How to Reduce, Reuse and Recycle at Home​

Responsible behavior starts at home and here are a few useful tips that ensure you do your part:

Upcycling is a fun and eco-friendly way to turn old items into something new and useful. Here are some DIY upcycling tips that kids can try at home:

Bottle Cap Magnets:

Glue pictures or decorative paper to the inside of plastic bottle caps. Attach a small magnet to the back and use it on your fridge.

Cereal Box Notebooks:

Cut out the front of a colorful cereal box, bind some recycled paper inside, and you’ve got a fun and quirky notebook.

Milk Jug Watering Can:

Poke holes in the cap of an empty milk jug, fill it with water, and it becomes an instant watering can.

Egg Carton Seed Starters:

Fill each compartment with soil and plant a seed. Once the seedlings are ready, they can be transferred to the garden.

Jar Lid Coasters:

Glue felt or foam to the bottom of large jar lids to create unique coasters.

Worn-out Glove Stuffed Animals:

Transform those single, unmatched gloves into cute stuffed animals or finger puppets.

Broken Crayon Art:

Melt down broken crayons in a silicone mold to create new multi-colored crayon shapes.

Old Jigsaw Puzzle Art:

Use those puzzles with missing pieces by painting and arranging them on a canvas for a unique piece of wall art.

Shoebox Dollhouse:

Use shoeboxes to create multi-story dollhouses. Decorate with fabric scraps, old magazine clippings, and other upcycled materials.

Plastic Bottle Planters:

Cut the top off a plastic bottle, decorate it, fill with soil, and plant your favorite small plants or herbs.

Bottle Cap Mosaic:

Collect colorful plastic bottle caps. Arrange and glue them onto a piece of cardboard or a wooden board to create mosaic art.

Plastic Container Jewelry Box:

Use small plastic containers (like those for fruit or takeout) to store jewelry. Decorate the outside with colorful paper or stickers.

Plastic Bag Crochet:

Cut plastic shopping bags into strips and use them as ‘yarn’ to crochet mats, coasters, or even bags.

Plastic Straw Weaving:

Melt the ends of plastic straws together side by side and use them as a base for weaving yarn or ribbons to create colorful placemats.

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Materials needed:

  • Plastic bottle caps
  • Decorative papers
  • Glue
  • Magnets
  • Scissors

How to make:

Step 1: Prepare the plastic bottle caps along with the same number of the magnets.

Step 2: Select decorative ideas and cut this with scissors with your desire size and shape.

Step 3: Apply a layer of glue on the backside of the decorative paper and stick this on the plastic bottle caps.

Step 4: Allow the glue to dry. Flip the bottle caps and add a glue inside the bottle caps and stick the magnet.

Step 5: Allow the glued magnet to dry and you can now display them on the fridge or any magnetic surface.

Materials needed:

  • Cereal box
  • Recycled paper or old empty notebook papers
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Glue stick
  • Binder or yarn
  • Puncher
  • Decorative elements (optional)

How to make:

Step 1: Clean the cereal box and flatten the box. This will be the front cover of your notebook.

Step 2: Cut the cereal box to your desired size of your notebook. The design portion of the cereal box will be your cover design of your notebooks. 

Step 3: Measure the recycled paper or old empty notebook papers with the same size as your cereal box cover. 

Step 4: Make a hole of the left side of your cut cereal box and do the same for the recycled paper.

Step 5: Place the cereal box cover on top of the recycled paper and cereal box cover on the back of the recycled paper.

Step 6: Bind the Cereal box and recycled papers with the binder or yarn. Make sure that binding is tight not to lose any pages of your recycled paper.

Step 7: Start decorating your cover page with your decorative elements to personalize your notebooks.

Materials needed:

  • Empty plastic milk jug with cap
  • Small nail 
  • Water

How to make:

Step 1: Clean the milk jug and free from milk residue. Rinse this with water to clean. 

Step 2: Remove the cap.

Step 3: Hold the cap firmly and poke several holes evenly to allow for a steady flow of water. 

Step 4: Fill the jug with water and put the cap back on the jug. 

Step 5: Once your satisfied with the flow, start watering your plants gently.

