Roots of Trash

Roots of Trash Photo Credit: Clipart.com


In this activity you'll look at some everyday items, explore how they are made, and learn how recycling them can help reduce waste.


Read over and discuss the Roots of Trash student sheet with your teacher. Then discuss with your team members how you will answer the questions using library resources and the Internet. Make sure to ask the librarian for assistance in your topic searches.

Depending on your topic, these websites can be used to find interesting facts and background information. Feel free to look for other websites that help to answer the questions.

Plastic Bag—Fossil Fuels

Milk Carton—Paper/Trees

Soda Can—Metals

Glass Bottle—Sand

Food Meat Item—Animals

Natural Resources—General

Knowledge Check

When you have finished your student sheet, you will be asked to give a presentation on the throwaway product and natural resource you researched. Be prepared to both ask and answer questions about each team’s topics.

Also be prepared to answer questions such as these:

  • Before this lesson, did you ever think about the things you threw away? Why or why not?
  • Do you think people should think about these kinds of things? Why or why not?
  • What did you find most interesting about the products or natural resources you researched? Why?
  • Are you surprised by all the technology that is involved in turning natural resources into everyday products?
  • What if we didn’t have science and technology? Would we have tires? Glass bottles? What would life be like without these things?

This esheet is a part of the Garbage 1: The Roots of Trash lesson.

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Esheet Details