Writing with Scientists

Eric, Louisiana
Grade 12, Age 17

Eric’s report about an environmentally friendly solution to animal wastes won a 2005 Young Naturalist Award.

In this excerpt, notice how Eric defines his topic and explains what made him want to find out more.

Got Cats? Get Worms!

When you read my work, you may not think of it as a nature study, but the ultimate purpose of my experiment is to find an environmentally friendly solution to animal wastes. My family has a lot of animals and, specifically, 10 cats. I see the problems with animal wastes daily. The cats live happily in a very large, specially equipped pen. The only problem is that I hate to clean four smelly litter pans. There are no words that adequately express my dislike for this chore. Tired of my complaints, Mom challenged me to design a better system. For years I’ve observed worms in the compost piles in the woods behind our house. Why not borrow some worms from the woods and have them clean the cat pans for me? Having worms clean up cat mess is my idea of how work should be done.

Learn more about Eric and his report.