Materials needed:

  • Empty egg carton
  • Potting soil
  • Seeds
  • Water

How to make:

Step 1: Open the egg carton and place it on a flat surface. 

Step 2: Add potting soil to each compartment of the egg carton, fill them nearly to the top.

Step 3: Plant one or two seeds in each compartment, place them in the center.

Step 4: Add a few drops of water to moisten the soil.

Step 5: Ensure that the soil doesn’t dry out and wait for the seeds to germinate.

Materials needed:

  • Large jar lids
  • Felt or foam sheets
  • Glue
  • Scissors

How to make:

Step 1: Clean and dry the jar lids. Remove any labels or sticky residue from the lids.  

Step 2: Place a jar lid on the felt or foam sheet and trace around it with a pencil and cut. 

Step 3: Put glue on the cut felt or foam sheet onto the glued surface of the jar lid. 

Step 4: Let the glue to dry 

Step 5: Ensure that the soil doesn’t dry out and wait for the seeds to germinate.

Materials needed:

  • Worn-out gloves
  • Filling material
  • Needle and thread
  • Buttons
  • Glue
  • Scissors

How to make:

Step 1: Choose worn-out gloves that are clean and made of a soft fabric.  

Step 2: Turn the gloves inside out so that the seams are on the outside. 

Step 3: Turn the gloves inside out so that the seams are on the outside. 

Step 4: Cut the filling material into small pieces. The amount will depend on the size of the glove and how plush you want your stuffed animal to be.

Step 5: Begin sewing the fingers of the glove closed, leaving the wrist area open. 

Step 6: Once the fingers are securely sewn, turn the glove right side out. Begin filling the glove with the cut filling material.

Step 7: Once the glove is filled to your liking, sew the wrist area closed. Make sure the filling is evenly distributed.

Step 8: Mold and shape the filled glove to resemble an animal shape. You can create simple creatures like teddy bears, rabbits, or any animal of your choice.

Step 9: Sew on buttons or safety eyes to create eyes for your stuffed animal. Use additional stitching or fabric glue to add features like a nose or mouth.

Materials needed:

  • Broken crayons
  • Silicone mold
  • Oven

How to make:

Step 1: Collect broken crayons. You can sort them by color or mix them for a rainbow effect..  

Step 2: Preheat your oven to a low temperature, around 250°F (120°C). 

Step 3: Arrange the broken crayon pieces in the silicone mold. Mix and match colors to create vibrant, multi-colored. crayons. 

Step 4: Keep an eye on the crayons as they melt. You can adjust the oven temperature if needed.

Step 5: Once the crayons have melted, carefully remove. Allow the crayons to cool and harden inside the silicone mold.

Step 6: Once the crayons have completely cooled and hardened, gently pop them out of the silicone mold.

Materials needed:

  • Old jigsaw puzzles 
  • Canvas or sturdy cardboard
  • Acrylic paint or spray paint
  • Craft glue
  • Paintbrushes

How to make:

Step 1: Collect old jigsaw puzzles pieces. You can use puzzles of different sizes and colors to add variety to your art..  

Step 2: Select a canvas or sturdy piece of cardboard as the base for your puzzle art. Ensure that it’s clean and ready for your project. 

Step 3: If you want a background color for your puzzle art, paint the canvas or cardboard with acrylic paint or spray paint. Allow it to dry completely. 

Step 4: Arrange the jigsaw puzzle pieces on the prepared base in a pattern or design of your choice. 

Step 5: glue the puzzle pieces onto the base using craft glue. Apply glue to the back of each puzzle piece and press it firmly onto the surface

Step 6: Allow the glue to dry completely. This ensures that the puzzle pieces are securely attached to the base.

Step 7: Once everything is dry, your old jigsaw puzzle art is ready to be displayed.

Materials needed:

  • Shoeboxes 
  • Scissors 
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Glue
  • Fabric scraps, wallpaper samples, old magazine clippings
  • Small cardboard pieces
  • Markers, paints, or colored pencils (optional)

How to make:

Step 1: Gather enough shoeboxes for the number of stories you want in your dollhouse.  

