Recycling Final Project Amanda


By: Amanda Ahl

1. Introduction

• The topic of this project is RECYCLING which means to treat or process used or waste materials to make suitable for reuse.
• Young children should learn about the needs of recycling because it makes the Earth happy.
• Students will be able to list categories of recyclable materials and be able to decipher between items that are recyclable and items that are not. They will understand what the symbol is that means to recycle.

2. Unit Map

3. Conceptual Explanations

• Concept #1: What the recycle symbol looks like. Students will be shown examples of the symbol that is on items that can be recycled.
• Concept #2: Which items can be recycled? Based on prior knowledge, the student will compose a list of general items that can be recycled. For example: cardboard, plastic, paper, ect.
• Concept #3: Given an item, which can are you going to put it in, the recyclable or the trash? Each student will be given an item and will have to decide which bin to throw it away.
• Concept #4: Introduction to composting. Student won’t fully understand this concept, but they will be introduced to it.

4. Engagement, Inquiry, and End Product

• To engage children in this unit, the teacher can use daily items that the kids will recognize and have seen before. When they know what the item is that they are being given, they are more likely to remember it and automatically in the future be able to tell if it is recyclable or not.
• The inquiry is student-directed when they are able to physically see the recycle symbol on something and know what they should do with it to dispose of it. This would be experimental since the students are getting actual items and being able to play with them. The inquiry is teacher-directed when they introduce the topic of composting, which would be observational to the students since it is most likely their first time be taught that concept.
• The main end product of this unit if for children to be able to recycle items on their own either within the classroom or at home. Students will also be able to recognize the recycle symbol and understand what it means.

5. Sub-Unit Activities, Inquires, Inquiry Questions, and Data Analyses

I. Concepts
a. What the recycle symbol looks like
b. Which items can be recycled
c. Should you put the items in the recycle or the trash?
d. Introduction to composting

II. Activities aligned with each concept (Each letter indicates the above concept it relates to)
a. Students will be given a paper with the recycle symbol on it and they will be able to be creative and color the symbol, hopefully providing them with an understanding of the shape and what it looks like.
b. The teacher will direct instruction and have the students come up with general items that they know can be recycled. The ideas will be written on the board as a reminder for the next activity.
c. Each student will be given an item that is either recyclable or trash. Some examples of recyclable items are; empty cardboard boxes, milk jug, soda bottle, and paper. Some examples of non-recyclable items are; sunglasses, bottle of glue, socks, and bath towel. There will be a recycle bin and a trash bin at the front of the classroom. One at a time, students will come up to the front of the room and place their item into the correct bin.
d. One of the trash items is an apple. When the item is brought to the front of the room, the teacher will stop the previous activity and discuss composting. For example, the apple they have could be composted instead of being thrown in the trash.

III. Questions or problems that are aligned with each concept and with each activity
• Why should we recycle?
• What things can be composted?
• Why should we compost those items?
• What color is the recycle symbol?
• Is the recycle bin always blue?
• Can we recycle glass?

IV. Types of techniques used to analyze the data
• Students can physically see the recycle symbol on items that can be recycled. They can analyze each item and look for the symbol if they don’t know for sure if it can be recycled or not.

6. Transdisciplinary (Integrative) and Patterns Opportunities

I. How patterns in unit can be used to explore other disciplines
• Social Studies: The history of recycling in their town can be discusses. Why we recycle and how we have come about recycling. Also why we recycle could be talked about.

• Math: Each recycle symbol has a number on it as well. When students can recognize the number, they are being aware of math.

• Art: Students can color a picture of the recycle symbol as well as try drawing the symbol itself.

• Dramatic arts: Students can be dramatic when placing their item into the correct bin at the front of the classroom. They can make up a game that goes along with and be creative in their own way.

• Social action can be taken place during this entire unit. Students are able to interact with their classmates and what item each of them has can be discussed within the class.

II. What metapatterns are present and how they can be used:

• Sheets: Cardboard or paper
• Arrows: Recycle symbol
• Border: recycle bin, trash bin, various items used in implementation

7. Assessment:
• To assess student’s understanding of what items to recycle, they are the ones who compile of list on the white board, with guided instructions by the teacher. When each category of items is written, the students are to provide examples of them, this giving the teacher an idea of what the students know.
• When the students get to color the picture of the recycle symbol, they are to draw two items that can be recycled.
• Each student gets an item and they are to place it into the correct bin. Their knowledge and understanding of what items can or cannot be recycled will help them in making that decision.

8. Implementation
a. Description with photos: (not valid for online viewing)

b. Reflections and Critical Analyses:
• The activities used were effective in engaging children in inquiry and in learning because they were able to be interactive and each were allowed to participate and each of the activities.

c. Recommendations for Future Implementation

9. References, Resources, and Other Information

• Bloom, J. (2006). Creating a Classroom Community of Young Scientists. New York, NY: Taylor & Francis Group.
• Bloom, J. (2011). The Really Useful Elementary Science Book. New York, NY: Taylor & Francis Group.

  • This unit was implemented on November 14, 2011 at PEAKS Elementary school located in Flagstaff, AZ in a Kindergarten classroom.
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