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How gardening can benefit and engage your children

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Posted at 9:49 AM, May 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-06 10:36:20-04

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. -- Want to get your kids out of the house and learning at the same time?

Get them into gardening.

"Gardening overall is a great way to not only learn about science, but also math, literacy, history, all of these wonderful topics,” said Kristen Thoromon, Director of Education at Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens.

Thoromon says it's easy, a backyard, deck, patio, even a windowsill will do.

"When kids are outside in the garden learning it's happening really naturally, pardon the pun. But as they're working in the garden, they're watching the lifecycle of a plant,” she explained. “They're learning about plants and what it takes for them to survive and to grow and to thrive."

Making labels for the plants uses literacy skills. And you can teach kids the history of crops grown by colonists.

"If you have a diverse garden; you plant parsley and zinnias and milkweed; that's going to draw in the wildlife as well and they start to learn about the lifecycle and it's not something that's boring. They're not in front of a screen hour after hour. They're actually physically engaged," said Thoromon.

Parents might get something beneficial out of it as well.

"You're engaging your senses. You're getting a sense of calm and peace,” said Thoromon. “It's been shown that being outside in nature can really help to calm de-stress, increase your mental health. And that's something that everybody needs right now no matter what age."

Building a love of gardening, is Building Better Minds.