Thursday, May 19, 2011

Recycle That!

The children in my class are enjoying a simple sorting activity I recently put together.  First, I wanted to be sure the children were familiar with the words used in the lesson.  For this reason, I introduced four small labels which I made using Clip Art for each category of recycleable material in the lesson.  This included cardboard, plastic, aluminum, and glass.  On the first day, after reading a book about recycling, I showed each card and read the corresponding word.  Then, it was placed on our classroom message board where I proceeded to write the word underneath in cursive.  I felt this was an important step because it provided the children an opportunity to read words in their written format (cursive) and compare it to what one would see in a book (manuscript). 

Here are the recycle labels on the message board with matching written words.  They remained here for a few days before I introduced the next step.
A few days later, a clear, plastic storage box filled with recyclable "goodies" was introduced to the children at circle time.  I reminded them of the labels on the board and we read each one before placing them across the top of a mat.  Then, as I brought each item out of the box, we discussed the material, where it came from, etc. and whether or not it could be recycled.  Of course the answer was always yes, and we sorted each item into the correct category by placing it under the appropriate label.

The items sorted on a mat  underneath the labels.
Lastly, I showed the children how to put the materials away in the box and collected the labels.  These too, were placed in the box so that the children could sort the materials on their own. 

The material in the box with labels (you can see them through the box in the lower right corner), ready for the next person to use.
We found a place in the room for the box and now the kids are having fun sorting out these recyclable materials.


  1. You had such great Earth Day activities last year, Sasha! I'll look forward to seeing what you do this year! I featured your photo and Earth Day posts in my Montessori-Inspired Earth Day post at

  2. Hoping you could share where you got those great recycling lables.

  3. Hi Angie,
    I made those with Clipart on Word! Very easy!