2015 Compost Stew
2015 Compost Creatures
2016 Recycled Paper Making

Solid Waste School Program

The Solid Waste Youth Program offers a variety of interactive lessons, focused on Solid Waste Management topics such as recycling, composting, and landfills. Partial funding to support this program is provided by NYS Department of Environmental Conservation with additional funding from the Broome County Division of Solid Waste Management to provide free education to Broome County residents. Groups must be a part of Broome County to participate.

Recycling Lessons

Recycled Paper Making (K-2nd)

  • First, learn how paper is used and created with an interactive presentation complete with real samples and easy to understand visuals. Youth will learn how this process affects our environment and experience first-hand how paper is recycled. All this complete with the finished product to take home!
  • Request Recycled Paper Making Lesson

When Trash Comes Back (3rd-6th)

  • This interactive presentation can be delivered on it’s own or in combination with the “Recycling Lab” for the greater impact. Discover where our trash comes from, how it connects to our natural resources and the environmental impact. Students will be fully engaged with vivid visuals, short videos, and easy to understand analogies. Get the inside scoop on what’s recyclable in Broome County, how recycling is handled, and the products (some extremely unique) created as a result.
  • Request When Trash Comes Back Lesson

Recycling Lab (3rd-6th)

  • This lesson can easily be offered on it’s own, but is best received when combined with “When Trash Comes Back.” Youth take on the role of Environmental Scientist when they receive a (clean) bag of trash to analyze with this hands-on lab. Youth will discover how trash is connected to natural resources and what can be recycled in Broome County through experiential learning, the use of reference charts, and a little teamwork. Your students are bound to be amazed with their new discoveries!
  • Request Recycling Lab
  • Request Recycling Lab to Follow "When Trash Comes Back"

Traveling Trash (3rd-6th)  

  • Youth will discover how litter impacts the environment and wildlife when not properly sorted into the appropriate compost, recycle, or trash bins. Supplemented with visuals and hands-on activities, youth will identify ways to reduce single-use items and help prevent future litter from entering the environment. 
  • Request Traveling Trash Lesson

Shopping Bag Dilemma (6th-12th

  • Answering the simple question “Paper, or plastic?” at your local grocery store entails a deeper dive into the production process and disposal of both options to determine which is “best” for the environment. Through research, group discussion, and debate, youth will examine both bag choices from various perspectives from the grocery store owner, the shopper, and the recycling facility operator.
  • Request Shopping Bag Dilemma Lesson

Composting Lessons

Compost Stew with Worm Bin Discovery (Pre-K-1st)

  • Literacy and Science come together! Discover the “ingredients” for compost through an interactive read-aloud of Compost Stew: An A to Z Recipe for the Earth by Mary Mckenna Siddals. This rhyming story provides the perfect lead-in to an up-close discovery of “Compost Stew” and the wiggly creatures that help create it.
  • Request Compost Stew

Garbage Helps our Garden Grow with Compost Creatures Discovery (K-3rd)

  • Literacy and Science come together! Garbage Helps Our Garden Grow: A Compost Story by Linda Glaser is an easy to follow, non-fiction piece with vivid step-by-step photos to share nature’s own form of recycling. Youth are sure to be engaged as they discover the tiny creatures that recycle garbage in a real compost sample, equipped with magnifying glasses for a closer look! Due to the availability of creatures, this program is offered from late April through mid October.  
  • Request Garbage Helps Our Garden Grow

Nature's Recyclers with Compost Creatures Discovery (4th-6th)

  • We all know that paper, plastic, glass, and metal can be recycled but what about food scraps? Learn more about how nature’s recyclers create healthy soils and how they can help us keep food scraps out of the landfill. Get up-close and personal with the decomposers (and even a few predators) that make it all happen as we search through a real compost sample, equipped with a spoon and magnifying glass! Due to the availability of creatures, this program is offered from late April through mid October.
  • Request Naure's Recyclers

Compost Creatures (6th-12th)

  • We all know that paper, plastic, glass, and metal can be recycled, but what about food scraps? Learn more about outdoor composting- how it affects our ecological footprint and the creatures that play a key role in the process. Get an up-close look at the creatures with a digital microscope after collecting them from a real compost sample! Due to the availability of creatures, this program is offered from late April through mid October.
  • Request Compost Creatures

Not seeing what you're looking for? Contact us to discuss options. 


Josh Enderle
Recycling and Composting Educator
(607) 584-5011

Last updated December 16, 2019