Gardening with Your Child

Gardening with children can be a lot of fun.  Children love digging in the dirt and watching plants grow.  You do not have to be a master gardener to grow vegetables, plants, and flowers.  You do not even need a lot of space to do this.  Gardening is a great way for you and your child to spend time together, get outside instead of inside watching TV or on the computer.  Gardening can also be relaxing and healthy activity or you and your children. Watch Miss Tracy discuss this topic on The Rhode Show!

Ways to get your children involved

  • Talk to your children on what they might want to grow.
  • Decide on a spot if you do not all ready have one.
  • Small space, no worries plant in large pots.
  • Once decided on what to plant, tools will be needed next.
  • Choose tools that children can use and be successful when they use them.   Stores have a variety of gardening tools for children. (not plastic)  Take your child to go pick some out together so they have their own garden bag of goodies.
  • If you have several children, give each child a one square foot personal garden.   Put tongue depressor with their names on their garden space.

Consider planting with the 5 senses in mind

  • Touch – woolly lamb’s ear, succulents (such as aloe Vera),  snapdragons
  • Taste – basil, strawberries, peas, rosemary, carrots, cherry tomatoes
  • Smell – jasmine, sweet peas, lavender, mint bush, lemon balm
  • Sight– daffodils, rainbow chard, marigolds, pansies, sunflowers
  • Sound – corn, bamboo and grasses rustle against each other when the wind blows

These will children the opportunities to use all of their five senses while they explore what they have grown.

Gardening can also be Educational

  • Gardening teaches children responsibility of taking care of living things.
  • Cause and effect  how things grown, what happens when they get no water or sunlight.
  • Children learn about nutrition and benefit from eating what they grow.  Your child may even try something new.
  • Children will also learn self-confidence, by watching plants grow that they planted and took care of.
  • Children can learn science by composting and learning what to recycle.

Resources:  Gardening for kids and Gardening Better Health

This article was written by Tracy Martin-Turgeon, VP and Regional Director at The Children’s Workshop.