Quick summary: Students investigate their school’s waste. As they develop a classification system for the waste, they investigate which items come from renewable and non-renewable resources. Students identify which non-renewable resources can be recycled. They do a quick spot audit of how well their school is managing its waste.
This lesson has been developed as part of the Schools Recycle Right Challenge for Planet Ark’s National Recycling Week. Register your lesson or other activities so they can be counted towards the national achievement and to receive other free support materials.
Learning goals for this activity include:
- Students collect data about the school’s renewable and non- renewable waste system.
- They draw conclusions and communicate their findings to the school community.
Australian Curriculum content descriptions:
Year 7 Science:
- Some of Earth’s resources are renewable, but others are non-renewable (ACSSU116)
- Science understanding influences the development of practices in areas of human activity such as industry, agriculture and marine and terrestrial resource management (ACSHE121)
- Summarise data, from students’ own investigations and secondary sources, and use scientific understanding to identify relationships and draw conclusions (ACSIS130)
Year level: 7
Syllabus Outcomes: SC4-13ES, SC4-12ES.
Time needed: 90 minutes
Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium – confirm students have developed a data record sheet that will be useful for data analysis. Make sure students don’t handle waste. Consider allowing students to use the staffroom and photocopy areas as part of their audit.
Resources needed: Clipboards and pens, or tablets (iPads) and access to computers. Also get permission to inform staff if students are going to locations such as staff lunch rooms to collect data.
Digital technology opportunities: Tablets (iPads) for producing data sheets and recording data
Assumed prior learning: Functional knowledge of the school’s waste system.
Key words: Waste, recycling, resource, renewable, non-renewable, rubbish, landfill, contamination.
Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.
These Planet Ark resources were developed by Cool Australia with funding from the Alcoa Foundation.