Do kids and gardening mix? Absolutely!
Getting kids outside into nature and connecting with the land (as well as the food they eat) is an amazing activity for kids to start at any age.
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Kids and Gardening – Where to Start
After months of cool weather, the first hint of spring will likely have the whole family eager to dive into outdoor activities.
This year, as you begin tackling the garden, find ways to get the youngest family members in on the action, too.
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Not only is gardening an activity you can enjoy together, there are numerous ways to incorporate age-appropriate, teachable moments from counting and colors to responsible care of living things.
5 Tips for Gardening with Kids
Creating a positive first experience with gardening can start with this simple advice.
Dedicate a spot for a junior garden
This allows you to instill a sense of pride and ownership in the little gardener while protecting your own garden areas from ambitious young hands.
Provide appropriate tools in child sizes
Just as you would teach a child the finer points of baseball using a bat and glove, demonstrate the joys of gardening with tools such as a rake, hoe and trowel.
All of these kid-friendly gardening tools can be found in sizes more manageable for little helpers.
Let the kids choose what to plant
Whether flowers or food plants, allow children to make their own decisions (within reason) about what they would like to grow.
This can help them engage in the magic of watching items they selected emerge from the ground and grow into their finished forms.
Encourage exposure to unfamiliar plants
Especially ones that entice the senses with appealing smells and flavors.
Herbs such as chives, mint and basil are good choices, or consider edible flowers such as pansies or violets.
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Or consider planting a sensory garden – which is designed to create a full sensory experience.
Set an example for your child
Give them a good example to imitate by giving regular and proper care to your own garden.
Remember to bring the lesson full circle by enjoying the bounty of your garden together, whether it’s a small hand-cut bouquet or a meal featuring your child’s fresh-grown produce.
For more gardening ideas with kids:
- Picture Gardening Books for Kids
- Gardening Unit Study
- Sensory Garden Ideas for Children
- Gardening Activities with Kids
- Organic Chemical Free Gardening
- Organic Gardening: Easy Ways to Get Started
And find more tips for gardening with your kids at eLivingtoday.com.
Mom Smarter, Not Harder! Find more fabulous family-focused activities on Mommy Evolution!