How Gardening Can Teach Kids Valuable Life Skills

How Gardening Can Teach Kids Valuable Life Skills

Perhaps the most challenging part of parenting is passing down essential skills your children will need later in life, such as patience and responsibility. One of the best ways to teach kids valuable life skills is through gardening, which rewards accountability and problem-solving. See why gardening can be invaluable in teaching your children skills they will need to use every day.

It Teaches Patience

In today’s world, where a phone can answer nearly any question immediately and needs are met with the click of a button, it can be a challenge to teach patience to children. Instant gratification is a problem almost all parents must deal with today, but gardening is an excellent way of demonstrating the value of waiting.

Planting takes time and effort, so it can be difficult to get kids interested in gardening. But, if you can teach them to stick with it, they’ll see the value of patience when their plant or flower flourishes. It’s a crucial lesson that no child is too young to learn.

It Rewards Responsibility

Another essential life skill a parent must pass down to their child is responsibility. As vital as this skill may be, it’s also one of the most challenging. Gardening is an excellent avenue for teaching your kids the rewards of being responsible.

Give them their own seeds to plant and grow. Over the plant’s life, your child will be responsible for:

  • Watering it
  • Feeding it the correct outdoor or indoor plant food
  • Cleaning the plant and its surrounding area
  • Ensuring it receives adequate sunlight
  • Protecting it from weather or animals

Your kids will need to be responsible for their plants over a prolonged period, not just a single day. If they forget to water or feed the plant, they’ll see the consequences of being irresponsible first-hand, and it’s a lesson they’re likely to remember.

It Requires Gentle Care

Gardening is unlike many other activities children can do because it requires a compassionate touch. It’s not like a game or drawing that can begin and end quickly because there’s no way to force a plant to grow faster.

Gardening requires kids to get their hands dirty, but it also rewards gentle care. The benefit of a delicate touch is a valuable lesson to pass down to the next generation.

It Involves Problem-Solving

Kids who participate in gardening must be patient, but they must also be determined. Sometimes, gardening goes smoothly and you can grow a gorgeous potted plant or lively garden, but obstacles and challenges often arise.

Sometimes, a plant doesn’t take to the soil or struggles to retain water—or a rabbit won’t leave it alone! How will your child solve the problem? Teach your kids how to brainstorm solutions to gardening troubles, and show them that with enough focus and creativity, they can solve any problem.

This is just a sampling of valuable life skills gardening can teach kids. Whether your child is five or 15, taking care of another living thing offers the opportunity for a wealth of important lessons.

Photo – Yan Krukov

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Mallory Knee

Mallory Knee, the Detroit Mommies Lifestyle & Parenting Contributing Expert is a freelance writer for multiple online publications where she can showcase her affinity for all things home, lifestyle, and parenting. She particularly enjoys writing for communities of passionate women who come together for a shared interest and empower one another in the process. In her free time, you can find Mallory trying a fun new dinner recipe, practicing calligraphy, or hanging out with her family.

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