Step 2: Decide on the layout of your dollhouse. Consider which shoeboxes will be used for each floor and how you want to arrange them.

Step 3: Carefully cut openings for doors and windows on the sides of the shoeboxes. Ensure that the openings align when stacking the boxes

Step 4: Stack the shoeboxes to create the multi-story structure of your dollhouse. Use glue to secure the boxes together.

Step 5: Decorate the interior of each room with fabric scraps, wallpaper samples, or old magazine clippings. Glue these materials to the walls to add color and texture to the dollhouse.

Step 6: Use small cardboard pieces to create your dollhouse furniture. Such as beds, tables, chairs, and other pieces.

Step 7: Decorate the furniture with markers, paints, or colored pencils if desired.

Step 8: Cover the exterior of the shoeboxes with decorative materials. This can include fabric, wrapping paper, or any other upcycled materials that add charm to the dollhouse.

Step 9: Enhance the dollhouse by adding details such as curtains made from fabric scraps, rugs from small pieces of felt, or artwork cut from magazines.

Step 10: You can add personalized touches, such as dolls or figurines, arrange them inside to bring it to life.

Materials needed:

  • Plastic bottles (empty and clean)
  • Scissors or craft knife
  • Permanent markers, paint, stickers, or other decorating materials
  • Soil
  • Small plants or herbs

How to make:

Step 1: Collect empty plastic bottles of various sizes. Make sure they are clean and free from any leftover liquids.  

Step 2: Using scissors or a craft knife, carefully cut the top off the plastic bottle. Decide on the height you want for your planter and make a straight cut. Ensure the edges are smooth to avoid any sharp points.

Step 3: Get creative and decorate the exterior of the plastic bottle planter. Use permanent markers, paint, stickers, or any other decorative materials you have on hand.

Step 4: To prevent waterlogging, you can add small drainage holes to the bottom of the plastic bottle planter.

Step 5: Fill the bottom part of the plastic bottle planter with potting soil. Leave enough space at the top for your plants or herbs.

Step 6: Carefully plant your chosen small plants or herbs into the soil. Make sure they are positioned securely and that the roots have enough space to grow.

Step 7: Give your newly potted plants a good watering. Ensure that the soil is evenly moist but not waterlogged.

Step 8: Place your plastic bottle planters where they can receive the right amount of sunlight.

Step 9: Regularly check the soil moisture and water your plants as needed.

Materials needed:

  • Colorful plastic bottle caps (various sizes and colors)
  • Cardboard or wooden board (as a base)
  • Craft glue or hot glue gun
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Acrylic paint (optional)
  • Sealant or varnish (optional)

How to make:

Step 1: Gather a variety of colorful plastic bottle caps.

Step 2: Think about the design you want to create with the bottle caps. You can create patterns, images, or abstract designs.

Step 3: Sketch your design lightly on the cardboard or wooden board using a pencil.

Step 4: Arrange the bottle caps on the board according to your design.

Step 5: Once you’ve finalized the arrangement, use craft glue or a hot glue gun to attach the bottle caps to the board. Apply glue to the back of each bottle cap and press it firmly onto the board.

Step 6: Continue gluing the bottle caps until you fill the entire design on the board.

Step 7: Let the glue dry completely. This may take some time, so be patient to ensure the bottle caps are firmly secured to the board.

Step 8: If you want to add an extra touch, you can paint the background of the mosaic using acrylic paint.

Step 9: To protect your bottle cap mosaic and give it a finished look, you can apply a sealant or varnish.

Step 10: Once everything is dry, your bottle cap mosaic is ready to be displayed.

Materials needed:

  • Small plastic containers (such as those for fruit or takeout)
  • Colorful paper, wrapping paper, or decorative stickers
  • Craft glue or a glue gun
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Ruler (optional)
  • Velcro strips or adhesive magnetic closures (optional)

How to make:

Step 1: Collect small plastic containers with lids. These could be containers from fruit, takeout, or any other small plastic boxes suitable for jewelry storage.

Step 2: Ensure the plastic containers are clean and completely dry before starting the crafting process.

