Plarn Project: Green Steps Reuse project for 2017-2018. This is a continuing project from Plarn Project 2016-2017.
Plarn project is a Green Steps project about conservation by reusing items instead of throwing them away. This Green Steps project has 3 components:
- Students learn something about reusing items
- Do something about conservation by reusing and repurposing items
- Teach others about what they have learned about reusing
We planned this project for Student Council where students meet once a month to plan social and volunteer activities. This club is designed for teens 9th-12th to develop leadership skills.
LEARN: This particular lesson has two components: an environmental awareness project and a community service project.
- Environmental awareness: Plastic grocery bags pose a problem for the environment: the time they take to decompose and the danger to animals. Plastic bags also cannot go in the local recycle bin. They are the number #1 no-no item for the local recycling center because they get tangled in the sorting machines.
- Community Service: Operation Bedroll is a local effort to provide an insulated bedroll made from repurposed plastic grocery bags. The bedroll will be distributed among approximately 150 chronically homeless people in Columbia. Volunteers are needed to participate in various stages of the project.
DO: The students also learned how to turn a plastic bags into a useable yarn, called PLARN (plastic-yarn). Plarn could be used for other items, if they wanted to extend their learning on their own. But, for our purposes–we would donate our plarn to a local coordinator for Operation Bedroll.
Note: Leftover plastic bag scraps can be turned in (secured in another bag) at local grocery store recycle bin especially for plastic bags. There is a recycling process that can repurpose plastic bags, too.
Operation Bedroll volunteers are needed to donate plastic bags, cut the bags, string the bags together into yarn, or crochet the plarn into bedrolls. Any contribution is helpful since it takes 500-600 plastic bags to make just one bedroll. Our students were able to cut the bags and string the bags together into yarn.
This is the ball of plarn we made during one class time
TEACH: Volunteers visited one of our co-op locations to teach other teens about the plarn project.
They were able to make enough plarn for half a bedroll. One of our parents took the plarn home to add to the bedroll she was making. Another of our teens is also working on making a complete bedroll to donate.
Here’s the progress on the bedroll by a teen volunteer.
See more of our Green Steps Projects 2017-2018: