Lesson 13. From Waste to Resource (Page 71)

  • Students will identify decomposition and observe how it leads to compost
  • Students will link composting to the plant cycle
  • Students will use the waste cycle to create a valuable garden resource

  1. Students will review the five food groups and list which are appropriate for composting and which are not.
  2. Students can explain why certain food groups cannot be composted.
  3. Students can describe the significance of composting food (reduce food waste, environmental impact).


Additional Resources

Composting Central from the University of Illinois Extension.

Composting for the Homeowner from the University of Illinois Extension.

Hawaiian Turkey Sliders with Mango Pineapple Salsa

Prep time: 30 minutes


Mango-pineapple salsa:

  • 1 ripe mango, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup diced fresh (or canned in juice) pineapple
  • 1 to 2 small jalapeños, finely diced (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons diced Bermuda or Vidalia onion
  • Juice of 1 medium lime
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Hawaiian turkey sliders:

  • 2 pounds ground turkey
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 3 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon gluten-free soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dried cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • Dash of salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 romaine or Bibb lettuce leaves
  • 12 gluten-free rolls or whole-grain dinner rolls
Equipment and supplies:
  • Medium bowl
  • Refrigerator
  • Large bowl
  • Grill or Griddle if cooked stovetop

Make the mango-pineapple salsa:

  1. Dice mango, pineapple, jalapeños, and onion.
  2. In a medium non-metallic bowl, stir together the mango, pineapple, jalapeños, onion, lime juice, salt, and pepper. Cover and chill in the refrigerator until ready to use. (The salsa is best when made several hours to one day in advance.)

Make the Hawaiian turkey sliders:

  1. In a large bowl, combine the turkey, garlic, ketchup, olive oil, soy sauce, cilantro, onion powder, oregano, salt, and pepper. Gently mix the ingredients until they are thoroughly combined.
  2. Divide the mixture into 12 equal parts and shape each one into a ball that is slightly smaller than a tennis ball. Using the palm of your hand, gently flatten each into a patty.
  3. Heat a grill or barbecue to medium-high heat. Grill the turkey sliders until cooked through, about 5 minutes per side.
  4. Place one lettuce leaf on the bottom of each roll. Serve the sliders on the rolls, topped with a dollop of mango-pineapple salsa.

Core Curriculum Standards

Writing Standards: (W)

  • 1.2-6.2: Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas and information clearly.

Reading Standards for Informational Text: (RI)

  • 1.1- 6.1: Ask and answer questions about key details in a text.
  • 1.2- 6.2: Identify the main topic and retell key details of a text.
  • 1.3- 6.3: Describe the connection between two individuals, events, ideas, or pieces of information in a text.

Speaking and Listening Standards: (SL)  

  • 1.4- 6.4: Report on a topic or text, or present an opinion.
  • 1.1- 6.1: Participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about topics and texts with peers and adults in small and larger groups.

Language Standards: (L)

  • 1.1-6.1: Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking.
  • MS-ESS3-3: Apply scientific principles to design a method for monitoring and minimizing a human impact on the environment.

NHES Grades 3-5

  • 1.5.3: Describe ways in which safe and healthy school and community environments can promote personal health.

NHES Grades 6-8

  • 1.8.3: Analyze how the environment affects personal health.