Spring is here and that means gardening season has begun! Gardening with preschoolers is a great way to bring hands-on learning opportunities to young kids. Unfortunately, many parents face challenges when it comes to gardening with kids- they might feel it’s too messy, fear plants won’t grow, or maybe (like us) they don’t have a yard to plant seeds in. I know we’ve used a few of these excuses ourselves! I was afraid of the disappointment of seeds that may not germinate, and we also live in a concrete jungle with a few patches of dirt (and lots of gophers!). I had made the sad decision that we weren’t going to do any gardening this year…until I came across the Gro-able’s project! I first I heard about the Gro-ables project was on Instagram where I saw parents helping their kids start gardens. Some were container gardens and others were traditional in-the-dirt gardens. I was totally intrigued by how easy it looked and was ready to start our own preschool container garden using the biodegradable Gro-able pods provided to us by Miracle-Gro.
How to use Gro-ables with Preschoolers
We decided to use our Gro-able pods in a container garden that could be moved around to the best sunny spots in our yard. My preschoolers helped with every stage of the planting process!
Once the container was filled with potting mix, we simply pressed the Gro-able seed pod right in until it was level with the potting mix. Easy-peasy! This gardening project is PERFECT for preschoolers because there’s really no way to go wrong. And we love the fact that each Gro-able is guaranteed to grow, so I don’t have to worry about disappointment down the road.
Ways to Extend the Activity
As kids are planting their Gro-ables, encourage them to notice measurements- How many cups (or handfuls) of potting mix were necessary to fill the pots? How much water will the plants need each day? Also give preschoolers a chance to talk about the contents of the Gro-able pods themselves. Point out that the Gro-able pods contain potting soil and plant food that help the plants grow big and strong. You can also make a measuring stick out of paint stir sticks like we did so your preschoolers can see the progression of plant growth while learning units of measurement!
I can’t wait for our herb and vegetable Gro-able plants to grow food, but I’m also looking forward to the process of caring for these plants with my kids while we wait for the harvest. Each day as we water the plants, look for new growth, and measure seedlings we have a chance to grow together as our plants do. The quality time that we will spend through this gardening project is as valuable as the lessons we will learn through the gardening itself.
Now it’s your turn to give us some input! What tips do you have on growing plants with your kids? What are your favorite plants to grow with them? Also, make sure to check out the valuable resources available at the Gro-ables Project