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Movement & Play


6th, 7th, 8th




60 minutes

Regional Focus



Google Docs, Google Slides


This lesson plan is licensed under Creative Commons.

Creative Commons License

Climate Action Sports Challenge

Created By Teacher:
Last Updated:
Feb 28, 2024
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In this lesson, students use teamwork, strategy, agility, and speed to reinforce lessons on how to reduce waste and fight climate change.

Step 1 - Inquire: Students learn how to use the 3 R’s: reduce, reuse, and recycle to reduce their carbon footprint and work together to fight climate change.

Step 2 - Investigate: Students play a game to learn how long it takes for different types of waste to decompose in a game.

Step 3 - Inspire: Students test their knowledge of the 3 R’s and decomposition timelines in a game of speed, agility, and teamwork.

Accompanying Teaching Materials
Teaching Tips


  • This lesson aligns with Hawai‘i’s Nā Hopena A'o HĀ-BREATH Framework.

  • The Investigate and Inspire section activities can be completed on different days. Additionally, this lesson could be spread out into a week-long Climate Action Sports Challenge.

  • Students collaborate and work together in order to be successful.

  • Students utilize various skills, including academic skills, SEL skills (communication, listening), and kinesthetic skills (agility, speed, passing, shooting, teamwork, spatial awareness).

  • Students work on physical fitness and enjoy cardiovascular exercise while reinforcing basic climate action concepts.

  • Physical activity helps kinesthetic learners to learn and retain climate action information more effectively.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Teacher will need to assemble the following materials for the games:

    • 4 sets of colored flags or jerseys for different teams

    • Scarves or foam noodles for the 3 R’s Tag game

    • 4 balls that could be used for soccer

    • 4 basketballs or bouncy balls

    • 4 soccer goals or 4 pairs of cones

    • Signs labeled 0-12 months, 1-100 years, 450-1000 years, millions of years-never

    • Signs labeled “true” and “false”

  • Teacher should print one infographic sheet for each team before the lesson.

  • Teacher should be aware of difficult cultural approaches to sportsmanship and participation.


  • If class sizes are small (under 20), students could be divided into two or three teams, instead of four.

  • To encourage sportsmanship or teamwork, teacher can award sportsmanship or teamwork points each game to the team that demonstrates those skills.

  • Instead of playing soccer for the Waste No Time! Game, students could pass a frisbee and follow the rules of ultimate frisbee where students must freeze when they catch the frisbee and pass to their classmate. Teams can send three players out at a time instead of two players.

  • Teacher can modify the games to feature different sports depending on the skill sets and interests of students (soccer, American football, basketball, rugby, ultimate frisbee, floor hockey, field hockey, water sports, etc.).

  • Instead of dribbling the basketball, students could be allowed to run three steps with the ball, then pass.

  • During the cool-down stretch review, students can come up with questions as teams to ask the other teams, instead of the teacher generating questions.

  • Teacher can choose alternative awards for the winning team. The winning team can choose the warm-up for the next class, be dismissed to the locker room first, organize an obstacle course for teammates, or choose a walk/run outdoors, etc.

  • As a possible extension, students can organize a campus clean-up, examine the school’s waste management, advocate for more effective waste management, or start a campus composting system.

  • As a possible extension, students can teach the 3 R’s Tag game to elementary students or create their own P.E. games for elementary students to reinforce basic climate action steps.

Scientist Notes

Students will learn about how to lessen carbon footprints and how to use exercise to fight climate change. They will discover how solid wastes—biodegradable and otherwise—are produced, how long various types of solid wastes might take to break down in a landfill, and the fundamentals of waste management. The lesson's materials have been examined, and they met our standards for scientific credibility.


Primary Standard

  • National Health Education Standards
    • Standard 7: Students will demonstrate the ability to practice health-enhancing behaviors and avoid or reduce health risks.
      • 7.8.2 Demonstrate healthy practices and behaviors that will maintain or improve the health of self and others.
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  • I like the interactivity of this lesson! I'm sure the students will be engaged! 😊😊
    6 months ago