Activity Introduction

Quick summary: The Enviroweek Trader Challenge encourages students to share their skills, space and time and to analyse their consumption habits. This resource is structured in three parts, each containing one activity.

Part 1 – Tune In: Students explore the basics of trading and exchange.

Part 2 – Act:  Students develop their own Trader Challenge and take action toward reducing whole school waste.

Part 3 – Share: Students share their experiences and inspire others to take action.

Screen Shot 2014-05-02 at 10.35.06 AMFollowing this lesson plan is an ideal way for your school to take part in Enviroweek 2014. Each student who participates in this Challenge will save 0.35 kg of CO2e correlating to 3 black balloons. You’ll be joining thousands of amazing teachers in making a difference and creating positive environmental change. Don’t forget to register! 

Learning goals:

  • Students explore the concept of trading and how it relates to waste.
  • Students begin to understand the impact of wasteful consumption on the environment.
  • Students begin to take responsibility for items that could be traded and would otherwise go to landfill.
  • Students will rethink the concept of waste and take action to reduce the personal impact of their wastage on the environment.

Year level: Lower Primary (Foundation – Year 2)

Topic: Enviroweek – Trader

Duration of activity: 

 Tune in 



30 mins

 45 mins planning plus Enviroweek 

30 mins

Resources required: props for the story, small items to trade (see story), How to host a swap party.

Homework and extension opportunities: Students may choose to discuss the topic of trading and money with family members.

Keywords: trade, swap, share

Australian Curriculum content descriptions:

Foundation Science:

  • Science involves exploring and observing the world using the senses (ACSIS011)

Foundation English:

  • Listen to and respond orally to texts and to the communication of others in informal and structured classroom situations (ACELY1646)
  • Use interaction skills including listening while others speak, using appropriate voice levels, articulation and body language, gestures and eye contact (ACELY1784)

Year 1 Science: 

  • Represent and communicate observations and ideas in a variety of ways such as oral and written language, drawing and role play (ACSIS029)

Year 1 English:

  • Engage in conversations and discussions, using active listening behaviours, showing interest, and contributing ideas, information and questions (ACELY1656)
  • Use comprehension strategies to build literal and inferred meaning about key events, ideas and information in texts that they listen to, view and read by drawing on growing knowledge of context, text structures and language features (ACELY1660)

Year 2 Science:

  • Represent and communicate observations and ideas in a variety of ways such as oral and written language, drawing and role play (ACSIS042)

Year 2 English:

  • Listen for specific purposes and information, including instructions, and extend students’ own and others’ ideas in discussions (ACELY1666)
  • Use comprehension strategies to build literal and inferred meaning and begin to analyse texts by drawing on growing knowledge of context, language and visual features and print and multimodal text structures (ACELY1670)


Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum. 


Teacher Worksheet

Teacher preparation

Overarching learning goals: Students build an understanding of the concept of trading and sharing. They begin to understand how these concepts are related to reducing waste. Students take action during Enviroweek, trading items with each other and communicate the benefits of trading / sharing schemes with others. 

Teacher content information: It’s everywhere. Consumption is almost impossible to avoid. It’s estimated that humans will consume more in the next 40 years than we have since we first stood on two legs. The more money we have, the more we consume. The main issue is not consumption itself but the inequality it demonstrates and the impacts it has on our environment. The richest 20% of people account for 77% of private consumption, the middle 60% account for 22%, and the poorest 20% account for just 1%. We can be smarter about what we consume. Can you think of some ways we can start to do things differently? 

We really need to stop buying so much stuff. Man

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Student Worksheet

Thought starter: How can we make fair trades in our classroom?




(Example: I have things I'd like to trade.)

(Example: What if there's nothing I want to trade?

(Example: What is this item worth?)



To share what you have learned about trading to reduce consumption, complete this creative task. Think of four items that people might have at home that may be valuable to some and not valuable to others. (For example, a fishing net with holes that could be mended, an old tennis racquet that could be re-strung, a pair of stained white sandshoes that could be decorated with glitter-paint, an ugly padded chair that could be re-covered with new fabric).

Take a piece of A4 paper and fold it into quarters. Unfold the paper and draw a picture of each item on the same side of the paper, one in each quadrant. Give the paper to your teacher, who will display them on the wall of t

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