- Author: Lanie Keystone
Whether you're a parent, a grandparent, a neighbor, friend or teacher—this book is for the kids in your life. Gardening Lab for Kids: 52 Fun Experiments to Learn, Grow, Harvest, Make, Play and Enjoy Your Garden, gets you and your kids outside and “playing in the dirt”! Author Renata Fossen Brown has created a fresh source of ideas that features 52 plant-related activities set into weekly lessons. It all begins with learning to read maps to find your garden heat zone, moves onto seeds, soil and composting. Once those basics are discovered, it's on to creating garden art and taking in the nature around us.
Through the 52 weekly lessons, Brown leads us through wonderful activities that are disguised as the fun that they are to teach us about botany, ecology, insects, the seasons, food, cooking, eating, and above all--patience. The author has certainly adopted Mary Poppins's philosophy of, “a spoonful of sugar”!
Along the way of these weekly garden activities, we're introduced to and explore pollinators by making a pollinator palace out of bricks, sticks, twigs, bamboo, and pegboard. The basic elements of soil, ( sand, silt, and clay), which are explored by testing how well our soil drains by just by using a shovel, water, ruler and timer. Among the other weekly activities are understanding the color wheel to help create the perfect, colorful garden; and native birds by making a bird feeder from an old picture frame and piece of screen.
As I review this remarkable book, it occurs to me how much I want to get out there and play and explore my garden for a year through the eyes of a child. Well, our kids are all grown and our grandkids are all away at college. But there's that terrific 7-year-old down the block that I can enlist in this fun pursuit! So, find your perfect young gardening soul-mate and create some garden experiments and memories of your own. ENJOY!