What, No Plastic?! - Problem Solving with Materials

National Curriculum Subject Areas: Science - Materials, Sustainability
Length of session: 75 minutes
Maximum group size: 32

Learning Outcomes
•    Understand why plastic was developed and the problems it has caused
•    Consider alternative materials to using plastic by looking at materials used by a range of cultures and evaluating their pros and cons
•    Encourage pupils to be active citizens as they explore concepts of reduce, reuse and recycle

Session Outline
In this interactive session, pupils explore alternative materials to plastic as they investigate materials used in a range of cultures in the past, present and future.
Activity 1: Problems of Plastic Discover why plastic was invented, the problems it has caused and what is being done to help solve the problem.
Activity 2: Guided Activities On a guided tour pupils will be inspired by materials used by people around the world and explore issues of reduce, reuse and recycle. This will include handling objects and unusual materials such as mushroom and pineapple leather. Please organise groups to have a ratio of one Primary Guide to every ten pupils.
Session 3: Creative Challenge Pupils plan out what they would pack for a journey - no plastic allowed! They are encouraged to be sustainable and inventive in their use of material!

Reduce, reuse, recycle is taught in all years of the school and having the opportunity to see it in practice past and present inspires the children!" (KS2 teacher)

"I discovered so many amazing materials like mushroom leather, banana paper and rice husk cups." (KS2 pupil)