Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Composting for Kids

Both of the kids recently attended a composting workshop, run by our local council.
This was a great program, encouraging kids to recycle, reuse and reduce the amount of waste that goes to landfill.
At home we try to limit what goes in the landfill as much as possible. The kids know what goes in which bin, we have a Bokashi for our meat and dairy waste, and a kitchen scrap bucket that is filled with fruit and veg peelings before going out to one of the big compost bins in the garden. We even have a worm farm. In the last two years we have significantly reduced how much we send to landfill and it really hasn't been difficult.
These mini compost bottles are a great demonstration of the carbon cycle at work, and an easy way to teach younger children about the benefits of recycling.

Here's what you need:
1. An empty, rinsed 2L PET bottle, label removed
2. Shredded paper
3. Handful of garden soil
4. Handful of blood and bone (or other fertiliser)
5. Green waste (flowers, leaves, kitchen scraps etc)
6. Packing tape
7. String
8. Small square of muslin or other breathable fabric
9. Water spray
10. Scissors

Start by removing the top third of the bottle with a pair of sharp scissors (you may want to do this step for your child). Set aside.

For your first layer, add a small amount of garden soil to the base of the bottle.

Then continue to build layers, spraying each lightly with water, alternating the soil, green waste, shredded paper, blood and bone, finishing with a top layer of soil, close to the top of your bottle.

Replace top of bottle and carefully tape back together.

Remove lid and cover top with fabric. Secure with string.

You may then decorate the outside of the bottle to make it into a living work of art!

Once the contents have broken down sufficiently the kids can use the compost to plant seeds in, and then start all over again.


Miri said...

we will definitely try this, thank you!!

Christina @ Boyish Charm said...

Ran across this via the Crafty Crow. I love this idea. I think I might have to try it out with my cub scouts.

CatWay said...

what a great idea to let your child see composting - perfect.

Calley said...

What an awesome project! Thanks for sharing!

Sherry and Donna said...

We've just discovered you through Jenny @ 'let the children play'. We are kindergarten teachers from Croydon right here in Melbourne and love your composting idea. We'll definitely make some of these with our children. Thanks so much for sharing such a simple yet exciting idea.
Donna :) :)

Anonymous said...

About how long does this take to completely compost?