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Citizenship, Life Literacies and Key Skills, Movement & Play


K, 1st, 2nd




60 minutes

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - Northeast, New Jersey


Google Docs, Google Slides


This lesson plan is licensed under Creative Commons.

Creative Commons License

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Repeat!

Created By Teacher:
Last Updated:
Apr 16, 2024
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This lesson introduces the idea of reduce, reuse, recycle and has students create a classroom waste management plan. 

Step 1 - Inquire: Students are introduced to the idea of reduce, reuse, recycle through an engaging video and cut and match sorting activity.


Step 2 - Investigate: Students practice RRR by sorting recyclables in The Great Reuse Reduce Recycle Relay!


Step 3 - Inspire: Students make a classroom waste management plan using the information they have gained throughout the lesson.

Accompanying Teaching Materials
Teaching Tips


  • Students participate in a hands-on and physically active learning activity.

  • Students collaborate and develop long-term plans together.

  • Students get a sense of ownership from developing a classroom waste management plan.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Teacher needs to either:

    • Bring in materials to sort for The Great Reduce Reuse Recycle Relay.

    • Print the alternate materials in advance.

  • Some sort of large poster needs to be available to hang in an easily viewed space for students to have easy access to the classroom waste management plan.


  • Students could work in groups to complete the cut and sort in the Investigate stage if time is limited.

  • Students with physical limitations may do The Great Reduce Reuse Recycle Relay at their desk with the alternate materials or be the “bin monitor” to help ensure each relay team is sorting their materials correctly.

Scientist Notes

This lesson introduces students to the sustainable waste management principles of reduce, reuse, and recycle. They would be engaged in sorting waste and disposing of it into appropriate recycling bins. They would also be able to explain the implications of waste recycling on the environment. All materials are thoroughly sourced and written. Accordingly, this lesson has passed our science review.


Note On Standards:

This lesson is aligned to New Jersey standards. Review the aligned standards directly in the lesson plan document and teacher slideshow.

Discover more on the New Jersey Climate Education Hub.
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