If you’re looking for a way to get your kids more involved in your family garden, composting is a great way to let them help while they play. Composting is a great family activity (get your kids to help with their Go Green!™ Cozy Truck™ with Trailer) for so many reasons: it’s an awesome way to kickstart your garden, it reduces the amount of waste your family creates, and it helps kids learn about how the smallest organisms in nature help create new life, just to name a few. Today’s blog includes a step-by-step guide of how to start your own compost with just table scraps and yard waste, maintain it, and some potential uses for it. Here’s how to start your own compost:

Step 1

Choose a Spot for Your Compost

A compost bin takes up less space than an open-air compost, and they’re usually easier to maintain too. Plus, your kids can decorate your compost bin with paint, colored chalk, or different types of wood to make it truly unique. If you’re going for an open-air compost pile, have your kids use their garden tools to help clear out a spot. You can always have them help build some fencing or other barriers to house your open-air compost pile too

Step 2

Gather Your Table Scraps

Gather up your biodegradable table scraps. A good rule of thumb is that anything that can be grown in a garden or field can be composted. Some common table scraps are leftover pieces of fruit, egg shells, and lettuce. Make sure your kids avoid adding things like meat, dairy products, or candy to your compost pile because those items tend to attract rodents. The goal is to make your compost bin / pile attractive to worms. This is also the perfect time to talk to your kids about landfills and how waste that we create can take a long time to be broken down, which they’ll see in action as your compost pile grows.

Step 3

Gather Green Yard Waste

The other important thing to add to your compost along with your table scraps is green yard waste. Have your kids help gather up some leaves, grass clippings, vines, and other green yard waste using the tools that come with their Go Green!™ Cozy Truck with Trailer. This truck is durable, made with sustainable materials, and totally recyclable, so it helps kids learn more about environmentally friendly products while they help in the yard. Yardwork like raking up grass clippings or gathering leaves into piles is a great way to keep your kids active and busy at the same time. Be sure to take a moment to jump in your leaf pile before you add it to your compost!

Step 4

Layer Your Compost

As you start to build your compost, have your kids lay down your table scraps and green yard waste in alternating layers. By alternating the layers, your kids are creating a natural barrier for insects and other pests while also trapping in the heat that’s vital to decomposition. This heat will actually speed up the decomposition process, meaning you’ll have fresh compost sooner too.

Step 5

Have Your Kids Water the Compost

Once your compost pile is all set up, the worms and microorganisms can go to town decomposing things. In order for the microorganisms to break down your table scraps and yard waste, the compost needs to be moist but not wet, so your kids should water it occasionally. Try creating a schedule for how often your kids need to water the compost pile to encourage them to take responsibility. Adding water every two weeks is a good starting point, but your compost pile may require more or less water depending on the time of year, where you live, and other factors.

Step 6

Turn Your Compost!

Making good compost takes about a year. That’s why it’s good to have multiple compost bins / piles going at once. Or, you can speed the process up by encouraging your kids to turn and mix the compost using the tools from their Go Green!™ Cozy Truck™ with Trailer every two weeks.  Turning over your compost adds oxygen, which is essential to the decomposition process. You don’t want your kids to turn your compost bin / pile too often though, as that will prevent the compost from becoming warm enough for things to decompose. Add turning the compost over to your kids’ schedule so they remember to do it regularly, but not too often.

Good Uses for Your Compost

Once your compost has matured, it’s ready to be used all over your yard! Here are a few ideas for how you can put your compost to good use:

Have your kids fertilize the soil in your garden

Shovel it around watery or exposed areas

This will combat erosion

Protect your plants from diseases

Surround their stalks with compost

Attract earthworms and microorganisms

Getting these to your garden with compost to help your plants grow

We hope your family has a blast building your own compost! As you spread your compost around your yard and garden, we’d love to see some pictures of your kids working and plants blooming. Don’t forget to tag us when you post (@OfficialLittleTikes on Instagram, @LittleTikes everywhere else on social media)! 

At Little Tikes, we don’t just make toys, we make play. Looking for more great active play ideas? Check out www.LittleTikes.com for all our latest play tips & tricks!