DIY Fairy Garden Ideas | Science & Engineering Activities in the Garden (2024)

Enjoy these DIY Fairy Garden Ideas for kids that incorporate science, math & engineering learning!

Today we are combining a few of our favorite things — gardening, fairies and STEM in this month’s feature of manipulative play and small worlds for kids!

We’ve been talking about planting a Fairy Garden for a year now and finally got around to it this month when we celebrated my daughter’s birthday.

She loves the idea of small worlds and we both enjoy gardening so I decided to overlap those activities with a few science, math and even a cool engineering project.

Come peek inside our Small World Fairy Garden and see how this fun activity will inspire kids to learn too — plus we have some great resources so you can put together your own fairy garden this Spring!

The obvious first step to any Fairy Garden is a pot and some plants.

We visited a local garden store to choose some colorful plants (since this was part of my daughter’s birthday gift, we let her pick the plants 🙂

In addition to the science, engineering and math that we’ll discuss — fairy gardens are also a wonderful sensory play opportunity for kids! And a great way to connect them with nature. We’ve included affiliate links for items that will help you to create your own fairy garden small world at home too!

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Science in the Fairy Garden

If you’re planting an indoor Fairy Garden, you may want to look into succulents.

For an outdoor garden, anything colorful that grows well in your yard will do nicely. You can double-up and include flowers & plants that attact butterflies.

Any discussion of plants and how they grow is an introduction to the science of botany. In addition to learning about the parts of the plant, you can also show your kids the the back of seed packets or the plant growing details so they understand that some plants need more sun than others or that certain plants don’t require as much water.

One of the skills we’re focusing on with this project is fine motor development and gardening is a wonderful way to work those finger & hand muscles. Be sure your kids get involved in using a garden trowel when you plant your garden.

If this is your first garden experience, you’ll love these 30 Fun Garden Activities for Kids which highlight some great crafts & activities you can do with plants & a garden.

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Engineering in the Fairy Garden

While we were at the store, we found this adorable wishing well for the Fairy Garden so like any normal family, we decided to make it into a fully functioning well so the fairies could water their own plants.

The well has an opening on the bottom so all we needed to do was to find a container that would hold water and ‘plant’ it under the well — and we found just the thing in our recycle bin, an empty plastic bottle!

We dug a deep hole, buried the container up to it’s neck and filled it with water. Then we secured the well on the top of the opening by grading the soil against the well.

I think this will work fine since it’s a temporary garden and one that isn’t growing edible food but I know there’s always some concern about leaching plastics into the soil so I’m not sure I would do this if you’re planting in the ground or near a food source.

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Next up — building a path with dragon tears (aka colored glass).

Also a fun engineering idea — where will the path lead to? How long should it be?

This is one of those areas where the kids can come back and change it as they like — let them change the shape of the path or where it leads to as they play in the garden.

More Engineering Ideas:

Laying out the garden itself is a type of engineer activity – you need to survey your space, be sure things aren’t too crowded — it’s similar to planning a city’s layout.

Build a trellis from sticks for plants that grow tall

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We also found this adorable little Fairy Garden Tool SetDIY Fairy Garden Ideas | Science & Engineering Activities in the Garden (5) and chair to add to the garden along with a sign — and of course, a Fairy HouseDIY Fairy Garden Ideas | Science & Engineering Activities in the Garden (6).

Both the teeny garden tools and using chalk to write on the fairy garden sign are other ways kids can hone those fine motor skills. We’ve used the tools to help weed the garden 🙂

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And of course, we need fairies!

Ours are part of the Safari Ltd Fairy Fantasies TOOBDIY Fairy Garden Ideas | Science & Engineering Activities in the Garden (8) which includes six different fairies.

We love their TOOB figurines — you can see how we use them in some of our other projects too:

Building a Mini World for the Greek Gods

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Math in the Fairy Garden

Since my daughter isn’t a big math fan, I always like to introduce fun math ideas when I can 😉

So we grabbed a ruler to see how tall our fairies stood and then measured the door to see if they could all fit inside the Fairy HouseDIY Fairy Garden Ideas | Science & Engineering Activities in the Garden (10).

Other fun math ideas include:

• Counting the number of dragon tears in your pathway (younger kids can count individually, older kids can count by 2’s)

• Measuring the size of your fairy garden (measure the circumference of your pot or the square inches of your garden if you plant in the ground)

• Print off this free How Fast does my Plant Grow? worksheet and have the kids track the growth of the plants in their garden.

