Garden Activities for the Kids
By Laura Clarke
Spring is upon us once again and the kids want to spend more time outside, but it is hard to know what to do with them to keep them occupied. With plenty of fun things to find, explore and make your garden could be the answer you were looking for cheap and engaging activities for growingly inquisitive young minds.
Write down a list of about 20 things for the kids to find in the garden and they can go round ticking them off as they find them. Put things like a yellow flower, a spider’s web and a bird. For older children ask them to find different types of plants such as daffodil, snowdrop and crocus and you can teach them what each plant is called at the same time. A little treat at the end is always a good way of keeping them focused on the task in hand.
All that is required for this quick and easy activity is some paper and some crayons. (Wax crayons work best as they color when rubbed on their side). Set your child the task of finding as many different patterns of bark as they can in the garden. If you don’t have many trees in your outside space they could use patio paving, brickwork or garden furniture to make rubbings of. Once they have collected their rubbings sit down with them and ask them to describe the differences between them, ask them which their favourite rubbing is and why. This will increase their describing vocabulary and keep them engaged in the activity.
Make a daisy or dandelion chain
As the grass grows longer and daisies spring up all over the lawn a great spring afternoon activity is picking them and making them into a chain. This is something the whole family can join in with and can keep the kids entertained for ages. Make the picking of daisies into a game to see who can pick the most and then help them to count out how many they have. Then you can show them how easy it is to make them into a chain by splitting the stem and linking another daisy through it. Repeat the process and join the ends to make fun flowery necklaces or headbands that little girls in particular will love.
Get them to help you plant bulbs and seeds
Make garden tasks that have to be done at this time of year into a game for the kids and they will love it! We all know how much children love to dig so have them make you some holes for you to fill with your bulbs and seeds then let them cover them up and water them. Getting them interested in the sowing process will keep them interested in the growing of the plants and you can teach them about how plants grow as you go along. Having a designated flower bed for the kids is also a great idea as it will give them ownership of a piece of the garden and they will learn how to look after their space.
Not for the squeamish amongst us, but kids will really enjoy this! Whether it is digging for worms in the soil, finding caterpillars on the plants or following snail trails children will really enjoy learning about all the different creatures that live in the garden and will teach them to respect them as living creatures.
Much fun can be had this season in your garden so make the most of when the weather is fine and these simple activities will busy the kids for hours on end!