There are many ways to bring the essence of fall to your children. Here are some ideas:
Cut off the top of your pumpkin (which your children select with your assistance) and invite your children to look inside and talk about what they see. Look inside at the strings and seeds. Do the inside and outside look the same? How does it smell?
Then clean and roast the seeds for a healthy snack. Start by soaking the seeds in a bowl of salted water overnight. The next day, drain the seeds; mix them in butter or cooking oil and spread over a cookie sheet. Sprinkle with a little salt and bake at 250 degrees, stirring every 15 minutes until they are golden brown. You can use these seeds to fill fall gift jars. Cover the lid with a piece of fabric and tie with a ribbon.
Make fall placemats by painting and printing leaves on brown paper. First, cut a rectangle from brown grocery bags. Collect leaves from your yard. Brush a layer of paint in shades of red, yellow, and orange onto the leaves, then press the leaves onto the paper to make beautiful leaf prints. When dry, laminate the placemats with sheets of clear Contact paper on both sides so they can be easily wiped clean. Another idea would be to glue the actual leaves onto construction paper and then laminate with a sheet of clear Contact paper. Make enough for the whole family. These homemade placemats can bring the spirit of fall to the dinner table or, next month, to your Thanksgiving feast!
That's So Corny!
October is National Popcorn Month. Start the celebration by popping a fresh bowl of popcorn. Your children can fashion edible necklaces by stringing the popped corn, dried fruits and raisins. Use a tapestry needle with a blunt tip and dental floss. The finished product is fun to wear and eat.
A is for Apple
Apples are a great symbol of harvest time. Use them to decorate white T-shirts. Cut apples in half and brush fabric paint on the surface, then press the fruit onto the fabric. You could even take a bite out of the apple before making some of the prints. Paint on black seeds, stems and green leaves with a brush. Follow the paint directions to heat-set your shirt. Then enjoy this creative new addition to your wardrobe.
Tania Cowling specializes in creating great activities and projects for little learners and their families.