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Table of Contents
Introduction | Note to Teachers | Learning Objectives | Task | WebQuest | Cross Curricular Extension Activities |
Recycling Resources | Evaluation | More Science Links and Resources | Search Engines

by gwyneth anne bronwynne jones
library media/technology specialist


Recycling Matters!

The subject of trash and waste in our society, just like trash itself, will not go away without concerted effort, research, planning and action. In this lesson students will learn about the trash that surrounds them in the school environment by viewing selected segments from Bill Nye the Science Guy, "Garbage" and by conducting a waste audit. Students will also be able to define and discuss the "3 R's" to recycling and will perform a WebQuest to discover recycling facts and tips. As a final product, students will share their findings with the school and the community by writing public service announcements. Using a variety of techniques and technologies to become more aware of the problems associated with trash, students will become better recyclers and more consumers in our society.
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TEACHERS: Don't forget to go to the really cool MPT/NTTI site to see the online FULL lesson plan for Talkin' Trash. There you will find more teacher resources and also the activity that preceeds this WebPage activity. Also check out the awesome site by the Environmental Protection Agency about Garbage and Recycling!


Students should be able to:
Define the "3 R's" of Recycling

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Your task today is to find interesting recycling facts using a variety of resources.
First you will use the Internet links below using the following links.  After you have found 2 recycling facts, be sure to note the URL or Web Address (it starts with http://www.) on your note sheet for Electronic Source #1 and Electronic Source #2. Then follow the directions below for the other facts found with other resources.
The important thing to remember is to READ the information first, decide upon its worth and importance and then WRITE the facts and your notes afterwards.

Now that you have at least 2 facts from the Internet (did you remember to note the URL?) go to either the CD-ROM encyclopedia, nonfiction book, regular encyclopedia or the Magazine Database and find out 2 more recycling facts. Don't forget to use search words such as:

    • recycling
    • garbage
    • waste
    • waste disposal
    • trash
    • pollution
Now that you have your recycling facts write your public service announcement, or PSA. Here's an example of how it could begin:
"Hi! I'm (your name here) and today's Talkin' Trash Recycling fact is:
did you know that according to (source goes here)...that..(fact goes here)
So don't forget, recycling matters, for today, tomorrow and forever.Thanks, and have a green day!"
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If you have completed this assignment, and have already written your PSA,  move onto this WebQuest: Recycle the Earth
(Stay tuned for a new webquest to be written and posted here! And email me if you have or have found a great WebQuest!)
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Other links that might help you find out more about recycling:
TAPPI Paper University
Quest of The Ring Leaders
PBA Main Menu
Kid's Stuff!
Recycling Coloring Book for Kid
Exhibits Collection -- Garbage
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Once you have finished this assignment the following rubric will tell you how well you performed:
Talkin Trash!  Rubric
Student Evaluation
Teacher Evaluation
Talkin Trash! Worksheet was completed fully with all 4 facts and all 4 sources legibly and gramatically 
50 points
PSA was written using correct facts and figures, with source noted/URL listed and with correct spelling and grammar.
25 points
Web Quest was performed.
25 points
Total Possible Points
100 points

Rate each category according to the following scale: 9-10 = excellent, 7-8 = very good, 5-6 = good, 3-4 =
satisfactory, 1-2 = poor, and 0 = unsatisfactory.

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  • Write an article or press release to the local newspaper, informing them about school wide recycling efforts, the trash audit, the slide shows, P.S.A.'sincluding digital photographs.
  • Write and illustrate a short story where you imagine you manage your own supermarket. - What are some things you can do to reduce the amount of waste caused by the products you sell?
  • Write and illustrate a short story where you imagine you were hired to design packaging for a new product that featured an Earth Friendly container.
  • Write a sales pitch for this new product.

Social Studies

  • Invite a recycling expert from a local city or county environmental agency.
  • Write a pamphlet informing students/parents how they can start implementing the "3 R's" in their house, yard and community.
  • Field Trip: Visit a local landfill, recycling center, or water treatment facility learn what is being done in your community and how you can help.


Using the data gathered during the "Talkin' Trash Waste Audit;" students can create a graph or spreadsheet.

