Garden-Based Learning: Multidisciplinary Activity
Gardening is a multidisciplinary activity embedded with learning every step along the way, from botany to soil science to meteorology. Gardening with children encourages their natural inquisitiveness and experimentation. Plus, most kids love to get dirty! If your child loves being outside, gardening will give you both a productive reason to spend more time.
Garden-based learning is a fun and productive activity to try with your children. After you have planted your foods or flowers, your child can nurture them and watch them grow. As children nurture plants and watch them change, they learn about scientific concepts such as habitat and life cycle. On an even more basic level, they learn the logic of cause and effect relationships; for example, if a plant does not get water, it will wither. Waiting for a bulb to flower or fruits to grow can teach patience, while plants that require a lot of watering can start discussions about responsibility.
Combining gardening with cooking can have a great impact on your child’s nutrition. Getting children involved in growing and preparing the foods they eat can have a positive effect on dietary choices. Incorporating whatever foods are ready to be eaten into your dinner can teach you to be creative and add variety to your meals. Plus, harvesting the result of your effort and enjoying it in a meal can teach your children about long-term rewards. Gardening and farming make vegetables fun and instill in children the importance of understanding from where food comes.