Teachers' Notes for Funky Junk Print E-mail
Written by Timezones   


Teacher's Notes © Timezones Curriculum Support Ltd. 2010

This interactive performance is aimed at Key Stage 1 (Years 1 & 2).
The performance lasts around 50 minutes, and looks at materials and their properties.
These notes give you an overview of the performance so that you can plan follow-up work if you want to.


Children investigate reusing and recycling materials, and help to make a ‘recycler’ to clean up the rubbish tip.

Sorting by senses.

Volunteers from the audience use their senses of touch and sight to sort out the rubbish into different types of materials; Metal, Plastic, Paper, Glass and Wood.

Testing properties.

After sorting materials into groups the children discover that not all the materials in each group are the same.  For example, some of the items in the wood group are rough and some smooth.  So, volunteers test some of the materials to discover more about their properties.  They try shining a torch through all of the glass items to see which are transparent or translucent, and test to see if magnets stick to all kinds of metal. They find that materials can take different properties; not all glass is see-through, and not all metals stick to a magnet.

Changing by heating and cooling.

Two plastic milk bottles are examined.  One of them has been changed by melting, and so it is discovered that plastic can melt and be moulded into different shapes. Volunteers help to demonstrate how by playing the hot and cold game with sunshine and a snowman.  The audience participate by being hot or cold.  Their actions are applied to changing plastic.  Safety is discussed and waste plastic from the rubbish tip is moulded into a stand for the recycler.

Changing by sanding and smoothing.

Volunteers use pictures to sort out the process of turning a tree into a table.  They then look at the tools used to chop down the tree, cut up logs into planks of wood, join the planks together, and how to smooth the table using sandpaper.  There is a discussion about chopping down trees, or reusing old wood.  Old wood from the tip is used to make a rubbish slide for the recycler.

Changing by squashing.

Volunteers show what happens to sponge rubber when it is squashed, by acting out the story of King and Queen Softy.  Sponge is squashed into the right shape to pad the recycler for safety, to stop glass bottles from smashing while they are being sorted.


The remaining unused materials on the tip are Metal, Glass and Paper.  All of these can be sold to factories, who reuse them to make new cans, bottles and paper.  Volunteers operate the recycler to separate the materials, ready for sale. The tip is now tidy and clean.





Our projects are designed to enhance your delivery of the curriculum. Children often remember the activities we use to illustrate topics for many years, so you can build on our visit by linking class work to the activities we do.

TIMEZONES achieves all its work without arts funding.

Last Updated on Friday, 22 July 2011 15:19
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