5 Helpful Tips for Homesteading With Kids

Share This!

As if homesteading weren’t challenging enough, try doing it with small children! Here are a few helpful tips for homesteading with kids.

For many back-to-the-landers, homesteading is a family affair. But challenging as homesteading can be on a good day, adding kids to the mix makes it even more so!

There are plenty of great ways for kids to entertain themselves on a homestead, but we all know that “entertain” can mean a number of things – some of which may not be that “entertaining” for you as a parent…. 🙂

The homestead can also be a very busy place, but you have to learn to balance all the things you need to do, with spending quality time with your children. Finding that balance is essential so that neither your children nor your chores are neglected.

Overall, a homestead can be an incredibly education and enriching place for kids to grow up.

But if you want to keep your sanity, and keep your family happy, you may want to keep these 5 tips for homesteading with kids in mind:

1.) Reign in your romantic expectations for full-family homesteading. Kids are kids. We cannot expect our children to love every minute of working on a homestead, and it would be unreasonable to expect them to spend every minute doing so.

………………………………………..

2.) Choose exciting projects to involve the kids. While we don’t expect our kids to participate in every project on the homestead, we do try to find projects that will excite them and get them involved so that we can plant the seeds for future appreciation for our land.

………………………………………..

3.) When your kids are helping, don’t aim for perfection. With all of our willpower, we resist the urge to tell the kids they are doing something wrong or should do it another way. We’re trying to let our kids develop their own love for the land, and lecturing them about proper watering techniques will probably build resentment instead.

………………………………………….4.) Resist the temptation to spend money on “kids” equipment. You’ll find kids gardening tools and equipment in all sorts of places, from miniature shovels and rakes to miniature versions of farm equipment — there’s a cartooned version of almost everything. But let’s face it, most of it doesn’t work very well or breaks if a child tries to do real work with it.

Likewise, half of the pleasure that kids get in helping their parents is from using the same equipment that the adults are using (within certain safety guidelines, of course). Children will learn more and be more confident if we trust them to use adult tools to accomplish adult chores in reasonable, kids-sized chunks.

…………………………………………..

5.) Find creative ways to engage kids while you are working. If we absolutely must get work done while our kids are around, we try to create a play space or activity that will keep them engaged while we are working.

Take a page from the research on outdoor play and develop a natural outdoor play space near your garden — natural “equipment” like logs, rocks, pieces of wood, or string can be made into magical creations by creative kids.

………………………………………………

It may take some time and practice for your kids to develop the free play skills necessary to keep busy while you are working, so be grateful for even a few minutes as you start using this strategy.

………………………………………..

Read More at MotherEarthNews.com

 

Share This!