Top 5 Gardening Ideas for Children
Our nursery in Bromley, Kindred Les Enfants, recently started up their very own allotment. It has brought the whole community together and has sparked an incredible interest in healthy eating and ‘where does our food come from?’ conversations throughout the nursery!
It got us thinking about the huge benefits gardening can have for our young ones and…a little bit older than the young, nursery team! Gardening is a fun and educational activity for children to enjoy outside in the fresh air, and it offers plenty of health benefits.
Did you know? Research has shown that children who participate in gardening activities perform better at school. Capture their interest by planting colourful blooms, watering seeds and asking them to rake up leaves. Giving children their own garden tools is a brilliant way to hand over new responsibilities, while teaching them to be independent.
So, we have pulled together our top 5 favourite ideas to help get our little ones flexing their green fingers!
1. Think big, start small
Start by opting for small easy-to-grow flower seeds such as sunflowers, marigolds and dandelions. If it's your child's first time at gardening, aim to get them involved in simple tasks such as raking, putting fresh soil on flowers or watering plants. These small yet exciting tasks will teach them responsibility and help to boost their confidence.
Check out these beauties that our little Les Enfants team grew in their allotment! Boy, are we all feeling proud and smug right now!
2. Make your own plant markers
You won't want your gardening projects getting mixed up, so you'll need to create some handy labels to sit alongside all your plants.
You could paint the names onto rocks, scraps of wood, miniature flags made of cocktail sticks and card, or - and personally we recommend you do this one - you could get your toy dinosaurs to hold them in their mouths!
3. Get creative with grass
Now this is going to bring back memories for those of us in the ‘little bit older than the young’ generation - Grass heads! It will make the whole family smile. Get a pair of tights, fill the foot with moist soil and grass seeds, then tie the end of the tights. Draw a face on it, and watch your grass head grow its own hair!
4. Fairytale beanstalks
Beans are so easy to grow, you can simply do it in a plastic cup with a little soil and some TLC. Create some little castles and clouds out of card and cotton wool and skewers and see your beanstalk grow right the way up to the castle, just like in Jack and the Beanstalk.
5. Edible delights
It's important to establish good habits about healthy eating early on in young children. Getting them clued up about how fresh produce grows will encourage them to think about where their food comes from. Start by growing simple fruits and vegetables such as peas, radishes, carrots, lettuce and strawberries. Your children will love to water them each day, watch them grow and eventually eat them. Check out the potatoes and spring onions we grew at Les Enfants - they turned it into their very own potato salad!