Egg Carton Garden

Child carrying watering can

Fine Motor: To continue to master small muscle movements of the fingers and hands that promotes grasping and manipulating small objects.

Age Groups: ,

Overview

You don't need a backyard to explore planting with your toddler! Simple tools such as seeds, soil, a spoon and an egg carton lid are all you need to make a little garden grow. Here is a simple Nurture, Explore, and Share activity to help your toddler’s love of gardening start to blossom!

You will need:

  • Egg carton lid
  • Potting soil
  • Flower pot
  • Small spoon
    Accessibility IconClick the Accessibility bar below for details on materials that can be substituted to make this activity easier for children with a range of abilities.
  • Chive seeds (or other herbs)
  • watering can

Directions

  1. Ahead of time, pour soil half way into the flower pot.
  2. With your toddler, hold a spoon together by placing your hand over their hand (if needed) to fill the lid of the egg carton with soil.
  3. Support your toddler to sprinkle seeds onto the soil by placing your hand over their hand to hold the spoon. Encouraging words help to keep your toddler’s attention such as “You poured in the seeds we need to grow our herb! Thank you”.
  4. Model by gently pressing the soil down using your fingers, then let your toddler try on their own.
  5. Prepare a littler water in a water can and support your toddler to water the seeds by placing your hand over their hand (if needed).
  6. Repeat steps 1-6 to allow your toddler to practice their skills in sprinkling seeds using a spoon and watering the herb.
  7. Encourage your little one to water the herbs each day to see the herb grow taller. Tip: Fill the small flowering pot with water (more water means a heavier flowering pot) and say, “Liam, I like when you water our plant”.
  8. Once the herbs have grown, enjoy them in a salad or on an omelet!
Accessibility IconThe accessibility icon suggests tips, such as materials or tasks, which will make an activity easier for children with a range of abilities to practice skills that support social, emotional, gross motor, fine motor and intellectual developmental milestones.

Nurture

  • Plant seeds and care for the herb
  • Learn to take responsibility in caring for a living thing

Explore

  • Provide sensory opportunities through touch and sight
  • Gain tactile experience in increased knowledge in texture and colour

Enriching Learning Through the Everyday Moments

  • To promote fine motor skills such as holding a pencil or marker, provide your toddler with blank paper and markers. You can prompt the idea of drawing your plant by saying, “Leo, our plant looks bigger today, maybe you can draw our plant for Mommy”. Remember, allow your toddler to expand their imagination by letting them draw however they view the plant to be.

Recommended Reading

  • The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle
  • From Seed to Plant by Gail Gibbons

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