Metro Public Works provides waste reduction education programs for the community. Below is a description of each program and a link to our registration form. Programs for schools are closely tied to MNPS academic standards.
Curby's Recycling Roadshow
Curby's Recycling Roadshow is a 30-45 minute long interactive presentation on how to reduce, reuse, and recycle. Participants learn how to put these practices in place at home, at work, and at school, while also learning how to recycle right within Davidson County. This program is great for schools and can be used to set up a school-wide recycling system. The program wraps up with participants going back to the second R through a related reuse art project.
Request the Curby Recycling Roadshow program.
Visit the Recycling Education Station
Visit the Recycling Education Station at our local Material Recovery Facility (MRF) to learn about how to reduce, reuse and recycle. See what happens to your recyclables when you put them in your residential recycling cart or take them to a recycling drop-off site. Students will participate in an interactive presentation and get to view the MRF in action.
Tour the Recycling Center
You're invited to join us at the Waste Management Materials Recovery Facility for a FREE tour of the recycling center every Wednesday from 1 p.m. - 2. p.m and every Thursday from 10 a.m. - 11 a.m. The tour will include an hour long interactive presentation and opportunity to see the MRF in action. See how the machines and employees work to sort all of our materials and learn what happens to our items next. Programs are open to all ages and all attendees will receive a free small recycling bin at the end of the program.
Registrations for the tour are required.
Reducing Food Waste
Reducing Food Waste at your school can involve a student led food waste audit of the school, working with a Metro contractor to collect the schools food waste or adopting a compost bin as a science project. The Dirt on Composting is a great compliment to this program.
Learn more about how to reduce your school's food waste.
Music City Pick-up
Music City Pick-up is a 1 - 2 hour class that starts with a brief, interactive presentation on the importance of litter prevention and picking up waste in our community. After the presentation, Metro Public Works will provide gloves, litter grabbers, bags and other supplies to the participants to use during a litter pick-up around the community. Participants use the app Litterati to record and map the litter they collect. They then separate items into recyclable, compostable, and landfill piles, weigh the materials, and discover how much litter they collected and sent to the recycling. We finish with a reuse art project highlighting our commitment to keep Nashville beautiful.
Request the Music City Students Pick-up program.
Waste Reduction 101
Waste Reduction 101 is an overview on the importance of waste reduction and ways that we can reduce waste, including reducing, reusing, recycling, and rotting. This program will touch on each area of waste reduction, what Public Works is doing, and what resources are available city-wide. This program is great for neighborhood and civic groups and businesses.
Request a Waste Reduction speaker.
The Dirt on Composting
The Dirt on Composting teaches the basics of composting, including backyard composting, vermiculture composting, and other composting options in Davidson County. This program covers what compost is and how it works to reduce food waste and help the environment. The workshops also teach participants the requirements for a healthy compost pile, including bin choices, the perfect compost recipe, and other tips. This program is suitable for schools, community groups, and any other organizations interested in composting. The program can include a reuse art project as well.
Request the Dirt on Composting program.
The Dirt on Composting at Turnip Green Creative Reuse
Programs are one hour long, open to all ages and skill levels, and free of charge. A Waste Reduction Educator will facilitate an interactive presentation and a hands on reuse art activity that will teach participants how to begin backyard composting. All participants are able to take home a FREE Earth Machine backyard composter at the end of the program.
Registrations for this class are required.
Emerald Ash Borer Presentation (EAB)
Nashville has many beautiful native ash trees in parks, on school grounds, along city streets and in private yards. Sadly, the Emerald Ash Borer, an invasive pest, will kill all of them by 2026, unless they are treated. No ash tree is immune to the devastating effects of this insect which is now in Davidson County. The progress of the infestation and resulting tree death is swift. Nashville Public Works offers a 20-45 minute presentation (can be adjusted to meet your needs) on EAB, how to identify ash trees, management options, tree owner's responsibility and how to hire an arborist. The presentation style is flexible and can be delivered through a projector or the speaker can use a flip chart. It is important to allow additional time for questions.