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gardening with kids

The Reality of Gardening with Kids

Posted by: Rhonda May 24, 2016

Every child should have the opportunity to get their hands in dirt, plant seeds, and experience the wonder of growing things. But put aside your romantic ideas—gardening with small children “is seldom as calm, intentional, or controlled as most teachers hope it will be,” writes Catherine Koons-Hubbard. “Instead, it’s about seeds being scattered in clumps and piles. It’s about far too much water being poured in one spot and next-to-no water reaching another. It’s about plants being dug up to see the progress at the other end.”


In other words, gardening with children is unpredictable, frustrating, and risky. Even so, we can’t force children to sit on the sidelines and simply watch. “They need to be in the garden, touching, tasting, and to some extent, destroying, in order to experience the absolute wonder of life springing from what seems like nothing.”


“For most children, gardening is just another form of play: there’s dirt, there’s water, and there are fun tools like shovels and hoes. But like all play, there is learning going on beneath the surface, just out of sight. It’s the kind that occurs without the child even being aware of it.” Read more.