Gardening with your children is a special time in their lives. We studied plants, animals, art, and science outdoors. When my sone was 18 months old we invested in a vermicomposter. We got the plastic bin, and a couple of days later we got our worms. Red wigglers, then we added newspaper, that we had shredded. The newspaper was wet, and then we added apple cores, and coffee grounds.
We have had the vermicomposter all these years to show the children they don’t have to throw everything in the trash, there is a better way to dispose of our garbage, and it will go back to the earth. These same products that we bought at the store, will help bring life to our new plants.
We used our “black gold”, the material that had been digested by the worms, for the plants. We planted pumpkins, tomatoes, basil, lavender, rosemary, beans, strawberries, peas, and marigolds. We planted our seeds, watered them, and the kids would draw and paint pictures of their growth.
We had an animal that was eating our strawberries, so we looked up the footprints of the animals to try to identify what animal was coming into the yard and devouring our berries. We also did science experiments outside as often as we could. We would research where the ants were coming from, and how much water it took for the ants to start carrying the eggs to the surface. Where did the ants want to take their eggs? What kind of tiny insects are on the leaves?
We also purchased ladybugs and released them in the yard. Counted how many stayed, and for how long. We also purchased praying mantis, and then would track them too.
I also allowed the children to take their own photographs. Even when they were very young they loved to take photos and show me what they discovered. What is in your back yard?