Step 3: Measure the surface area of the plastic container using a ruler or simply by wrapping the paper around the container. Cut colorful paper or wrapping paper to fit the exterior of the container.

Step 4: Apply craft glue or use a glue gun to attach the cut paper or wrapping paper to the outside of the plastic container.

Step 5: Enhance the aesthetic by decorating the container with colorful stickers. You can use themed stickers or mix and match different designs for a playful look.

Step 6: If your plastic container is deep enough, consider adding compartments for different types of jewelry. You can use small dividers, cardboard, or foam inserts to create sections.

Step 7: For a more secure closure, consider adding Velcro strips or adhesive magnetic closures to the container’s lid. This helps keep your jewelry safely stored and prevents accidental spills.

Step 8: If you’ve used glue, allow it to dry completely before handling the jewelry box. 

Step 9: Once the jewelry box is dry and ready, use it to organize your favorite jewelry pieces.

Materials needed:

  • Plastic shopping bags (clean and dry)
  • Scissors
  • Crochet hook (appropriate size for the plastic bag yarn)
  • Optional: Ruler, tapestry needle

How to make:

Step 1: Gather clean and dry plastic shopping bags. Flatten them and smooth out any wrinkles. Remove any stickers or labels from the bags.

Step 2: Lay the plastic bag flat on a surface, and cut off the handles and the bottom seam. Then, cut the bag into strips approximately 1 to 2 inches wide. The width of the strips depends on your preference and the desired thickness of your plastic bag yarn.

Step 3: To create longer strands of plastic bag yarn, you can connect the strips together. Overlap the ends of two strips and make a small slit in each end. Pull one end through the slit in the other, creating a secure knot.

Step 4: Stretch the plastic bag strips to create plastic bag yarn. This process helps to straighten and elongate the strips, making them easier to work with. Repeat this step for as many strips as you need.

Step 5: With your plastic bag yarn ready, create a slipknot and place it on your crochet hook. Start crocheting using your preferred stitch.

Step 6: Continue crocheting using the plastic bag yarn until you reach the desired size for your project. You can make mats, coasters, bags, or any other items you have in mind.

Step 7: multicolored or patterned effect. Simply join a new color by overlapping the ends of the old and new plastic bag yarn and securing them with a knot.

Step 8: Once you’ve completed your desired length or shape, finish off your project by cutting the plastic bag yarn, leaving a tail. Pull the tail through the last loop and secure it.

Step 9: Using a tapestry needle, weave in the loose ends of the plastic bag yarn to secure them and create a neat finish.

Materials needed:

  • Plastic straws (clean and dry)
  • Scissors
  • Lighter or heat source
  • Yarn or ribbon (for weaving)
  • Tapestry needle
  • Ruler (optional)

How to make:

Step 1: Gather clean and dry plastic straws. You can use straws of the same color or mix and match different colors for a vibrant effect.

Step 2: Decide on the desired length for your placemats. Measure and cut the plastic straws into equal lengths.

Step 3: Working in a well-ventilated area, use a lighter or heat source to carefully melt the ends of the plastic straws. Melt two adjacent ends side by side, creating a bond between them. Repeat this process for all the straws you’ll be using.

Step 4: Arrange the melted straws side by side to form the base of your placemat. Ensure that the melted ends are aligned, creating a continuous surface.

Step 5: Use additional heat to fuse the straws together along their edges, creating a secure and stable base for weaving. Be cautious not to overheat the straws, as they may warp or lose their shape.

Step 6: Choose yarn or ribbon for the weaving part of the project. Cut strands that are longer than the width and length of your placemat to ensure you have enough material to work with.

Step 7: Using a tapestry needle, weave the yarn or ribbon over and under the plastic straws to create colorful patterns. Experiment with different weaving techniques and patterns to achieve the desired look

Step 8: If you’re using multiple colors of yarn or ribbon, change colors as desired. Simply tie the ends together and continue weaving.

Step 9: Once you’ve reached the desired size and completed your weaving pattern, secure the loose ends of the yarn or ribbon by tying knots or weaving them back into the design.

Step 10: Trim any excess yarn or ribbon, and make sure all loose ends are secured for a neat finish.