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Public Works

Learn about Recycling, Composting and Reducing Waste

Metro Public Works provides waste reduction education programs for the community. Whether you are a student or an adult, the following resources are available for free to learn all about recycling, composting, and reducing waste. And don't forget to check out our tree information page and our stop litter page for more learning.

Learn About Recycling

Recycle Right Lunch 'n' Learn Webinar

Do you have questions about recycling in Nashville? Join us for this virtual lunch 'n' learn workshop to learn about the importance of recycling and how to Recycle Right. 

Register for an upcoming webinar.

Watch a recording of our Recycle Right Virtual Workshop

All Ages Activities

Make Recycled Paper - this step-by-step guide teaches you how to make your own recycled paper using materials you have around the house.

Pre-K – 4th Grade Activities

Let’s Recycle! Sorting Activity - Get your crayons ready! Use this coloring page to teach your kids what goes in the recycling bin.

Let's Recycle! Sorting Activity (Spanish)

Sorting Plastic by Numbers Graphing Activity – Find out what kind of plastic your stuff is made of and whether or not you can recycle it with this investigation activity.

Sorting Plastic by Numbers Graphing Activity (Spanish)

High School and Adult Activities

Watch Plastic Wars on PBS – As both the plastic industry and the concern over plastic pollution grows, Frontline investigates the future of plastics including the plastics recycling industry.

Learn About Food Waste and Composting

The Dirt on Composting Webinar

hand holding compost; text

Backyard composting is an easy way to reduce your food waste and give your garden a nutrient-rich boost. In this virtual workshop, you'll learn about what compost is, why composting is good for the environment and your garden, and how to start composting at home. 

Each webinar includes two chances to win an Earth Machine Compost Bin!

Register for an upcoming webinar.

All Ages Activities

Watch “The Extraordinary Life and Times of a Strawberry” from the National Resources Defense Council – This 2-minute video gives an insight to how many resources are wasted for food that goes uneaten.

Learn how to compost at home with worms.

Read “The Dirt on Composting” - Learn how to start composting food and yard waste in your backyard.

Pre-K – 4th Grade Activities

Let’s Compost! Sorting Activity – Get your crayons ready! Use this coloring page to teach your kids about composting.

Let's Compost! Sorting Activity (Spanish)

Learn About Reducing Waste

All Ages Activities

Home Investigation Sustainability Activity – Created by Urban Green Lab, this activity will help you evaluate your home and identify ways you can reduce your waste including reducing your food waste, solid waste, and litter.

High School and Adult Activities

The Consumer's Guide to Zero Waste Living - Created by the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, learn more about why zero waste is important and how you can reduce your waste at home, in the kitchen, while traveling, and at work.