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And of course, if you’d like to read about fairies in the garden — or inspire the kids to read TO the fairies who visit the garden, here’s a few of the books that got us started in thinking about what we wanted to include in our garden:

How to Find Flower FairiesDIY Fairy Garden Ideas | Science & Engineering Activities in the Garden (15)

Pinkalicious: Fairy House (I Can Read Level 1)DIY Fairy Garden Ideas | Science & Engineering Activities in the Garden (16)

Magical Secret Garden (Flower Fairies)DIY Fairy Garden Ideas | Science & Engineering Activities in the Garden (17)

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We love the way it turned out and as long as we can keep the bunnies from eating all our flowers, it will be a beautiful garden for any fairies who want to visit!

ps. Want to surprise your kids with a fairy visit? I’ve heard that fairies leave a trail of colorful Fairy DustDIY Fairy Garden Ideas | Science & Engineering Activities in the Garden (19) when they come to play in your garden 😉

More Garden Activities for Kids:

DIY Garden Sundial

23 Free Printable Garden Activities

30 Gardening Activities for Kids

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MORE LEARNING WITH SMALL TOYS

Visit all these other fun ways that kids can learn with teeny toys!

Car Parking Lot Preschool Math Grid Game from Life Over C’s

Alphabet Car Wash from Learning 2 Walk

Sorting and Counting with Die-Cast Trains from Crafty Mama in ME

Directionality Activity with Small Cars from Teach Me Mommy

Forest Animals Letter Sounds Activity from Stir the Wonder

Learning Shapes with Toy Cars from Adventures of Adam

What Makes Ice Melt Fastest from Raising Little Superheroes

Fun DIY Phonics Game from Mum in the Madhouse

What Do Animals Eat? Classification Activity from Schooling a Monkey

Color Mixing with Toy Cars from The Kindergarten Connection

AM and PM Time Telling with Shopkins from Sugar Aunts

Sorting Animals Venn Diagram Activity from Mom Inspired Life

Hands-on Way to Learn Letter Sounds from School Time Snippets

from Edventures with Kids

Name & Letter Practice: A Painting With Toy Car Activity from Play Dough & Popsicles

Learning Letters & Reading With Cars! from Preschool Powol Packets

Shopkins Sorting from Still Playing School

Insights, advice, suggestions, feedback and comments from experts

As an expert and enthusiast, I have personal experiences or emotions, but I can provide you with information on the concepts mentioned in the article.

DIY Fairy Garden Ideas for Kids

A DIY fairy garden is a creative and educational activity for kids that combines gardening, fairies, and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) learning. It involves creating a miniature garden with plants, accessories, and decorations to attract fairies and engage children in hands-on learning experiences.

Gardening

Gardening is the practice of growing and cultivating plants as a hobby or for aesthetic purposes. It involves activities such as planting, watering, weeding, and maintaining plants. Gardening provides numerous benefits, including connecting with nature, developing fine motor skills, and learning about plant growth and care.

Small Worlds

Small worlds are miniature landscapes or scenes created for imaginative play. In the context of a fairy garden, a small world refers to the miniature garden space designed to attract fairies and create a magical environment for children to explore and play.

Science in the Fairy Garden

The fairy garden provides an opportunity to introduce children to basic scientific concepts related to plants and their growth. Some science-related activities that can be incorporated into a fairy garden include:

  • Learning about the parts of a plant.
  • Exploring the back of seed packets or plant growing details to understand the specific needs of different plants.
  • Observing and discussing the role of sunlight and water in plant growth.
  • Exploring the life cycle of plants and the importance of pollinators like butterflies.

Engineering in the Fairy Garden

Engineering concepts can also be incorporated into the fairy garden project. Some engineering-related activities that can be included are:

  • Building structures like a well or a trellis using recycled materials.
  • Planning and designing the layout of the garden, considering factors like space, arrangement, and accessibility.
  • Creating pathways using materials like colored glass or stones.
  • Encouraging children to modify and improve the garden design as they play and experiment.

Math in the Fairy Garden

Mathematics can be integrated into the fairy garden project to engage children in fun and educational activities. Some math-related ideas for the fairy garden include:

  • Measuring the height of fairies or the size of the fairy house using a ruler.
  • Counting objects in the garden, such as colored glass or plants.
  • Measuring the circumference of the pot or the square inches of the garden.
  • Tracking the growth of plants and recording the data on a growth chart.

These activities help children develop math skills such as measurement, counting, and data analysis while enjoying the fairy garden project.

Remember, the information provided above is based on the concepts mentioned in the article. If you have any specific questions or need further clarification, feel free to ask!

DIY Fairy Garden Ideas | Science & Engineering Activities in the Garden (2024)
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