Gardening is an all-around great opportunity for the whole family. When kids join you in the garden they are learning so much while spending quality time with you. For families that are often on the go, on devices, or have multiple children, one on one activities like gardening are wonderful for helping keep a balance in life. Here are some of the many wonderful benefits of gardening with your kids.
Benefits of Gardening with Kids
Children can learn so much while helping you in the garden. It is the perfect place to connect with nature and explore the basics of life and earth science. As your child spends time in the garden they will naturally find themselves observing the world around them up close and personal. Your child will enjoy the variety of elements of gardening, especially learning about the many insects that can be found in the garden and in the soil.
Your garden is a small ecosystem of its own that rivals anything your child can read about in a book. As they watch the compost break down they are seeing decomposition up close and personal. Likewise watching a plant grow from a small seed, for fruits that eventually provide more seeds is the perfect example of the life cycle.
Working in the garden your child learns how pollinators help gardens thrive and help to produce the food we eat. Growing flowers and placing a hummingbird or bee feeder in your garden is a great way to help attract these pollinators and get them close enough for your child to watch up close and personal.
Tracking the weather to help you decide on what is needed for your garden is a great way to explore weather and the water cycle up close and personal. Building a weathervane in your garden is a great way to make the most of this opportunity. Learning to save and reuse water while in the garden is a great lesson for kids to learn as well.
Completing printable activities such as this Vegetable Garden pack, or this strawberry life cycle pack, will help reinforce what they are learning as well as encourage them to be more hands-on in the garden to achieve great results.
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Starting with growing herbs may be a fun and easy way to start as you can pick the leaves as you need them and they provide a great flavour to your foods. Usually, herbs such as basil, can start being harvested within a few weeks of being planted. Rosemary is hard to grow from seed but is quite easy when you can get a cutting from a friend or family member. If you have limited space, things such as lettuce can be grown in containers. Cherry tomatoes are fun to grow, children love picking them and popping the little fruit into their mouths when they are bright red.
While your child will learn so much in the garden when it comes to science a garden is also a place for personal growth and life lessons. Working in the garden helps to teach your child how food is made and how it finds its way onto your table. Growing food from scraps as well as from start to finish helps your child understand this concept and can even encourage them to be willing to try new foods after harvesting them.
Gardening takes work, organisational skills, and the ability to plan ahead. Involving your child in your garden from start to finish is a great way to encourage them to learn how to plan and organise. Pouring over garden seed catalogues and learning how to map out garden beds and even plan for companion planting is a great way for your child to learn to prepare ahead of time and organise before starting big projects.
Your garden doesn’t have to be the latest and greatest and you don’t have to have a lot of money to start it. You can find many great tips for saving money on your garden by sharing seeds and cuttings with friends and family as well as visiting your local library to read up on how to care for your garden.
Growing a garden is a great way to teach our children to be patient and that some things are well worth waiting for. The benefits of gardening with kids are amazing, and a great way to introduce them to life skills that they will appreciate in the future.