Mid Michigan Waste Authority – School Education
School Education Programs and Resources
Are you looking for some new, hands-on information and/or curricula to bring recycling and other solid waste management alternatives to life for your students? Mid Michigan Waste Authority, your government garbage gurus, may have the answer for your enviro dilemma! We have a number of school education programs and resources that just might get you and your students into Recycle-Motion. Check them out!
Why Offer Solid Waste Education? Human consumption habits have an enormous impact on the amount of waste material that is generated in our community, county, state and nation. In Michigan alone, each resident creates about 7 pounds of waste daily at home, work, school and traveling. That amounts to around 700 tons of waste in Saginaw County alone each day.
MMWA believes educating community leaders, residents and students about their environmental impacts is vital as we strive to tackle the solid waste challenges in the Saginaw Valley area, across Michigan and the country. To support this goal, MMWA provides a variety of free solid waste education programs, resources and services to Saginaw Valley area educators.
Let MMWA assist you in modeling and teaching a variety of environmentally responsible behaviors that will have a positive impact today and in the future.
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4R Environmental Education Program
The award-winning 4R Environmental Education Program provides comprehensive solid waste education to schools in the Saginaw County area. This educational, comprehensive, interactive program allows students to learn about waste reduction, reuse, recycling and buying recycled from the area’s solid waste experts, while encouraging participation in real world activities to reduce waste in their own school environment.
Over the past 9 years, the 4REE Program has worked with 45 schools across the area, teaching hundreds of 4R lessons to over 18,500 students, who diverted over 356,000 lbs of paper from the landfill!
4REE is free and open to any public and private school, (K-8, limited high schools) that has at least 25% of their student population within MMWA member communities. Participating schools commit to achieve the program’s five criteria over the course of a school year. MMWA staff help facilitate school participation and provide guidance as schools attain the program goals.
This interactive, hands-on program allows school staff, teachers and students to learn about waste reduction, reuse, recycling and buying recycled, and encourages participation in real world activities to reduce waste in their own school environment.
The five 4REE program criteria:
- Presentation outlining the 4REE program to all school staff by a MMWA staff member.
- Start-up or continuation of a paper or other school recycling program of at least one material type. The school must provide MMWA data on amounts recycled on a monthly basis for 12 months.
- 4R lessons taught to at least one entire grade level by a MMWA staff member.
- School-wide waste reduction event held to actively promote the recycling and/or waste reduction of a specific set of items. Possible events: no-waste lunch day, plastic bag recycling, desk/locker clean-out, crayon recycling, school event recycling program, etc.
- School holds a 4REE end of year school assembly celebrating the school’s 4R achievements. MMWA often sponsors an enviro-entertainer. At the final assembly, the school is presented its 4REE Award.
Space is limited in this intensive learning program, so sign up early. Schools who have participated in 4REE before and whose population has turned over can enroll again! Contact MMWA school education staff at 989-781-9555.Click Here to download the brochure. Click Here to download the lesson sheet.
4R 4Ever Supplemental Enviro-Education Program
The 4R 4Ever Program is a supplemental program just for schools who have completed the 4REE program. 4R 4Ever was designed to further reinforce the lifelong 4R habits taught in 4REE of reduce, reuse, recycle & re-buy solid waste materials, instead of needlessly sending these materials to the landfill.
To earn a 4R 4Ever school designation, participating schools must successfully complete a minimum of three (3) of the 14 program activities. Participation is easy and, as always, free. Schools just pick from the list of activities and send in an application form to MMWA.
Schools have an exciting list of activities to choose from, such as implementing a school-wide policy of reusing/recycling used school supplies. Maybe host a book, toy or clothing swap, or hold a locker/desk clean-out. Or, have your students create student art from waste materials. There’s even a fill-in-the-blank activity to let your 4R imagination run wild!
Schools have until May 15 of the participating school year to complete the chosen activities and file the 4R 4Ever certification form with MMWA. Schools successfully completing all selected program requirements are eligible for 4R- themed books and other interesting 4R/recycling awards, plus a certificate of completion.Click Here to download the application. Click Here to download the activities list.
Environmental Education Presentation Program
The E2P2 program offers schools access to a variety of individual class lessons in environmental stewardship. This free program from MMWA teaches students valuable and fun enviro lessons which meet specific Michigan Learning Standards in various disciplines. Fun and creative class activities are also available, featuring trash to treasure crafts or several book readings and lessons.
