Growing plants is an activity that preschoolers really enjoy because it’s something they help create, can care for and watch their efforts succeed. However during the winter months many of us don’t have the opportunity to play in a garden. This is when creating a terrarium becomes an especially fun activity.
Terrariums are mini gardens encased in some kind of a container so they become self maintaining. Your preschooler can enjoy watching the plants grow and change without your having to worry about over watering or the plants dying for neglect. The closed environment allows the condensation of the water to build up and keep the plants moist for successful growth.
You will need:
- A plastic or glass container with a tight fitting lid and an opening wide enough for your hand
- Potting soil
- A few small rocks or craft stones
- Seeds for small growing plants
How to make it:
- Place the small rocks at the bottom of your container
- Fill the container about 1/2 – 2/3 with potting soil
- Plant seeds
- Add water, enough to dampen the soil but not soak it
- Close with the lid tightly
- Set in a nice sunny area but not directly in the sun
- You can remove the lid occasionally to view the plants inside, but remember to place the lid back on.
The rocks at the bottom allow for the water to rest at the bottom without soaking into the soil too much.
- Choose fast growing seeds so your child doesn’t lose interest in the project before the seeds emerge.
- Do not place in directly full day sun as the environment inside the container will become too hot and kill the plants.
- If the plants grow too large for the container, you can re-pot them in a new container as you would any other plant.
- Make sure the container is large enough for your hand so that there is ample space for placing rocks and planting seeds.