In the Montessori environment, the care and respect for the environment is an important part of the curriculum. One way that children can learn about caring for the environment is by watering plants. By taking care of plants, children can learn about nurturing and responsibility, while also developing a sense of empathy towards living things.
Significance of Plant watering activity:
- Importance of caring for the environment in Montessori education:
Children are taught to respect and care for the environment, as well as the living things in it. By caring for plants, children can learn about the interdependence of living things and the importance of taking care of our natural world.
- Teaching Responsibility and Nurturing
Watering plants can provide a valuable opportunity for children to learn about responsibility and nurturing. By taking care of plants, children can learn to take responsibility for their actions and develop a sense of ownership for the plants they are caring for. They can also learn about the needs of living things and how to respond to them, developing their sense of empathy towards the natural world.
Watering plants may seem like a simple task, but there are certain techniques that can be used to ensure that the plants receive the appropriate amount of water.
Here are some steps to follow:
- Prepare the water: Choose a watering can that is easy for your child to carry and view the water inside clearly. Fill a watering can with room-temperature water. It's important to avoid using cold water as this can shock the plant's roots.
- Check the soil: Before watering the plant, check the soil to see if it is dry. If the soil is moist, then the plant does not need watering.
- Watering: Walk to a small plant and gently lower the tip of the watering can's spout to the dirt closest to the edge of the plant. Raise the can until the water flows and water until the dirt is wet. Ask your child if they would like to try, and let them continue to water all the plants in the room if they desire. Gently pour the water onto the soil around the plant, avoiding the leaves. The water should be poured slowly and evenly, so that it can be absorbed into the soil without running off.
- Drainage: Make sure the pot has drainage holes to prevent the roots from rotting. After watering, empty any excess water that has collected in the saucer.
- Observing the plant: After watering, observe the plant to see how it responds. If the leaves are wilting, this could be a sign that the plant needs more water. However, overwatering can also be harmful to the plant, so it's important to find the right balance.
Your child can fill the watering can with water from the sink when more is needed and can use the sponge to clean up any spills. If your child spills any water, encourage them to clean it up independently. By modelling the behaviour of calmly cleaning up spills and allowing your child to be in charge of cleaning up their own work area, you can help them develop a sense of responsibility and pride in their work.
Watering plants is a simple yet effective way to teach children about caring for the environment and the importance of nurturing living things. By following the steps outlined above, children can learn how to properly water plants and observe the responses of the plants to their care.