Gardening With Kids
Gardening with kids can be a fun project that’s educational and entertaining for family members of all ages.
Gardening helps to teach children responsibility, respect, self-assurance and love of nature – but most importantly, it lets kids have fun digging in the dirt! Here’s how to capture their interests and lure them into gardening. Methods for gardening with kids varies based on age and interest, so the following suggestions are divided by age group.
Design the garden so it can’t hurt exploring toddlers and so they can’t hurt it.
Smooth gravel paths help teach them where it is and that is not okay to walk. Bite your tongue and let toddlers touch, smell, rip, tromp and otherwise experience the garden.
Ages 6 to 12
Use the garden to stimulate physical and intellectual abilities during this growth stage. Give a budding artist a book about Monet or a young scientist a microscope. Look for ways the garden can be used in school projects.
The child who once loved gardening may now hate it. If a teenager doesn’t want to garden, don’t push it. If they have a garden of their own and want to make unusual decisions with it, respect their opinions. Some slack given at this stage will help them enjoy the activity as adults.
To spark interest, try planting a theme garden. Some examples are a rainbow garden; a pizza garden with tomatoes and herbs planted in a circle; or a pet garden to raise parsley for hamsters, corn to dry for squirrels or catnip to entice the family cat.
As children’s gardens grow, nature not only bewilders them with the cycle-of-life, but sets their imaginations to work. Gardening with kids is a great way to increase a love of the outdoors, while showing kids that a little effort can produce fantastic results.