Since the program began in 2005, E2P2 has taught lessons about comprehensive solid waste management to more than 9500 students in 25 schools.
Available E2P2 lessons/activities
Exploring Green Goods – Grades K-12
What happens to the materials put into recycling bins everyday? Students learn how recyclable materials are transformed into new green products by investigating the recycling process and new product production. They also learn how to identify a recycled product in order to help complete the recycling loop by re-buying: buying items made with recycled content.
Its a Garbage Pizza! – Grades 2-8
Students learn how they create trash and what makes up America’s trash. This lesson teaches students how to reduce the impact on our landfills and resources by discovering smart alternatives to simply throwing unwanted items away. The centerpiece of the lesson is creating a pizza representing the 7 categories of waste.
Incredible Edible Landfill – Grades K-6
Students travel back in time and learn the history of garbage, landfilling and the importance of the 4R’s. This lesson culminates with students understanding the dynamics of landfill structure by building an edible landfill model.
Recycled Paper – Grades 4-8
Journey through the life of a piece of paper as it moves from a tree to wood pulp to the flattening and rolling during paper production. Students learn about their trash habits and experience the paper recycling process as they recycle old paper into a new piece of paper.
Worms Eat Our Garbage – Grades 3-8
Students discover how redworms can play a part in reducing the amount of organic waste sent to the landfill by building and maintaining a classroom worm bin. Students will learn the basics of red worms, how to maintain a healthy worm bin and the variety of organics manageable by this process.
Books or Crafts (5 Activities) – Grades K-4
Students get hands-on learning as they make memory books from old cereal boxes, create ornaments from empty toilet paper rolls, or catch a school of fish they make from old CDs! Schools/educators pick from 5 fun and creative activities.
Green Goods Kit
Check out the Authority’s Green Goods Kit to explore over 50 items made from recycled materials. The appealing assortment of items can be used for both a tabletop display and an interactive presentation. An index of product information is included in the kit, along with display set-up tips, signs and a presentation script.
This interesting kit is a great way to provide a hands-on lesson on the 4th R, Re-Buy, to students and adults. Purchasing products made from curbside recycled materials is needed to complete the recycling loop and keeping curbside recycling viable. To check out the Green Goods kit please contact MMWA at 989-781-5555
MMWA has an extensive collection of solid waste and recycling education tools and resources. Educators, youth group leaders, librarians, organization leaders, businesses and community residents are welcome to check out materials from the 4R Lending Library free of charge (a refundable deposit is required).
The 4R Lending Library has a unique collection of resources:
- Activity and Craft Project Books
- Curriculum Lessons (all grade levels)
- Educational and Informational Books (Pre-school to adult)
- Recycled Craft Kits
- Recycled Item Display
- Solid Waste and Recycling Videos and DVDs
Trash To Treasure
Get creative with these ideas for taking common materials and transforming them into Trash-to-Treasure crafts. A variety of easy instructional kits are available to supplement your 4R class curricula.
Available Trash-to-Treasure kits include:
- CD Fish
- Magazine Photo Frames
- Paper Bead Necklaces
- Tins with a Calendar Puzzle
- Origami Greeting Card Boxes
4R Art Opportunities
MMWA sponsors a poster contest, in celebration of Earth Day, for area children ages 5-13. Individual children, classrooms, and schools can submit eligible entries. Detailed poster contest information is available in March.
Local winners are recognized at Authority events, in local papers and on the MMWA website, as well as receiving unique, recycled-content prize items.
Rip is MMWA’s recycle mascot. He is excited to share important information, fun activities and great websites with you about recycling. You’ll spot him hanging around on the kid’s pages, on banners at local events and in October you might even see him on billboards around town. See where you can spot him.
Checkout his downloadable recycling coloring book! Enjoy filling the pages with color. Share your colored pages with friends, family members, teachers or anyone that you want to remind about the importance of recycling. Just remember to recycle them when you are done with them.
- Download the coloring book here.
- Download the bookmark here.
Household Special Waste Collection
Saturday - June 22, 2013
9 am - 1 pm
Arthur Hill High School
Electronic Waste Drop-Off Event
Saturday - October 12, 2013
9 am - 1 pm