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Worms back in school


It’s been a long summer vacation for thousands of Red Wiggler worms in a Squamish-Lillooet Regional District storeroom, but now it’s back to school with all the banana peels, sandwich crusts and apple cores they can eat.

SLRD 3R’s educator Wendy Horan brought the worm composting bins back to Myrtle Philip school for a second year, where they are used to teach children about a variety of scientific, environmental and social topics while cutting down on the food waste the school sends to the landfill. There are currently bins in most of the classrooms as well as in the cafeteria and office, and each bin contains approximately 1,000 worms – although that number will grow as they multiply.

The first thing that the kids learn is that there are two ends to a worm – food goes in one end and composted soil comes out the other. They learned what kinds of foods the worms eat and why they need a blanket of wet, shredded newspapers to keep temperature and moisture constant.

They also learned how to care for and feed the worms, ensuring that the bin doesn’t start to smell or attract fruit flies.