How To Make A Fun DIY Terrarium With Your Kids

This DIY Terrarium Is Fun AND Educational

Fostering a fun learning environment for the kids is a praiseworthy goal for any parent. After all, as a parent, you will want to give your children that much-needed quality time, all while imparting invaluable knowledge and experiences they can look back to when they get older. It seems simple to do on paper, but putting it into action can sometimes be a different story altogether, especially when the entire family is juggling schoolwork, housework, and work-work. And, let’s face it, some family activities can seem repetitive when done one too many times.

The kids (and parents!) need something a bit different… to liven up the atmosphere, from time to time, and building a DIY terrarium is the perfect way to start.

Why a Terrarium?

Well, why not?

First of all, it’s an activity that takes everyone out of their cycles. Not that television or regular playtime is all that bad, but cycles get boring and even exhausting over time. At this point, it is best to take a step back and dive into something new– not everyone makes a DIY terrarium every day, after all! And besides, it’s best if your children realize that experimenting with science (and the world!) can be done outside school, too!

Building a terrarium, apart from all the fun involved with gathering materials and planning how to set them up, is a learning experience for both child and parent. Kids can learn so much about plant life cycles, plant identification, earth layers, and, most importantly, compassion and responsibility for another living thing (which is very important to learn if they’ve been asking for a pet recently!).

Of course, as the facilitator for this activity, it is important to establish an open environment for conversing about their curiosities. You can tell them about how the terrarium is a “mini-earth”, and how caring for it will be a stepping stone for them taking care of many other things as they grow older. You can even ask them to name the DIY terrarium once everything is set. Give them the freedom to ask questions, and ask them questions, yourself. A healthy back-and-forth during learning activities will help you, as a parent, to see how they process and digest information, which you can use for future activities.

diy terrarium

What are the Steps to Making a Terrarium?

  1. Decide what kind of DIY terrarium you want.
    The following are the basic materials for creating a terrarium; adding in more decorative items such as colorful rocks and minerals is all up to you!
  2. Gather the needed equipment.
    The following are the basic materials for creating a terrarium; adding in more decorative items such as colorful rocks and minerals is all up to you!
    • Container
      Terrarium containers are transparent and have openings varying from small to wide, open to closed. Take note that small openings are similar to closed ones, such that they trap moisture inside the container, so if you want to have fewer problems with such containers, it’s best to keep them away from hot places.
    • Pebbles
      Pebbles will act as the bedrock for your little earth, so make sure to get a lot of these.
    • Sphagnum Moss or thin cloth (optional)
      This material is optional. For the thin cloth, it is recommended to use something as thin as a pantyhose so that nutrients and moisture can still come through.
    • Soil
      The best kind of soil to use isn’t overly damp or too compact.
    • Plants
      It’s a free-for-all for this one! Get creative! Ask your kids what kinds of plants they want to place in their little earth. Offer to research their plants with them; you’ll be surprised with how much insight they will share about this.
  3. Make sure your container is clean and dry.
    Wash your container and dry it thoroughly; you wouldn’t want your container to be moist at the get-go!
  4. Place your pebbles.
    Now it’s time to layer those pebbles! Big ones are great as a base, while small ones can come later. Try not to leave much space within the layers. One inch is good enough, but you can definitely add more!
  5. Add an optional layer of cloth or moss.
    This next layer is optional, but it helps with keeping the soil from seeping into the pebble layer.
  6. Add in your soil!
    You’re almost there! A minimum of two inches is recommended, but you have to add more depending on the root size of your succulents.
  7. Finally, in come the succulents!
    The moment we’ve all been waiting for! You and your kids have free reign on how you arrange them in your DIY terrarium, but make sure they don’t touch the glass, or that they don’t block each other– leave each of them with a lot of room to grow!

Tips on Caring for your New Terrarium

So, you’re done with the DIY terrarium… now what? Why, creating it is half the battle! Now you and your kids can spend time together taking care of this new member of the family! Thankfully, there are only a few things to remember when caring for your DIY terrarium.

First, you have to water it at least twice a week, three times max. A medicine dropper will be perfect to water each plant with, making sure they get around one to two teaspoons of water. Remember that with plants, less is more. No need to give them too much!

Second, it will need daily sunlight. Four to five hours a day will be perfect.

Finally, make sure you have fun with the kids taking care of the new “Terry (Rarium)”! It’s a bit of work at the start, but if you allow it to, it’s going to provide you with that much-needed step back from all your hectic schedules and boring cycles.

Remember to snap and share a picture of your DIY terrarium with us!

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