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After and Before

Respect= to show regard or consideration for.


Learning to respect our resources and surroundings is a very important skill for today's kids and youth to grasp. In a highly "disposable" society, kids have been trained to use something once and then throw it away. They, and we, have been trained to do what is easiest, most convenient, and what most benefits us short-term.

Who wants to visit this beach?

It is good to develop a love and respect for the Earth in our students in order for them to even care about the decisions they are making that might affect the environment. One of the perhaps easiest to teach is the difference between littering and disposing of garbage/recycling properly. Role plays and scenarios are a good way to teach and discuss this. For example:

*Imagine that you are walking home and you're chewing gum. The gum loses its flavor and you don't feel like chewing it anymore. What should you do?

Some might suggest that you throw it on the ground (littering) or swallow it (not ideal for digestion). Others might say just keep it in your mouth until you get home or that you spit it out into the wrapper and put it in your pocket until you get to a trash can or arrive home. Talking through making good decisions is an effective way to improve decision making skills in our students- not just on matters of recycling but in all areas of their life.

DID YOU KNOW? In most states it is against the law to litter. You might recieve a hefty fine of up to $500 in some states.

Looking for a great class project for older students? Check our SOLV's website. SOLV originally stood for Stop Oregon Littering and Vandalism. It now encompasses even more than literring and vandelism. It's mission is: "to build community through volunteer action to preserve this treasure called Oregon." There are Saturday beach clean-ups, riverside clean-ups, and other volunteer opportunitites. They will supply gloves and bags for your group. You just have to get there.

Type of Litter and Percentage
Fast Food Waste (33%)
Paper (29%)
Aluminum (28%)
Glass (6%)
Plastic (2%)
Other (2%)

Another class extenstion about littering and protecting the environment could be tied to cause and effect. If we throw trash in the rivers and an animal eats it. What would happen? What are the consequences or effects of our actions?

Think about the animals.


Remember: cigarette butts are litter too! Littered cigarette filters contain toxic chemicals that leak into the air and water. One of issues is lack of cigarette butt receptacles at bus stops, building entrances, etc. Plus, many people either don't care are aren't aware of the effects of their actions.

Source: Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) survey of Adopt-A-Highway volunteers - 1994