The Benefits of Gardening With Kids

Benefits fo Gardening with Kids

Guest Blogger, Heather Roberts

Gardening is among the most popular hobbies that people nowadays practice. It is good for so many reasons that listing them all would be impossible. If you have a garden space to your home, you should make every effort to utilize it and work there with your children, as that is a great idea!

If you are all for spending some quality time with your children in the garden, you are definitely on the right track. It will help them build up knowledge of the natural world, engage in a lot of interesting and fun activities and grow beautiful flowers or delicious healthy produce. There are plenty of benefits to gardening with your children:

  • It is a fun physical activity – if you can develop interest in your children about the outdoors, you can surely feel proud of yourself. It is not only healthy for them to spend time out in the sun, but also to get sufficient physical activity in order to stay in shape. There is plenty of stuff in the garden for them to do – from lawn care and landscaping to garden clearance and removing clutter. All of it falls in the category of interesting activities that your children can engage in.
  • Acquiring knowledge of the wildlife – whenever your children work beside you in the garden, they acquire useful knowledge of the world that surrounds them – plants and wildlife. For example, growing your own produce can teach them a great deal about where their food comes from. Even if they don’t grow to be gardening experts, you can be proud of the fact that it is useful experience for them to acquire.
  • Understanding animals – all children are curious and quite interested in the animal kingdom; that is no secret. Well, gardening presents the greatest opportunity for some interactions of this kind. You can work with your children to create a birdhouse or a squirrel feeder. Growing beautiful flowers also means that one day you may see gorgeous butterflies. If you build together a small pond, chances are you may even attract frogs. These are just few examples of how garden care with your children can encourage their interaction with the surrounding world!
  • Plant growing and care – normally, all gardening activities are associated with growing various plants. What better way to introduce your children to the various plants of the world than to grow some together? A wide range of skills can be acquired that way – knowledge on how to look after plants, how to perform effective garden maintenance, care for flowers, etc. All of that will be useful to them and help them become more responsible. Be their guide in the world of gardening and explain to them the process of plant growing as much as you can, as well as anything else they might want to ask you about.
  • Spending quality time together – the garden makes for the perfect place to spend some family time with your little ones. You can work on creating wonderful displays of flowers or grow other plants together. In case you have a playground there, it is even better!

Gardening with your children is definitely a great idea! In case you haven’t already, you should definitely introduce them to this area of your home.

Explore Through Play: Scavenger Hunt

sacevnger hunt 1One of my favorite things about being a parent and a child life specialist, is that I get to witness children exploring their world through play. I just stay present, connected and follow their lead, they do all the rest.

We decided to go for an adventure walk one afternoon and wrote out a scavenger hunt list with the help of my five-year old.

scavenger hunt list

The word “hunt” must have trigger him to get into his hunting gear, which is basically anything cameo. Within a few minutes he had changed his clothes, put on his hat and attached a large squirt gun to his backpack. Then he gathered his hunting dogs and binoculars.

scavengerhunt2

Off we went, looking for dead animals, bugs, leaves and one diamond.

scavengerhunt3

It was pretty cute to watch the two engage. They discussed who would be the leader, what to look for and to be vigilant of zombies. They showed each other what they found and even stopped to smell the roses, well dandelions.

scavengerhunt5

We came home with a wagon full of new discoveries and a smile on our faces. 🙂

Scavenger hunts are great! They let kids lead, problem solve and use their imagination. It can also be done indoors. To my fellow child life specialists, this is a great activity for hospitalized kids.

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