Gardening, in general, has proven to have a variety of benefits for adults. It can reduce stress, provide a healthy workout, and can help to fight disease. It has external benefits, as well. Whether you choose to create your own garden or get your kids involved, it can boost the overall value of your home by increasing the curb appeal if you ever decide to sell.
For all of the benefits gardening can provide as an adult, gardening with your children can bring even more positivity – for both of you!
You and your children will both gain a lot from gardening together. So, it’s time to get them interested in getting their hands dirty. Not convinced? Let’s cover three interesting benefits of gardening with your children that will motivate you both to get outside and start planting.
1. Healthy Eating
Kids can be picky eaters – especially when it comes to fruits and vegetables. But, research has shown that children are more likely to try new things when they help to grow them. You can use gardening as a great way to teach your children about proper nutrition and fueling their bodies. If they’re hesitant to try things, use the following tips to make it easier:
- Start small
- Grow vegetables they’re already familiar with
- Try an herb garden that they can add to foods they enjoy
- Encourage taste tests
When you explain how each fruit or vegetable can benefit your child, they are likely to become more interested. Plus, what child wouldn’t want to enjoy the “fruits of their labor” when they’ve tended to something from start to finish? Not only is it a fantastic way to teach your kids about nutrition, but it’s a wonderful life lesson in working hard for something to reap the rewards.
Gardening is a great way to do something fun together with your children that also gives you time to bond and get closer. Unlike many other hobbies and outings, gardening is relatively quiet. You’ll be able to talk to each other while appreciating your natural surroundings. You’ll have to use proper communication, teamwork, and listening skills to plant and tend to your garden over the season.
It’s also an opportunity to teach your child about basic outdoor safety while helping them feel cared for and secure. When you’re going to be outside for long periods, stress the importance of hydration. Provide them with water and keep them safe from the sun with:
- A high-quality sunscreen
- Protective clothing
- Frequent breaks
You might be surprised by how much you can learn about your child (and learn from them) when you’re spending time together in the garden. It can be a hobby the two of you share for years and a time you both look forward to so you can reconnect and get closer.
3. A Natural Science Lesson
Let’s face it, nature is amazing!
If your child is already interested in science, or even if they tend to struggle with it in school, gardening is an easy way to get them excited about it and show them how science impacts our everyday lives.
You can start your science “lesson” by practicing garden safety. Make sure there is no vermiculite in your soil and explain to your children how that compound could be harmful since it was mined in the same ore deposits as asbestos.
Once you’ve talked about safety, you can “dig in” to how soil impacts the growth of your garden and what you can do to enrich it. The possible conversation topics are truly endless, from the science of nutrition to how fruits, vegetables, and plants grow. Be prepared to answer a lot of questions. Kids are naturally curious, and that’s a good thing!
If you’re looking for a hobby to share with your children that will benefit you both and offer them life-long skills, look no further than gardening together. Keep these interesting benefits in mind as you get started, and it will end up being something you both look forward to each day.