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Eco-island: Scrapheap Barrens activity 2

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Design and make a modern recycling box from recyclable materials.

Keystage 1

Curriculum links: D&T 1a-e, 2a, d-e, 3a-b.

Recycling box

What to do: Start a recycling regime in your school by making some funky, new recycling boxes that the children will find fun to use. Decide what recycling boxes to make depending on what gets thrown away the most during your school lunchtime. Plastic bottles? Cardboard cartons? Tin foil? Refuse collectors complain that people do not flatten or compress their recycling before throwing it away so try to encourage this in your designs by having tubes that the packaging has to fit down in order to be put into the box.

To start with, choose a box that is the right size for the items it will be storing: a plastic bottle recycling box will need to be much bigger than a foil recycling box, for example. Collect recyclable materials to build your box with – cardboard tubes and various chocolate boxes are good because they vary in shape and size and make your box look interesting. Decorate your box with examples of what will go inside – the children can be really creative with this. Bottle tops make a great decoration, as do straws and foil. Make signs and arrows giving instruction on what to do – Drop your bottle here, Flatten and insert here and so on. Make sure that the ‘recycle’ sign (three arrows) is used on the box somewhere.

When your boxes are complete display them prominently and make arrangements for them to be emptied regularly.

Completed this activity? Use our show and tell facility to upload your work and help this zone to improve.

Keystage 2

Curriculum links: D&T 1a-d, 2d-e, 3a-c.

What to do: Start a recycling regime in your school by making some funky, new recycling boxes that the children will find fun to use. Decide what recycling boxes to make depending on what gets thrown away the most during your school lunchtime. Plastic bottles? Cardboard cartons? Tin foil? This can be conducted as a survey over the period of a week with volunteers checking the lunch bins each day and reporting back.

Refuse collectors complain that people do not flatten or compress their recycling before throwing it away so try to encourage this in your designs by having tubes that the packaging has to fit down in order to be put into the box.

To start with, choose a box that is the right size for the items it will be storing: a plastic bottle recycling box will need to be much bigger than a foil recycling box. Collect recyclable materials to build your box with – cardboard tubes and various chocolate boxes are good because they vary in shape and size and make your box look interesting. Decorate your box with examples of what will go inside – the children can be really creative with this. Bottle tops make a great decoration, as do straws and foil. Make signs and arrows giving instruction on what to do – Drop your bottle here! , Flatten and insert here! and so on. Make sure that the ‘recycle’ sign (three arrows) is used on the box somewhere. The children can design their own fun versions of it.

When your boxes are complete ask the children to test them and report back on whether or not they work effectively. Make any necessary changes and then display them prominently, making arrangements for them to be emptied regularly.

Completed this activity? Use our show and tell facility to upload your work and help this zone to improve.

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