Whether it is building a store out of old card boxes, designing a shopping card that is more tailored to young parents or finding a solution to address issues of low-income communities, creativity most commonly involves numerous components such as imagination, originality, productivity, and/or problem solving (National Foundation for Educational Research, 2004). While elaborateness of these components will develop throughout a person’s life in one way or the other, the foundation and degree of development can be influenced in early stages of children’s lives (Runco, 1996). One way to foster creativity can be through creative play and playful learning. Thus, by giving children the opportunity to spend time in creative environments while learning and solving problems such as ‘in what can we plant this crops?’ may facilitate creative thinking.
Giving children and parents guidance of an expert teacher or farming ambassador and let them participate in a community program to explore the richness and fun of planting and farming.
In the early stages of children’s lives, parents have the responsibility to ensure that their children are well fed and practice a healthy diet. However, oftentimes it is the case that due to the lack of resources, children’s diet is very monotonous and lacks diversity. Through introducing children to planting and farming their own vegetables in early stages of their lives in a playful way, they can start contributing to and expanding the availability of fresh fruits and vegetables for themselves and their community.
When parents are working and trying to secure income, food and survival, children in low-income communities oftentimes lack parental engagement, guidance and contact. In such cases, it is up to siblings, grandparents or the community to bring up the younger members of the family. To maintain a positive and vital relationship between parents and children, they both increase their engagement hours while collectively contributing towards food security. By doing so with other parents and their children, the whole community can benefit not only from personal insights into farming or planting techniques, but also from exchanging personal success stories or particularly fruitful approaches to how to parent. In addition to that, the veggication program leader can play a great role in influencing the participants, both young and old. Our program is designed to determining socially respected and influential people within communities and partnering up with those as to attract many families to engage.
Through implementing the Veggication program, we can support children with opportunities to explore creativity, playful learning and knowledge about issues related to farming such as plant anatomy, how to plant, best times and conditions for planting, and pollination. By making this a social process, children can learn from both parents and other children from the community. Having this in collective activity in place, children get to know about others’ success in planting and can be encouraged to do so themselves. Additionally, the sense of being able to plant, taking care of and nurture plants, and successfully harvest them can be transferred to other areas of life such as forming and knowing one's ability to achieve desired outcomes. This can have a particular impact on educational achievements at a later stage of the childhood.
We invite a children in families from different communities to take part in vegetables planting process, they are going to learn, We provide different types of seeds to children and hand out printed materials to explain the process of growing and familiarise children with the vocabulary of planting. The focus is to encourage the development of memory, communication, and motor skills. Eventually, when vegetables are fully grown, they can be eaten or sold to local communities.
As a side effect, the community will gain greater awareness about new vegetables and herbs, which could be grown in their region and could promote a healthier lifestyle. We assume that children will be willing to eat these vegetables, as they were candies. Since these plants are new for kids and they have put so much effort in growing them, it should make veggies like broccoli desirable for kids to try.
We believe this is a simple program. It helps children to explore the world around them, which is the most important things for kids at this age. This project does not require lot of resources, apart from seeds, tools and volunteers and local partners.
We can ask the communities about …
- their expectation about their children`s future.
- the time they spend playing with their children.
- common family activities.
- parents’ daily routines in the local community.