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Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources


5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th


Science, Social Studies, Chemistry, English Language Arts

Resource Type

  • Article

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - Midwest, Wisconsin



What to Recycle in Wisconsin

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  • This helpful guide for recycling in Wisconsin includes detailed lists of recycling rules, explanations, and how to recycle a variety of other materials.
  • Students will learn about what can and cannot be recycled, how to recycle, some issues encountered when recycling, and additional information about recycling-adjacent topics. 
Teaching Tips


  • This resource is straightforward and easy to understand. 
  • Students will benefit from non-fiction text features embedded in the resource, such as headings and subheadings, lists, and explanations. 

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should have prior knowledge of the importance of recycling and conserving natural resources.


  • Science classes can use this information to connect to lessons about nutrient cycling, rare metals and other elements, or decomposition.
  • Younger students may enjoy a role-playing recycling game using the rules set forth in the resource and using real recyclables would make it even more fun!
  • Older students may enjoy creating informative recycling posters to spread awareness in their school or community.
  • Most of the vocabulary terms are linked to provide more information for students unfamiliar with the terminology used.
Scientist Notes
This resource describes what can and cannot be recycled in the state of Wisconsin. It also contains resources for how to recycle other materials that cannot be recycled through the municipal waste systems. This resource is recommended for teaching.
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • MS-ESS3-4 Construct an argument supported by evidence for how increases in human population and per-capita consumption of natural resources impact Earth's systems.
      • 5-ESS3-1 Obtain and combine information about ways individual communities use science ideas to protect the Earth’s resources and environment.
      • HS-ESS3-4 Evaluate or refine a technological solution that reduces impacts of human activities on natural systems.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Reading: Informational Text (K-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.8.10 By the end of the year, read and comprehend literary nonfiction at the high end of the grades 6-8 text complexity band independently and proficiently.
  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 2: Civics
      • D2.Civ.12.3-5 Explain how rules and laws change society and how people change rules and laws.
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