Silence is golden — until you have children. Then, silence means trouble is lurking.
As a stay-at-home mom, I always am looking for inexpensive activities to engage my children, and, of course, keep them from tearing the walls of our home down to the studs. A few weeks ago, I was scouring the aisles of Walmart and discovered tiny white clay pots that were $1 apiece, and I had one of those ah-ha moments.
Spring is just around the corner, and that means it’s grow time!
In the same section, I grabbed a tray of paints for $1, a pack of paint brushes for $1, and then, I headed to the garden department for a bag of Miracle Grow potting soil for $7.33 and two seed packets for $1.28 each. I chose chive seeds, because they can be grown in a window, with minimal sun.
When the kids were both home from school, the first task was to paint their pots. I can’t speak for your children, but mine love to paint.
After school the following day, we took the project outdoors, and the kids proceeded to plant and water their seeds. Note: Be sure to fill the pots three-fourths full of soil, sprinkle the seeds and then cover with dirt. I made the mistake of planting the seeds too low, and they never grew. I never have had a green thumb!
Every day after school, the kids knew they had to water their plants. Often, they would be excited to come home and see if a tiny piece of chive had pierced the surface.
The part I love most about this craft is the virtues it is teaching them in a fun, non-assuming way.
They are learning responsibility. Often, I notice my kids are in the “all about me” stage. This teaches them to think about giving their time and attention to something other than themselves.
Through the daily watering, the kids are learning to nurture and care for their plants. One day, they will have to nurture adult relationships, such as a marriage or friendship. Those require the same amount of love and care to keep them alive as it does their little plants.
Patience is something my children, or really, most children, lack. They want everything right now. Even as adults, we often want quick fixes. This is not life, and I think it’s great for the kids to have to see that, with daily responsibility and nurturing, their plants will grow in due time.
Planting seeds of virtue is my most important task as a mother, as I’m sure is true for most moms.
I hope this activity finds a place in your home, and together, we can grow a future garden of respectable adults.
Please post a picture of your children with their plants to my Pajama Mama Facebook page.