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Learn more. How Verizon Media and our partners bring you better ad experiences To give you a better overall experience, we want to provide relevant ads that are more useful to you. Physically working to achieve a goal is something that should be valued and encouraged. The benefit of physical labor is that typically at the end of the day you are able to step back and visually see what you have accomplished.

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It is so important for small children to be able to see their progress and appreciate the work that they have just completed. I love gardening for many reasons but one of the biggest draws for me to want to share it with my children is to teach them self sufficiency. I want my children to be able to live their lives without being dependant on the decisions of others and instead have the knowledge, skills, and confidence to live freely and successfully on their own reliance. I am not a doomsdayer by any means but I truly believe that old-fashioned skills such as gardening, food preservation, scratch cooking, and animal husbandry still have an important place in a modern society and passing this on to our children will make them well-rounded individuals.

It is really never too early to start exposing children to your garden.

Gardening with Children

One of the struggles with trying to garden while having small children is how to contain them and keep them busy and occupied while you get some work done! Some options are taking them outside to sit in a stroller while you weed or harvest. You could also set up a pack-n-play or play yard in the garden so that they can safely play.

If they are able to move around, sit, crawl, or walk you could also let them wander around and investigate. Gardening can really awaken the senses and allows children access to some brand new smells, sights, sounds, and textures to feel. Kids can play in the dirt, roll cherry tomatoes around, pick up bugs and worms, and splash in a bucket of water. Some of these simple sensory activities can keep children occupied while you get some much-needed gardening done!

Gardening with young children helps their development

By gardening with your children, you can emphasize the importance of taking care of the earth and all of its living things and develop a real connection and appreciation for the nature that is accessible right in their backyard! Independence is an extremely important thing for little kids. Gardening is a perfect way to allow them some controlled independence, which will help them develop a sense of pride and responsibility. Doing new things by themselves encourages confidence and allows them to be responsible and proud of their successes. My oldest loves to carry baskets of vegetables and it makes him so proud to be able to fill a basket full of tomatoes and carry it to the house.

What an awesome feeling for both your children and for yourself! Gardening is full of failures. Every year you are pretty much guaranteed to face at least several different challenges, obstacles, or setbacks with your garden. While it may be frustrating, if you are already anticipating this, these challenges can provide some great learning opportunities for your children. One of our last gardens was a HUGE failure. That season we experienced a record-breaking amount of rain and major deer and rabbit problems which made for an awful gardening year.

Alan Titchmarsh's Summer Garden - Four Great Plants to Grow With Kids - Waitrose

We barely harvested anything that year. We were very disappointed but the experiences forced us to learn how to handle and prevent these challenges in the future.

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Understanding and dealing with failure is a very important lesson that children can learn from gardening. One of the great things about getting children involved in gardening is that it allows them to be more connected to the food they eat. Watching the entire growing process of a green bean plant can encourage much more excitement about trying something new than just buying it at the store. Actually having a part in growing, harvesting, and preparing the vegetable, could encourage curiosity in a child making them more likely to try a vegetable they would otherwise be opposed to.

Patience is a virtue! Gardening definitely teaches all of us patience. Once you plant that initial seed, you will have to wait for the plant to grow, then wait for the vegetable to grow and be ready to pick, and lastly, wait to eat it. These steps requiring patience will help your children understand that not everything can be obtained instantly. Instant gratification has no place in gardening and in my opinion, that is so refreshing! I LOVE the idea of treating the garden like an entire family project. As there are so many tasks in gardening, everyone can have a special responsibility and job.

This not only encourages teamwork among the family but also allows the child to own a part of the garden where they can see the benefits of their individual efforts of hard work. A family should rely on each other but also encourage and elevate each individual. In the end, you all get to reap the benefits and eat the food!

Grow your own Tomato Sauce

Today, there is so much instant gratification and social media that sometimes it is so refreshing to have something real, natural, and intentional. There are many reasons as to why someone would choose to live a homesteading lifestyle. It seems that all of those reasons are generally based on the desire to provide their family with security, love, and protection. For our family, we want to provide our children with security and protection in the way of teaching them to be self-sufficient so that they can be successful regardless of the actions of other people.

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We also want to foster a close family unit which to us looks like teamwork to complete family projects and work towards a family goal that will be beneficial to all of us. These values and beliefs are the driving force for our decision to homestead and by living out those dreams, our children are also learning to create their own dreams and take action.

What I love so much about gardening is that it can be a personal and private endeavor for you and your family. Peas, kale, beans, carrots, and tomatoes are some easy vegetables to grow with kids.

Cultivating childhood or teen gardeners will reap benefits that go beyond healthy eating habits. Keep in mind the best vegetables to grow with kids and the 10 easiest vegetables to grow from seeds. Pick up your organic seeds and compost and let […]. Your email address will not be published. Recipe Rating. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed. Related: Gardening Lab for Kids: 52 Fun Experiments to Learn, Grow, Harvest, Play, and Enjoy Your Garden She has seen an increase in observation skills, curiosity, and a willingness to collaborate among the children who work with her in the garden.

Say Peas! Prehistoric Kale Kale plants grow incredibly healthy leaves, loaded with calcium, iron and antioxidants. Carrot Surprise Carrots are fascinating to kids because of the mystery: they see the leaves, but the carrot is hidden under ground. Tiny Tasty Tomatoes Cherry tomatoes are a delicious treat eaten straight off the vine, still warm from the sun.