Sunday, October 2, 2016

Fall is Here: Trees, Leaves & Pumpkins!

Fall is here!  The temperatures dropped this week and we even had a little rain this morning.  And now that October has officially arrived, I decided it was time to start in on the fall/Halloween crafting.  The end-of-year holidays are always good for some art inspiration.  Ben has been studying trees in his kindergarten science unit, so he also inspired us to read a bit more about trees.  One beautifully illustrated fun book we discovered is: Strange Trees: And the Stories Behind Them.  Other fun stories we've been reading that feature trees and leaves and fall flavor include:

Wangari's Trees of Peace by Jeanette Winter
Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert
The Hugging Tree: A Story about Resilience by Jill Neimark
The Season's of Arnold's Apple Tree by Gail Gibbons
Apples and Pumpkins by Anne Rockwell
Stuck by Oliver Jeffers
We followed up our reading with a very simple art project.  Yesterday, Clara and her dad took a walk in the park and collected leaves.  We then glued the leaves to paper and painted them.  The kids observed that the leaves Clara found were mostly brown and very dry.  Ben ran outside to find a red leaf from our yard - and as we looked outside this morning, we noticed that there were yellow leaves on the trees that were falling and not so dried out.  We thought maybe if we went on a nature walk in a couple weeks we would find some very different leaves to work with.  

I started out the project by putting out various colors of construction paper, the bag of found leaves, and glue.  The kids picked the color paper they wanted and got to work.  Because we got started on our project pretty late in the day, we let the glue dry overnight and headed up to bed for more tree reading.

In the morning, the kids each chose the paint colors they wanted for their palate and started painting.  I also picked up a few little pumpkins this morning at the store, so they spent a little time also decorating those.

The kids had a fun time with the actual leaves, but in the end, I think they had the most fun mixing and swirling the paints.  After talking about their leaf creations, we focused on how to make different colors and designs.  We had a fun time kicking off the fall season!