With the pandemic taking a toll on our lives, every parent wanted their kids to be at home. But keeping these little ones engaged for a long time is next to impossible. One such fun-filled activity that can help you in keeping your children entertained is Composting. Yes, you read that right!
Composting is an amazing hands-on activity for kids and families. The process of composting helps kids learn about the importance of the three environmental Rs (Reduce, Recycle, and Reuse). This is how kids understand the significance of worms, insects, biodegradable items, and much more.
A recent study revealed that half of the food wasted in the bin could be composted into nutrient-rich soil. It feels good to know that composting for one year can save global warming gases, which is equivalent to the carbon dioxide your washing machine produces in just three months.
Why should kids learn compost?
In this age of digitalization, kids are mostly seen busy playing with electronic gadgets. They are not interested in getting involved in outdoor activities. This is why every parent needs to help their kids learn everything about the environment.
Composting is a natural process of recycling and decomposing organic material into a rich soil amendment. Through this process, kids can learn how waste can be used for composting, and they can help their parents in collecting composting waste from their gardens.
This activity is fun and will help kids improve their communication skills, and also they will be able to learn a lot of lessons.
The Benefits of Teaching Composting to your Kids & Family
Composting with kids and family offers loads of mental and physical benefits. Let’s find out those benefits in detail.
Learn About The Environment
If you have a child at home, ask them about the environment. You will be surprised that they don’t have anything to say. Therefore, it is our responsibility as parents to make them understand the importance of the environment.
Composting can help your kids learn how the environment works and how to reduce their waste, says Kristine from LightandCozy. This fun-filled activity will help improve their knowledge about the three environmental R’s (Recycle, Reuse, and Reuse). Your little ones will start falling in love with the environment.
According to a study, the composting process helps kids understand the significance of sustainability for preserving the planet. Make sure that you make your kids understand the reasons behind composting. Composting is known for being an essential step toward creating a sustainable household. This process can be practiced even without a large backyard. You can place a composting bin under the sink to produce enough soil to fill potted plants.
Decreases Food Waste
Many kids are tricky when it comes to food habits. This leads to a considerable amount of food waste. Do you know that composting can help reduce the waste your house produces? Yes, they do! Compostable materials like tea bags, fruit peelings, vegetable peelings, coffee grounds, eggshells, plant trimmings, etc., can be used to save the environment.
Improve The Soil Texture
If you or your family loves gardening, composting can help grow a crop in the coming season. Adding composting materials can help enrich the soil with nutrients. This makes the fruits, vegetables, and flowers grow beautifully in your garden. Composting can help produce healthy materials for your meals. This will let your kids understand where the food comes from and how it grows.
Hands-on Activity For Kids
The process of composting involves exploring worms. This is a great hands-on activity for the kids. Kids usually love holding worms, and they can spend hours watching them and playing with them. The little ones love feeding them; therefore, building a worm composter is a fantastic idea too. If your child is scared of worms, make sure you encourage him/her to get involved in this activity. This will reduce their fear.
Getting your kids involved in the composting activity offers the opportunity to turn the everyday task into a learning session. This particular activity can help kids learn how to identify and sort compostable material. They also observe how the worms and other insects eat and decompose food. This is like seeing the carbon cycle in action.
Learn to Save Water
Saving water is something that we all should learn. The process of composting helps in conserving water. When you add organic material to the soil, it increases its water-retaining abilities.
Appreciating The Environment
Composting teaches the little ones how to enjoy the environment and gives them the satisfaction of doing their share as a friend of the environment.
How To Teach Your Children to Compost
There are a few steps that you need to follow when teaching composting to kids. Make sure you follow them properly:
Search For a Composting Corner
Firstly, you need to find a proper spot for the activity. The area you select should be shady, without any light. The ground area needs to be well drained. Make sure the chosen location will not bother people if the process involves a ripe smell.
Set Up Your Compost
The next step is building a family compost heap. You can even help your little ones develop their own. If you plan to create one big heap, you must make four walls to create a pen. No need to use a tub or a box because the compost quality becomes good when it rests directly on soil and not on any base. If the compost pile is unsightly, camouflage it with shrubs or tall plants.
To build the pile, you need to start with the course materials like small branches, twigs, etc. These will help in proper drainage. Add a layer of green or brown matter like dry leaves, and also include some newspaper. Don’t forget to sprinkle water between each layer.
Setup a Mini-Bin
Creating a small bin to collect scraps is a good idea to remind your family to fill the container. Encourage your kids to empty the mini bin liner by transferring everything to the compost heap at the end of the day. This will become a daily task for the little ones to do and enjoy. Don’t forget to keep a can full of water, a shovel, and a tub of soil behind the compost bin. This will let you put a layer of soil and water on each layer.
Organize Weekly Compost Activity
The compost needs to be exposed so that every part of the organic material is decomposed. Turning up the compost triggers the breakdown process. Therefore, plan a weekly activity to turn the compost. This is an excellent way to keep your kids engaged.
Use The Compost
The final step is to use the compost in the garden to help the plants grow beautifully. Take a bucket and fill it with compost. Allow your little ones to sprinkle the compost on pot plants and flower beds, and also spread it in the garden.
Composting is a fantastic family activity that helps promote sustainability and encourages a love for the outdoors. With kids getting involved in electronic devices, it is high time you should encourage them to get involved in such outdoor activities and make the environment a better living place.