Lesson Plan

Reduce Our Carbon Footprint, Let’s Compost!

This Reduce Our Carbon Footprint, Let’s Compost! lesson plan also includes:

Roll up your sleeves and get a little dirty with this elementary and middle school compost instructional activity. All you need is a large plastic container, a couple old newspapers, some organic waste, and a few hundred worms and you're ready to start composting in your classroom.

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CCSS: Adaptable
NGSS: Adaptable
Instructional Ideas
  • Include this lesson in a life science unit on ecosystems or the carbon cycle
  • Before and/or after creating the compost bin, teach students about the process of decomposition
  • Create a classroom job associated with maintaining the class compost bin
  • Investigate the biodegradability of different materials by placing them in the compost bin and observing the effects
Classroom Considerations
  • Use the resulting black gold in a school garden or offer it to parents with gardens at home
  • Provide a container in the cafeteria for collecting organic waste from students' lunches
  • This resource is only available on an unencrypted HTTP website.It should be fine for general use, but don’t use it to share any personally identifiable information
  • A list of key vocabulary and definitions is included with the lesson
  • Significant background information about decomposition is provided to support the teaching of this lesson
  • Lesson does not explicitly address teaching student's about decomposition
  • The purchase of worms is required for this science investigation