If you have run out of ideas of projects that you can get your kids involved in during this pandemic, you should try gardening. Rather than have your children stay indoors and play video games that contribute to living a sedentary lifestyle, you can get them to plant a themed garden of vegetables in your backyard. To make it interesting, you can have them plant vegetables used to make their favorite food such as pizza. Here are 4 reasons why you should get your kids garden:
Encourages eating organic food
If your children are the picky type, it is highly unlikely that they will refuse to eat food that they grew themselves. Astudy conducted among children involved in school-based gardening activities showed that this activity increased their consumption of fruits and vegetables. Their sudden interest in healthy food would be driven by the curiosity to taste the food they helped plant. To encourage them, you can have them eat raw vegetables like carrots or beets while you cook the rest onto their favorite meal. Another research showed college students who have been exposed to gardening before ate more healthy foods including fruits and vegetables as adults. Therefore, turning your children into young growers guarantees that they will continue eating healthy as adults!
Promotes mental health
It is said that it is always easier to find your zen when you are outdoors; well, it is the same for kids too. Gardening provides horticultural therapy, a practice that improves children’s mental and physical well-being. If you doubt this, ask yourself why there are gardens planted in rehab centers and children’s hospitals like The Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario. In case you didn't know, children also experience stress. Studies conducted show that compared to playing out in the playground; gardening helps reduce children’s stress and inattention significantly. Some researchers postulate that there is a bacterium found in the soil which helps in boosting mood and triggering learning behaviors. Thus, during these pandemic times when mental health pertinent for everyone’s general well-being, get your kids into the outdoors to soothe their minds!
You can turn planting seedlings into a game or picking up your harvest into a fun activity where children get to guess what you intend to make for lunch. All these activities are a great way to spark creativity in your children and get them to think outside the box. You can also turn these activities into a senses feast where you get them to experience various plant textures or smells which are perfect for art and craft.
Suppose you live in an apartment and do not have access to the outdoors, you can grow plants in your apartment so that your kids still get to experience gardening while indoors. For you to succeed in creating an indoor garden, you need to find a grow tent setup. The beauty of this tent is that you can grow your plants all year long because you can control the growing environment wholly. This advantage translates to better harvests, organized growing because you are working with limited space, and few pests problems to deal with. Should you travel or get busy with other duties, you never have to worry about killing the plants, because you can preset the temperature and humidity inside the tent.
Boosts physical activity
According to the American Society for Horticultural Sciences, all the activities involved in nurturing a garden offer moderate to intense physical activity for children. Therefore, when you send your kids back and forth to bring you tools, get them to water the plants, weed, and harvest vegetables, you are getting them to exercise which is good for their metabolism. By the end of the day, your kids would be so tired that when they go to bed, they fall into a deep sleep which helps improve their attention, learning, behavior, and memory.
Gardening is a healthy and fun exercise. It will help your children gain skills in agriculture, learn about science, and appreciate where their food comes from. During these pandemic times where moving around is restricted and risky, you can get them involved in a broad range of activities such as mulching, weeding, and planting. But you have to ensure that your garden is safe by putting up fences, gates, and acquiring suitable equipment for your kids.