Why is Gardening Good for Kids
18th January, 2021
Any parent will already know that kids are attracted to mess, mud, water and getting extremely dirty. So, having the kids help in the garden will make them very happy, as they can get their fix of being messy and you can get some help planting and watering plants. A win for both parties, but you must clean your very eager helper afterwards.
I have never been a parent that worries about dirt, but I know some that do. They freak out and race quickly to wash every trace of dirt of their child. However, dirt and the microbes that exist in it can be very helpful to your immune system. They are beneficial to make you stronger and more able to fight off infection.
There are many benefits of gardening, and some are:
Growing your own food
Having a veggie garden in your backyard is helpful, it not only promotes healthy eating, but it makes things cheaper. If you are growing something you normally get at the shops all you need to do is to walk into the garden, pick it, wash it, and it is ready for dinner. The only cost is taking care of the plant and waiting until it is grown…basically time and a little bit of gardening. Easy really.
Teaches kids about plants
Gardening teaches kids about the different types of plants, how to care for them and the different seasons. Plus, how the different seasons affect the lifecycle of the plant.
Helps with sensory development
Children get to experience different textures of the plants, soil, and seeds. Seeing different shapes, flowers, colours, smelling flowers is a great learning experience as kids learn what scents go with what flower and plant.
Teaches responsibility and patience
Gardening is not something that happens overnight, waiting for a plant to grow from a seed can take a while. Children need to keep caring for their growing plant, water it, tend to it even when they cannot see any sign that things are changing.
Helping in the garden allows kids to get a bit of exercise. Carrying soil, plants, and digging holes is a lot of work for little kids. Gardening also helps with hand eye coordination and can make writing easier when at school.
Gardening is a calm activity that allows everyone to relax and just be. The focus is on the task of caring for the plants and maintaining the garden. It is a nice change of pace in the fast-paced environment we are living in.
Learn by doing
Kids learn best by learning by doing. Putting what they have been told into practice allows children to really take in what they are being taught, as well as have fun giving it a go for themselves.
Quality time with family
Kids who garden with their family spend some good quality time just being with mum and dad or their brothers and sisters. This time allows the family to have some one-on-one connection and move at a slower pace. Another plus of gardening with the family is that you get outdoors, get some much-needed Vitamin D, and have fun together. It is all about connection to others and to the earth.
To make sure that my little boy is in tip top health and ready to garden, I add Caruso's Kids & Teens Probiotic to his breakfast. It must give him a boost as he has been racing around like he is full of beans lately, and was very happy to be my gardening buddy.
Some suggestions to help kids get involved in gardening:
- Give the kids their own part of the garden. It does not have to be big; it can be a few pots or a little area that is just for them. Having their own area for their little garden will allow a sense of ownership and you will see how keen they are to look after their part of the garden.
- Make sure that the tools for kids are lightweight and right for little hands.
- Involve older kids in decisions about the design of the garden and what plants you are planting.
- Start a worm farm – Creating a worm farm will show kids how essential worms are to gardens.
You will see how much your kids blossom (yes, a planting pun) from gardening. They will grow (yes, another pun) in confidence, creativity, have learnt some science about plants and the environment and cooperated with others to work in the garden.
Gardening is not just beneficial for kids it is also great for everyone, so I urge you to get out in the sunshine, plant something and enjoy the outdoors.
Enjoy and Happy Gardening!