Left-right game

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North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources



Students will learn:

  • Items they can recycle in their community

  • Everyday items made from recycled waste

  • How recycling benefits their community


  • A recycled “prize” for each group

  • Story script copies


  1. Divide students into groups of 4-8. Have them circle up.

  2. Give one student in each group a prize (something made from recycled materials is preferable). Examples: a pencil made from recycled newspaper; a keychain from recycled aluminum; a ruler made from recycled plastic, etc. Contact your local recycling program about getting some prizes donated.

  3. Explain to them that they will be reading a story about recycling (or a teacher can read it), and each time they hear the word RIGHT, they must pass the prize to the person on their right, and when they hear the word LEFT they must pass the prize to the person on their left.

  4. Words with RIGHT and LEFT in them count and they must pass the prize.

  5. The student left holding the prize when the story ends is the winner of the prize.

Discussion Questions

  1. What can be recycled in your community?

For information about your community’s recycling program, visit this Web site http://www.p2pays.org/localgov/PAYT/ncwaste.asp.

  1. Name some products made from recycled car tires.

Bulletin boards, floor mats, mulch, garden hose, tire swing, etc.

  1. Give an example of how recycling can benefit your community.

  • Conserves natural resources

  • Prevents the need for more landfills and reduces problems associated with trash and litter

  • Creates jobs

  • Saves energy and reduces pollution


Student 1 reads -

My friend LEFTY called to remind me about her Recycling party, so I LEFT my house and went RIGHT on over. I threw a plastic soda bottle in the trash and LEFT it there and I thought to myself, “Recycling doesn’t matter, RIGHT?” Anyway, LEFTY was my friend, so I thought I should at least make an appearance at her party. LEFTY met me RIGHT at the door so I went RIGHT on in.
Next student reads -

I was a little late, so I decided to go RIGHT to the refreshments. As I looked to the RIGHT and then to the LEFT, I saw that LEFTY had labeled everything that could be recycled. RIGHT away I realized that recycling helps conserve the Earth’s natural resources. I went RIGHT for a soda in an aluminum can, took a sip, and RIGHT away I realized it was diet! Yuck! So I threw it in the trash can RIGHT under the table.

Next student reads -

Then LEFTY came rushing RIGHT over and picked the can out of the trash and put it in the recycling bin to the LEFT of her. LEFTY told me that recycling soda cans and bottles helps prevent the need for more landfills and reduces environmental problems associated with trash and litter.

Next student reads -

RIGHT then I remembered the plastic soda bottle I had LEFT in the trash at home. One bottle doesn’t matter, RIGHT? LEFTY told me to sample some of her RIGHTeous cupcakes. They even had a recycling logo RIGHT on top of the icing.

Next student reads -

RIGHT around the time I LEFT the refreshment table, LEFTY’s neighbor, Mr. RIGHTman arrived at the party. LEFTY asked him why he was tardy to the party, since he lives RIGHT across the street. Mr. RIGHTman said he came from his job at the Recycling Facility in WRIGHTsville Beach, North Carolina. Mr. RIGHTman also said that if anybody needed a job, he could get them one RIGHT away, since recycling has created more than 14,000 jobs in North Carolina.

Next student reads -

Since LEFTY told me I could recycle aluminum cans, I wondered what else I could recycle that I usually LEFT in the trash. I asked Mr. RIGHTman and he said, “Well, RIGHT now you can recycle newspaper, glass, plastic bottles, cardboard, car-batteries and even old car tires!”

Next student reads -

LEFTY told Mr. RIGHTman that she usually LEFT her old tires at the dump RIGHT down the block. RIGHT away Mr. RIGHTman said, “Used tires can be recycled into many different things: Bulletin boards, floor mats, mulch, garden hoses, even the soles of both your LEFT and RIGHT shoes can be made from old car tires!” “RIGHT on!” said LEFTY.

Next student reads -

RIGHT about then I started to get curious. I asked Mr. RIGHTman, “What are old plastic bottles turned into?” Mr. RIGHTman handed me a card from his RIGHT shirt pocket. “You can read about it RIGHT here”, he said. The card said: “Plastic soft drink bottles and milk jugs can be turned into soda bottles, tables, carpet, shoes, clothes and other things.” RIGHT away I knew what I needed to do. I said goodbye to Mr. RIGHTman and told LEFTY I’d see her later. As I LEFT the party, LEFTY yelled “Wait! Don’t you want some LEFTovers?”

Next student reads -

As I rushed back to my house, I dodged things RIGHT and LEFT, wondering if they were also made from recycled materials. When I got to my house, I burst RIGHT through the door, ran RIGHT around the corner to where I LEFT the plastic bottle in the trash before the party. RIGHT away I put the bottle in the recycling bin that my local government LEFT for my family. Since LEFTY’s party, I haven’t LEFT a single recyclable product in the trash. After all, recycling is the RIGHT thing to do…RIGHT?

1639 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, North Carolina 27699-1639

Phone: (919) 733-1398

FAX: (919) 715-6794

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