Gardening is such a versatile activity. In addition to being a meaningful activity that also provides a lot of learning opportunities. It is a great place to observe and learn about the cycle of life and how plants grow. Moreover, kids learn to take responsibility and how to care for and give what a plant needs. Children can learn where the food they eat every day comes from.
Gardening doesn’t have to be a boring task where the only thing a kid does is dig and plant. There is an abundance of activities to turn gardening into teaching and fun moments for your kid.
Benefits of Gardening with Children
Children are naturally curious and they like to learn. Gardening for kids, also gardening with kids is an activity that fits very well with children’s natural development. This activity is so good for both their body and their mental health. Here are a couple of benefits of gardening with children.
Come along with 200k+ families!
Explore the endless possibilities of learning!
Download for Free.
Confidence is important for a child’s growth and learning process. Tending a plant, understanding their cycle of life, seeing the food that they produce and how this process takes time and they have to be patient will make children feel more confident and capable.
Better focus, better memory
Tending plants takes a lot of focus. You have to know what your plant needs, how to take care of it, and when to do all of these. Also, you have to be on the lookout for any problems and prepare ahead. This helps the children to improve their alertness and cognitive abilities. Gardening has a therapeutic effect on kids and it is believed that memory and attention of children improves when they are engaged in outdoor activities like gardening!
Teaching patience and compassion
Taking care of a garden means you need to have patience, and this applies to everyone, not just kids. When your kiddo is watering the plants and waiting for them to bloom or to produce fruit, you will get the chance to explain the importance of patience. They will observe and understand that it takes time and care (and of course love!) for anything to grow and shine. Although plants can’t interact the same way animals do with children, kids are smart and they realize that showing compassion is the key for anything to reach their full potential! You can explain that their love and care should not depend on a plant’s growing pace, that they can tend to plants which are growing slower than the others.
Garden Projects for Kids
Get your hands dirty and recruit your little one for fun garden projects! Here are some gardening ideas to get you started.
Kids love collecting pebbles and stones and twigs they find in the garden. Put their collecting powers into use and create yourself a fairy garden. It’s a little enchanted, magical garden that you can build wherever you like. The base of your kiddo’s favorite tree to hang out or a scrap, shallow plastic pot you were waiting to use somewhere would be perfect for this project. You can use popsicle sticks to build a house, pebbles to make the path leading to the house and lots more. Decorating your fairy garden with your child will be a blast.
Little Garden Pond
Ponds attract so many little animals like birds and insects so creating one is a great activity for kids to get to know nature. It is also easy to build! All you will need is a shallow container that will not leak water. Make sure that it is large enough to resemble a pond. You may want to put an oxygenator to keep the water clear so that your child can see what is going on. Fill it with some plants that are suitable for ponds and make sure that it is not in direct sunlight. Sometimes you may need to top up the water but it is a great time to observe what is happening in your little pond!
Kids Garden Tools
There are many tools available for purchase for your kid. The products range based on the kid’s age or their preference, material and the purpose of the tools. Some tools come in basic sets that contain basic gardening tools like shovels and garden and others come in extensive sets that also include books that are full of activities. There is a great article on the Veryvell Family that compares the kits that you can purchase.
Garden Games for Kids
Garden activities don’t always have to include actual gardening. There are tons of games that children can play in the garden, outdoors, exploring their environments and learning and feeling comfortable with their environment. Here are a couple of gardening games for kids that you can try:
This classic game will be such a fun time for everyone involved. It’s great for big groups and when played outdoors in the garden, it becomes live, fast. Here, everyone will dance when the music starts. You can instruct the kids to dance as crazily as they can! When the music stops, everyone must stop and freeze in their position at that time. If they move, they’re out. The last one standing wins! You can control the music and be a referee.
Red Light, Green Light
This old game is a blast when played in the garden, in open spaces where kids can fall and roll and have the best time. This is another group activity to play with lots of kids at garden parties. One kid will be a traffic light. When they face the group, or they say “Red light”, everyone must freeze. When they turn their back and say “Green light!”, everyone tries to get close to the traffic light. When the traffic light turns around and says “Red light!”, everyone must stop. anyone who is spotted to move, they go to the start line. The first child to get to the traffic light wins!
Gardening Ideas for Kids
Gardening doesn’t always have to be about big outdoor spaces with farmland as far as the eye can see. You can create your own outdoor garden with your kids with scrap materials you have lying around the house!
A herb garden would be a great way to teach some of the herbs that children eat regularly. They can learn the names of different herbs, and it is a nice, small and green corner of your house or garden! You can create a space in your garden and use plastic or scrap containers that you have at hand. You can also create an indoor herb garden, too! There are many indoor herb garden kits out there in the market, but it is also possible to start one without a kit.
Herb Garden Ideas
If you catch the season, you can start your herb garden from the seeds! You would need a plastic container and seed starting soil at first. Fill the container halfway up with the soil, plant the seeds, and water. Make sure that you inform your child how it is important to put holes in the bottom of the container to drain the excess water. You can search online and create a checklist for your herb garden and its care and task your child with the care of the plants!
You can also get some plants from your local nursery if you don’t want to start your garden from the seeds. Have your kid pick out the plants, it will be a nice shopping trip!