Sensory Benefits of Gardening with Kids

Sensory Benefits of Gardening with kidsGardening with kids can be fun, educational and refreshing; but did you know that it is also full of sensory benefits. Whether your child has difficulty with sensory processing or not; all children can benefit from sensory play. From birth, children learn about their world using their senses. As children grow and develop, sensory experiences help them make connections and make sense of the world around them.

As part of the Hands-on Play Party, I am excited to share how gardening with kids can encourage sensory connections.

Heavy Sensory Work In the GardenCarrying, Lifting and Pushing Encourages Proprioceptive Sensory Input

“Heavy work” is a common part of gardening. Did you know that just by carrying that bag of dirt with you, your child is getting a sensory benefit? Of course, you want to watch and monitor your children carefully and only give them weight they can handle, but the possibilities are endless.

Ways to encourage Proprioceptive Input:

Help push the wheelbarrow
Help carry away large sticks
Carry pots and bags of dirt from one garden bed to another
Pulling a trash can
Digging in deep holes

Proprioceptive Sensory Benefits of Gardening with KidsTextures from the Plants, Dirt and Sand Encourage Tactile Sensory Input

The garden has endless opportunities for  hands-on experiences to foster learning and encourage children to process their world through touching, feeling, comparing, and observing.

Ways to Encourage Tactile Input:

Feeling and rubbing a variety of plant parts
Seed sorting
Scooping and pouring dirt
Planting seeds to encourage fine motor development
Squeezing, sifting and rubbing dirt
Creating mud with dirt and water
Writing in the dirt with their fingers
Harvesting vegetables and fruit
Picking the flowers

Gardening with kidsWant more ideas about Sensory and Gardening with Kids?

Garden Sensory Bins from Fantastic Fun and Learning

Indoor Garden for Kids from Life at the Zoo

Garden Sensory Play from The Chaos and the Clutter

Garden Sensory Bin in a Pail from The Chaos and the Clutter

Worms: A Guide For all Things Wiggly from Lemon Lime Adventures

100 Sensory Activities for Home or School from Lemon Lime Adventures

What is Sensory Processing?  from Lemon Lime Adventures

Now it’s time for the Hands On Play party!

My Favorite Hands-On Sensory Activity From Last Week

10 stick activities

I love this post of 10 Sensational Stick Activities from An Idea on Tuesday. This is a great follow-up activity after a day in the garden with the kids. It is great for fine motor development and tactile sensory input.

It’s your turn to show us your Hands-on Play ideas.


 Pom Pom Races from P is for Preschooler

Dr. Seus Activities from Little Bins for Little Hands

5 St. Patrick’s Day Themed Activities from Making Time For Mommy

Please share your great ideas with us!


What is your Favorite Hands-on Activity? Be sure to link up below or comment on FacebookTwitterGoogle+PinterestInstagram . Don’t miss a thing, subscribe by email . (I only send one email a week)



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30 thoughts on “Sensory Benefits of Gardening with Kids”

  1. Dirt: the ultimate natural sensory experience! My grandmother was always the one to take care of gardening, but this year I guess me and my daughter will be taking over. She’ll be happy with any reason to get digging in the dirt! 🙂

    1. Dirt is pretty amazing. Once it turns spring here, you can find me it in all spring and summer long. My hands may even turn a different color 🙂

  2. Thanks so much for featuring my stick activities. Love your blog.

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  5. We love to garden with our children. If children are not getting dirty outside, then they have not learned enough! Thanks for sharing!!

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  9. GREAT post! We love getting outside and playing in the dirt. We’re excited to get started on our garden this year! Thanks for linking up to the All Things Kids Spring sensory link up. I’m off to pin!
    xoxo~ Colleen

  10. GREAT post! We’re excited to get started on our garden this year. Thanks for linking up at the All Things Kids Sensory activities link up! Pinning 🙂
    xoxo~ Colleen

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