15 Fantastic Sustainability and Recycling Anchor Charts

You can reuse these recycling anchor charts year after year!

Brought to you by PepsiCo Recycle Rally

Recycle Rally is a free nationwide program that directly benefits K–12 schools and students by providing valuable incentives and resources to help make recycling easy, fun, and rewarding. 

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It’s so important to promote conservation and sustainability in today’s classrooms. To help teach your students to be responsible citizens of earth, we put together our favorite anchor charts about recycling and sustainability. (New to anchor charts? Learn everything you need to know at our Anchor Charts 101. )

And this goes without saying that you should try to make your recycling anchor charts reusable and eco-friendly! First, create the basic text and images. Then, laminate the chart. After that, you’ll be able to use dry-erase markers for students to add their own input over the years!

1. Use a familiar phrase

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle has been around for decades, teaching us all how to conserve and preserve. Create your chart with the basic terms and definitions, then work as a class to come up with ways to take part in each of the activities.

Source: Simply Kinder

2. What is waste?

Create an anchor chart that defines what waste actually is and how it impacts the planet.

Source: Teaching With Terhune

3. Give love to the Earth

Teaching with Terhune

Start with the simple but eye-catching heart-shaped earth graphic in the middle. Then, have students help you fill in the activities of a true earth lover, like planting trees or saving water.

Source: Teaching With Terhune

4. Focus on a strong message

WeAreTeachers had so much fun creating this anchor chart with teacher Joe Dombrowski. (Watch it all the way through to see how we created it.) Your students will be challenged to come up with their own answers, which will help them remember that they really can make a difference. 

5. Borrow inspiration for your design

lyndseykuster instagram

Do as I say AND as I do! Let your recycling anchor charts put words into action by using old newspaper pages instead of new paper. Tip: Use bold markers to ensure your message stands out over the newsprint.

Source: Lyndsey Kuster on Instagram

6. Make a pledge

 First Grade Fever

Go one step further with your recycling anchor charts and turn them into a pledge! After students come up with a list of ways to take care of the earth, use cutouts of each student’s hand to seal the deal.

Source: First Grade Fever

7. Look at pros and cons

Easy Teaching Tools

This simple chart helps kids map out good and bad behaviors when it comes to caring about the environment. Post it in the classroom and add to it as you go.

Source: Easy Teaching Tools

8. Try fun shapes and designs

The First Grade Parade

Don’t limit yourself to an ordinary piece of chart paper! These globes are a fun way to remind your class that what really matters is what’s good for the earth. 

Source: The First Grade Parade

9. Organize it into section

Simply Kinder

This is a simple way for younger kids to learn about sustainability. Print the free images from Simply Kinder and have the little ones help you add them to the right places on the chart.

Source: Simply Kinder

10. Break it into two parts

Mrs Hendren and Block's Newsletter

Give your students a deeper understanding of why the earth is so precious. Once you’ve charted examples of renewable and nonrenewable resources, talk about how you can help to conserve and protect each.

Source: Mrs. Hendren & Block’s Newsletter

11. Make it actionable

Angela Norman Pinterest

Remind kids that everything they do touches the world and others around them with this colorful recycling anchor chart.

Source: Angela Norman on Pinterest

12. Gather the facts

Books Unit Teacher

Have students gather facts from reading or research and use them to build an illustrated chart like this one.

Source: Books Unit Teacher

13. Check for understanding

Katie Shaw Pinterest

Kids will have a better understanding of why conservation and sustainability are so important when they realize how everything is connected. 

Source: Katie Shaw on Pinterest

14. Promote responsibility

One Extra Degree

Learning to be a good citizen is one of the most important things you can teach in the classroom. Incorporate conservation and caring for the planet into your citizenship lessons with this chart.

Source: One Extra Degree

15. Celebrate special days

Buzzing with Ms B

When Earth Day rolls around, create an anchor chart to explore what it is and why it’s so important. The vocab words corner is especially valuable.

Source: Buzzing With Ms. B5

Are you looking for more recycling resources? Check out the printables, games, and more available from Recycle Rally.

Posted by Jill Staake

Jill Staake is a writer living in Tampa, Florida. She's spent most of her life teaching in traditional classrooms and beyond, from 8th grade English to butterfly encounters, and believes learning is a life-long process.

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