Planet Earth Scouts

Sustainable Stewardship of Our Planet Earth

Composting is easier than you think. I know most of you are worried about worms in the house and the odor of compost heaps. However, it is possible to set aside a comfortable, odor-free place in your house for red worms! In a proper compost container, red worms will just do what they are best at: eat scraps and “release” a wonderful compost that can be used for planting trees and spring! Kids will absolutely love making compost. It is a great Earth Day activity and will be a rewarding and educational experience at home for your children.

Compost Containers and Bins
Guess what? If you go down to the local hardware store, you can pick up a cheap compost bin in minutes. Buy an 18-gallon, plastic storage tub and get ready to teach the kids how to live green by composting scraps! Prepare your compost bin by cutting breathing holes in the cover of your bin. You might also want to poke a few drainage holes at the bottom and place your bin onto a large plastic or metal tray (but this is optional).

Start Composting — Setting Up a Compost Bin and Where to Get Worms
To start your compost bin, buy the worms. These can be found at garden supply stores or hardware stores, or you can order them at an online farm store! Once you get the worms, kids will love to place them into the compost container.

Once the worms have been purchased, collect a good amount of old newspapers, have the kids rip them into strips, moisten them with a small amount of water and place them into the plastic container. Then young children will love this part: place the worms into the compost container underneath a good amount of newspaper so that they will stay moist and happy.

What To Put Into Compost Bin — Eliminating Compost Odors
It is important that your indoor compost bin does not develop any odors. That’s why you need to be sure that children do not put any meat or odorous scraps (such as onions or potatoes) into the compost bin. The best ingredients for the compost bin are bread, rice, fruits and vegetable scraps and coffee filters. Continue to add newspaper strips and spray with water occasionally.

How Long Does It Take for Compost? Getting the Compost From the Bin
Compost will start to form in a couple of months, and you will be able to retrieve compost after about four to six months of composting with worms. Separate the compost from the worms and scraps of newspaper and food. It might be a challenge to get the worms out of the compost, so if you put the food scraps and newspaper in one half of the bin, and keep the compost in the other half, the worms will eventually migrate to the half that has food.

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