Just recently I discovered a seedling growing under my lemon tree. Not knowing what it was I pulled it out and a few days later two more seedlings appeared. I decided to consult my friend Google and was surprised to discover that without planting anything in that soil, pumpkins were growing in my backyard!
I was a bit excited and immediately got the kids to come and have a look. We have all been amazed that within four short weeks they have grown from a tiny seedling to THIS:
I’ve become a bit obsessed with my ‘surprise’ vegetable garden and my husband has joked on more than one occasion that the pumpkins are my new babies (sorry kids, mummy has other ‘children’ to attend to). But it has quite honestly impacted me powerfully as I’ve become more in touch with nature than I have been in years. I’ve realised I’ve been missing out on something wonderful and nature is amazing, fascinating and inspiring!
Growing plants and vegetables is such an amazing opportunity to learn and teach kids not just about biology but about life:
The lesson of time
Our modern lives are busy. We are all guilty of losing perspective and not making time for the things that are truly important.
Plants take ‘time’ to grow and if we don’t take ‘time’ to care for them then they will die. The same is true in life. If we don’t make time for important things like relationships then these things will eventually ‘die’ or at the least, not grow to their potential.
The lesson of patience
In our ‘instant gratification’ culture kids are no longer learning the value of patience. Gardening teaches kids that sometimes we have to be patient and some things are worth the wait, like when we see those vegetables begin to grow or that flower bloom.
The lesson of “STOP! Look at how amazing life is!”
As a modern day homeschooler I love learning alongside my children. I admit that sadly, I do not know much about gardening. So we began to do some reading and research together and I was amazed at what we discovered about male and female plants and pollination. What an amazing design. The world of plants and nature in general is just well, amazing!
Who would have thought that a few pumpkin plants could teach me so much about biology and most importantly about life!