Are there any benefits of encouraging gardening in early childhood? We believe there are, and have proven it in the lives of our children and grandchildren. Keep reading to discover why.
Every parent on the planet struggles at times with things to do with their little ones. You can only do so much reading and colouring before you need a break outside. Well, here is a big tip folks. When those times come around, take the lead and teach your child how to help you do the gardening.
We wrote about this recently in ‘The benefits of letting kids engage in sensory play‘: any hands-on activity which engages your child’s senses: her or his sight, touch, hearing, taste and smell.
Kids of all ages will love you for it, and have a ball in the process.
What we like about this type of activity is that it is a great excuse to get kids of all ages away from the electronic gadgets and out into the fresh air. They also learn a heap of new skills as they handle tools (safely!), plant veggies, learn to water and fertilize them, and understand the growing cycle of life – in a way that many ‘supermarket’ kids don’t.
They love to get their hands dirty as they mulch, weed, and even handle worms.
And of course, once the food is ready for picking, they are filled with the excitement of collecting a basketful for the kitchen, and then learning how to prepare and cook it (that is if any is left over as they munch away on all this great-tasting and very healthy food on the way to the kitchen!)
As they grow a little older, they also have the opportunity of helping with more advanced gardening including fencing, preparation of garden beds, pruning, poisoning weeds, handling more dangerous tools, and building pathways between the vegetable beds.
Yes, it is a lot of fun, but just think of all those skills and abilities they are learning and exercising during that simple gardening activity:
- engaging all their senses – sight, hearing, taste, smell and touch
- responsibility as they handle tools and follow instructions
- teaching about, and encouraging a healthy diet
- safety and hygiene as they use their hands, handle tools and plant a multitude of veggies
- self-confidence as they realise they really can grow things in the garden
- enhances their fine motor development during the intricate process of planting seeds, watering and feeding, and tying them up
- creativity as they learn new ways of growing and preparing food
- social and interactive skills as they mix with their brothers and sisters, parents and grandparents
- love of nature that will stay with them for the rest of their life, and
- cooperation as they share tools, wait for their turn to plant, and work together to harvest.
It’s hard to imagine that planning gardening activities for toddlers can be so much fun, and so good for them. Can we encourage every parent, caregiver and grandparent to try some gardening at the very next opportunity.
You won’t regret it, and you will have the satisfaction of knowing you are building skills into these little ones that will help make them better people.
If you enjoyed today’s post titled: Benefits of gardening in early childhood, why not also check out ‘Parenting: why you need to teach your child ball skills‘ and ‘Be careful what you ask children to do, they may just do it‘. And don’t forget to subscribe if you haven’t already, so we can keep you updated in the future with more great posts.
Living each adventure,
Christine and Trevor
ONLINE FASHION STORE
Empowering people to live a healthy, authentic and fulfilling, personal and business life.
Adelaide, South Australia.
If you haven’t yet subscribed to the LiveEachAdventure.com blog, pop over to the side of the page and drop us your email address so we can keep you informed. Please leave a comment below, and do check out our social media channels on Facebook,Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest so you can be kept up to date as we share this great journey of life with you.
DISCLAIMER: This article is written for informational purposes only and is based on Christine and Trevor’s own life experiences. No food featured on this site should ever be consumed or handled if known or suspected allergies exist. Nothing featured here should be taken as medical, professional or legal advice. It is always recommended that you consult the appropriate professional before changing any routine or adopting any new procedure. We provide relevant links in each post to services or products of relevance to that topic. Many are unpaid links, while others may be affiliate links. They are included because of their relevance above all else.