Household hazardous waste action projects
A student stencils a storm drain with a message to keep pollutants out of local waters.
Work with your students to take on a project to reduce household hazardous waste as a way to reinforce important concepts while benefiting the environment. Action projects bring learning out of the classroom and are perfect for leadership groups and environmental clubs.
Form a team with your students to
- educate others about household hazardous products.
- encourage others to use safer substitutes.
- reduce the amount of hazardous waste used at home and in the community.
- find alternatives to common products that contain hazardous substances and demonstrate them at a science fair or community event.
- present what they've learned to other classes or schools, either in person or on video.
- prepare a display for the school, library or city hall display case. Focus on the importance of reading labels, using safer substitutes or practicing safe disposal.
- publish a column or write a letter to the editor of the community paper detailing what they've learned about hazardous products.
- interview community members to find out what they think about the issue and what practices they favor. Present what they've learned in a newsletter, a video or on the school news channel.
- teach younger students how to recognize the signal words: poison, danger, caution and warning.
- create a smart-shopper channel highlighting safer substitutes for hazardous products.
- design ads for safer substitutes.
- sponsor classroom waste audits (for cleaning supplies) to encourage awareness and change.
- stencil storm drains to raise awareness about protecting our water.
- find out when the Wastemobile will be in the area and remind community members to participate.
Encourage students to
- create safe cleaning kits to be used at school or at home in place of hazardous products.
- meet with the school custodian or school district staff to encourage them to reduce the use of hazardous cleaning supplies.
- challenge parents and family members to use less-toxic products in the home and garden.
- develop a pledge program to reduce the use of hazardous products and identify three things to change. Involve family member and neighbors.
- sponsor a swap sheet that lists items and phone numbers so that people can exchange cleaning or garden products or paint they no longer need.
For assistance on starting a Hazards on the Homefront action project, contact Erin Hislop at 206-583-0655 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
For examples of successful projects as well as classroom-tested lesson plans, visit the Hazards on the Homefront mini-grants page and the project and classroom examples page.
top of page