While you are gardening with your child or taking a walk with him in your neighbourhood, take the opportunity to teach him about flowers. Instead of boring him with information he may be too young to understand, pique his interest by sharing fun facts about the various flowers he sees. This will engage him and encourage him to learn more about his environment.
Humans have prized flowers since ancient times. Share some historical titbits with your children. The pharaohs of Egypt, for example, treasured their flower gardens. The ancient Romans used calendula flowers with vinegar to spice salads and meats and wore crowns of carnations at ceremonial rituals. In the 1600s in Holland, a single tulip bulb could cost more than a house.
The Use of Flowers
Flowers are not only beautiful, but also utilitarian. Tell your children how flowers are used as food. Daylily buds, for example, are in Asian dishes, and stuffed squash blossoms are common in Italian and Hispanic cuisine. For fun, prepare a dish that incorporates flower blossoms with your children.
Animals, too, find flowers very tasty. When you're gardening, show your children where rabbits, deer or maybe even insects have been nibbling. If squirrels are busy in yard, show your children any perennials that have sprang from bulbs the squirrels have dug up and transplanted. Show your children, too, how bees pollinate flowers and make honey.
Meaning of Flowers During Victorian Times
Flowers had special meanings during Victorian times. Share interesting pieces of information with your children. For example, herbs were believed to have magical powers, so they were often used in medicines. Wearing a fresh flower or smelling like flowers was a statement of status.
The rose was especially important during the Victorian era. With it's bright colour, soft petals and thorny stem, the rose represented love. Someone who presented a bouquet of hyacinths was making an apology, and an arrangement of carnations meant that the giver would never forget you.
Random Flower Facts
Use opportune times to share additional information about flowers with your children. Would they be interested in knowing that in the tropics orchids grow high in the trees rather than on the forest floor? Do they know that broccoli is a flower, as well as a vegetable? The next time you're preparing a curry, tell your children that saffron comes from a type of crocus.
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