As parents, we can teach our kids about Patience, Perseverance, Process and much more through plants and plant growing process.
Kids are more curious about exploring, adventure and of course science (if they are taught science in a right way, trust me they love science). It signifies that they are great learners and open for learning. It is up to us (parents) on how we would like to take their ability of learning to use or misuse!
If you want your child to develop patience, perseverance ( ie. persistence in doing something or continue to do something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success) that involves process, start gardening or start with even just 1 plant. There are lot of DIY (Do-It-Yourself) ideas available on internet to do this activity with the easily available resources at home.
Step 1 : Gathering the basic things for planting (container, soil, water, digging tool and seeds) :
You can teach your child on preparation process to achieve a certain goal. If you are choosing to plant tomato seed, you can teach your child that your goal is to get tomatoes from the seed that you are seeding and can't expect mangoes. This helps the child to set a clear focus and expectation on his/her act right from the beginning. Allow them to question more and be prepared to answer any question they may ask. If you do not know the answer, patiently tell them that you don't know the answer and that you will find the answer for them. Don't forget to find the answer and tell them without fail. This build confidence and trust on you from your child.
Step 2: Find the right place (environment):
Teach the child on how important it is to find a right place to grow a plant where there is sunlight and it is important to choose how much sunlight is needed based on the type of plant you want to seed. Some plants doesn't need more sunlight and some needs moderate sunlight. Not only plants but for everything, the environment plays an important role. Remember, this point is for you as well to know, if the environment that you provide to your child is not appropriate, he/she will not grow with their true potentials. Allow them to question more and be prepared to answer any question they may ask. If you do not know the answer, patiently tell them that you don't know the answer and that you will find the answer for them. Don't forget to find the answer and tell them without fail. This build confidence and trust on you from your child.
Step 3: Sowing the Seed and Watering:
Teach them about the 1st step of planting process is sowing the seed with the full intention, commitment and expectations of the plant to grow. The above mentioned Step 1 & Step 2 are the pre-requisites. The commitment that you make it to yourself for watering it everyday and that to nurture the plant with all the positivity to grow on its own pace and time, would develop a sense of ownership in your child while creating positivity and trust.
Step 4: Awaiting with Patience and Perseverance through the Process:
While we all know that every plant is different and they grow as per its natural ability to grow, we should also ensure and provide necessary things like water, sunlight, soil and manure. Teach your child that we need to let the plant grow by itself with all our patience and to protect the plant from any hindrance (pests, birds, etc) that may cause while growing. It is important that you educate the child on the process of how a plant grows from lot of YouTube videos for kids, so that they can visualise what they are going to see in the future from the thing they are responsible of creating. Emphasis on the step-by-step process, by explaining them that we cannot achieve anything overnight. It takes time, effort and resources to achieve the successful end result.
Step 5: Encourage, Engage and Enjoy with your Child:
It is important that you do encourage your child to connect with nature, as nature teaches us lot of things by itself. So that children develop the ability to learn from everything around then. While you do the above process, you are engaging yourself and your child for a team building activity which allows you to let your children do many things consciously and subconsciously. Most importantly, you should enjoy these moments with your child by admiring the way they ask intelligent questions so innocently. Cherish every moment with them!
I would like to end with a short note by saying:
Kids are like plants - How we nurture them is what they become. What kind of thoughts we sow in their minds, so do they reap those thoughts and develop based on their environment, based on the people around them, the exposure to various situations and also with the kind of response, reactions and words that we parents show and use on them.
Creating a Mindful Child is a step-by-step process and not an overnight miracle!