How to Make a Compost Pile With Kindergarteners

Overview

Kindergarten is the perfect age group to begin teaching the importance of reducing waste and using the planet's refuse to create new things. The lesson of composting is an easy concept for a child to understand and take an active part in. You will be able to make a compost pile at school, in the classroom or at a garden with kindergartners. If you're a kindergarten teacher, use a vermicomposting bin. A protected container near the school building will need to be placed where it will not be disturbed or contaminated. A gardener that offers a school visitation hands-on learning experience is an ideal compliment to your composting lesson.

Step 1

Encourage students to bring compostable fruit and vegetable peelings from home in a securely covered container. Ask staff, parents or school janitors to bring two to three garbage bags of leaves, a few pounds of twigs and grass clippings for an outdoor school compost pile.

Step 2

Set up the bin or fencing at a predetermined area on school grounds. The fencing should be placed in a circular shape and secured. Have the children cover the ground or bottom of the prepared bin with the twigs and dirt.

Step 3

Show the children how to layer leaves and fresh peelings, grass clippings and other compostables. Explain to them that meat, bones and pet manure can not be placed in a compost pile. Spend about 30 minutes with them as the bin is prepared with their composting materials.

Step 4

Involve the kindergarten class and a few parents when planning a worm or vermiculture compost bin. Ask for a business or community donation of a worm composter and 1/2 to 1 pound of red worms. Make a worm compost bin from a covered sterile plastic container.

Step 5

Follow steps 2 and 3 with the class on a smaller scale when adding the ingredients to the worm bin. Encourage the children to gently touch the worms when you add them to the bin at one corner. Explain that the worms will work to compost the food refuse that the children brought from home.

Step 6

Show the children how to turn the compost pile after a few weeks. Allow them to observe and list composting critters that they see in the working pile.

Things You'll Need

  • Compost bin or fencing

References

  • Composting for kids
  • Backyard composting K-3

Who Can Help

  • Worm composting in schools
  • Kindergarten composting video
  • "The Adventures of Herman" the composting worm
Keywords: school compost pile, lesson of composting, worm composting

About this Author

Suzie Faloon is a freelance writer who has written ad copy and online content for Demand Studios and Associated Content. As a professional crafter and floral designer, Faloon owned a florist business for nearly 25 years. She completed the Institute of Chilldren's Literature course in 1988.