Fall is obviously here in Middle Tennessee. The leaves are changing. It’s time to break out the flannel sheets. Definitely fireplace weather if you have one. If you have small children, or even if you don’t, here are some activities to help celebrate the changing of the seasons and the bounty that is fall.
- Nature walks. There are any number of parks in the area, but you can even walk down your street, if you have trees, and look at the fall colors. It’s a great time to do some simple tree identification, with all the trees so brightly colored. Try to learn the names of at least a couple of trees in your yard or area that are especially pretty. Even if you don’t have a tree identification book, you can look online these days for help. Even if you can’t do these things, there are farms that allow you to come in and do all sorts of activities relating to fall. Hay rides, playing in the hay loft, picking fruit are fun activities you can participate in, for a fee of course, so come prepared.
- Nature art–on those walks, collect leaves to press, or do art projects with, or just to enjoy. Make sure the parks don’t have rules about taking leaves, even off the ground, and don’t pick leaves off someone else’s trees without asking:). Pressing leaves is very easy–you can even use a phonebook if you have one. Place the leaves between two paper towels and keep it pressed for a few weeks. The colors won’t be as brilliant, but you can still glue them in your nature notebook. My favorite website for art projects right now is Deep Space Sparkle. What a name, right? But it’s perfect for simple art activities. These are all developed by an art teacher and they work. Plus the kids love them. I searched for fall activities and found several art projects that will be fun to do in the coming months. Some of these are Halloween-ish, but many are simply fall leaves and gourds and such.
- Cook with the bounty of the season-if you don’t know what fruits and veggies are actually harvested in the fall, look it up! Then try some recipes with those ingredients. Root veggies, pumpkin, apples, to name a few are all wonderfully fresh right now. Spend the day at a pick your own fruit farm and harvest a pumpkin then cook it. Or buy several different varieties of apples and have a tasting. Read the book How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World, then bake a pie and enjoy it. I found recipes for pumpkin cookies, pumpkin scones and pumpkin bread that all sound so yummy.
- Incorporate the fall fruits and veggies into your school day. If you have preschoolers or young grade schoolers, check out mymontessorijourney. under the search button type in apples or pumpkins and she’ll have all sorts of ideas for simple activities that are lots of fun and keep your little ones busy. There are life cycle of a pumpkin or apple activities, counting, you name it. This site is one of my favorites as I choose activities for my little ones. She has a great recipe for play dough and ideas for apple spice play dough shaped as apples. Fun!
So here’s a few ideas to get you started. I’d love to hear other activities you enjoy with your family in the fall!