National Recycling Week - From Trash To Treasure

National Recycling Week - From Trash To Treasure

Lesson 2 of 4 in this unit

  • Primary
  • Year 3 - 4
  • English
  • Science
  • Environmental
  • Recycling
  • Economic
  • Design Thinking
  • ...

Lesson summary

In this lesson, students will think about waste and recycling from the perspective of a piece of garbage. They will cement their knowledge and understanding by completing creative and responsive tasks.

Learning intentions:

Students will...

  • understand the problem of over-consumption
  • understand the importance of recycling and re-use
  • respond to texts
  • create texts to demonstrate their understanding.

Lesson guides and printables

Lesson Plan
Student Worksheet
Teacher Content Info

Lesson details

Curriculum mapping

Australian curriculum content descriptions:

Year 3 Science:

  • Science knowledge helps people to understand the effect of their actions (ACSHE051)

Year 3 English:

  • Draw connections between personal experiences and the worlds of texts, and share responses with others (ACELT1596)

Year 4 Science:

  • Science knowledge helps people to understand the effect of their actions (ACSHE062)

Year 4 English:

  • Discuss literary experiences with others, sharing responses and expressing a point of view (ACELT1603)

Syllabus OutcomesEN2-11DST2-11LW.

General capabilities: Literacy, Critical and creative thinking, Personal and social capabilities, Ethical understanding.

Time needed: 60 minutes

Resources required

  • Internet
  • Student Worksheet
  • A copy of Dougal the Garbage Dump Bear by Matt Dray (2005, Kane/Miller) OR images from the book to copy or display. If this book is not available one of the many children’s books about recycled and re-used rubbish will work as a substitute. Some ideas are:
  • Charlie and Lola: We Are Extremely Very Good Recyclers. By Lauren Child and Bridget Hurst (2009, Dial)
  • The Adventures of a Plastic Bottle: A Story About Recycling.By Alison Inches and Pete Whitehead (2009, Little Simon)
  • The Cardboard Box Book. By Roger Priddy (2014, Pan Macmillan)


This lesson is designed to build students’ competencies in the following skills:

  • Creativity
  • Communication
  • Collaboration

Additional info

Planet Ark’s National Recycling Week started in 1996 to bring a national focus to the environmental benefits of recycling. This highly regarded annual campaign continues to educate and stimulate behaviour change by promoting kerbside, industrial and community recycling initiative. It also gives people the tools to minimise waste and manage material resources responsibly at home, work and school. In partnership with Planet Ark, we have developed lessons from early learning through to year 10 to help educators bring these important topics into the classroom.

National Recycling Week is held in the second week of November each year but you can recycle all year-round with these lessons which were designed to be used at any time. Click here to find out more about National Recycling Week and the Schools Recycle Right Challenge. 

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