The Benefits of Gardening in Early Childhood
There are a lot of parents are struggling to find one activities that could drain the excessive energy that their children have while at the same time also educative. Well, how about gardening? Generally, children are easily attracted to play outside, get dirt on their clothes or just running around in the back yard. Parents could distract their children by asking them to join the gardening activities because the benefits of gardening in early childhood are not only a good option of exercise but also teaching them to know their environment a bit better. Moreover, gardening could be considered as recreational activities and there are a lot of benefits of recreational activities for mental health and children during development.
Simple Gardening for Children
When asking your children to do gardening activities, sometimes parents are over thinking and preparing everything especially when it comes to dirt. Well, gardening activity is also a perfect time to let your children spend their time doing all the mushy dirty activities because at the end of the day they will get bored. If you don’t let them, they will become curious and keep doing it behind your back and keep giving you dirty laundry until their reach teenagers. It is only one of the benefits the list below will give you more information about the benefits of gardening in early childhood.
- Enhances Sensory Development
During the gardening activities your children will touch a lot of things from the dirt, grass up to plants. For toddlers this kind of activity could be encourage not only their sensory ability but also encourage their curiosity. They will touch a lot of things at the same time not only with their hands but also with their feet.
- Improves Motor Skill
You cannot just sit around if you want to grow something. You should do a lot of physical activities in doing gardening. For children it could improve their motor skills. So parents could distract them from hours sitting in front of TV playing video games because playing outside is a lot fun than that.
- Teaches Them about Environment
It is important for parents to teach their children about environment. It will enhance their curiosity and at the same time is improve their respect to environment around them. There is no better activity to introduce them about the importance of environment for their life but gardening activity.
- Enhances their Knowledge about Plants
It is important to teach your children about plants, vegetables or fruits they eat. You cannot just teach them about their name but also the health benefits of eating fruits and vegetables. Moreover, growing their own vegetables and fruits will tell your children more about the benefits of organic fruits and vegetables compared to non-organic ones.
- Encourages Healthy Eating
From the previous points, the more they know about vegetables or fruits they grow, the more curious they are about the health benefits of fruits and vegetables for kindergarten and children in general. In other words, it could encourage them of healthy eating because they consume all vegetables and fruits they grow themselves which is healthy and safe for environment.
- Develops Social Skills
There are a lot of social benefits of exercise including gardening. If you have more than one child and due to some factors like age gap are making them not really well in getting along, gardening could help them developing social skills because during this activity they could learn how to work together.
- Relieves Stress
There are lot of health risks of stress even children could get stress over homework, school or even fight with siblings. Well, asking them to join gardening activity is an instant solution to relieve the stress in children.
- Alternatives Education
If your children somehow getting bored study indoor you could ask them to do gardening activities. Through this activity they could learn about plants, basic biology, basic sciences even maths such as how many seeds they should plant in a row or how plant cannot grow without water.
- Improves Creativity
Gardening activity is also good to improve their creativity. Though it is too far to teach them about landscaping but they could learn about how flowers could become more beautiful if they arrange them in random way.
- Teaches Children about Plan and Organize
During gardening activity children should learn about steps and process from preparing the land, preparing the seeds up to how to organize the schedule so they could take care of the plants.
- They Could Learn about Being Patience
Gardening is not an instant way, they should learn about patience because you cannot grow tomato in a day. Instead they should learn about how to be patience and not getting bored in taking care the plants they have planted.
- They Could Learn about Responsibility
Not only teaching them about patience, one of the benefits of gardening in early childhood is also teaching them about responsibility. Once they have planted the plants, they have responsibility to take care of the plant until it grows flowers, fruits and they should wait until the times to harvest them.
Things to Prepare and Considerate
If you want to ask your children to join the gardening activities there are some things to prepare and some things to considerate as well.
- Gardening activities may include some sharp objects like scissors or shovel. If your children are old enough like 4 or 5 years old and have handled scissors before, you could trust them with scissors which size is good for them. But for children under 4 years old is better for you to take care of sharp objects.
- Choose the right or good weather when asking your children doing gardening activities outside. It is better if you do it early in the morning when the weather is still fresh.
- Some days before the day, you could discuss with your children about plants, flowers, vegetables or fruit tree they want to grow and then ask them out to shop some seeds. However, it is also important to choose plants that required short time to grow. It will excite them more because they feel involved in the process.
After the big gardening day, you could put a schedule or assign each of your children to each activity in taking care the plants they have planted. It will enhance their responsibility though sometimes they will find it a bit boring but wait until the flowers blooms or the fruit trees are actually growing the fruits they love and comes the time for them to harvest it. Believe it or not, this activity could become an addiction for your children.