At the Cherry Tomatoes Gardening Club, located Craighall and Bryanston, there are colours to be seen, textures to be felt and new skills to be learnt for children between the ages of three and eight.
The club offers the opportunity of working in a garden where kids can experience the satisfaction that comes from nurturing plants over time, while observing the source of our food first-hand.
Gardening is important for children’s development and the the Cherry Tomatoes Gardening Club nurtures an appreciation for nature that promotes healthy lifestyles with a focus on teaching valuable life skills in a safe and stimulating environment.
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Why is gardening important?
Studies show that when children have contact with soil during activities like digging and planting, they have improved moods, better learning experiences and decreased anxiety. Most important is the self-esteem a child gets from eating a vegetable or fruit that they grew themselves is priceless.
Gardening is also a great way to teach environmental awareness by exploring the workings of nature and growing your own food through practical experiences that encourage outdoor play.
“We believe that children are natural gardeners. They are curious, experimental, creative, and caring and they learn best through play. The Cherry Tomatoes Gardening Club hopes to nurture their sense of curiosity about growing food, the environment and healthy eating. It is proven that gardening with kids cultivates life skills and has wellness benefits that range from physical activity to mental health gains. Children are also more likely to make healthy food choices if they grow their own fruits and vegetables,” says co-founder Patricia McClelland.
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What to look forward to
Much of the enjoyment of gardening and the value of being part of the Cherry Tomatoes Gardening Club is derived from watching seeds sprout, harvesting produce and discovering the changes in a garden throughout the season while spending quality time outdoors.
“This is a unique programme which aims to inspire and excite young children at the same time teaching them to be environmentally aware. We do this through fun and stimulating activities that teach children about the workings of nature and the fascinating world of gardening,” she adds.
Familiarity and consistency allow children to settle in quickly, enjoy themselves more and learn better. Classes are small and intimate and pricing is structured to encourage regular participation by offering packages at discounted rates.
The programme runs every Saturday morning starting at 9am and ending at 11am at GardenShop Bryanston (Cnr Main Road and Halifax Street, Bryanston) or at REEA Vegetable Gardens in Craighall Park (Cnr Marlborough Ave and Richmond Ave, Craighall Park). Holiday programmes run throughout the year, so keep an eye on the Cherry Tomatoes Gardening Club’s Facebook Page for the latest updates.