3-year-old urban gardening

Age Group:

This video shows the occupation of urban gardening, the meaning of it for mother and son and how it impacts the development of skills in a 3-year-old-boy. Although he has learned to speak English in the past few months, there are a few Dutch words mentioned, which are clarified in the transcription.

This is a narrative of a 3-year-old boy and his mom, living in the Netherlands, who are engaging in the occupation ‘urban gardening’. We live in a large city called Almere, which is 25 kilometers away from Amsterdam, the capital of the Netherlands. Kai: Look. Mom: looks really pretty huh? What color has it? Kai: Red Mom: Shall I help you? Oh there you go. Well done! Kai: I got it! Mom: How many strawberries do you got? Kai: Two! Gardening has been known to promote health and well-being, for us it is also a great way of bonding and connecting as a mother and son. It has become a part of our daily routine. Taking care of the garden and the plants, monitoring the growth of our fruits and veggies and of course eat them as soon as it’s ripe. Hey Kai, what have you grown there? I have a pepper. Mom: A pepper, what color is it? Kai: It’s red and it’s hot. Mom: Is it hot? You can ‘brand’ (burn) your ‘mond’ (mouth) Mom laughs: you have fire in your mouth? No, but this is a bell pepper you know. Mom: But we also have Spanish peppers, chilies. Kai: Yeah! This activity supports the development of motor skills, cognitive skills, social-emotional skills and communication. For example, knowing how you can harvest raspberries without damaging them, you need to see and feel when they are ready to eat, you need to dose your strength and you need to use your hand in a way to take the raspberries from the branch without hurting yourself with the thorns of the bush. Regarding social-emotional skills, it is also dealing with frustration if things are not going the way you expected, being able to communicate your wishes and needs and negotiating and dividing tasks. Being able to do things independently is also promoting self-esteem and trust in oneself. Kai: Look! Mom: Look? Is there another one? Kai: Yes! Mom: No, that’s not ready yet. As a parent, I am learning a lot about my child and how he is managing tasks, I provide him with the right challenges to see how he is developing new skills. Also, he learns that we need to use our problem-solving skills to overcome issues such as the extreme heat and drought this year or how to deal with insects and birds in a non-harmful way. Every day after dinner we take care of our garden, it’s a very relaxing and mindful way of finishing the day for my son, getting your hands dirty before taking a bath and then going to bed. Kai: What is that? Mom: Come, we are going to… …cut it (Kai is breathing heavily) Mom: Only the stem of the pepper. Mom: Yeah, try it again. Mom: Ohhh, good job! Kai: Yeah! Mom: Ok Kai, we also have… Kai: Blueberries! Mom: Blueberries, but we also have… what is this? Kai: Raspberries! Mom: Raspberries (different pronunciation) Kai: No, raspberries! Mom: Do you think this is okay to eat? Kai: Yes, it is yellow, just as my bucket. Mom: Oooh it’s yellow just as your bucket from the tractor? Kai: Yeah! Mom: Okay come on let’s take this. We hope you enjoyed our short video and hope to see other narratives of children and parents developing meaningful occupations together.

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Video: 3-year-old urban gardening
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