By Fredrica Syren:
I work very hard to teach my kids about the value of the environment and the importance of preserving the world around them. This, I feel, helps ensure a positive future for the earth.
One very simple but fun way to teach kids about recycling, giving back and the circle of life is by teaching them about composting. I believe it is important that we include the children in our efforts to protect and restore the environment. Educating kids about composting is surely a great way to start. Gardening and kids are a natural mix. It involves dirt, digging and water – children’s favorites.
Composting truly is one of Mother Nature’s most miraculous processes. Using only natural means, you’re able to turn “waste” into one of the most beautiful and productive growing mediums. You don’t need a huge garden — or any garden at all — to compost.
We have a very basic worm bin made from a plastic tub. You can learn here how to make your own. We stocked the bin with shredded paper and soil, then bought about a pound of red wiggler earthworms at our local nursery. The worms devour food scraps and other waste such as paper, and turn it all into nutrient-rich castings that our garden loves. The worms are vegetarians and do not like acidic or spicy foods, dairy or oils. To avoid fruit flies, do not place bananas in the bin and make sure to bury the scraps in the soil. You want to make sure the worm bin is not too dry or too wet. If it’s too dry, the worms will dry out or try to escape; too wet, they will drown.
We collect food scraps in a used yogurt container and put the kids in charge of feeding it to the worms. It’s so great to see how well they care for them, and how they learn about waste and what can and cannot be reused.
Here are some kids books I recommend about composting: