Spring and summer are the ideal times to focus on the joy of gardening.
The Urban Farm/Toddler Garden is an example of the Montessori philosophy of Dr. Montessori. She envisioned a natural environment that would practice community living and be in harmony with nature.
- Starting to learn gardening at a very young age increases a love and appreciation of nature that will be helpful throughout life.
- When students grow their own food, they tend to eat more healthy fruits and vegetables.
- Students have reported that they feel happy, safe, and relaxed in a school garden. Community gardening also improves teamwork and social skills.
- It is certainly fun to plant seeds and then see the fruit, vegetable, or flower come out of the ground and continue to grow and bloom. Besides planting the seeds, the toddlers can help water the plants, rake fallen leaves, and weed. Teach what each weed looks like, the name, and what is NOT a weed so the latter won’t get pulled.
- In the winter months, a garden can be moved indoors to continue the experience.
Creating a Garden
- Names and Descriptions: Even before seeing the plant or flower come up, at the point of planting the seeds, create lessons on each name and description.
- Edible Only: Plant only those plants that are edible.
- Storage boxes: Rather than trays, use plastic storage boxes and keep the lids on when not in use. That way the seeds and tools can’t blow away or fall.
- Weather Prepared: Prepare for all kinds of weather. When it’s hot, have the children wear sun screen and a sun hat and work in a shady area. If it might rain, have them wear a rain coat and boots. Have towels available for wiping off.
Real child-size garden tools
These are designed especially for children and may include a shovel, a hoe, a spade, a garden rake, a trowel, and other items.
Canvas Garden Tote and Tools
Sturdy pockets and a roomy interior can hold seed packets, small gloves, scaled-down tools, and more.
Radio Flyer Child-Size Mini-Wheelbarrow
This strong all-steel wheelbarrow meant for ages three to six looks like its full-size “cousin” and can do the same work
Come and See for Yourself
Though much has been said about the academic achievements of Montessori children, the main value of the educational method lies in the self-discipline, self-motivation, independence, and love of learning that the children achieve. To learn more about our Mission Valley Montessori program, contact us to schedule a tour.