It has been raining cats and dogs and much to Fangchu’s dismay, Ma has asked him not to venture out into the garden. Ma did mention though that being the retreating monsoons, the rains will be over in a very short while. That did uplift Fangchu’s mood but not much to avoid Ma being concerned. She planned to sit with the kids and teach them on how they can recycle empty tin cans. This will avoid creation of waste and also help create new life.
She sat together with the kids with the following items neatly laid out on the table and described them.
- Empty aluminum cans that has been washed and dried clean
- Screwdriver and hammer
- craft paper in various colours
- Thin cardboard
- 5-10 small rocks, stones or pebbles
- 2 cups soil
- Seeds : rye, wheat, spinach, coriander or fenugreek
- Glue and scotch tape
- Mug of Water
She now took the aluminium can and gently with scissors cut the top. Any rough edges was quickly dealt with and flattened. The can now looked like a handle less mug.
Next she turned the can upside down and using a screwdriver hammered small holes in the bottom of the can. Ma mentioned that this needs to be done so that any excess water in the pot can easily flow out. This prevents the roots to suffocate when there is too much water.
Both Kia and Fangchu looked amusingly at Ma. As Ma had instructed they were cutting strips of various coloured craft paper while Ma cut a single piece of card board to cover the outer walls of the can. She stuck the cardboard using glue and scotch tape. The pressure cooker in the kitchen blew its whistle. As she headed to the kitchen to turn off the gas, she asked the kids to stick the cut craft paper onto the cardboard. By the time Ma returned to the table, she was pleased with the turn out of the can. The can looked very colourful and bright. Using green, white and blue craft paper the kids had created a landscape of grass, clouds and the sky. And Kia’s favourite was there. Using yellow craft paper, she cut a circle and pasted it where the sky was made along with the clouds. The sun completed the simple yet beautiful design on the can.
Once the glue had dried, Ma then placed enough rocks or pebbles in the bottom of the can to form a single layer. This prevents soil to wash out through the holes by acting as a filter.
The can was then filled with dry soil around two-thirds full. She left a little area at the top vacant so that while watering, the soil did not jump out of the can.
Ma took a few coriander (dhania) seeds and sprinkled them on the soil. She covered the seeds with a thin layer of soil. She then placed the can on a plate and gently poured some water to the newly sown seeds. Excessive water trickled into the plate.
The can was ready. In no time Ma had beautifully crafted and converted an empty, useless tin can into this beautiful looking pot that now will grow coriander in it. Kia took the pot onto her palms and kept it next to the window sill. She promised Ma and Bhaiya to water and take care of the pot.
Strict Parental supervision is required during the complete exercise. Please keep away sharp objects from kids once the experiment is over.