Thursday, April 26, 2012

Exploring the compost bin

We had a worm ball with the compost bin today! The kids were excited to hear that our worms finally arrived and our compost bin all set up and ready to help the earth with composting! We passed around some of the worms for close inspections! Many of the kids were fascinated with the worms and how they moved. Some of the kids giggled because the movement tickled them! A few students were initially nervous/scared of the worms, but everyone tried it out in the end. I let them know that worms have no teeth and don't hurt at all. The class got to dig around the compost bin as well to become familiar with what's inside. Questions came up during our exploration.
A.K observes the movement of the red wigglers
K.W examines the red wigglers
D.K holds one of the worms
G.S holds a worm
O.S jumped a bit because the worms tickled
J.C, D.K and A.R look into the compost bin
A.R and G.S try to find some red wigglers
T.W and X.I explore the compost bin
The worms like to stay at the bottom of the compost bin
J.A, T.S and A.R look through the newspaper shreds for some red wigglers
O.B, G.P and T.D look for worms
T.D holds a worm
O.B asked, "What do the worms drink?" I told the class how the worms "drink" water through their skin. It's also why they're always wet. Knowing this, we know not to pour any other kinds of liquids into the compost bin (unless its juice that comes naturally from a fruit/veggie scrap or from coffee grinds).  Many asked about which side the head was and we found out together that if you watch the worm move and wiggle, you can figure out which side is the head because its the side that moves forward before the other end. O.S asked, "How do worms hear?" and through our read alouds about worms, we found out that worms "hear" through vibrations they feel on their body! 

We added the word "worm" to our word wall! Many kids gravitated towards it today!

We'll be conducting some experiments next week with the compost bin-we will put varying fruits and veggies in the four corners of the compost bin and see which corner/fruit/veggie attracts the most red wigglers! A lot of the students also noticed that there were baby worms in the compost bin (these worms were noticeably smaller) so we will also be measuring the worms (we'll have to think of what nonstandard unit we would like to measure them with because they are so small). Tomorrow we will be creating a worm menu to keep track of things we can put into the compost bin for the worms to eat!

I also took some video clips of some writing conferences with students during writing. Sorry I haven't had the time to blog in-depth this week! Please bear with me as I try to catch up on blogging! :)
T.S shares his writing---
J.A shares his writing---
Also, tomorrow is Friday-please bring back any books so students can bring home new books to read! :)