Anna held the Dustbin Diet course at Marlborough school, Woodstock, with around a hundred and eighty Year 8 students.
They opened the session with a thought provoking short film trailer by photographer, Chris Jordan, which you can view here.
After contemplating the full impact of the film and looking at their own recycling habits (where it was discovered most households completely filled their landfill bin), the students looked at the differences between linear economies and circular economies, talked about the waste hierarchy and Anna used story telling to understand ‘habit’ while they played some games to help understand change management.
For the whole course, each student had the loan of a copy of 101 Ways to Live Cleaner and Greener for free, and they jumped at the idea of making their own version of the book.
Over the four week period, the students spent some time discussing and thinking about how they could live cleaner and greener for free. The talked about it in assembly and in additional PSHE lessons they played some of the games developed to encourage a closer read of the facts and figures in the book and made posters about living cleaner and greener.
They had a collection box, in which they could submit their ideas and illustrations for the tip pages.
When Mr Easterbrook delivered the said box of tips to Anna over the half term break, it was like opening up a goldmine. There were some thoughtful contributions, some excellent tips and some great art work. Some of the contributions demonstrated the need to delve deeper into the waste hierarchy as a concept and so deeper we delved.
By the fourth and final session, they had the makings of a book and they looked at it together in its pdf form on screen. Watching the students’ faces as they saw their tip come up on screen was truly magical.
The teacher who ran the Dustbin Diet workshop told us:
“I could have given you a list at the beginning of the course, of students who we’d have expected to be difficult to engage, but it has been great to see that those students have been enthusiastic and have all contributed their own tips.
Students from a wide range of abilities and social backgrounds made contributions to the book, including students on the Special Educational Needs register, ‘pupil premium’ and ‘free school meals’ students, and the Gifted and Talented students with high CAT scores.“
Feedback from the lead teacher at The Marlborough School:
“If I was to deliver the course myself it wouldn’t come across as powerfully as having an outside speaker. It is invaluable for the students to hear another voice.“
Here are two student reviews of the book and workshops:
If you would like to run a Dustbin Diet workshop in your school, please contact us for further details.