Well, fall is really here, as I can testify to by looking outside my window at all the leaves that have fallen out off the trees in the park behind our house. The frozen feet as I sit here typing also confirm the colder weather is upon us. I love this time of year, even though it means colder weather is just around the corner. I love the smell of fall as I head out the door. I love the brilliant colors as we drive down our country roads.
The fallen leaves are great for crafts and activities.
I wanted to share with you some of the fun fall activities we have done in the past and are looking forward to doing again. I thought I would also mix in a few great activities I found online (on other blogs or on Pinterest).
Of course, we love heading over to the park and collecting fallen leaves. I try to find unblemished leaves with bright colors. Then the children come to me with leaves with holes in them, or dull leaves, or dried out leaves. And you know what? I finally realized this year, that in the eyes of the children, all of the leaves have worth. Oh, to see the world through the eyes of a child. (Weren't expecting such a deep lesson in leave hunting, were you?) If we happen to go over to the park on a windy day, we love trying to catch leaves in baskets as they fall from the tree. We haven't had an opportunity this year, and I am hoping we will before all the leaves have fallen.
What would fall be without piles of raked leaves to jump in or to bury oneself in? The girls had a blast last year at playgroup, raking, throwing leaves, burying each other and jumping in piles. This year they made a big pile of leaves at the park and were rolling around in it and jumping in it.
Of course we take the leaves home that we collect, so there are projects we will do. Last year we sorted the leaves and made Leaf Men and Leaf Wreaths. The book Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert is such fun.
I found this great idea on Pinterest to thread leaves. I really want to try that one this year.
You can find this post over at Irresistible Ideas for Play Based Learning.
Another great way to take advantage of nature is to use them with these play dough activities I found. Pre-School Play had some different ideas for autumn play dough and apple play dough.
Last year we also used some leaves I printed out on fall colored construction paper. This would be a great activity if you don't live in a place were there are abundant leaves falling from the trees.
I cut the leaves out and had the girls finish and create their own patterns (math activity). They glued them to paper strips and we hung them up for our fall decorations.
As you can see, we also decorated with candy corn crafts. I love candy corn, it is one of my favorite candies. I did this craft with the girls when I first started my blog, which means Tabitha was 2 and Amelia was 1. Then last year we made them again. You can see how we made them here.
Real candy corn is a great manipulative for math activities. We found this fun number line activity over at Raising the Cameron Clan. We used her ideas last year and came up with a game of our own. You may check out the details of this number matching game here.
Two years ago, we made an apple tree out of a paper grocery bag, green construction paper and paint. I cut the bag to flatten it out and then cut out a tree trunk. The girls colored it for some texture. Then we glued on the green leaves and used a halved apple to print on red apples.
I would love to make this again this year when we get to the letter A in our My Father's World curriculum. That will be next week.
One other thing I think would be fun to do this week, while we are still on the topic "leaf," is this fun Leaf Counting Activity:
I hope you have found some fun fall activities you would like to do with your children. If you have any other ideas I would love for you to share them in the comments.