An abundance of free recycling curriculums can be found online. Create your next lesson plan using one of the following resources:

Napa Countywide Waste Reduction and Recycling Curriculum

Napa County and the City of Napa have released a new Countywide Waste Reduction and Recycling Curriculum that’s FREE to local teachers. The curriculum consists of seven standards-based in-class lessons designed to increase student understanding of concepts such as the 4Rs, conservation, waste prevention, renewable vs. non-renewable resources, product life cycles, and biodegradation. The lessons are designed to stand individually or form a cohesive curriculum if used together, and include all necessary teacher background.

Grades PreK-3

Health World LogoHealth World’s Safety Smart Goes Green
A digital instruction course in which The Lion King’s animated characters Timon and Pumbaa teach children grades about green practices, focusing on the three R’s.

Grades K-6

Dem-Con’s Green Grades
Videos by this Minnesota landfill company show how various components of residential and industrial waste are processed at the landfill so that they can be recycled into new materials. Lessons and activities are broken down into grades K-2, 3-5, and 6+.

Grades 1-5

Ranger Rick Educator’s Guides
The National Wildlife Federation puts out monthly classroom guides for educators to use to teach from the children’s magazine Ranger Rick. Topics range from wildlife and habitat to trash and pollution.

Grades 4-6

recycle rosieRecycle Rosie Curriculum: Understanding the Waste Cycle
This PDF curriculum contains six chapters that introduce the three R’s and encourage students to think critically about the environment-waste management relationship.

Grades 4-12

can manufacturers instituteCan Manufacturers Institute
Three separate curricula for grades 4-6, 6-9 and 9-12 that emphasize the importance of recycling and environmentally responsible behavior.

Grades 6-12

I Want to Be Recycled logoI Want to Be Recycled
Educational game and fact sheets for grades 6-12 highlighting economic resource value and strategy of collecting and sorting recyclables.

Grades K-12

EPAUnited States Environmental Protection AgencyA vast array of lesson plans, games, quizzes, videos, projects, activities and community service ideas.

ca eeiCalifornia Education and the Environment Initiative (EEI)
More than 80 science and history-social science units that highlight environmental relationships and encourage critical thinking.

teacher visionTeacher Vision
Green activities, articles, slideshows and more, organized by grade level.

education worldEducation World
This site offers links to more than 40 recycling activities and resources for various grade levels.

neaNational Education Association
Earth Day-themed lessons, projects, activities and games for grades K-5, 6-8 and 9-12.

isriInstitute of Scrap Recycling Industries, Inc. and JASON Learning
Posters, lesson plans and web-based experiences about recycling for grades K-4, 5-8 and 9-12.

recommunity recyclingReCommunity
Educational recycling videos, infographic posters and lesson plans for grades 1-5 and 6-12.

Grades 9-12

The Greens
The Greens is a website for kids with games and activities on sustainability and green living. Recommended grades 9-12.


Grades K-12

cafeteria-cultureCafeteria Culture

Working creatively with youth to achieve zero-waste, climate-smart school communities and a plastic free biosphere with citizen science, civic action, media and the arts!