By: Oliver Assogna
There are many reasons why you should encourage your kids to pick up gardening. It makes for fantastic entertainment, it will become a hobby your children will nurture for the rest of their lives, and it refines their palate. In fact, there will be no crocodile tears next time they are presented with carrots or broccoli at the dinner table!
Outdoor trips are great fun, but we also strongly believe that you can have a brilliant time in your own back garden. Here is a brief guide that explains why gardening is the perfect pastime for your little ones.
They will love it
Let’s face it – gardening can be mucky and very messy. As we know, children are more than happy to get covered in soil and mud. You may have to put the washing machine on straight afterwards, but it will be worth it.
From mixing their own compost and searching for bugs to planting vegetables and making mud pies, gardening keeps your kids busy and amused. They do not need specific tools either – with a big spoon in their hand, they can dig all day long.
A life-long hobby
Studies show that children who take up gardening tend to perform better at school. In fact, it is an activity that stimulates all five senses. They can see, smell, touch, and feel a wide variety of plants, and it enhances their motor skills too!
Moreover, it is a hobby that gets all the family involved. Whatever the weather or the season, you can join them in the garden as they put their kids’ wellies on. During the colder months, you may also want to encourage your children to build a DIY greenhouse or a den in which to keep their own-grown plants. This will also allow them to garden regardless of the weather.
A different lesson every day
There is nothing better than an activity that is both fun and educational. Gardening is an inexpensive hobby that will get your kids’ grey cells working, teaching them everything they need to know about nature and the environment.
By digging and playing with soil, while watching their plants and vegetables sprout, gardening will spark your children’s curiosity and creativity. Not only will seeding develop their patience and sense of responsibility, but it will also enhance their organisational competencies.
They will grow strong and healthy
Both a mind-body workout and playful activity, gardening is a brilliant way for your children to unwind and burn energy. By planting their own vegetables and watching them grow, your kids will also develop an interest in healthy eating. In fact, they will no longer hesitate in front of a plate of carrots or celery if it is their own ‘creation’.
They will appreciate natural food
Not only will your children eat their veggies without having a tantrum, but they will also appreciate the importance of consuming natural food.
Do not worry if you do not have a garden. The good thing about growing greens is that you can do so from the comfort of your own kitchen, as herbs like basil, oregano, mint, and rosemary survive warmer indoor temperatures too. By putting the pots on your windowsill, your budding little gardeners will be able to check on them whenever they like.
Why not start with fast-sprouting seeds such as cress? This way, your kids will not have to wait too long before seeing the results of their hard efforts.
As you can see, gardening is a perfect activity for curious and energetic children. Both fun and healthy, it is a brilliant hobby for them to grow up with!