This project came up by accident. We were at the pond and we watched small bugs and tiny new frogs get on the lily pads. We started talking about different plants and I asked my son if he knew that some plants can actually eat bugs. His eyes almost popped out of his head.
So we went to the library that afternoon after I was bombarded by a million annoying curious questions. We found a kid’s book about the Venus Fly Trap that was a really cute fiction book. We also got online and looked up pictures and information about real life Venus Fly Traps.
Then it hit me. We needed a craft/game. So I came up with this. What you will need: cardboard from a pizza (or just cardboard cut in a circle), green paint, green paper, scissors, glue, and a few pieces of black paper.
Paint your circle green. We used the small paint roller (that Allie always uses) and it worked great because the paint came on thin and even. The paint dried really quickly. For a paint free version you can just glue some green construction paper onto the cardboard. You will want to make both sides green.
While the paint is drying you can cut out triangles of green construction paper.
Cut the black pieces of paper into strips or small pieces and then wad them up into small little balls.
After your paint has dried, put a bead of glue around the edge and have your child place the triangles with long points out. I had to do a few to show my son, but he got the hang of it pretty quickly.
When you are done it should look like a big green sun. My son was a tad confused until I folded it in half.
Then he grabbed it and made it chomp. After I finally got him to stop chasing the dogs with his new Venus Fly Trap, I had him stand in one place.
I tossed the wadded up pieces of black paper (our flies) and had him catch the flies with the Venus Fly Trap. He did really well. We counted the flies as we caught them.
We learned all about a new plant (along with a whole new aspect of nature – carnivorous plants), made a cool puppet-like toy, played a fun game, practiced motor skills, and sharpened our eye coordination.
Here is the information on the book we checked out from the library.
____________________________________________________________________________________________Kim is a contributing writer for No Time For Flash Cards, a mom to a toddler, a preschooler, and a foster parent, too. She juggles her day by trying out fun activities and crafts with the kids. After all, she is just a big kid herself.
Getting Started In early Spring, we had lots of fun starting seeds indoors! This helped to give Emily an appreciation for how long it takes plants to grow. She took very good care of her seedlings.
Next, we planted seeds and transfered some of the seedlings over to the garden plot. We found it helpful to have a kid-friendly garden layout, so as to avoid any little feet accidently squashing plants. Some good options include: raised beds, container gardening, or going with a square foot garden layout.
Kid-Friendly Garden Ideas
1. Raised Beds
2. Container Gardening
3. Square Foot Garden Layout
We chose to go with a square foot layout, which gave us plenty of vegetables and was a clear way for Emily to navigate her way around the garden without fear of stepping on any of the seedlings.
To be even more kid-friendly, we even gave Emily her very own space within our lot where she could grow whatever vegetables or flowers she wanted. She chose lots of broccoli, tomatoes, lettuce, and marigolds!
If possible, give your child his/her own special garden space!
Ten Gardening Chores Kids Can Do:
- Planting Seeds
- Making Seed Markers
- Watering Plants
- Weeding (with supervision)
- Harvesting Vegetables
- Loosening Soil
- Laying Down Straw
- Decorating the Garden (handmade mobiles, pinwheels, banners, etc.)
- Picking off bugs.
- Collecting Seeds for Next Year’s Garden
Garden Themed Books! Of course, we took advantage of our local public library as much as possible over the course of the Summer. Our favorite “garden” reads are The Carrot Seed by Ruth Krauss….
….and Seeds! Seeds! Seeds! by Nancy Elizabeth Wallace.
….and decorating a photo frame with dried beans (which Emily learned are also seeds). There are many more gardening craft ideas on Frugal Family Fun Blog too!
With lots of hard work, our garden was in full bloom!
Gardening is one of the best ways for kids to learn about where their food comes from, basic plant biology, and exposes kids to nature. As an added bonus, we saved lots of money by growing our own organic vegetables! I made a fun garden goody bag for Emily to harvest her vegetables in, and it was a great hit! I love to share good things, so I thought you might like one too!
Congrats Luna!! You Won. Check your email !