Ideas for a Kindergarten Project That Creates Transportation Using Recyclable Materials

Using recyclable materials saves money and teaches children the importance of recycling.
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Kindergartners' learning is enhanced by incorporating arts and crafts projects. When learning about transportation, having kids build models for different modes of transportation can help them remember important details as well as compare and contrast. Using recycled materials is an inexpensive way to create projects and teaches children about helping the environment.

1 Transportation on Land

You can create a car out of a box and paper plates.
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A variety of vehicles exist to transport people across land. Children can make cars, trains and trucks using a variety of recyclable materials. Cardboard boxes can be used to make vehicles that children can actually sit in and pretend they are driving. With some cutting and painting, boxes can be made to look like various cars, trucks or trains. Add paper plates for tires and steering wheels. Smaller versions can also be created by children. Turn toilet paper rolls into cars by painting them and adding bottle caps or construction paper for wheels. Egg cartons can be made into trains by cutting apart the egg carton sections, painting them, gluing on construction paper wheels and then using string to tie them together. Another idea is to use emptied and cleaned laundry detergent bottles and tops to make trucks and cars in different shapes.

2 Transportation in Air

Use cardboard cutouts to create a rocket.
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Students can make helicopters, airplanes, and rockets out of recycled materials. A toilet paper roll can be used for the body of a plane. Students can cut wings out of cardboard and tape them on. Planes can also be made out of cleaned out shampoo bottles. Wrap the bottles with colored tape and tape on cardboard wings. Make a helicopter using an old egg carton. Cut the egg carton into individual pieces and cut the tall divider to use for the tail. Students can paint the helicopter, including a windshield. Cut out strips of paper for the blades and glue the pieces together. Large cardboard boxes can be cut and decorated into planes and rockets that students can get inside.

3 Transportation in the Water

Corks can be turned into boats.
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Boats are an important method of transportation and fun to make, especially if they really float. Students can use rubber bands to hold together 3 corks for the base of a boat. They can use a toothpick with a foam sheet for the sail. Then they can put their boat in the water. A two-dimensional boat can also be created using old scraps of fabric and paper. Just give students a template and they can decorate using these recycled materials. Students can also create a large boat out of cardboard boxes. This is great for imaginative play and further exploration of this mode of transportation.

4 Putting It All Together

Use an old box to create roads for vehicles to drive on.
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After vehicles have been made, children are ready to put them to use. Children can transform a cardboard box into a scene of roads and tunnels to drive their cars and trains through. Use markers to draw roads on the inside of the box and cut holes in the sides for tunnels. Another option is to flatten a cardboard box and again draw roads, scenery and buildings. Children can also create buildings out of small boxes to create a city to drive through.

Katrice Morris is an educator based in Georgia. She has six years of classroom teaching experience in the primary grades and certified to teach grades Pre-K through 8 in the state of Georgia. She holds an Master of Education in instructional leadership from the University of Illinois at Chicago.