Upcycling is about creating something new from used materials. Garbage and waste materials are processed in a way that they are formed into a new artefact. Thus, a racing car can be created from old plastic bottles, a hair band can be made from paper, and a bag can be created from used plastic bags …to name but a few of the numerous possibilities.
In a first step the topic garbage and waste production is explored: what kinds of waste do we produce in our everyday lives? What materials do they consist of?
The second step of the project activity combines online search and creative brainstorming and developing of ideas. In small groups, the participants chose to work on one of the materials, concentrating on why it is problematic, how this kind of waste material can be reduced or even avoided in everyday life, and finally developing ideas, what may be designed and built from this material.
Subsequently, these ideas are put into practice and the Upcycling artefacts are built.
The groups document this design and production process in text, visuals (and audio), so that concomitant to the Upcycling artefacts little digital stories are being produced, each providing a) information about the respective (waste)materials, and b) ideas and useful tips about the design and construction process for others interested in engaging in a similar project. Some examples are shown below:
- The bag – Second life of a plastic bag.
- Miss Sock – How we made a true lady from an old sock.
- The car – How to make a racing car from an old cardboard box.
The project combines analog, manual and technical learning with digital skills: not only do participants practice their skills in handling tools and different materials, they also aquire and broaden their skills in online research and assessing online information, as well as the production of digital content. Last but not least, the upcycling activity contains an active and constructive learning element focusing on one’s own environment and the living conditions therein.
- waste materials like plastic bottles, paper, cardboard, textiles etc.
- tools (scissors, glue, cutter knives, sewing equipment, flat iron etc.)
- paper and pens for construction sketches and notes
- digital cameras
When the needed tools are at hand, project costs might be as low as a few Euros for sewing materials, paper or glue.
Project duration is determined by the complexity of the Upcycling designs. Four to five sessions should be calculated.
With younger children, support is needed in handling the various tools.
tuduu comes with project ideas, tips and provides a useful overview on materials and tools.
Dieser Beitrag ist auch verfügbar auf: German