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Projects & Activities

Using or buying less stuff is the best way to reduce waste. The next best thing is to reuse items. Here are some projects that you can do in the classroom or at home.






Mailing Envelopes from Magazines

Instead of tossing all those old magazines into the recycling bin you can reuse some of the pages to make colorful and interesting mailing envelopes.

Step 1: Choose a magazine page. Cut a total of 2 inches off the top and/or bottom to form a square sheet.

Step 2: Place the sheet face down. Fold one corner up, almost folding the sheet in half (within 1-2 inches).

Step 3: Fold sides in about 1 inch away from first fold (step 2), forming 90 degree angles. Make sure the sides are high enough for your letter.

Step 4: Use a glue stick to glue side flaps in place. Be sure not to glue the inside shut.

Now that you’ve made your envelope use these tips to make sure your mail makes it to its final destination!

  • Use a self-adhesive stamp
  • Write addresses on mailing labels
  • Seal with clear tape or glue stick
  • Use calendar pages to make a bigger envelope

Project information obtained from the County of San Mateo KIDS RECYCLEWORKS

Reusable Bird Feeder

Repurpose empty cardboard milk/soy cartons as a feeding station for outdoor birds.

Step 1: Take an empty cardboard milk/soy carton and punch a hole through the top from one side of the peak to the other. Thread a piece of yarn or ribbon through the top and tie it in a loop so you can hang the feeder.

Step 2: Cut a few round holes, about the size of golf ball, a few inches from the bottom of the carton.

Step 3: Decorate the outside of the carton using reusable items, like sticks or make a perch for the birds by the feeding holes. If you are using a hot glue gun make sure you have help from an adult first.

Step 4: Spoon wild birdseed in through the holes.

Step 5: Hang the feeder in a tree away from cats! Enjoy watching your birds eat. Don’t forget to fill the feeder.
milk carton


collection box

collection box

collection box

collection box

Homemade Recycling Collection Container

You will need the following materials: medium cardboard box, piece of construction paper, tape or glue, and markers or crayons.

Step 1: Find an empty, clean cardboard box. If you don't have a cardboard box, you can use a paper grocery bag.

Step 2: Fold the flaps of the cardboard box inward—down inside the box.

Step 3: Use scrap paper and make your own recycling sign and attach it to the box. Or, simply draw it on the box with crayons or markers.

Step 4: Place your recycling box next to the trash can in the kitchen or your room and it's now ready to use!

Talk to your family about how to recycle and ask them to help. When the box or paper bag is full, take it out and empty it in the curbside recycling bin. Put your box or bag back inside the house and you are now ready to recycle again! And, again! It’s that easy.

kids and collection box               kids and collection box

More Activities, Click Below!
Take our Recycle Word Search Challange
lil girl carrying recycling bin    Go on a Recycling Treasure Hunt
lil boy carrying recycling bin

Plastics Number Game strong recycling globe