It is only natural that God’s creation points us towards Him. Your children will often see and understand God a little better by seeing His handiwork in nature. Spending time outdoors in activities like hiking and gardening will give your children time to interact with God’s creation. It will also give you opportunities to talk to them about concepts like stewardship (taking care of the world God gave us), gifts (using the things God has created to serve Him), creation itself and much, much more.
I’m always on the lookout for resources that will help parents do creative things with their children while also helping them teach their kids about God. Sometimes, these resources are secular, but the ideas will give you something to do and you can insert your own Bible lessons and principles that apply to what you are doing.
Recently, I was offered the opportunity to review a book that could give you some fun ideas. The Bee Friendly Garden, by Kate Frey and Gretchen LeBuhn is advertised as a primer on how to design “an abundant flower-filled yard that nurtures bees and supports biodiversity.” Don’t let the biology terms frighten you. Although, the authors do occasionally throw in proper botanical names and some scientific research, it is still a user friendly book.
As you probably know, there is currently a bee “crisis”. Bees are dying in great numbers, which threatens not only our honey supply, but other crops that depend upon bees and other insects to pollenate them so they can produce food.
The first part of the book gives a lot of great information about bees. You will have to share the high points with young children verbally, but older children and teens may want to read it for themselves. The remainder of the book goes into quite a bit of detail about how to plant an appropriate “bee” garden – which to them also means no pesticides and other chemicals.
I absolutely loved the beautiful pictures throughout. Just looking at the photos alone was a soothing experience. As a not exactly perfect gardener, I really appreciate that they took the space to list the plants that will work best in each region of the country. (I hate when you see a description of a beautiful garden only to be told by your local nursery half of the plants won’t grow well in your climate.)
There is a lot of detailed explanation for those who are totally new to gardening, bees or both. If you are the type of person who really wants to understand what they are doing and why, you will love all of the great details. For people in a hurry (and don’t like to read instructions!), there aren’t a lot of summary charts, but you could probably use the plant lists in the back to help.
For those who have kids who become really interested in bees and saving the bees, they also list some other things you and your kids can do to become involved in helping save this part of God’s creation. Of course, while you are planting your bee garden and watching for bees, you will have lots of quality time to spend talking to your kids about God. It’s a great way to spend some of the coming summer days.
This book was given to me for free in exchange for my honest review. An affiliate link is included for your convenience.