Directions for The Crunchers ôStudent Graphing Activity:

                  1.Data table must have columns labeled.
                  2.You must have an area that describes total mass of trash in your data table.
                  3.The graph you pick must be an appropriate graph.
                  4.All numbers in the data table must have the same amount of digits after the
                    decimal point.
                  5.Create an additional column in your data table to list the percent of that
                  type of trash in your sample.
                  6.Then, choose an appropriate graph to display the data.


  • Design cars or other vehicles from recyclable materials. Polystyrene leftover boxes, paraffin covered milk cartons or soda cans. Have a race with the end results.
  • Design and create sculptures with recyclable materials to promote the concepts of reduce, reuse and recycle. Display them in the lobby of your  school or in the Media Center.
  • Illustrate a story (see above) that you have written about recycling or the "3 R's"
  • Go to The Realm of Recycling Crafts and choose a craft.
  • Take a digital picture of what you did and email it to me! If I get enough pictures i will link a student ART GALLERY page to this site!
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This site was created by Gwyneth Anne Jones, Media Specialist with the cooperation of Mrs. Shelley Heinz, Science Team Leader and Ms. Dianne P. Wells, GT Resource Teacher for the assignment entitled:
Talkin' Trash!

More (Cool!) Science Links!

Local Maryland Ecosystem Research Sites

Wildlife and Plants
The Bay & its Ecoysystem
The Barn Owl (Tyto albq)
Saving the Blue Crab
Recycling Craft Projects Cheap
Other Resources
Nonpoint Source Program
National Education Programs
MetaCrawler Query Ulali
Maryland Streams information ce
Maryland Native Plant Society
Maryland DNR Fish Fun Facts
Links to Wildlife Sites
From the Field, Mid-Atlantic
Cool School Sites (Resources fo
Chesapeake Bay information cent
Celebrating Earth Day with Art
Arbor Day Online! Free Trees, R
Home Page: Maryland DNR
Threatened and Endangered Species in the Northeastern States
The Chesapeake Bay Trust
Region 5 Listed Species by State, Endangered Species; U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Chesapeake Bay Sites
Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum
Baltimore Ecosystem Study Home

Satellite and Weather Sites

Acid Rain
SeaWiFS - JASON - Ocean Planet
BATS Satellite Oceanography Project
NESDIS Home Page
Satellites - Science & Nature for Kids - 06/07/97
WeatherNet: Radar & Satellite Menu


Peterson Online
Widlife Habitats, by H. Kibbe Turner, APLD
Manning Sci - Habitats
IGC: Habitats & Species: Internet-Resources Collection
Habitats for Critters & People & Plants
Habitat Conservation Division
Arbor Day Online! Free Trees, Reforestation, Schools, National & State Programs
The Backyard Jungle


Save America's Streams
Welcome To The Save Our Streams Website!

Science Experiments

You Can with Beakman and Jax
Welcome to Thinking Fountain!
Welcome to
Th History of Inventions
Science Explorer Exploratorium
Science Experiments
Reeko's Mad Scientist Lab - Fre
Real Time Experiments!
Minnetonka Science Center - Ooe
Kid's Section
IPL Youth Division's Dr. Intern
Home Experiments
Hands-On Technology Program
Cool Science for Curious Kids
Bill Nye the Science Guy's Nye

General Science

Yahooligans! - Science and Oddities
Photosynthesis Center
OSU SoyNews: The Latest Soybean Research at Ohio State University
Ontario Soybean Growers' Marketing Board Home Page
Ontario Corn ProducersÕ Association Home Page
C3/C4 sedge Eleocharis vivipara: cDNA cloning and expression analysis.
Corn Home Page
Agronomy/Crop/Soil Home Page
Welcome to Corn World!
Environmental Division

Science Fair

ISD77: CyberFair - Science Fair Ideas
Middle school science fairs and alternatives
Teachers.Net Lesson Exchange: Science Works (An Alternative Science Fair) (Middle, Science
Wisconsin WebFair 1999:Ê Welcome to Our Homepage!
ISD77: CyberFair - Project Steps

Search Engines & Prof.

go2net | MetaCrawler | search
Welcome to Lycos UK
Welcome to Lycos
Welcome To - Reference Desk!
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this site was created by Gwyneth Jones using Netscape Navigator Composer on a PowerMacintosh G3, updated 3.22.00.
Murray Hill Middle School