Tag Archives: compost

How to Love Your Dirt

At the Island School we have a saying: “there’s no such thing as trash, just resources in the wrong place.” This mantra is the guiding force behind our efforts to turn glass bottles into drinking vessels, vegetable oil into biodiesel, and old tires into a walking bridge. It is the reason why we compost; the reason why we take banana peels and pig manure and shredded cardboard and turn this “trash” into productive soil for our farm. The drive towards a more sustainable campus means following the model of a natural ecosystem, in other words, a system that generates no waste. Materials that might otherwise go into a landfill retain their productive capacity. But what about the school’s less tangible byproducts? In an intensely inward-looking and self-reliant community such as ours, social tension is bound to arise. How can disagreements, frustrations, and conflict be among the “resources in the wrong place?”


The answer starts at Community Meeting, a weekly forum where Island School students and faculty come together for collective problem-solving, goal setting, and appreciations. It was at a recent meeting—during a discussion of hot issues like dish crew, sorting recyclables, and what happened to all the socks Continue reading