California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle)

Table of Contents

On this page are links to all sections of Closing the Loop (CTL).

To view CTL documents for grade levels K-3 or 4-6, select a specific item of your choice below. All files are in Adobe PDF format unless stated otherwise. Note: Pictures with children have been intentionally deleted for privacy reasons.

Covers (for use when placing CTL in a 3-ring binder)

Front Cover (519 KB)
Back Cover (160 KB)
Spine Insert (63 KB)

Introduction

Acknowledgements (105 KB). Lists people involved in developing the CTL curriculum.
Introduction to Closing the Loop (530 KB). Background information on development of 2000 edition of CTL, including history, goals, elements incorporated, and field test results.
Profile of the California Integrated Waste Management Board (99 KB). Highlights the purpose, mission, and function of the Board.
Table of Contents (102 KB). Specifies each section of CTL.
Title and Other Introductory Pages (142 KB). Title page, publishing information, and a letter from the Chair of the Board at the time the 2001 version was published.

K-3 Module
Introduction to the K-3 Module of Closing the Loop
(135 KB). An overview of the module for grades K-3 that includes 23 lessons targeting integrated waste management concepts.

Unit 1: Conserving Natural Resources

Tab (108 KB). An insert for use in a 3-ring binder.
Overview (467 KB). Highlights of K-3 Module's Unit 1 in the 2001 edition of Closing the Loop.
Unit 1 (all five lessons, including Overview) (3.2 MB). Highlights people's use of natural resources to make items and their responsibility for conserving and protecting those resources.
Lesson 1: What Are Natural Resources? (521 KB). Defines natural resources and discusses how natural they are used to meet the needs of all living things, including people.
Lesson 2: People Use Natural Resources (632 KB). Teaches how people use natural resources to live and make things.
Lesson 3: Landfill in a Jug (1.2 MB). Demonstrates that solid waste takes up space in a landfill and how many materials can be diverted from the landfill through reuse and recycling.
Lesson 4: There Is No "Away" (173 MB). Teaches that many items considered garbage can be reused and recycled (also composted), or less of it could have been used, to conserve natural resources.
Lesson 5: Treasures of the Earth--A Play (136 KB). Students learn how people use natural resources to make many items and the importance of caring for natural resources.
Spanish Student Pages (496 KB). Student pages from Closing the Loop translated into Spanish (Spanish translation not part of CTL).

Unit 2: Reducing, Reusing, and Recycling Classroom Waste

Tab (109 KB). An insert for use in a 3-ring binder.
Overview (563 KB). Highlights of K-3 Module's Unit 2 in the 2001 edition of Closing the Loop.
Unit 2 (all five lessons, including Overview) (4.9 MB). Teaches students to reduce, reuse, and recycle classroom waste by managing plastic items, exchanging personal items, making recycled paper, and writing songs/singing about recycling.
Lesson 1: Reducing the Amount of Plastic That Goes to a Landfill (1.1 MB). Helps students identify plastics that can be recycled and develop a plan for reducing plastic items going to landfills.
Lesson 2: What Do I Do with It Now? (395 KB). Focuses on what beverage containers are made of and which ones can be reused or recycled.
Lesson 3: Classroom Exchange of Unwanted Items (401 KB). Students learn to reduce solid waste by exchanging unwanted items for other students' items they can use.
Lesson 4: Making Recycled Paper by Hand (909 KB). Teaches about conserving trees and landfill space by making recycled paper.
Lesson 5: Sounds from Reused Materials and Songs About Reusing and Recycling (1.4 MB). Focuses on writing and singing songs to reinforce lessons on reuse and recycling. Musical instruments made from trash, other materials.
Spanish Student Pages (509 KB). Student pages from Closing the Loop translated into Spanish (Spanish translation not part of CTL).

Unit 3: Vermicomposting

Tab (104 KB). An insert for use in a 3-ring binder.
Overview (811 KB) Highlights of K-3 Module's Unit 3 in the 2001 edition of Closing the Loop.
Unit 3 (all five lessons, including Overview) (7 MB). Covers vermicomposting, red worms and their effect on soil, and using compost.
Lesson 1: The Basics of Vermicomposting (2.2 MB). Teaches food waste and paper recycling through vermicomposting basics, red worm needs, and set-up of a worm bin.
Lesson 2: Getting to Know Red Worms (2.1 MB). Students learn to observe and handle red worms.
Lesson 3: Cycles in Nature and Red Worm Development (160 KB). Teaches natural cycles through observation of decomposition stages and results.
Lesson 4: The Effects Worms Have on Soil (339 KB). Covers how red worms improve soil and how people depend on this enhanced soil.
Lesson 5: Using Composting and Promoting Vermicomposting (1.3 MB). Covers harvesting and using worm compost and sharing about vermicomposting.
Spanish Student Pages (364 KB). Student pages from Closing the Loop translated into Spanish (Spanish translation not part of CTL).

