There is a lot in the media at the moment about the health and well-being of our children. Including what they are eating and some exercises that they are doing. But did you know that with just one activity, you can address both these issues? That activity is gardening. Your kids could thrive in so many ways by getting out and gardening with you and here are just a few reasons why…
Understanding the source of healthy food
Part of being able to select and keep to a healthy diet when they are older is getting kids to like fruits and vegetables when they are little. This is because this helps to set the foundations of their eating habits, defining what is normal for them. That means it’s vital to educate kids on where their food comes from, and what is good for them. As well as just how to cook and prepare healthy meals.
Happily, the garden is the best place to start to do this because you can easily grow things at home that are tasty, and these will get the kids engaged and interested in the whole food growing and cooking process.
A good choice for to start the kids off with include salad leaves that can be grown in raised beds. These can be tended easily by the little one that will enjoy watering them and weeding around them. Carrots are another good option, as they can be planted in tubs to make them easier to harvest. Lastly, tomatoes are always a winner. As these don’t even need to be grown outside if you don’t have the room. Mushrooms are not plants (they’re fungi), but they also grow well indoors. Some species are also relatively low-maintenance, which makes them perfect for beginners and kids to grow. Try growing mushrooms with your little one using mushroom kits for newbies. These kits are quick and easy to set up and can yield mushrooms in over two weeks or so. All you and your little need to do is to place it somewhere semi-shaded and humid (beside your kitchen sink should be perfect) and water it as needed.
Of course, you should never let a small garden put you off growing vegetables with the kids. In fact, space needn’t be an issue if you make the best use of it with things like a smaller lean to greenhouse and vertical beds. The benefit of these being that they can help your homegrown fruit and vegetables grow big and strong. Creating a good crop for the kids to taste and make into yummy healthy meals.
Exercising through gardening
Gardening is also a stellar activity for kids because it’s great exercise. There is a lot of walking and bending, and some of the tougher jobs like turning the soil over or digging out plants can really work up a sweat.
The best thing is that as it’s not framed as a sport, then kids that lack confidence in this area will still be quite willing to do it.
It also helps that there are specific goals that you are setting for the gardening tasks. Like getting your tree planted, or a section of ground weeded. This can be very motivating for little ones, as they will try their best to achieve the goal set out, without even realising that they are engaged in a pretty strenuous physical activity.
Not to mention that it is a great way of getting the little one outdoors, something that can help them get the requisite amount of Vitamin D. Which is essential for healthy bones and teeth.
Making gardening overall a truly healthy activity to get the kids involved in.
*This is a collaborative post. For further information please refer to my disclosure page.
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