I've wanted to do this for a long time but finally got it started. This is composting on a small scale which works well for us with the kids and our small garden. The kids are so excited about it! Everyday I tell them we have something for the compost bin and they all are wanting to help. It involves teamwork because the cover needs to come off and be put back on and the rug draped back over the top. They take turns dumping the bucket and returning it to the deck by the patio door for me to wash and refill. It won't take long for us to get a good amount in our bin. I do wish we had started in the spring but this will work. It's kind of strange...I'm finding I really enjoy environmental/nature and science activities with the kids. It feels like we're really learning something!
A compost bin with a lid (a tote with holes drilled in it will work)
Old plant waste (leaves, weeds, etc)
Kitchen waste (fruit and vegetable peels, egg shells, etc.)
An old rug or doormat
1. Place bin outside on earth, not concrete, and fill with plant and kitchen waste.
2. Sprinkle in some soil to help the worms digest it.
3. Place lid on and cover with rug or doormat and keep it in the sun until there is more to add.
4. As time goes by, dig into the compost and turn over as it is decomposing.
Predict: What will happen over time if we place plants and scraps with soil?
This process takes months for rotting and decomposing. Keep children involved by asking them which foods can be saved daily to add to the compost, asking them to help rake leaves or pull weeds and put those in the compost bin as well.
When the bottom of the compost is brown and crumbles, it is ready for use as fertilizer. Find flowers, plants or trees that can use some extra nutrition.
Here you can see how I drilled the holes. There's a row of holes all away around the top and the bottom. Drill carefully! Mine cracked on one side.
Composting idea from Science Experiment Card from Mother Goose Time curriculum