FUN IN THE SUN – 10 REASONS TO GET YOUR GREEN FINGERED KIDS IN THE GARDEN
Not much can beat the feeling of being out in the garden full of sun and fresh air surrounding our every breath. That is why it is increasingly important in encouraging little ones to spend as much time in the garden as possible. Whether that is simply playing, or even helping mum and dad with some gardening, being outside can help build personal bonds and increase creativity amongst children.
In this Blog we will explore 10 reasons to encourage your kids into the garden.
HELPS TO CREATE BONDS WITH FAMILY
Getting out in the garden and spending quality family time together can be a great method in encouraging your little ones to want to spend time in the garden. Parents can make children feel connected to the garden through allowing them to help choose types of flowers and plants which can be put within the garden area.
Regular gardening can help to sustain and further develop relationships, whilst also laying the foundations of hard work and the importance of team work. Having such values at a young age can be such as fundamental life skill.
ENCOURAGES HEALTHY EATING
Healthy eating is becoming an ever more important element within general society. In terms of children, a healthy and balanced diet is pivotal for the brain and body development. However, getting children to eat a variety of fruit and vegetables can be difficult. By having children grow their own crop such as carrots, lettuce, tomatoes etc. they will then have a sense of pride in eating food that they have helped to create. This will go a long way in emphasising the importance of a healthy balanced diet to children.
In turn, children will start to love exploring and eating a wider range of fruits and vegetables, helping to make meal times easier for parents. If you’re lucky, your little one might even be open to the possibility of eating their sprouts on Christmas Day…maybe even encouraging adults to eat their own sprouts and vegetables!
CAN TEACH CHILDREN THE PRINCIPLE OF LOOKING AFTER THINGS
Gardening can be a fantastic method to help children develop an understanding of taking care and looking after a wide variety of things. For example, gardening can help children to take care of seeds daily in order for them to develop into healthy plants. To help, you can make a checklist that kids can use to make sure they care for their plant every day.
ENHANCES MOTOR DEVELOPMENT AND COORDINATION
Scooping up the dirt, placing the seeds in the pots and pouring the water all take fine motor control and strength. As kids garden, they develop important motor skills that will help them improve their academic skills such as writing, cutting and typing.
Gardening is also a fantastic activity which can assist in both children and adults keeping fit and healthy. As touched upon in our article ‘can gardening be good for your health’ (click here to read) 30-45 minutes of gardening at least 3-5 times a week is great for our overall health.
HELPS TO ENGAGE AND DEVELOP SENSES
It is said that children learn best when their senses are being fully engaged. When gardening, kids can touch and feel seeds, flowers, dirt as well as seeing a wide array of colours and varying in sized plants. In addition to the vast scents of flowers, children can develop these senses in more detail through gardening. Allowing all the senses to be involved helps kids understand and grasp the concept of gardening along with all the scientific concepts that go along with it.
KIDS ENJOY GETTING MUDDY AND DIRTY!
As much as parents do not like it when their kids get dirty and mucky, dirt in fact is actually good (to an extent) with improving children’s immune systems and reduce chronic conditions such as diabetes, asthma, allergies and obesity.
Therefore, children should be encouraged to help plant seeds, dig soil and pull out weeds as it will enable them to get their little hands dirty. This in turn will help kids to sustain a bond with the garden and the overall natural environment – meaning they would want to spend more time in the great outdoors!
The benefits of this can be vast as not only would your kids build a desire for gardening and the outdoors, it will also enable them to develop stronger immune systems which is great for long-term health.
INTRODUCES KIDS TO SCIENTIFIC CONCEPTS
Gardening is a wonderful introduction into the world of science especially botany, biology and chemistry. When kids plant their first seeds they become curious about what will happen next. They make their own hypothesis and monitor the progress each day.
This is a fantastic way to get kids to learn the basis of science. From an early age, they can gather a better understanding regarding the impact of sunlight and water which are both fundamental elements towards the growth of plants. Therefore, gardening can provide the perfect science lesson whilst being at home.
HIGHLIGHTS THE IMPORTANCE OF TAKING CARE OF THE ENVIRONMENT
Environmental sustainability is an element which more and more of us are becoming passionate about. Therefore, it is important to get that mindset into children as early as possible. This should help to get them growing up with a mindset of wanting to protect the environment in addition to planting and growing healthy plants.
Areas such as pollution, pesticides and recycling are all factors which children can start to grasp from an early age, helping to make them want to make a positive impact in the future.
THE OUTDOORS IS A GREAT PLACE TO BE
Does your little one love spending time playing computer games and baulks at the idea of going outside because they “have nothing to do out there?” Well, you won’t be the only one. Planting and general gardening is a great method in enticing your children outside. Children are naturally curious and like to check the progress of plants or vegetables that they have planted.
It is important to remember that getting kids outside helps to keep them active, creative and reduces stress levels whilst making them smarter!
THE GARDEN IS THE PERFECT PLAY AREA
Children playing outside is unfortunately not as common as it used to be as electronic devices such as tablets, phones and consoles take up a lot of their spare time. However, playing out in the garden has so many health benefits, in addition to being lots of fun!
Playing outside exposes kids to the natural environment and gives them important vitamins such as vitamin D from the sun, which is imperative with regards to children growing up with healthy skin. The fresh air which is further aided by the plants they have helped to plant in the garden is another great reason to encourage kids to play in the garden.
Having fun and playing in the garden will also keep kids fit and healthy as activities such as a variety of ball games and running around playing with water pistols are both full of fun and great for long-term health. To check out our range of toys which are great for the garden, please click here to view toys which are available on our online shop.
We hope that the above examples will help encourage kids to spend as much as time as possible in the garden as it has so many health benefits for them as well as being a great way to help them burn off some of their never-ending supply of energy!
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