Unit 4: Proper Disposal of Waste

Tab (104 KB). An insert for use in a 3-ring binder.
Overview (122 KB). Highlights of K-3 Module's Unit 4 in the 2001 edition of Closing the Loop.
Unit 4 (all five lessons, including Overview)  (1.9 MB). Students learn about litter types, litter's impact on wildlife, how to reduce, reuse, and recycle litter, how packaging becomes litter, and developing an antilitter campaign.
Lesson 1: Litter on the School Grounds (368 KB). Students learn what litter is, identify school ground areas where it is a problem, and offer solutions.
Lesson 2: Litter, Wildlife, and Decomposition (209 KB). Teaches how litter harms wildlife and how long it takes for litter to decompose.
Lesson 3: Litter Relay (250 KB). Students work in relay teams to classify litter that can be reused, recycled, or sent to the landfill.
Lesson 4: Packaging Can Become Litter
(507 KB). Covers excessive packaging for some similar products and how to reduce litter in students' lunches.
Lesson 5: Antilitter Promotional Campaign (306 KB). Students choose an activity to promote litter reduction and survey school grounds to determine its effectiveness.
Spanish Student Pages (482 KB). Student pages from Closing the Loop translated into Spanish (Spanish translation not part of CTL).

Unit 5: Proper Management of Household Hazardous Waste

Tab (104 KB). An insert for use in a 3-ring binder.
Overview (70 KB). Highlights of K-3 Module's Unit 5 in the 2001 edition of Closing the Loop.
Unit 5 (all three lessons, including Overview) (1.6 MB). Focuses on household products that should be kept away from children and on proper disposal of household hazardous waste.
Lesson 1: Poisons That Look Like Food (189 KB). Students identify household products that should not be touched, smelled, or eaten.
Lesson 2: Safety's House (547 KB). Covers common hazardous products in the home and where they are located.
Lesson 3: Proper Disposal of Household Hazardous Waste (671 KB). Through relay game, guest speaker, poster design, and other exercises, students learn to how to dispose of household hazardous waste.
Spanish Student Pages (760 KB). Student pages from Closing the Loop translated into Spanish (Spanish translation not part of CTL).

4-6 Module
Introduction to the 4-6 Module of Closing the Loop (123 KB). An overview of the module for grades 4-6 that includes 27 lessons targeting integrated waste management concepts.

Unit 1: Managing and Conserving Natural Resources

Tab (104 KB). An insert for use in a 3-ring binder.
Overview (184 KB). Highlights of 4-6 Module's Unit 1 in the 2001 edition of Closing the Loop.
Unit 1 (all five lessons, including Overview) (2.9 MB). Focuses on reusing and recycling natural resources.
Lesson 1: Defining Natural Resources (605 KB). Covers what natural resources are and products made from them.
Lesson 2: Away to the Landfill (906 KB). Students learn how landfills are constructed to protect the environment and make a model of a landfill in a bottle.
Lesson 3: Keeping Items Cycled (723 KB). Covers extending the life cycle of various objects.
Lesson 4: Renewable and Nonrenewable Natural Resources (312 KB). Teaches difference between renewable and nonrenewable resources.
Lesson 5: Ways to Conserve Natural Resources (184 KB). Students identify ways to conserve natural resources and provide this information to others in the school.
Spanish Student Pages (859 KB). SStudent pages from Closing the Loop translated into Spanish (Spanish translation not part of CTL).

Unit 2: Reducing, Reusing, and Recycling

Tab (104 KB). An insert for use in a 3-ring binder.
Overview (201 KB). Highlights of 4-6 Module's Unit 2 in the 2001 edition of Closing the Loop.
Unit 2 (all 12 lessons, including Overview) (3.1 MB). Highlights how reducing what we buy and reusing and recycling helps us manage and conserve natural resources.
Lesson 1: Sources of Energy (197 KB). Focuses on energy sources and other natural resources and how to conserve them.
Lesson 2: Performing a Class Audit of Waste (222 KB). Students learn types of garbage generated in the classroom and develop strategies to lessen classroom garbage.
Lesson 3: Model Community Relay (208 KB). Teaches that reuse and recycling are more energy-efficient than creating new objects from raw materials.
Lesson 4: Packaging: What a Waste! (373 KB). Students learn how excess packaging contributes to solid waste needing disposal.
Lesson 5: Why Do I Buy It? (261 KB). Students learn that informed buying reduces solid waste and find out why they buy certain products.
Lesson 6: Reusing Trash (260 KB). Focuses on reuse of products to extend their life and reduce solid waste placed in landfills.
Lesson 7: Plastic Polymers (308 KB). Covers properties of different plastics and ways to reuse plastic products.
Lesson 8: Separation Mania (276 KB). Teaches how materials are sorted at a materials recycling facility.
Lesson 9: Buying Recycled Products (277 KB). Students learn about items made from recycled materials.
Lesson 10: What Are We Reusing and Recycling at School? (221 KB). Identifying material types being reused and recycled at school and deciding how to increase success of reuse/recycling program.
Lesson 11: A Class or School Game and Reuse Day (238 KB). Students organize a "game and reuse day" to emphasize that reuse conserves natural resources and landfill space.
Lesson 12: Sharing What We Know About Reducing, Reusing, and Recycling (203 KB). Students teach others about reducing, reusing, and recycling materials.
Spanish Student Pages (1.3 MB). Student pages from Closing the Loop translated into Spanish (Spanish translation not part of CTL).

