top of page


A simple guide for class V students

Lawrence School, Lovedale 2019

Solid Waste Management – made simple for Children

Trashonomics is the study of solid waste and its environmental, health and financial impact.


Trashonomics is designed and set up by:

  • Conceptualisation and Content: Archana Kashyap, Claire Rao, Meera Nair
  • Illustrations and Design: Sahil Kutty with support from Smita Kulkarni
  • Support and Guidance: The entire team of SWMRT, Kasa Muktha Bellandur, We Care For Malleswaram, Bangalore 


Why Trashonomics?

  • Garbage is a global problem that requires local solutions

  • Waste Management is an essential life skill that every child should acquire

  • Children are the best changemakers and this book aims to empower them to lead the change

  • The book has 5 easy chapters with hands-on activities that will help children understand the concepts better

  • Trashonomics can be included as the supplemental chapter to Environmental Science


Trashonomics is a play on the words ‘Trash’ and ‘Economics’ and is a simple guide to the students of Class V, on building the awareness of what ‘waste’ or ‘trash’ or ‘garbage’ is and its environmental, health and financial impact.

We live in a world in which it is becoming increasingly difficult to live a life of harmony with nature and our environment. Our world today is a world of “use and throw” and ‘online shopping” – both of which seem to be ingrained in the culture of our daily lives.

Our planet is changing and it is important for the children to understand some of the flawed habits that have brought us to the brink. Therefore, it is important to understand how our welfare is dependent on the earth and its wellbeing.

Children are the best change-makers and this course aims to empower them to lead the change by redefining the historical narrative on waste as something to be thrown away.

Reduce, Reuse and Recycle is the mantra of this program and helps children understand the importance of waste segregation. It will also introduce them to the simple process of composting and help them see their food waste as a resource that can feed them as well as rejuvenate the earth.

There are activities for the children designed to further their understanding of the above in an experiential manner.



The contents of the course include the following

  1. Identifying the Problem

  2. Finding a Solution

  3. Knowing what is ‘Organic Waste’

  4. Understanding ‘Recyclable Waste’

  5. Learning to ‘Reduce Waste’



The activities that enable experiential learning are:

  1. Understanding different kinds of waste

  2. Segregation of waste

  3. Knowing ‘organic’ waste

  4. Composting

  5. Visit to the landfill

  6. Growing plants using the compost


Visit to the Landfill in Ooty on 13th September 2019 :

On Friday, the 13th of September 2019, the pupils of Class 5 along with 4 teachers made a visit to the landfill of Ooty – Theetakal.

It was an eye-opening trip for the children as they witnessed, in real time, where all the trash that we discard ended up.

The pupils also visited the DWCC – the Dry Waste Collection Centre of the Ooty Municipality, so that they could get an idea of how recycling is done.

Virtual Conference and Interaction with Rajmata Krishna Kumari Girls Public School, Jodhpur:

On the 25th of September 2019, there was a virtual conference over Skype with the pupils of Class 5 of the RKK School, Jodhpur and the topic of the conference was ‘Say No to Plastic’.



To get children to interact with each other, discussing the issue and finding solution to resolve the problem. 


Some of the questions discussed were:


  1. What is the major cause for plastic pollution in today’s time?

  2. When is India going to be declared ‘Plastic Free’?

  3. Who invented/discovered plastic and when?

  4. What is the name of the plastic island in the Pacific Ocean?

  5. What steps can be taken to impact the environment that is already damaged?

  6. What are the different kinds of waste generated?

  7. What is the volume of waste generated by different cities in India?

  8. How can the problem of Solid Waste be managed in today’s scenario?

  9. What is Composting?

  10. What is the chemical produced when plastic is burned?

  11. What is segregation?

  12. How can we help towards making the environment more eco-friendly?


The children of Class 5 were excited to be able to interact with the children of another school and they are hoping there will be more such interactions.

bottom of page