How to capture the joy of this favorite season with your kids
Ahh the sights, sounds, and scents of Fall. All around creatures are going into hibernation mode. Sometimes wouldn’t it be great to head south along with the birds! Speaking of migration, now is the time that you can point out flocks of birds migrating to your kids. We recently had huge flock of Blackbirds pass through our neighborhood, as they do every year. It’s really neat to watch hundreds of birds foraging together in the leaves and grass. When they fly they are huge mass blackness against the blue sky.
Around this time, we also watch for the Northern Juncos to arrive here yet from Canada. Now that the wind has turned brisk and cold, we expect them any day now.
You and your kids can watch the winter preparations going on around you, too. You can point out he squirrels and chipmunks foraging for food. Talk about what tress lose their leaves first and last. Often its the maples, birch, tulip and sassafras trees followed by the oak trees. You can easily spend and entire afternoon identifying leaves you all find. Another idea is to race acorns down a hill to see which one wins.
You know those rocks that kids often collect and are found alll over the house! Now is the time to convert to items found around the yard or in the neighborhood park. All kids enjoy collecting things and collections are especially handy to help them learn sorting , counting, comparing and contrasting.
Here are some tips on having fun with collections during Fall:
- Ask you children to find a boxes, jars or plastic containers from your recyclables bin. They can paint or decorate them prior to heading outside.
- Once outside look for items on the ground. You can look for items in several categories.
Seeds – Maple “helicopter” seeds, acorns, hazelnuts, rose hips, various cones, chestnuts, berries
Leaves of all varieties and colors
Twigs and branches
Spent fern and flower fronds
Warning: Do not let your children collect fungi or berries that could be poisonous. If there is any question in your mind a “no touch” policy is best.
3. Spread all the items they have found out onto the lawn and have them sort them by color, type, size, etc.
4. Use use the items to make fun things like masks, decorative hats, mobile and much more.
Once your child is fisnihed, ask him or her to put all the items into the various containers lable them and organize them on a shelf them inside. This is the perfect was to always have items to use in artwork or creations throughout the winter! The bonus is that they are natural and totally free!
There are so many fun activities to do in the fall! Check back next week for more fun activity ideas.