Unit 3: Composting

Tab (104 KB). An insert for use in a 3-ring binder.
Overview (210 KB). Highlights of 4-6 Module's Unit 3 in the 2001 edition of Closing the Loop.
Unit 3 (all five lessons, including Overview)  (1.5 MB). Focuses on how organic waste can be recycled through composting to enrich soil and save space in landfills.
Lesson 1: The Nutrient Cycle and Other Cycles (227 KB). Covers the nutrient cycle and allows students to observe stages and results of leaf decomposition.
Lesson 2: Scavengers and Decomposers (362 KB). Students study scavengers and see examples of the actions of decomposers.
Lesson 3: What Decomposes? (202 KB). Teaches the difference between materials that decompose (organic) and those that do not (inorganic).
Lesson 4: What Is Composting and Why Is It Important? (261 KB). Focuses on basics of indoor composting without worms.
Lesson 5: Promo and Play on Composting (230 KB). Students encourage others to compost and create a play on importance of composting.
Spanish Student Pages (497 KB). Student pages from Closing the Loop translated into Spanish (Spanish translation not part of CTL).

Unit 4: Proper Management of Household Hazardous Waste

Tab (104 KB). An insert for use in a 3-ring binder.
Overview (154 KB). Highlights of 4-6 Module's Unit 4 in the 2001 edition of Closing the Loop.
Unit 4 (all five lessons, including Overview) (1.5 MB). Highlights key concepts of household hazardous waste management.
Lesson 1: Hazardous Products in Your House (251 KB). Students analyze labels from household products to identify hazardous products.
Lesson 2: No Household Hazardous Waste in a Landfill (325 KB). Teaches that laws and environmental effects are reasons household hazardous waste should not be placed in the garbage.
Lesson 3: The Consequences of Improper Management of Household Hazardous Waste (294 KB). Focuses on problems with improperly disposing of used motor oil and other household hazardous wastes.
Lesson 4: Proper Management of Household Hazardous Waste (257 KB). Students learn to properly manage used motor oil and other household hazardous wastes.
Lesson 5: Promoting Proper Management of Household Hazardous Waste (191 KB). Students demonstrate what they have learned about properly managing household hazardous waste and encourage others to properly manage these wastes also.
Spanish Student Pages (1.1 MB). Student pages from Closing the Loop translated into Spanish (Spanish translation not part of CTL).

Appendices

Tab (95) KB). An insert for use in a 3-ring binder.
Appendix A--Instructional Materials (200 KB) Required and recommended materials for K-3 and 4-6 modules, including books, magazines, videos, and activity guides.
Appendix B--Overview of Integrated Waste Management (232 KB). General information on integrated waste management. Topics: history, waste prevention, recycling, landfill issues, incineration, waste-to-energy facilities, household hazardous wastes.
Appendix C--Overview of Specific Materials (220 KB). Covers materials found in the waste stream--aluminum, aseptics, ferrous metals, glass, motor oil, organic materials, paper, plastics, and tires.

Appendix D:

Setting Up and Maintaining Composting Systems (345 KB). Instructions for constructing wire mesh bins, maintaining a vermicomposting system, and assembling worm bins.
Worm Suppliers (web page only, updating information from 2001 edition of CTL). California worm suppliers.
Worm Bin Suppliers (web page only, updating information from 2001 edition of CTL). California worm bin suppliers.

Appendix E--Closing the Loop Vocabulary:

English (158 KB). English glossary of terms.
Spanish (614 KB). English glossary translated into Spanish (not part of CTL).

Appendix F--Websites (web page only, updating information from 2001 edition of CTL).
Appendix G--Your Local Area Template (156 KB). Template which cities and counties may use to provide jurisdiction-specific information for the "Background Information for the Teacher" sections in each CTL lesson.

Closing the Loop Home

Last updated: March 17, 2006
Office of Education and the Environment http://www.calrecycle.ca.gov/Education/
Contact: EEI@calrecycle.ca.gov (916) 341-6769