Sorting recyclables in preschool

We’re celebrating Earth Day and one great way to show that we care about the Earth is by recycling!  See how we examined the process of sorting recyclables in circle time…

Sorting recyclables in preschool by Teach Preschool

To begin our Earth Day celebration, we read The Earth Book by Todd Parr.  This bright, colorful book gives wonderful suggestions for how we can help save our planet…

les in preschool by Teach Preschool

As with all of Parr’s books, The Earth Book’s illustrations are simple, yet bold.  His style of writing is humorous, which our preschoolers love…

les in preschool by Teach Preschool

After enjoying The Earth Book, we brought out baskets labeled with the words paper, plastic, metal, and glass…

les in preschool by Teach Preschool

Then we brought out our bag of recyclables.  The children took turns passing the bag around the circle and pulling out a recyclable object…

les in preschool by Teach Preschool

Our bag contained a wide variety of items that could be recycled: yogurt containers, cereal boxes, foil, cans, salad dressing bottles, etc.  Once the children picked an item, they were to choose which basket they thought it might go in…

Exploring Recycling for Earth Day

Some items were obvious, but others were a bit tricky…

les in preschool by Teach Preschool

When the children had a difficult time determining which basket their item went in, we helped them examine the item by asking questions like, “Can you rip it like paper or cardboard?  Is it shiny like metal?  Can you see through it like glass?”

les in preschool by Teach Preschool

We continued to examine recyclables throughout the day in our centers. I will share more in the next post so check back!

Available on Amazon

Links to grow on: 

Making a trashy collage for Earth Day by Teach Preschool

Making a recycle city collage by The Seeds Network

Recycling think and sort game by No Time for Flashcards


By |2017-04-18T23:07:14+00:00April 13th, 2013|

About the Author:

Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. has been working and teaching in the field of early childhood education for over 30 years. Deborah currently owns and teaches in her own part-time, private preschool called The Children’s Studio. Deborah’s deep passion for teaching and working with young children is documented and then graciously shared with millions of readers around the world through her blog and other social networking communities. Deborah believes that young children learn best through play and exploration and embraces this belief in all that she does in her own classroom so that she can effectively and passionately share rewarding, real- life, tried-and-true practices with other teachers, parents, and leaders across the field of early childhood education.


  1. Marnie April 13, 2013 at 9:09 am - Reply

    Yay for Earth Day! Love Todd Parr’s book! Thanks for this post, Deborah!

  2. jEAN gOOCH April 14, 2013 at 4:15 am - Reply

    I am preschool teacher, like to learn the songs you have from the song book you have posted. Love the words, How do I know what the tunes are?

  3. Amanda April 14, 2013 at 8:20 pm - Reply

    I’m really looking for things to do for Earth day. Thanks for sharing!

  4. […] the Recyclables Explaining why everyone needs to recycle is one thing, but showing your children how to do it can make all the difference! Set up four […]

  5. […] like this article shows, preschools and daycares can teach kids about recycling by sorting materials that go in […]

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