If you’re a parent of a school age child, you have probably been ignored more than once while your formerly eloquent child stares intently at their pc/handheld/laptop seemingly unable to see you, hear you or speak to you.
The Playstation, Xbox, Ipad and a host of other gadgets have reduced our once active children to zombies and with the rise of childhood obesity it’s time to take action.
But how to encourage them to switch off Minecraft, Splashy Fish or Candy Crush?
According to a new survey, gardening could be the perfect answer for parents struggling to get their kids off their electronic games gadgets and into the great outdoors.
The survey of 2,000 parents, commissioned by British gardening manufacturer Hozelock, reveals only four out of 10 children regularly play outside and that the majority of parents (seven out of 10) say they can find it a struggle to get their youngsters out of the house and into the garden.
In fact two thirds (60 per cent) admit their children now reach straight for their gadgets to beat boredom and one third (30 per cent) confess their youngsters now spend less than two hours a week playing in the garden.
However three quarters (75 per cent) of parents say their children are more likely to want to go outside if they can join them in with gardening jobs like watering the plants or sowing seeds.
Lisa Jordan, UK marketing manager at Hozelock, said: “With a little encouragement from their parents, youngsters can be tempted away from their gadgets to lend a hand in the garden.
“Hozelock has a wide range of products to help children enjoy the garden – take our newly launched Pico Reel for example – this compact watering hose weighs less than two bags of sugar and will help children make light work of watering the garden.”
Hozelock’s ‘Gardening for Life’ campaign aims to encourage parents to get their children to enjoy and appreciate outdoor life during the summer.
TV gardener, David Domoney, who is fronting Hozelock’s ‘Gardening for Life’ campaign to try to get more kids playing outdoors and interested in gardening, said: “Youngsters are playing indoors much more than they used to a generation ago, and many spend nearly five times more time on computer games than playing outside. It’s so important for children to get out in the garden during the summer and get some fresh air and exercise, and if we’re not careful a whole generation will miss out on the joys of the great outdoors.”
David Domoney added: “Despite these findings, there still is some hope that children will want to get out in the garden more this summer. Children love simple activities like sowing seeds, planting flowers, picking fruit and watering the garden. Plus they love getting their hands dirty! A lot of children said they would spend more time in the garden if they could help out with an activity, such as watering the plants. Nowadays there are loads of products on the market which are ideal for little hands to use.”
“Gardening is a great hobby for people of all ages however, for children it’s particularly beneficial. It’s a fun, healthy activity plus the sense of satisfaction children feel when they watch something they’ve had a hand in growing is immeasurable.”
For tips on getting children involved in the garden, and details of the full range of gardening products, check out the Hozelock website www.hozelock.com, and watch this great video about the Pico Reel. For more information on David Domoney, check out his website at www.daviddomoney.com
Hozelock have been instrumental in making sure that all our garden builds on Love Your Garden 2014 have been well watered, and provided much equipment to make watering the gardens easier for our garden owners in the future. Thanks guys!