Incorporating a garden into your family’s routine helps your children build skills to live healthy, balanced lives, and that just one reason why your kids should garden. Take advantage of the natural opportunity to model and teach your kids the life skills they need to lead successful, happy lives.
With modern grocery stores and grocery delivery services, you no longer have to grow your own food for survival.
But there are still plenty of reasons why my garden is a necessity in my life, including benefits like:
- Cutting down on screen time and instead spending quality time working with my hands
- Exercise, fresh air, and a daily chance to be in tune with nature
- Developing an understanding of where my food comes from and how to be a sustainable citizen of the planet
- Taking ownership of my life, developing healthy habits, and learning “consistency is key”
- How to cook, prepare, and preserve garden-grown foods
Do those sound like life skills you want your kids to learn? One study showed that children who participated in gardening projects scored higher in areas of science.
You might think of gardening as a physical activity, but tending to plants requires:
・math and science skills
・observational and investigative skills
・writing and planning skills
・connecting with your intuition and trusting your instincts
Talk about a building the skills to live a well-balanced life! The added bonus is that at harvest time, all the phytonutrients, vitamins, and minerals are a natural brain boost.
Your Kids Should Garden So They Eat Their Veggies!
Even though we know the nutritional benefits of eating fresh-grown foods, it can be a challenge to get kids to eat their veggies and I’ve had many parents tell me it’s a daily struggle. If you want your kids to have a well-rounded diet, gardening can be a fantastic tool to aid in that. Plant kid-friendly varieties like sugar snap peas, sweet cherry tomatoes, and raspberries and have your kids join in throughout the whole growing process. In addition to teaching your kids how to garden, you’ll be spending quality time together and making an investment in a healthy future. It might take time to adjust your family’s taste buds, but the more you eat new fresh veggies, the more you’ll enjoy them.
Your Kids Should Garden for Exposure to Healthy Germs
If you need help convincing your kids to get out in the garden, give them the license to get dirty. Have you heard of the hygiene hypothesis? Well, it’s another reason why your kids should garden. It proposes that childhood exposure to germs can help the immune system develop. The soil is full of bacteria, microbes, and while you might be thinking “ew,” it’s actually so good for us. The soil really is alive and although we can’t see the biodiversity happening beneath the surface, getting our hands dirty can aid in boosting immunity and make us less susceptible to allergens, asthma, and disease. It’s easy to see that with the rise of technology, humans are spending much more time inside. Playing in the dirt and soaking up the sun can go a long way in supporting the health of your whole family, and the natural exercise you’ll get from weeding, watering, and harvest is just a bonus!
Your Kids Should Garden to Explore Their Interests
Each kid is different, but everyone can benefit from some aspect of gardening. For some kids, it might be more about digging in the dirt. For others, the bugs and the critters might be the most interesting part. Some children find a real sense of purpose in caring for a plant from seed to harvest. It can be surprising to see why your kids should garden, and they might be naturally drawn toward something you would never expect! I encourage you to give your children the responsibility of tending to the garden and watch the healthy benefits of being out in nature boost their moods and reduce feelings of anxiety. Plus, afternoon snacks are ready-made in the garden – pick them fresh!