Clean Ocean Action

Biodegradation Lessons & Activities

Identifying Biodegradable Materials” by Lisa Lamotta, Lesson Plan #AELP-ENV0077

  • Grades 4 & 5
  • Students identify what materials are biodegradable through a series of experiments.
  • Students track the properties of different materials over time to determine whether they are biodegradable.
  • Students discuss what to do with the materials that cannot be broken down easily.

Biodegradability Capsule” by Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission

  • Grades 2 & 3
  • Students identify what materials are biodegradable through an experiment.
  • Students track the properties of different materials over time to determine whether they are biodegradable.
  • Students discuss practical uses for the compost created through the biodegradation of their materials.

“Biodegradation Poster” from Mote Marine Laboratory

(order from www.mote.org, $4.50 each)

  • Educational poster creates a time line for biodegradation of marine debris
  • Items such as glass bottles, disposable diapers and paper towels are ranked by the length of time it takes for them to biodegrade in the marine environment.

"Marine Debris Biodegradation Timeline" from the Irish Sea Fisheries Board

  • Educational poster creates a time line for biodegradation of marine debris
  • Items such as glass bottles, disposable diapers and paper towels are ranked by the length of time it takes for them to biodegrade in the marine environment.
This is the first place winner in a third grade poster competition.
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