Lesson Plan: Upcycling Competition

Students apply principles of upcycling to build a product from waste materials.

Author: Recycle Rally

Recycle Rally

Recycle Rally has partnered with EcoRise to bring you comprehensive, hands-on lessons focused on waste and recycling for grades K-12. This upcycling lesson is full of fun competition! Access the free lesson plan by clicking on the link below.




Lesson 6.4: Upcycling Competition


In this lesson written for grades 9-10, students explore the concept of upcycling and how it represents a positive and sustainable way of thinking about waste management. They also consider the role of consumerism in modern society and how consumer behaviors impact the environment. Students are challenged to apply the principles of upcycling to build a product out of waste materials, and they compete in a friendly competition to see whose product is the most creative and functional.


Tip: To award the winning group, try creating this upcycled trophy!


Estimated time needed: Two 55-minute sessions and one 20-minute session


All lessons are mapped to CCSS, NGSS, EFS, and TEKS standards.




Students will be able to…

  • Describe creative ways to use waste materials.
  • Define upcycling and give examples.
  • Design and construct an upcycled product from waste materials.


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