The National Children’s Gardening Week: gardening with pre-school children

“What doing Grandpa?”

“I’m going to put some plants in the garden.”

“My help!” (Daisy’s preferred personal pronoun is ‘my’, as in “my do it”)

Daisy squatted down next to her Grandpa and while he sorted out the small geranium plants; Daisy grabbed Grandpa’s trowel and started to randomly dig in the soil.

It didn’t take long to get Daisy interested in gardening!

Trowel

Daisy’s at an age where she is curious about everything and so she’s ready to find out about some of the processes involved in gardening, and the tools we use.  Instantly, Daisy wanted to use Grandpa’s trowel and small fork to dig in the soil – using those skills she has already developed when playing with sand.  It took Grandpa a little while to explain to Daisy how he was going to dig a hole with the trowel, put a plant in the hole and then replace the soil so that the plant could grow.  Daisy watched, dug in the soil and then together they planted some of the geraniums.

Fern

Once they had finished the planting Daisy used her small watering can (from her water play toys) to assist in watering the young plants.

Next time Daisy visits we’ll remind her about how she helped us to put the plants in the garden together we will look at the plants to see how they have changed.

This kind of activity can be repeated to suit the space that you have available, all you need is a plant pot, some compost and some plants (they could be edible ones).  If you want more inspiration, you’ll find plenty in the Things To Do section on the National Children’s Gardening Week website.

Granny Smith says

Tool set

If you are choosing gardening tools for your children/grandchild, select ones which are smaller versions of the ones that you use.  I prefer children to use wooden and metal gardening tools rather than plastic ones which can sometimes frustrate children because they’re not always as durable as the traditional tools.  With your guidance, they will be more successful gardening with the wood and metal tools as they learn how to use them safely.

Mummy found a set of gardening tools for Daisy at their local supermarket and I’ve also seen them available in garden centres.

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