Early Literacy in Everyday Spaces: The Garden


The Garden

Early literacy can take place anywhere, anytime. There are a number of ways to make everyday activities fun learning experiences for you and your child. Why not start in your own yard? If you don't have a yard, try starting a small container garden on a balcony or windowsill.

Talking Points

  • Talk about the word "garden." Spell it out together, sound it out, and count the syllables. Talk about the definition of a garden and how it can be found in many shapes, sizes and varieties.
  • Help your child think of words that rhyme with "flower" (shower, power, etc.) Make up silly rhymes and songs with these words.
  • Help your child think of words that relate to gardens (garden hose, soil, seeds, etc). This is a great way to build vocabulary in an active setting.
  • Learn the names of flowers, plants and trees in your yard, or around your neighborhood. Go on a walk around town and talk about the different plants that you see. Discuss how some fruits and vegetables grow on trees and some you dig up from under the dirt.
  • Bring the garden indoors and plan a meal around a certain fruit or vegetable that you want to plant together. Talk about the different ways to cook with this food item.

Did you know that there is a community farm in San Jose where you can learn about gardening and farmlife? Veggielution is a part of the sprawling Emma Prusch Farm Park. They offer a variety of events, training opportunities and hands-on gardening experience in the youth garden every Saturday for the low, low-cost of free.

Suggested Reading

(Don't forget that these books can count for your 1000 Books Before Kindergarten log).

The Curious Garden cover

The Curious Garden by Peter Brown



And Then Its Spring cover

And Then its Spring by Julie Fogliano



My Garden coverMy Garden by Kevin Henkes



Growing Vegetable Soup coverGrowing Vegetable Soup by Lois Ehlert



Spring is Here cover

Spring is Here: A Story About Seeds by Joan Holub


Rhymes to Share and Sing

10 Little Peas in a Pea Pod Pressed
10 little peas in a pea pod pressed (clasp hands together)
One grew, two grew, so did all the rest (slowly pop out fingers)
They grew and grew and did not stop (slowly lift arms up overhead)
Until one day that pea pod popped! (clap hands together)

Flowers, Flowers Everywhere by Jean Warren
(to the tune of "Twinkle, Twinkle LIttle Star")
Flowers, flowers everywhere;
In the garden, in my hair.
In the vase, at the store,
On the table, on the door.
What a lovely time of year,
Flowers blooming, bringing cheer.