There is nothing better for children than spending some time outdoors in the natural world, away from screens and other such distractions. Fortunately, it is easier than ever to encourage your children to spend time amongst growing things when you have a polytunnel. Creating a child-friendly polytunnel is the easiest thing ever. Here are a few tips to help you get them on the right track and make your polytunnel a place where they want to spend some time:
To a child, some fruits and vegetables may be more appealing than others. For example, while few children will reject the offer of a strawberry, fewer will want to munch some broccoli from your garden. While it is good to introduce them to a whole variety of new flavours (and things often taste better straight from the garden), you can make them more interested by growing things they love to eat, and allowing them to graze at will inside your polytunnel. To entice them further, and get them to eat those greens, give them a small space of their own inside the polytunnel, along with some seeds to start, and get them to grow fruit or vegetables themselves.
While many kids will love helping out a bit in the garden, younger ones' attention will start to wander after a while. So you do not lose them to their inside toys and technology, consider giving them a small space to play in the polytunnel – a small den or hideout where they can amuse themselves while you do a spot of weeding or harvesting. Older kids may also appreciate the chance to use the polytunnel as a bolt -hole – a place to read a good book, or just do a bit of thinking on their own among the plants. Remember that though, in an ideal world, the whole family will utilise the polytunnel, they won't all use it in the same way.
Another way to encourage kids to love the natural world is to take them on bug hunts – and a polytunnel offers the perfect place to discover all sorts of little creatures. Get them to help you out while exploring the polytunnel jungle and let you know if there are any pests on your plants that need to be dealt with. Get your kid a magnifying glass so they can take a good look at the insects they come across. Later, perhaps you could come out to your polytunnel for an exciting late-night slug hunt!