Composting and Kids

April 9, 2018

 

There is no better science experiment that teaches children about biology, life cycles, recycling and reusing. There is also nothing easier than teaching kids about composting and it's benefits. 

 

Composting is such an amazing and natural process that can be done in the largest and smallest of spaces. Teaching your kids to compost will help raise their environmental awareness by re-instilling the three R's - Recycle Reduce and Reuse. It's not all about biology which is a huge benefit but will also touch on chemistry, and physics. There is quite a scientific process to the natural process of decomposition and the recycling of organic material. They will see how the types of items they compost are important but they will also see how bugs and worms will add a true benefit to the process. 

 

So how do you start? 

 

Composting is pretty simple but there are some actual requirements to make it successful.  When choosing the right compost bin, be sure to get one that preserves heat and keeps animals out. You can build your own or you can buy one. Choose a location for the compost bin that has substantial sunlight, easily accessible and has good drainage. Depending on the compost bin you are using, you may be required to turn the soil underneath to ensure the beneficial organisms make their way into the compost if you aren't adding them yourself. Compost-able materials can vary but the b est are those that are cut up into small pieces as they will rot and compost faster. Start your first layer in your bin with course materials such as twigs or dead plant stalks. This will help allow for drainage and aeration. Your second layer should consist of leaves and garden/kitchen waste topped with a third layer consisting of garden soil.  Be sure to give each layer a small sprinkling of water but not so much that it is slop. Just wet enough to assist in the breaking down process.

 

If you are using a bin like we used, you can add in your bugs and worms to move the process along but the rest is fairly similar.  The next part of the process is adding to your compost bin and being sure to mix and turn it at least once a week. This will help decomposition along with the smell. 

 

THINGS TO PUT IN YOUR COMPOST

Leaves 

Vegetative kitchen scraps 

Garden plants

Grass clippings

Dead houseplants

Horse/Chicken manure

 

THINGS TO NOT PUT IN YOUR COMPOST

Cat, Dog, Reptile manures

Diseased plants

Colored paper

Meat

Bones

Fish

Dairy

Inorganic materials

 

Happy Composting!

 

 

 

 

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