Preparation: Create a “trash” bag full of items that can be sorted into recyclable, reusable, reducible and throw away groups. Make sure all items are clean and safe – no sharp edges, free of food residue, etc. Be sure to include a good assortment of recyclable items such as number 1 and 2 plastic bottles, metal and aluminum cans, paper and glass containers. Also add in items that cannot be recycled but that could be repurposed, reused or donated. Have enough items for each girl to have two or more if possible. Set up a sorting system for the girls to use in this game, either recycling bins, a garbage can and a donation box, or simply indicate those locations with signs, boxes or other collection devices. There should be seven categories for sorting: Plastics, Metal, Glass, Paper, Donate, Reuse and Trash.
Game Play: The object of the game is to reduce the “trash” category to be as small as possible. Have each girl remove one item from the bag and determine where it should be located. Troop members can assist her by coaching her choice. Encourage girls to be creative in their sorting and include more reusing and donating. After the original trash bag is emptied refill it with the new “trash” and show the girls how much they saved from going to the landfill. Talk about alternatives to the items that were put into the trash bag, such as reusable cups instead of Styrofoam and composting food instead of throwing it away.