Last week was the first day teaching a new class called "Trash Treasures." I offered it to grades 1-6 as a choice for interest groups. Nine children, all grades 2-4 with eight boys and one girl, signed up to explore the world of morphing "trash" into "treasures."
Our first assignment was turning our school's old utility sinks that were bound for the landfill into beautiful and functional flower planters for our gardens. We started with painting the sinks. One sink ended-up a neat camoflauged pattern with the menancing smile of that face seen on airplane bombers centered around the corner of the sink; a result of five fourth-grade boys given free reign and multiple colors to design their own planter motiff. The other sink, painted by younger boys, the only girl , and myself, ended up adorned with butterflies, flowers, trees, and praying mantis. All did an exceptional job that threw me for a loop as intriguing as it was to be expected. They loved painting secret messages on the bottom.
Next stop was the mulch pile, to load up plant "trash." While the old sinks/new planter paint dried, we gathered mac nut husk mulch, shredded paper (office trash), manure (cow waste), and fish guts (fisherman fertilizer). These ingredients were layered into the dried sinks and thouroughly watered. We picked seedlings from the garden and planted them into the filled-up sinks; calendula for the camo, warrior style sink and firecracker grass for the flowery one.
Trash Treasures is going to be fun! One super-stoked boy even busted out with, "This is the best interest group ever! Trash Treasures is awesome!" All wiggly children were engaged the entire class; our garden scores two beautiful and useful planters; the landfil is minus two bulky plastic sinks. A win-win for everyone and the planet!
Next week: turning stained trunks into reusable sandwich bags!
Krista Joan says:
My mission is to teach, train, and testify in resistance to the white supremacy of my ancestors. My personal choices are political, powerful, and practical. Let's trash waste.