At Central Kids Ngātea Kindergarten, we have entered the biennial Dalton Sunflower competition to see which kindergarten can grow the tallest, widest and heaviest sunflower, it’s all systems go as we take on this challenge. The tamariki have shown a keen interest in gardening this year and this is a fun way to extend their learning. We started off in August with a “propagation station” where the children planted the seeds into small cardboard containers, once these sprouted we transferred the seedlings into our garden.
The tamariki have taken ownership of this project. They have been busy watering the sunflowers with the worm tea from our worm farm, helping to hammer in stakes, tying the plants and weeding the garden.
The sunflower competition is a great way to extend the children’s gardening interest as they have planted putiputi and hua whenua seeds throughout the year that have resulted in lovely flowers and vegetable seedlings to brighten our environment and share with kindergarten whānau.
Gardening is a wonderful way for children to take responsibility, sustain an interest, explore science and investigate maths concepts through measuring and comparing the different plants.