School Composting and Seed Sculptures


After attending the Youth Climate Forum in October, our students returned to school with some ideas of what they would have liked to see change at our school. Since we are a small school, we wanted to make sure that everyone got a chance to share their thoughts and ideas, so we held a proposal timeframe where students could submit a proposal of a climate action project for our school. We got a ton of great ideas from wind turbines, bee colonies, tree planting, clothing swaps, and more!


One of the major points of action our students wanted to take was to better our garbage system, especially our composting. To do so, we installed 2 large tumbler composters outside that will be used to turn our food scraps into usable soil. Our hope is that the easy access to this system will also be used as teachable moments for teachers to discuss decomposers, composting, environmental awareness, properties of soil, and more! We also added a compost bin to our upper school lunch room so that students can better sort and dispose of their waste each day. Students helped construct the tumbler composters and in the new year we will have a system for taking care of them – tumbling them often, what to add, what not to add, managing the materials to keep the nitrogen levels appropriate, etc. What we hope is that this will help our school be a greener space, while also creating new soil to use in our gardens and classrooms.

Along with our new composting program, we also held a seed sculpture event as part of an art exhibition at our school. This was a hands-on opportunity for members of our school community to come and sculpt something out of clay to be put in their garden. The secret is – each seed sculpture contains soil and a sprinkling of local Nova Scotia wildflower seeds. The intention of the sculptures is to be placed in gardens or other areas so promote the growth of wildflowers for our local pollinators such as bees and butterflies. Since the sculpture contains seeds, when placed in a garden, mother nature will do her thing and slowly wear away at the sculpture (which is airdried as opposed to being put into the kiln). As time passes, and the rain falls, the clay will slowly be worked away to allow the seeds to sprout and grow. It was important for us to use local seeds from Halifax Seed, a local business near our school that sells plants and garden products, and to ensure we were promoting the growth of native species of plants that are naturally found in the area. Flower species found in the mix include:

Bachelor’s Button (Centaurea cyanus)
Perennial Lupine (Lupinus perennis)
Russell Lupine (Lupinus polyphylus)
Baby’s Breath (Gypsophila elegans)
Scarlet Flax (Linum rubrum)
Tall Lance-Leaved Coreopsis (Coreposis lanceolata)
Siberian Wallflower (Cheiranthus allionii)
Blue Flax (Linum lewissi)
Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)
Shasta Daisy (Chrysanthemum maximum)
Indian Blanket (Gaillardia pulchella)
Black-Eyed Susan (Rudbeckia hirta)
Gayfeather (Liatris spicata)
Catchfly (Silene armeria)
Spurred Snapdragon (Linaria maroccana)
European Columbine (Aquilegia vulgaris)
Sweet William (Dianthus barbatus)
Foxglove (Digitalis puprea)
Maltese Cross (Lychnis chalcedonica)

For our event, we had 30 people come out and create around 70 seed sculptures that will be spread around our community in gardens and balcony planters! We are excited that we are helping create new habitat for pollinators so that they have places to find some food while they do their important jobs.

Since our school ends earlier than most, we were a little crunched for some time at the end of the year, but we have also made a bucket list for some things to kick off our new year with including:

– Looking into the installation of a wind turbine as a power supply for our buildling.
– Hosting a back to school “Shop and swap” to try and reduce landfill waste of old clothing and household items.
– Planting a fruit tree or 2 on the property.

We are looking forward to enacting more climate action projects next year!

11. Sustainable Cities and Communities
13. Climate Action
15. Life on Land
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