The Waste Paper Basket
(Adapted from Team Team Up for a Clean New York, by Curriculum Editorial Unit, Brooklyn, NY)
SUBJECT AREAS: social studies
CONCEPT: What are the consequences of our actions with litter and garbage?
OBJECTIVE: To get students to think about what happens with their litter or garbage.
MATERIALS: worksheet: *The Waste Paper Basket
KEYWORDS: litter, solid waste

PROCEDURE: Have the students complete the following questions, either individually or as a class project. Then discuss the results, emphasizing the idea that individual actions are significant. How we all treat our environment determines how good an environment we will have.
FOLLOW-UP: Discuss the following questions:
1. Extend the waste paper basket situation to the world outside the classroom. If you were walking down a street and there were no litter baskets around, and you wanted to throw some candy wrappers away, what would you do?
2. If you threw one piece of paper on the ground, would that make a big difference? Explain.
3. Suppose 100 people threw papers on the ground, what would it look like then? Why?


(*Waste Papaer Basket worksheet)

What would you do? Suppose the waste paper basket in the classroom is full?
Answer the questions A. B. C. D. E. with these choices:
Yes - No - Maybe - How will this affect you? - How will this affect others?
Would you ...
A. Would you put your garbage in your desk?
B. Would you throw your garbage on the floor?
C. Would you try to put your garbage in the waste paper basket anyway?
D. Would you put your garbage in your bookbag until you find another waste paper basket to put it in?
E. Would you ask your teacher for another waste paper basket to put your garbage into?
Back to Solid Waste Activities Grades K-3

Cornell Waste Management Institute ©1991
Department of Crop and Soil Sciences
Bradfield Hall, Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853