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Database Provider


PBS Kids


K, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th


Art, Climate Action

Resource Types

  • Activity - Classroom
  • Project

Regional Focus




Let's Make a Bag!

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  • In this activity, students can make their own reusable bags by repurposing an old t-shirt. 
  • Students will learn that recycling old t-shirts and using reusable bags at the store can help reduce waste. 
Teaching Tips


  • This activity empowers students to take action and recycle and repurpose old clothes. 
  • The activity is fun and allows students to personalize their own designs. 

Additional Prerequisites

  • Teachers and students will need old t-shirts, chalk or fabric pencils, fabric scissors, and a ruler to make the bags. Donation stores would be a good place to find used shirts if the students do not have any.
  • Teachers will need wax crayons, an iron and ironing board, newspaper and plain paper, and printouts of the various character designs for the optional bag decorations.
  • Students will need extra instruction on how to safely use fabric scissors because they are very sharp, and adults are needed for the iron-on decoration.


  • The activity could be used in a lesson about taking action for the climate and reducing waste.
  • Students can personalize their designs by choosing a character printout or by creating and decorating the bags with their own designs, fabrics, or materials.
  • Buttons, zippers, and snaps could also be incorporated into this project for more advanced students.
  • Have students present their t-shirt bag to the class or put them all on display for a week to showcase them to the school.
  • Younger students could work in pairs or in groups to help complete the different steps of the project.
  • Try pairing this activity with these upcycling projects or with this digital picture book about waste.
Scientist Notes
The resource is creative and is suitable to guide students to create a cloth bag, so as to limit plastic pollution. This is a good recycling lesson and it is recommended for the classroom.

This resource addresses the listed standards. To fully meet standards, search for more related resources.

  • Visual & Performing Arts
    • Visual Arts: Standard 1 - Generating and conceptualizing ideas.
      • 1.5.2.Cr1a: Engage in individual and collaborative exploration of materials and ideas through multiple approaches, from imaginative play to brainstorming, to solve art and design problems.
    • Visual Arts: Standard 3 - Refining and completing products.
      • 1.5.5.Cr3a: Reflect, refine, and revise work individually and collaboratively, and discuss and describe personal choices in art-making.
  • Science
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • K-ESS3-3. Communicate solutions that will reduce the impact of climate change and humans on the land, water, air, and/or other living things in the local environment.
  • Related Resources


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