Composting: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Tawnya Eash

Tawnya has a master's degree in early childhood education and teaches all subjects at an elementary school.

Did you ever wonder what happens to all of the garbage people create? What are we to do with all of the garbage in the world? In this lesson, you will learn how to use composting to help the environment.

What is Composting?

Do you have any idea how important the garbage in this bin is?

Garbage in a Compost Bin

The garbage in the picture is actually being used for composting. Composting is what you call the process of someone controlling how natural wastes are decomposed. When something decomposes it is broken down into smaller parts.

Only certain materials should be composted. You want to use natural wastes that will decompose easily when they are left outside. Take a look at the chart to see what kind of natural wastes are good to use in a compost pile.

Materials to Use or Avoid for Composting
Compost Materials

Importance of Composting

Think about how many bags of garbage your family sets out for the garbage man each week. Then, think of all of the other households doing the same thing. Through recycling and composting, you can create less garbage. Each person or family can make a difference.

Not only is it important to limit the amount of garbage in the world, but you can create a substance you can reuse! When all of the materials you put into your compost pile decompose, you are left with a fertilizer. Composting is used as a safe way of getting rid of garbage and then using what is left over to fertilize soil. To fertilize means to feed something nutrients. For example, you would fertilize soil before growing a garden of vegetables.

Soil needs to be fertile to help plants grow

Soil is already composed of layer after layer of dead plants and animals. Yuck! It might sound disgusting, but plants and animals are natural wastes that decompose after time. Sometimes for plants to grow well, it helps to have fertile soil, which you can create from adding your own compost.

How to Compost on Your Own

Anyone can create compost on their own. It requires a few materials you probably already have.


1.) Area of land and (optional) compost container

2.) Garbage (refer to the chart at the beginning of the lesson on materials for composting)

3.) Small twigs, sticks, and dry leaves.

4.) Soil (it has worms and microorganisms that help with the decomposition process)


1.) Prepare your compost area and (optional) container

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