`Recycling MathMichelle Jones                 Morgan Park High School                               1744 W. Pryor Ave.                               Chicago Il 60643                               (312) 535-2550Bob Foote                      Disney SchoolObjectives:  The teachers and students will have experience applying mathematics to environmental problems.  This will include classification, weight and percentages of types of garbage, using a map with a scale to estimate distances, using containers to measure areas, and identification of plastics using SPI codes. Materials Needed:Activity I           Garbage, balancesActivity IIString, maps, rulersActivity IIIIndividual and economy sized containers, rulersActivity IVPlastic containers in each of the seven SPI codes (on the bottom of container inside of the three arrows). Strategy:Activity IGiven a bag of garbage, students will sort the materials into the categories of paper and cardboard, glass, metal, plastic, and other.  Food and yard wastes should be removed prior to the lesson.  After separation of the garbage, the student should determine the weight of each category of garbage.  After weight determination, students should calculate the percentage of the total weight for each category of garbage.  To find the percentages first divide the weight of each type of garbage by the total weight of all of the garbage, and then multiply this number by 100 to convert the decimal to a percentage. Activity IIDistribute maps of the East coast and direct the students to follow the route of the Mobro 4000 (garbage barge).  The route began in Islip, NY and went to Morehead City, NC then to Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, Mexico, Belize, the Bahamas and then back to New York.  First have students estimate the distance the barge travelled and then, using the scale on the map have students measure the distance (on the water only) the barge travelled.  Have students discuss the environmental impact of such a trip and what it tells us about the problems of solid waste.Activity IIIUsing individual and economy sized containers, (cereal boxes, milk cartons, soap boxes, vegetable cans) that have been opened and cleaned, 1.  Have students measure the area of each container [rectangle= length  X width]. 2.  Have students record the volume of each container that is printed on the label. 3.  Calculate the difference in the amount of packaging used to hold the same amount of product. 4.  Calculate the number of small cartons needed to have the same amount of product as the large carton.  5.  Which package is more environmentally friendly and why?Activity IVHave students sort a large variety of plastics by the SPI codes found on the bottom inside of the triangle.  Once the products are in the seven categories, have the students determine which categories have the most products and discuss if this has anything to do with the Chicago Blue Bag Programs limitations of plastics 1 and 2 only.  Have students try to find exclusive physical or behavioral properties of each category of plastic.  Tests can be done to test transparency, creases when folded, squeaks when rubbed, smooth or textured sides, etc.Performance Assessment:Students will be graded based upon ability to perform the correct calculations according to the standard rubric.Conclusions: Students should have learned about the impact of the volumes of garbage that we introduce into the solid waste stream.  Students will also have an opportunity to practice mathematical calculations.References:  Using Mathematics From Your Backyard To the Great Wall.  Everyday Learning Corporation.  Evanston, IL. `