Tips for Gardening with Kids

by Kimberley McGee
gardening with kids

Kids learn so much from digging in the dirt, growing plants from seeds and cultivating vegetables for family dinners. Gardening classes for kids can teach them how the plants grow and help them gain confidence while growing their own vegetables.

I get a lot of questions about what to grow in the desert, from containers on a patio to how to build a backyard garden. So, I bought a garden bed at Floyd Lamb park for kids to be able to see what grows well here and to hold classes. I’ve reached out to a few people and will update the classes in the weekly newsletter. I designed a garden planner to hold all your plans and projects. It’s on sale for less than $2 through SUNDAY April 18 with discount code SPRINGCLEAN.

 

Build an Earthworm Farm

Terri at Homeschool Gardens taught us how to build an earthworm farm! It was a so much fun, we probably all forgot how to maintain those healthy farms! Here is the series of posts Terri wrote to help you build, maintain and successfully use the products of the earthworm farm in your garden.

How to Build a Worm Farm
How to Feed Composting Worms
How to Harvest Worm Compost

earthworm farm

What Kids Learn from Gardening

There are many skills children learn when working a garden, from the growing process to expanding their vocabulary and outdoor experiences. They can also improve fine motor skills with writing and drawing. We have a bucket of paint pens and rocks for kids to decorate rocks. We have hidden a few around the garden! If you find one, take a photo and tag us on Instagram @vegaskidszone!

painting rocks at gardening class

 

Kids can also get a chance to check out local wildlife. We’ve seen jackrabbits, peacocks, chipmunks and a wide variety of birds. We’ve even had a few horses stop by, with their riders, and talk to the kids about the animals’ dressings, diet and dispositions!

horse riders in las vegas

Gardening can help children get an understanding of the lifecycle of plants, a closer look at wildlife, compare the shapes, sizes, and weight of seeds, foliage, and produce. They solve problems as they work the garden and figure out how to keep critters out, protect plants, pry away rocks and clear out leaves and junk from the bed. They can also chart the height of the plants each week and track their growth.

Gardening is a tactile and sensory experience that revs up their curiosity. Kids can work independently from a young age to grow their own vegetables from seeds they push into the dirt. They are so proud when they pluck the ripened fruit after patiently waiting and tending the garden.

The best part of our gardening days has been the other families and kids we’ve met at the community beds. On a recent afternoon, as another mom and I worked our beds, we commented that while we brought helpers, we didn’t have any because they were using sticks as swords, gathering pine cones and running rings around the garden.

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