Activity Introduction

group-students-huddle-heroQuick summary: This lesson is designed for a flipped classroom, where students learn new content by watching a video in their own time. This strategy provides the opportunity for students to build their knowledge, attitudes and values by themselves, thereby freeing up class time for hands-on work.

clean up logoFollowing this lesson plan is an ideal way for your school to take part in Schools Clean Up Day. You’ll be joining thousands of amazing teachers in making a difference and creating positive environmental change.

Learning goals: 

  • Students explore a range of waste issues.
  • Students build their thinking and questioning skills.

Australian Curriculum content descriptions:

This lesson can be used with all the learning areas of the Australian Curriculum. Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.  

Time needed: 20 minutes

Level of teacher scaffolding: Low – allow students to explore the topic independently.

Resources required: Internet, laptops and earphones, Student Worksheet.

Key words: Waste, Clean Up Australia Day, Litter.


Schools Clean Up Day

clean up logo


Teacher Worksheet

GreenideaheroTeacher Preparation

Overarching learning goal: Students take responsibility for their own learning by watching a video on waste and completing a thinking routine. 

Teacher content information: Recycling and reusing rubbish is the best way in which we can reduce landfill waste and conserve resources. It provides a way to manage solid waste while reducing pollution, conserving energy, creating jobs and building more competitive manufacturing industries.

Natural resources simply will not last forever. In Australia there are 20 billion fewer trees than when Europeans first settled here in 1788. Paper accounts for a large part of rubbish found in Australia. Paper rubbish is not only unsightly in the environment it can also be very harmful to animals and marine life, as can other forms of rubbish such as plastic and glass.

So, why is recycling important?

  • Waste that is recycled can save a lot of energy. For example making glass from recycled material only requires 40% of the energy nec
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Student Worksheet

Thought starter: Where does waste go?

When we talk about waste, rubbish, trash or whatever you want to call it, we’re talking about something that is in excess of our needs. Something we have created or bought that we no longer want.

The food and drinks we consume, the transport we use, the stuff we buy – everything has waste as a part of its production. Too often waste is not counted in the final cost – so products that create waste in their production are much cheaper than they should be when they get to us. 

Watch the video while filling in the table below (


1. Before watching the video...

When you throw your waste away where does it go?


2. While watching the video

What is waste?



Why do humans produce so much waste?



How can we look at rubbish differently? 



What is a litter trap? 

3. After watching the video

How can you reduce the waste at your school?


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