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To demonstrate a measurable increase of the variety and amount of products recycled at home, at school, and/or in the community.
Rethink recycling with the Philadelphia Zoo Albert M. Greenfield UNLESS Contest, a project-based partnership to engage students in action to save wildlife.
The Philadelphia Zoo has partnered with more than 200 schools and over 10,000 students from the Delaware Valley region to make positive change. As part of this year's Albert M. Greenfield UNLESS Contest, we are asking students to rethink recycling! Your students can participate in this unique authentic learning experience that focuses on how recycling saves energy and saves wildlife.
It takes energy to make items we use every day—books, toys, packaging, containers, computers, phones, clothes. Recycling saves energy. We can reduce carbon emissions, a leading cause of climate change by recycling. Recycling saves water, preserves natural resources, and protects wildlife habitat. The EPA estimates that recycling one ton (2,000 pounds) of paper can save enough energy to heat a home for up to six months. Recycling just one glass bottle or aluminum can save enough energy to light a 100-watt light bulb for up to four hours. Recycling will ultimately reduce the impact of climate change on people and wildlife!
Climate change affects both humans and wildlife. The Philadelphia Zoo is committed to providing education on the impact of climate change. According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), there is evidence that supports a serious threat to the future existence of gorillas in their natural habitat. Over the past few decades there has been a consistent decline in inches of rainfall. The dry season is getting longer. Gorillas are just one of the many animals that is trying to adapt to this change. We can slow down these changes by taking action to reduce the impacts of climate change.
(Contest is open to grades K-2, 3-5, 6-8 and 9-12)
Students follow these step by step guidelines to develop a plan to RETHINK Recycling then create a means to share their project and results.
Students research gorillas or other animal impacted by climate change. Other animals include migratory birds or amphibians (local impact), polar bears or penguins (global impact).
Students research what is currently not being recycled at home, at school and in their communities and how recycling can save energy and save wildlife.
Students create a positive RETHINK Recycling campaign to engage their families, schools and communities in action. The campaign must be specific, measurable and will increase the variety and amount of products recycled.
Be creative! Example ways to persuade others to RETHINK Recycling.
Spread the word. Engage others in raising awareness about the importance of recycling and how it saves energy and saves wildlife.
Track results. Information should include the number of people reached with the awareness campaign and how change occurred at home, at school and in the community as a direct result of the project.
Your students can work on this real-world issue all while addressing the common core standards:
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