We are forever looking for something fun to do with our children. Teaching your child to garden can be a fun outdoor activity with your child.
It doesn’t have to be expensive or time-consuming. Teaching kids to garden also encourages an attitude of conservation and respect for nature.
Here are a some tips:
- Start small. Small and simple is generally better because children are more likely to remain interested. Use a simple project like these to teach your child about gardening basics, such as healthy soil, sunlight, and water. Plant beans or sunflowers in or a small rectangular pot garden of flowers and place on a windowsill or on the patio.
- Choose high-interest and quick growing plants or flowers such as snapdragons or pansies. Cherry tomatoes bear fruit quicker and make a tasty snack.
- Use the right tools. Give your budding little gardener a child-size spade and watering can along with a durable pair of gloves.
- Cultivate good habits. Set aside 15 to 20 minutes once or twice a week to tend the garden. Show your child how to pull weeds and water the garden. Teach your child to store the tools away after use. These experiences offer bite-size lessons in responsibility and organisation.
- Eat the fruits of your labours. Make a pizza with the cherry tomatoes and basil.
- Visit a farm or farmer’s market. Through gardening at home, children begin to understand where their food comes from. It could be a fun outdoor activity with your child to go to a farm or farmer’s market. You could teach them appreciation for the earth and the farmers who work hard to bring us food.
- It’s much better to grow a small garden successfully than plan an unrealistic larger project that ends with poor results.
- Gardening with children is downright fun. Children are natural explorers who find joy in the simple pleasures of planting seeds or searching for earthworms.
- A garden is a grand teacher. It teaches patience and careful watchfulness and is a fun outdoor activity.
- A teepee or play tent in the garden is a great place for your child to take a break after a session of gardening.
Children’s books about gardening
- In the Garden, written by Elizabeth Spurr and illustrated by Manelle Oliphant, Infant & Toddler
- UnderGround, written and illustrated by Denise Fleming, Preschool
- Planting a Rainbow, written and illustrated by Lois Ehlert, Preschool
- It’s Our Garden: From Seeds to Harvest in a School Garden, written and illustrated by George Ancona, School Age