Understand, build, maintain, and use compost systems

THEME: The Living Soil–The Living Plant: We are all Interconnected and Related
STRAND: Science of Soil Fertility

Key Concepts

Construct and maintain healthy compost systems and apply to the garden (e.g., vermiculture, aerobic, anaerobic).


Using proper ratios of nitrogen to carbon and water to air, build an aerobic compost pile.

Observe a compost pile. Turn and record moisture, temperature and pH changes over time. Use a compost log to record data.

Determine when a compost pile is finished and ready for use (i.e., temperature is stable, abundance of macro-and microorganisms)

Use compost in the garden. Estimate, using buckets, the volume of compost and/or mulch added to soil.

Build and tend a classroom or garden worm bin.

\* See Appendix: Composting:


Create a graph of your data.

Put together a scientific paper to communicate your findings.