From Trash to Treasure
Create art from recycled materials while understanding the need to eliminate litter and be kind to our earth.
Big Idea: Recycled materials can be used to make art work.
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- Disposable gloves (latex or cloth)
- Large bucket
- Strong glue or tape (for example, rubber cement, duct tape, or electrical tape)
- Permanent markers (optional)
- Acrylic paint (optional)
- Discuss with children what “recycle” means. When we recycle, we use the object again – a cup, a bowl, etc. or the material – aluminum or plastic, for example – is cleaned, melted, and made into something new. Why is it important to recycle?
- Today we are going to go on a walk around the school/in the park and collect trash that people have thrown on the ground. We do not want to pick up any food! We are looking for aluminum cans, plastic cups, lids, pens, etc. Let’s put on our gloves first, so we don’t get any germs. When you find something, gently pick it up and place it in the bucket that I will be carrying.
- After walk, clean the trash with soap and water and allow to dry overnight.
- Today we are going to use our “clean trash” to create art. Show children how they can connect the pieces with different adhesives. Discuss what a sculpture is.
- When sculptures are finished, you may paint them with acrylic paint or permanent markers, or decorate them with stickers, colored tape, etc.
Q. Why is it important to recycle?
A. It helps to reduce waste and keep our earth clean.
Q. What is a sculpture?
A. A piece of art work that is 3D or can be seen from my different sides.
Q. How else could we reuse items?
Q. What other ideas do you have about recycling?
Q. Can you think of any artist that use recycled materials to create art?
Q. How do you think we should display our artwork for others to see?
4.A Listen effectively in formal and informal situations.
9.A Demonstrate and apply geometric concepts involving points, lines, planes and space.
25.A Understand the sensory elements, organizational principle and expressive qualities of the arts.
25.B Understand the similarities, distinctions and connections in and among the arts.
26.A Understand processes, traditional tools and modern technologies used in the arts.
26.B Apply skills and knowledge necessary to create and perform in one or more of the arts.
31.A Develop a positive self-concept.
Display: to show or exhibit
Recycle: To extract useful materials from garbage or waste. To extract and reuse useful materials found in waste
Recyclable: fit for or capable of being recycled
Sculpture: The art or practice of shaping figures or designs in the round or in relief, as by chiseling marble, modeling clay, or casting in metal