If you are in need of inspiration on how to make your garden child friendly, here we have put together our pick of the best tips and garden friendly activities for the kids.
Nowadays getting the kids to play outside can be tricky. They prefer to sit glued to the screens of computers, x-boxes, tablets, phones and other gadgets that tend to soak into the life of the little ones as quickly and early as never before. The kids need some fresh air and sunshine – and your garden is a great place for supplying that.
Having children involved in gardening is not only an excellent way to raise awareness but also a meaningful and entertaining experience. If you are wondering how to encourage the children to play outside, here we’ve collected some garden ideas that will be able to appeal to your kids:
Garden friendly activities for kids
Fresh air and vitamin D keep children fit and help them burn off excess energy. A playhouse can become a place where your children can set their own territory with their own rules and let their imagination run wild. A playhouse not only enables creative playtime but also gives parents a much-needed pause from the chaos that comes together with the children. Kids can sit in the house for hours, dressing up as pirates, princesses or knights and planning their next adventure.
There are many variations of playhouses that will make the little boys and girls scream with joy. It doesn’t matter whether you would purchase a playhouse, buy wood at the hardware store and build one yourself or just turn your garden shed with some paint and accessories into the kids’ dream. Let your children be creative in choosing the colour and decoration for the house.
A self-designed playhouse will surely become the favourite leisure place for your kids. When the playhouse is no longer in use over time, it can serve as the perfect tool shed or storage place.
Planting with kids
Of course, planting is one of the best garden-friendly activities for kids. A garden bed can engage all the senses of your kid: a sense of hearing, sight, smell, touch and taste. When choosing the plants that children would love to watch growing, it is important to choose the ones that would appeal to your children the most. Children enjoy plants that have a strong smell, grow quickly, and are easy to notice.
In most cases, it is easier for small hands to pick plants with large crops, for example, sunflowers and mini pumpkins. As a bonus, because of their bright colour, they are easy to spot. Where, for example, sweet peas, lettuce, radishes, and cherry tomatoes grow quickly, which is great for kids who have a harder time with patience.
After all, plants that can be eaten are generally good for kids, since they help to build a connection between the child and nature and help to understand where the food comes from. This knowledge instils environmental concerns and sustainability goals in the children’s minds and helps to foster them.
As a tactile adventure, you can consider plants with interesting textures like flaky, rubbery, prickly, and smooth. Investigating such plants and playing with them can be a fun experience for kids.
Gardening is the perfect activity for growing bodies. While working with earth, the body is given an opportunity to build up and strengthen its immune system. Simply digging and moving the ground will help your kid build muscles and improve hand-eye coordination.
How to make your garden child friendly – Danger protection
When thinking of ways of how to make your garden child friendly it is imperative to take into consideration any garden dangers.
Small children are very curious, that is why it is important to protect them in all areas of life, naturally while gardening too. Water can be not only fun, but also can pose a threat to your child. Getting a cold after playing with cold water is not the only concern, for instance, wet areas around the pool can be extremely slippery and lead to injuries. It is therefore very important to fence pools and ponds and actively supervise a child while they are near water.
It is very important to keep an eye on the playground equipment. Check safety features and ensure that everything is assembled correctly and according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
If you have something like a wild garden, it may often mean that there are many plants that you haven’t planted. And exploring an area can be exciting for a child. Point out which plants have thorns and can be harmful.
Also, make sure that the children can recognize good plants from bad ones, eatable from not eatable etc.
Teach your children how to avoid bees and other stinging insects. Do not let the kids wear clothes that attract such insects.
There may be no doubts that lawn is a great area for playing, but it doesn’t offer the same opportunities as a sandpit and a play fort. Playing in the sand is a great activity for kids. Whether building castles or just digging around, it can offer endless possibilities for playing and learning.
A climbing frame with swings and slides is also great for children of all ages. The climbing frames need a flat, stable base and must be constructed in such a way that they can handle the weight of children. You also need to make sure that the floor underneath is soft and thick enough to cushion a fall and minimize injury. Concrete, asphalt and even earth should be avoided. While loosely scattered mulch, wood chips, sand, rubber, and special mats are considered to be safer.
There are so many important things that children can learn while they are having fun. The garden is a perfect example of teaching children the necessary skills for life and keeping them away from gadgets.
For more ideas on garden friendly activities for kids see our other articles:
article submitted by guest blogger Kimberley Cornish from SummerHouse24”