The students will identify the various waste materials generated
in the school. They will describe the sequence of collection and
the destination of the materials identified.
Classroom wastebasket, maintenance personnel, area road map, chalkboard.
1. Separate the class into three groups.
2. Have group one examine the contents of
the classroom wastebasket. Ask the group to identify the various
types of waste materials generated in the classroom. Categorize
the waste materials as paper products, glass, metals, plastics,
organic wastes, etc. Record the findings on the chalkboard.
3. The second group should examine the flow
of the waste materials after they are collected from the classroom.
This may require an interview with maintenance personnel. Are
the wastes consolidated with other classroom's wastes? Why? Are
the wastes transferred to a large capacity receptacle? Are any
wastes burned in a school incinerator? Are any waste materials
recycled? If wastes are collected from the school by the municipality
or a commercial disposal firm, where are the wastes disposed?
4. Have the third group determine the types
of wastes generated in special subject areas of the school (arts
and crafts, gym, home economics, industrial arts, etc.), the school
cafeteria, the office, the maintenance area. Are these wastes
handled in the same manner as classroom wastes? Determine what
other wastes are generated by the school. Where do these wastes
5. Regroup the class. Have a member or members
of each group report the group findings, beginning with group
one. Create a diagram or a flowchart on the chalkboard to outline
the reports of groups two and three, indicating the steps
between waste generation and waste disposal.
6. Ask whether any members of the class live near or have visited
a landfill, an incinerator, a recycling center, or a sewage treatment
plant. Ask for descriptions and impressions of the facilities.
Determine whether any of these facilities are located near the
school. You may need to contact your county planning department
for the locations. Plot the facility locations and the school
location on the road map. Calculate the distances that waste materials
must be transported to each facility. List the type of wastes
generated by the school which are managed by each facility and
the distance of each facility from the school.
7. (Optional) Arrange a class field trip to one or more waste
management facility. Create a class record for each facility.
Include photos, drawings, essays, and audio or video tape recordings.