I was reminded the other day of the "Garden Back rub" we found in a magazine years ago and gave to our children many times at bedtime.
The idea is to give your children a back rub with various different types of motions based on a bit of a story of how a garden is planted. It also teaches them how a garden grows.
We told our story and gave a Garden Back Rub with each of the following parts:
- First, ask what the person wants you to plant - this is a good way to find out what they like. Flowers? What type? Vegetables? Fruits?
- Turn over the soil - this was a sort of rotating motion
- Use the rake and/or hoe to smooth it down - use the fingers spread (like a back scratch) for a rake or the edge of the hand like a hoe.
- Make rows - draw straight lines down the back with a finger
- plant the seeds - use your pointer finger to poke, poke, poke those seeds
- Cover over the seeds - pat it down with the palm
- Water it and let the rains come - gentle taps of the fingers all random, almost like randomly typing keys on a keyboard
- Wait for God to make it grow - sometimes you can let this linger until the person getting the back rub tells you it's been long enough.
- Pull the weeds - gentle grabbing motion
- Pick the garden - gentle pinching motion - you could also ask here what we planted: are they flowers? Vegetables? A little variety?
- Eat the vegetables and fruits - take an imaginary fruit or vegetable and put it in their mouth. Ask/tell them what you're giving them. This is the part when I had some fun: after they got used to me giving them the fruit, I'd not say anything and "give them something to eat" then I'd say "that was dirt" or "that was a rock" or "I forgot to peel that one" - It added a bit of laughter and joking.