PUBLISHED: 10:00 13 August 2017
With the summer holidays in full swing garden projects are a wonderful way for adults and children to get outside in the fresh air, and positively direct pent-up energy into something meaningful and constructive.
Children are naturally inquisitive and with the power of their imagination, everything they will see, hear, smell and feel in a garden will open a whole new world of learning to their young minds. They can be simple projects like creating a fairy garden, or more complex like building a home for wildlife like a bug hotel or hedgehog house. Find some inspiring and simple projects that you can work on that can help to you to pass on valuable DIY skills to children on our Home Made By You page.
1. It expands their knowledge
Being exposed to natural elements, whether its flowers and vegetables or insects and other living creatures, allows children to observe their surroundings and get to know more about nature in detail. Gardening provides children a practical yet enriching hands-on experience that cannot be otherwise learned in a classroom, by encouraging them to watch become safely involved in small garden projects you can inspire them with a passion for gardening that can last a lifetime
2. Improves problem-solving skills
*Studies have found that gardening increases children’s alertness and concentration levels and forces children to think on their feet and solve problems. Simple tasks like measuring to lay beds or help create build projects can help them understand the practical implications
3. Encourages healthy eating
Growing food in the school or home garden supports a positive change in the eating habits of children. Giving kids their own veggie patch to cultivate is a perfect way to get kids on the path to a healthy diet. They will almost certainly enjoy eating their own produce too!
4. Nurtures love and respect for nature
Children learn about sustainability and their responsibility to the environment when given the chance to discover and experience the outdoor environment – a love and respect which should last to adulthood and encourage a new generation of garden enthusiasts. Head to the RSPB website to find out how to build a bug hotel that insects and frogs will love
5. Develops a positive attitude
Gardening helps children to learn and experience valuable emotions and attitudes at a young age. Patience, responsibility, and even loss when flowers die is a valuable and important lesson that is learnt in a light-hearted way through gardening.
6. Improves confidence and self awareness
Children’s self-confidence can be developed when setting them goals such as being able to successfully grow a plant or build a bug hotel. It also gives them a sense of pride in their accomplishment.
7. Gives a sense of responsibility and teamwork
Helping to look after a vegetable patch or flower bed can awaken a sense of responsibility and teamwork among children. Being aware of their responsibility, from ensuring that the plants are watered daily and properly taken care of, increases their motivation to succeed and to put in the effort and teamwork to make things work.
8. Enhances social skills
Community gardening and gardening in schools are great opportunities for kids to meet and interact with different children in a fun and healthy way. By having a common goal to grow and flourish a garden, children’s ability to communicate with their peers and to work in groups are greatly exercised. Involve keen gardeners such as grandparents who can pass on skills and knowledge to inspire the next generation.
9. Improves fitness
Children’s young bodies are stretched and worked out in ways they may not be aware. The simple act of pulling weeds, digging soil, carrying watering cans, and building garden projects increases physical activity whilst encouraging muscle and bone growth.
10. It’s fun!
Andrew Booth, brand director DIY at Bosch, said: “There’s plenty of research out there that clearly shows the educational, therapeutic and social benefits for children who get involved in gardening activities. Gardening can be a wonderful family project filled with adventure, experimentation and learning; and children love to learn when they’re having fun!”