The weather has a chill, you’re getting those chunky sweaters out and the leaves are changing colors. It’s finally fall! And you want your little learner to start appreciating the autumn season. How can you help your child to find the beauty in the fall? With a few awesomely imaginative activities, of course.
From learning about the environment to getting crafty with fall leaves, these ideas will help your tot to start understanding what autumn is and why it deserves more than just some appreciation.
Your kiddo doesn’t understand why you don’t throw those old magazines or plastic water bottles into the trash. DIY-ing your own recycling bin is a family project that can help your child to learn about why you don’t just throw out everything. Instead of one of those boring bins that you get at the home improvement store, dress-up a kitchen-sized trash can. Cut out pics of recyclables from magazines, reusing the pages. Help your child to tape or glue them onto the recycling can as a visual reminder of what goes inside. Do a little “fall cleaning” and clear out the plastic, glass, and paper, putting it into the bin.
Create a craft that’s based on your child’s favorite part of the planet. Take a walk outside, enjoying the fall weather. Ask your child to point out the different parts in the natural world. These could include tree trunks, colorful leaves, critters and other creatures that are all outside. Ask your tot to pick one of their favorite nature items. Head back inside, pick up some crayons, pencils or finger paints and watch as they recreate their most-loved piece of earthy awesomeness.
Frame a leaf! Or, a few. Take a mini-trek in the cool fall weather, collecting red, yellow and orange leaves. Look for leaves in different shapes and sizes. Turn the leaves into autumn art by sandwiching them into a picture frame. Your child can glue the leaves onto a piece of cardboard or card stock paper. Let your pint-sized Picasso paint a wash of school glue over the board. Before the glue dries, press the leaves down. Your child can even add a sprinkle of glitter — for that special autumn shine.
Your child can create their own fall tree that’s inspired by what they see in real life. Use brown tempera and a paintbrush to make a towering tree trunk. Pour red, yellow and orange paint into puddles. Dip cotton balls into the paint and press them onto the paper, creating colorful fall leaves.
All your child needs are a piece of reused cardboard, school glue, and a few leaves. Cut the cardboard into a circle and glue the leaves onto it. That’s it! It’s that simple to make an artsy autumn leaf wreath.
Fall means more than just leaves. Chances are that you’re going pumpkin picking (even if it’s only at the grocery store). With a few markers, your child can transform a plain pumpkin into a magical little friend. Eyes, nose, and mouth make a pumpkin-sized portrait.
Don’t forget to take pictures of all your child’s fall activities. Whether your family is taking a fall walk, picking pumpkins or crafting up a storm, start snapping away. Arrange the photos into an “autumn appreciation” picture book. Add to your library of seasonal books, making one in the winter, one in the spring and a fourth in the summer. Keep your little one’s library handy, paging through the pics during each season!