Beyond Recycling Workshop - Day 1
1. Before students arrive, the teacher will have several boxes of different recyclable materials placed around the workspace. There should be one box containing plastic bottles of all sizes, another of glass bottles or jars or all sizes, another tin cans, another cardboard, another newspapers, another with magazines, etc.
2. The teacher will begin with a brief discussion on the amount of waste that is represented by these boxes and how it’s important to recycle
3. The teacher will then ask students to switch their thinking to creatively reusing these recyclable items. Teacher will pick up an item to recycle and say, “I think this could be a ______. All it needs is a little tweaking.” The teacher will then give example of what he/she would do to alter this item in order to change it into a usable item.
4. Students will be asked to walk around the room and look at the recycling items. As they are doing so, they should try to think of a way to repurpose one of the items seen.
5. Students will be asked to sit in a group of three. Once there students will be given these instructions: “You’ve now had a chance to look at the different recyclable items around the room. Think about one of the items you saw and how you would repurpose this recyclable into a usable item. When your group number is called, go grab your item and take it back to your group.”
6. Group numbers are called and each students brings back the item of choice to the group.
7. The teacher then asks each student to share with group members how he/she would repurpose the chosen item. Group members are asked to listen to the ideas and offer encouragement and additional ideas.
8. Students are then introduced to the overall purpose of this workshop: repurposing and reusing recyclable items. Future sessions will focus on different ways to create new, usable items out of what many see as trash.
9. At the end of this session, students may choose to return the chosen item to the original bin OR students may take the item and work on repurposing it during future workshop time or on their own.
21st Century skills address in this workshop:
Information taken from the Partnership for 21st Century skills. http://www.p21.org/our-work/p21-framework
Suggested steps for this workshop:
1. Complete the initial activity
2. Focus on a new area of recycled items to create per week (ie. during week 1 focus on paper and cardboard, week 2 CD's, etc.) *Students may create new items based on directions available and/or make their own creation with that week's item(s)
3. Take photographs of students creating items throughout the workshop
4. A final workshop week could focus on the students creating something completely new from recycled items available
5. Encourage students to be videotaped as they explain how to create one of their recycled masterpieces
6. Post photos and demonstration videos to the Student Gallery
Overall, after the initial activity, the teacher may decide how many days the workshop will run. The possibilities for what the students could create are endless! Take one, two or all ideas from the additional tabs on this LIBGuide to organize your own Beyond Recycling workshop.
Workshop extension ideas:
1. Take a closer look at what goes into the recycling process and why it is important. A local recycling plant owner could be asked to come speak, or the group could take a field trip to the recycling plant.
2. Invite local artists who specialize in recycled art to come speak and share their artwork and explain what inspires them.
3. Take a video or virtual tour of a recycled art park or museum.
4. Visit a recycled art museum or art show in your area.
5. Explore other recycled activities and projects.
Students will have the ability to not only creatively think about how to repurpose and reuse recyclable items, but they will also have the opportunity to create their own artwork work to display in the library, be featured on the LIBGuide's Student Gallery, and eventually take home to share with their family.
Students will have three choices when creating recycled artwork: to create artwork from their own imagination, to make a specific art project (directions provided), or a combination of both.
As mentioned earlier, the possibilities are endless!