Everyone Can Be The Green Ninja

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MAIN TOPIC OF VIDEO: How everyone can do things to save the planet

Play Picture

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

Frame:

  1. You have finished drinking a can of soda. What should you do to the can next? Why? Be as specific as possible.
  2. You and your mother are at the grocery store going through checkout. When asked, “Would you like a paper bag or plastic bag?” How would you answer? Please explain.
  3. You are in a rush to get to school. Are you going to bring a refillable water bottle to school or are you going to grab a non-refillable water bottle from the garage? Why?

Focus:

  1. What is a landfill? What is the closest landfill to your home? Be as specific as possible.
  2. Why are landfills harmful to the environment? Be as specific as possible.
  3. Use the picture below to answer the following questions:
  • Why are the items below recyclable? Be as specific as possible.

ECGN_recycling

  • Why are the items below compostable? Explain how this works.

ECGN_compost

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Follow-Up:

  1. How can you live like a Green Ninja every day?
  2. What can you do to let everyone know that they can be a Green Ninja too?
  3. Explain how the phrase- refuse, reduce, reuse, recycle, and repurpose is related to being a Green Ninja.

 

ANSWERS TO DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

Frame:

  1. You have finished drinking a can of soda. What should you do to the can next? Why? Be as specific as possible.
    • You can do one of two things. First, you can put the can inside a recycling container. Once it is full, the can will be taken to a recycling facility where the can will be shredded and processed into new aluminum cans. Second, you can collect all soda cans and once you have a garbage bag full of cans, you can take it to a recycling facility where you can get paid for recycling. You can be paid by the piece or by weight. If paid by piece, it is $0.05 (CRV) for any container under 16 oz. and $0.10 for any container over 16 oz. If paid by weight, aluminum will fetch a different price per pound than glass or plastic. Check with the recycling facility for current prices.

2.  You and your mother are at the grocery store going through checkout. When asked, “Would you like a paper bag or plastic bag?” How would you answer? Please explain.

    • The best answer is “No thanks. We brought our own bags”. In San Jose, grocery stores will charge you $0.10 for each paper bag that it provides. In terms of economics, it is better to bring your own bags which are reusable. Environmentally speaking, having a reusable grocery bag is better because trees are not being cut down to create paper bags. Even though paper bags are compostable, it will take many years for that to happen. The first act in being environmentally friendly is refusing to use anything that is not renewable. Plastics bags can be recycled but it takes a huge amount of energy to recycle it.

3.  You are in a rush to get to school. Are you going to bring a refillable water bottle to school or are you going to grab a non-refillable water bottle from the garage? Why?

    • Refillable water bottles are your best option because of three reasons. First of all, reusing is one of the best options in reducing the use of resources. Second, plastic water bottles are made with chemicals such as BPA which has been shown to cause cancer and birth defects in laboratory animals. Third, having a reusable water bottle is definitely economical in the long run.

Focus:

  1. What is a landfill? What is the closest landfill to your home? Be as specific as possible.
    • Landfill is another word for a garbage dump. In the United States, sanitary landfills are places where the garbage is dumped. Sanitary landfills have safeguards in place which can prevent both air and water pollution. For example, it has leak detectors which can detect the leaking of chemicals from the garbage dump into the groundwater below. Additionally, some sanitary landfills also have exhaust pipes for the methane to escape from the landfill. Methane is a gas that is produced from the decomposition of garbage. People might find that landfills are unsightly and smelly.
  2. Why are landfills harmful to the environment? Be as specific as possible.
    • Landfills can be harmful to the environment because of the potential air and water pollution that they can cause. As stated before, some landfills have issues with dust and smell. If you live downwind from a sanitary landfill, you may have a whiff of the decomposition that is happening there on a particular day.
  3. Use the picture below to answer the following questions:

a.  Why are the items below recyclable? Be as specific as possible.

ECGN_recycling

  • Items that can be recycled are remade into the same/similar objects as before but huge amounts of energy are used in the process. If left alone, it will take hundreds or thousands of years for it to break down.

b.  Why are the items below compostable? Explain how this works.

ECGN_compost

  • Items that can be composted take no extra effort and or energy to break down. There are broken down by bacteria through the natural process of decomposition.

Follow-Up:

  1. How can you live like a Green Ninja every day?
    • You can live like a Green Ninja every day considering the following. First of all, realize that your individual daily actions can impact the environment. Individual actions do matter. Second of all, be a smart consumer. Reading labels and thinking about where things come from, how they are made, and whether we really need them are all things to think about. Third, consider your diet, and the idea that red meat and processed foods typically have higher environmental impact than fruit, veggies, and grains.
  2. What can you do to let everyone know that they can be a Green Ninja too?
    • Consider yourself a role model. If those around you see that you are serious about being green and not just talking about it, they will be more likely to follow your actions. Second, it is also about awareness. How would you build that awareness? That would be through education. This can be either formal (in a school setting) or informal. Once again, it is all about being a role model. Third, having environmental-theme days on campus is quite powerful. For example, Earth Day started with a few individuals over forty years ago in the United States. Now, it is worldwide with millions of people celebrating it.
  3. Explain how the phrase- refuse, reduce, reuse, recycle, and repurpose is related to being a Green Ninja.
    • Why would a Green Ninja live this way? First of all, by refusing to use or buy something that either you don’t really need, or is not recyclable or reusable, you are stopping the use at the beginning. Second, if you reduce, you are not buying as much which means less resources are being used. Third, if you reuse, you are once again not buying as much which means less resources are being used. Fourth, if you recycle, you are using less raw materials even though recycling does require energy. Lastly, if you repurposed, you are using the recycled materials in a new way which is also a great idea.

 

ADDITIONAL NOTES AND RESOURCES

6 Resources for Becoming a Zero Waste School- Click here
Waste Reduction & Recycling Checklists & Tools- Click here

 

Credit: This teacher resource has been adapted from content originally developed by Chung Khong.

 

 

 

 

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