Did you know that, on average, each person produces solid waste weighing nearly 4.4 pounds every day? If you do the math, annually, this adds up to almost a ton of trash created per person. In response, many schools have begun recycling awareness programs in their district with the goal of teaching children the importance of reducing and reusing waste. Your classroom may employ the use of a blue bin to participate in school-wide recycling of paper, plastic bottles, etc., but Tammy Andrew, a Suite101 contributor, has created a new way of salvaging these materials. Collage art has been advocated as a wonderful exercise through which children think about concepts in new and different ways. It has also been heralded as a great outlet for creativity. Andrew has combined this popular art form with recycling concepts to create an inspired Earth Day collage activity. Integrating natural elements along with recycled trash, Andrew suggests providing your students with a common theme for their art such as “Nature v. Trash” or “How are we harming the earth?” Take your students on a field trip to the school yard encouraging each child to collect natural materials such as leaves, acorns, pine cones, etc. that they can incorporate into their collage. Discover materials to use in the recycle bin in your classroom and invite your students to collect the rest of their materials as homework. You’ll be amazed at the enthusiasm and creativity this activity invokes.
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