Quick summary: In this lesson, students will apply mathematical skills as they explore recycling practices in schools and reflect on their own recycling processes. They will measure the mass of recyclable materials and calculate approximate totals for the schools, developing skills in both measurement and geometry, and number and algebra.
This activity has been developed in partnership with Visy. For over 70 years Visy has been committed to finding sustainable solutions for Australia’s recyclables and helping to reduce local landfills. Visy collects, receives and sorts paper, cardboard, glass, plastics, steel and aluminium from households, businesses and schools with the purpose of reusing these products in the re-manufacture of new packaging products.
- Students will be able to sort recyclables into categories
- Students will be able to estimate the total consumption of each material within the school.
21st century skills:
Australian Curriculum Mapping
Year 4 Mathematics
- Use scaled instruments to measure and compare lengths, masses, capacities and temperatures (ACMMG084).
- Develop efficient mental and written strategies and use appropriate digital technologies for multiplication and for division where there is no remainder (ACMNA076).
Syllabus outcomes: MA2-9MG, MA2-11MG, MA2-12MG, MA2‑1WM, MA2‑2WM, MA2‑3WM, MA2‑6NA.
General capabilities: Numeracy, Personal and Social Capability, Ethical Understanding.
Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability OI.8.
Relevant parts of Year 4 achievement standards: By the end of Year 4, students choose appropriate strategies for calculations involving multiplication and division. Students use scaled instruments to measure temperatures, lengths, shapes and objects.
Topic: Recycling, Sustainability.
Unit of work: Visy Education – Primary Mathematics.
Time required: 60 mins.
Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium – students will require supervision during the audit activities and will require support during the calculation activities.
- Student Worksheet (printed, one per student)
- Calculators (one per student)
- Note paper and pens or pencils
- Class bins
- Five tubs
- Tub Labels (attach to tubs before starting the lesson)
- Tongs and/or latex-free gloves (at least one pair between two)
- Scales (i.e. bathroom scales that bins/tubs can be placed on)
- Recycling Guidelines poster (print or display).
Keywords: mass, estimate, calculate, sustainable, recycling, green waste, compost, landfill.
The information and statistics included in this document are approximate and have been simplified for educational/illustrative purposes. They should not be relied upon for any other purpose.
Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.