Children loves outdoors and they likes to keep more attention, works creatively and enjoys alot. So, to spark their interests to higher levels, indulge them with gardening ideas.
You could dig up the soil and can make your children to sow the seeds and water them.
Tell them how much time its usually takes for a seed to grow into plant in simple terms.
Don’t impose them with much information at a time because children learns mostly by watching and doing.
How Do You Start A Garden For Kids?
The fastest way to make your children involve into gardening is done by allotting a little plot for growing plants to them but you have to support them in some complicative situations like weeding, replacing seeds(when seeds didn’t sprout), watering(when they forgot to water) etc.
When plants starts growing out from the seed then explain importance of watering, removing weeds etc.
If there is no sign of sprouts from sown seeds, explain the importance of replacing seeds but don’t overload them with much information because it is very hard to understand and remember at that age.
Always give them easy growing plants like lettuce, radishes, carrots, onions, peas, beans, peppers, leafy vegetables, cherry tomatoes, herbs and potatoes.
Tell them how these plants grows, show them some picture and make it a fun learning session.
Once they starts showing their interest towards gardening then provide them with kids-sized gardening tools.
Always reward their efforts and set up a little gardening chart.
When your child waters the plants, note down the date and task on the chart and compliment them by writing flattering comments beside the task. When your kid completes weeding then repeat the same thing by writing date, task, compliments on the charts. These compliments acts as rewards and appreciate all their efforts.
Dealing With Mistakes
Kids learns by making mistakes. Making mistakes is a part of learning and should not be considered as failures.
Explain them about the mistakes and how to avoid them.
Don’t give too much information at a time because children feels very hard to grasp, may lose attention and feel bored.
If your child overcomes the mistake, go back to chart and give a compliment about their improvement.
Usually gradual learning that is incorporated with fun will retain longer.
Once Your child learns, improves and masters their skills then increase the size of their plot and allow them to do digging, planting, watering and even harvesting on their own.
Local Gardening Hubs & Fairs
Form a local kids gardening hub and invite neighborhood children to join.
Create a club news letter and allow the kids to decide name, logo, membership fee(money should be used for buying new seeds for club) etc.
Conduct meetings and plan a garden fair day.
Allow the kids to make posters regarding the gardening fair and allow them to advertise for neighborhood.
Select the impartial judge and award prizes according to categories like well maintained garden, fewest weeds, best carrots, best spinach etc.
This small competition brings so much interest in kids and make them to involve in gardening, learn from other gardeners, winning and losing with grace.
If your children wins, that’s great. If not reward them with small gardening tools, video game, movie etc for their participation in the event.
Get some gardening T-shirts with club logo printed on it and award it for all the children who participated in the event. Start club’s YouTube channel because this acts as funding source.
Growing Newer Varieties:
Now your children are ready to try new varieties in order to broaden their horizons.
Introduce them a new seed variety along with information on how to grow that plant.
Provide them with gardening book which is concentrated on growing that particular variety. This helps them learning all the theory, tips and related information in growing that variety.
Also check the availability of space for the particular variety to grow. If not introduce them to container gardening.
Take them to gardening center and show them seed catalogue.
Ask them the variety of plant they would try to grow.
Herb seeds are great to start to teach them about herb kitchen gardening.
Buying a herb growing container may look fancy and easy to grow but this don’t let them to know them about growing herbs from the seeds.
Most of the plants grows in starter soil. But we should change the plant into other pots because all the nutrients in the starter soil are used by the plants and starts showing nutrition deficiency.
If you buy herb growing container then supervise them in repotting.
Growing herbs from seeds will improve your children gardening skills.
Some seeds are slow germinators for example parsley takes 20-30 days to germinate. Keeping the seeds watered, giving adequate light, air and warmth will help the seeds to germinate.
Note-keeping is very important in gardening because it reminds us of what seeds were planted, when, where, final outcome etc.
You can even include date of plantation, location, date of germination, success rate, weather challenges affecting growth and so on.
It helps in comparing with previous years record and helps in improving garden accurately.
Notes helps in developing a separate growing style for gardener.
Children will benefit from it by comparing with previous years and keeps track of pests, poor weather conditions, what crops grows in your area etc.
As your kids gets into high school, gardening can be terrific summer job to them by selling the harvest or by selling baby plants to other gardeners.
Some elementary and high schools are adding gardening as extra curricular activity.
Class rooms may equip with soil, organic fertilizers, growing lights, tools and seeds etc. You can also include growing plants outside the school property.
Growing Indoors & Customized Gardens
Crops can be grown indoors during cold months.
Garden skill that is taught by schools is very useful, applied throughout the life and can be passed to future generations.
It helps young entrepreneurs to get enough knowledge on gardening and to start their gardening business.
Customized gardens are exclusively build for individual gardener who likes variety in height of garden beds. It is the garden created for the people who cannot bend or walk.
Containers and Raised beds are great for people who enjoy different looks, heights of garden as well as people with disabilities.
Children needs supervision and support while building these raised beds.
Once outdoor gardens are completed then encourage children to build indoor garden.
For kids simple growing crops like onions, garlic, peas, herbs are best choice.
Kids likes the artificial lighting and feels very fun to grow plants indoors than outdoors.
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Video Source: YouTube