From scraps to soil: an educational composting adventure

English Language Groups

Picture a crisp August morning, and an enthusiastic group of English language learners heading on an adventure to Awapuni Community Gardens.

There, under the guidance of Daniel Morrimire (Morri), a passionate educator from Environment Network Manawatū, English Language Partners (ELP)learners were immersed in the world of composting.

"The eco-friendly encounter was also the perfect opportunity to delve deeply into the English language as people got their heads and hands stuck into composting activities."

Morri revealed the secrets to crafting the perfect compost bin, and the group learned how to layer the ‘right stuff’ in a compost bin for richer results. Morri even used the box the compost arrived in as the first layer, then built up a pile of brown leaves and food waste. Learners were fascinated to find out the foundation of any good compost is all about balance.

Next, learners were shown a bucket of waste items and challenged to decide if they could go into the compost bin. The result? A resounding yes for veggie scraps, but a resolute no for chicken bones!

After Morri’s demonstration, everyone took a leisurely stroll around the garden and looked at another bustling ecosystem - a worm farm - which captured imaginations and fired up interest in sustainable practices.

Learners were warmly invited to return in the spring and summer seasons to help out with the communal garden beds and reap the rewards of fresh produce.

Learners get their own gardens going

As part of this educational experience, learners were given compost bins to use at home, and ELP plans to hold a composting competition later in the year to see how everyone is going. That way, they can share knowledge, successes, and even mishaps – discovering composting tips and tricks together.

As the planting season approaches, learners will be given seedlings to cultivate using their homemade compost, setting the stage for another friendly competition to see who produces the best tomatoes!

"With the wealth of experience and enthusiasm many learners have, there’s no doubt the project will reap rewards for both rookie and more seasoned gardeners."

The generosity making all this possible

The excursion was made possible through a generous grant ELP Palmerston North received from Palmerston North City Council(PNCC). The initiative seeks to educate and inspire learners to use sustainable practices in their daily lives, and to promote home-based composting as an alternative to adding them to landfill.

English Language Partners extends its heartfelt thanks to the Palmerston North City Council and to Environment Network Manawatū who have made this educational journey possible. Their generosity has helped sow the seeds of change and sustainability in the lives of ELP’s learners. 

For more on our project partners

Getting ahead in life – with English

Newer Kiwis are keen to get ahead in their lives and contribute back to their community. Learning English is the key to working, studying and living independently in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Want to learn English? Know someone who does? Or want to volunteer to teach? Please get in touch! https://www.englishlanguage.org.nz/

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