling.
For every ton of recycled glass turned into new products, 315 kilograms of extra carbon dioxide that would have been released during the creation of new glass are saved.
Activity One: Reducing Waste
Tell the students that you are going to show them what it means to reduce waste. Explain the idea of reducing waste by telling your class that when you avoid making garbage in the first place, you don't have to worry about disposing of waste or recycling it later.
Show the students the large bag of popcorn and the individual bags of popcorn and ask them which they think makes more waste.
Show the students how more wrapping is used in the individual bags and tell them that if more paper and packaging is used to make something, it makes more waste, or garbage. Explain how packing popcorn in reusable containers will reduce waste because it makes less garbage. Show the students the gallon jug of juice in a glass jar, and a six-pack of juice boxes. Ask the students to predict which of these items makes more waste.
Tell the students that it takes more paper and plastic to make the juice boxes.
Ask questions to ensure students' understanding of the differences between the items you have presented to them.
Encourage students to think of other examples of how to reduce waste.
Use the following prompts as guides to stimulate discussion:
• If you write on both sides of paper, how does this reduce waste?
• If you buy one big bottle of detergent instead of three small ones, how does this reduce waste?
• If you use a reusable lunch box or bag instead of paper, how does this reduce waste?
• If you use dishes instead of paper plates, how does this reduce waste?
• If you use a reusable mug instead of a paper or plastic cup, how does this reduce waste?
• If you say, "No thanks, I don't need a bag," when you buy something that doesn't require a bag, how does this reduce waste?
Activity Two: Recycling
Ask students to share what they may know about recycling. Tell the students that recycle means to use something again. Share the following examples of things that can be recycled:
• Glass bottles
• Plastic water bottles
• Detergent bottles
• Cereal boxes
• Plastic yogurt cups You may wish to have the class revisit the EekoWorld section which shows what happens to paper, glass and plastic when it is recycled.
Share the following recycling symbols with your class. Some of the symbols mean that the item may be recycled, and some of the symbols mean that the item is made from recycled materials. You may wish to visit the Recycling Symbols Web site https://www.recyclenow.com/recycle/packaging-symbols-explained that shows many examples of recycling symbols.
Ask the students to look for examples of recycling symbols on the items you have provided.
The students will have to be arranged in groups of 3 or 4 to be able to work correctly.
They should create a slogan or spot advert that will be displayed as a PowerPoint slides file.
Each group will have to deal with a different subject regarding the recycling process. Each group will have to be able to answer the following questions in their slogan:
a) Which material goes to each container?
b) Origin and type of the materials.
d) Negative consequences of not recycling them.
e) Positive consequences of recycling them.
Likewise, everything the students have been working on and learning in all other activities has to be reflected throughout the spot. Furthermore, neeedless to say that it is very important that it is a motivating slogan to promote recycling.
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