Less Packaging

Age group: 10-15

This page provides you with a snapshot of this activity that discusses why packaging is important and what does it have to do with waste? Put your skills to the test and find out more about different food and beverage items and their packaging. Learn how your choices of packaging can change the amount of waste produced. Learn that what you buy every day and how it is packed has a direct influence on how much you throw away.

We recommend that you use the ‘Introduction to Solid Waste’ activity before any of the other activities as it is a good starting point for students to learn about waste and provides a comprehensive overview of how waste is generated and its impacts on animals, the environment and us. If you have already done so and wish to continue to download the rest of this free activity please click on the download icon below. Enjoy!

  • Learn about the different types of packaging and the impacts they have on waste
  • Be able to analyse and determine which packaging is essential, reusable and recyclable
  • Become more conscious when shopping so less waste is created in the first place

Whole class

  • List of food packaging categories that each group of students needs to bring from home

Preparation time (10 minutes)
1 class period (approximately 55 minutes)

Skills used:

Critical thinking
Problem solving




  • Separate the students into groups of 3-4 and assign each group a food category several days before you do this activity.
  • Inform the students that each group will need to bring 3-4 items from home on the day of the activity. The best option is to bring empty packaging (especially for items which contain liquids such as yoghurt and milk).
  • It is important for the groups to bring a variety of different types of packaging within each category (example: for soft drinks students could bring a range of items such as plastic PET bottles, glass bottles and aluminium cans).
  • Remind students the day before the activity to bring their items to school (it would be good for teachers to bring several items for each category in case some students forget).


Food category groups:

Group 1: fruits and vegetables (tomatoes, carrots, bananas, grapes…)
Group 2: drinks and juice (soft drinks, fruit juices, water…)
Group 3: cereals and grains (rice, pasta, sugar, flour…)
Group 4: dry goods (biscuits, chips, soap…)
Group 5: wet goods (yoghurt, milk, cheese…)



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Lesson plan (English)
Lesson plan (Tamil)