Sunday, October 28, 2012

Fall for Preschoolers

Fall has officially arrived a while ago out here in Germany, but this week was peak for foliage. It is looking good outside and we transported all the beauty inside with fall activities for preschooler Adrian. You will not find as many activities as you usually do though because we were away in the Alps for a a few days enjoying the colors of the season.

Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany; our fall retreat

Making leaves out of fall colored playdough

Kids love play doh but my son usually ends up losing interest because he is not too sure what to do with it. This week, I brought out fall colored play doh and fall cookie cutters (Target, dollar bins). I modeled how to flatten the dough and showed him what happens if I pressed lightly and heavily on the cutters. He preferred the latter and loved taking away the un-needed doh to have beautiful leaves stand on their own.

Making a leaves puzzle out of play doh

Another activity done with the same items was this simple fall leaf puzzle made of play doh. I asked Adrian to cut some leaves out of play doh and to keep the leftovers. I then showed him how to put the leaf inserts back into their "mold". It was a big hit. We did it with different leaves but also made "color puzzle" as seen above.

Leaves rubbing with fall colored crayon stubs

I was aiming at doing this activity with real leaves but remembered I had the stencils (Oriental TRading Co) so I decided to use the stencils as we hadn't gathered any leaves yet. The result was beautiful and Adrian liked it.

Watercolor Q-Tip leaves in fall colors

This was Adrian's first attempt at watercolors. We used Crayola's washable watercolors for this and it went very well. To show Adrian how to make the watercolors ready to paint, I drew the trunk and branches of the tree. He did the rest, including the falling leaves and the ones on the ground. I found this cute idea on La Classe della Maestra Valentina. She has such beautiful projects on her blog. Can't wait until my kids grown up just so they can try her projects! :)

Leaf Puzzle - Anatomy of a leaf

I believe this leaf anatomy puzzle was purchased from Montessori Outlet. It wasn't all that difficult for Adrian but I like to use the puzzle instead of making "Parts of a Leaf" booklet. I told Adrian the parts as he put them in the tray and asked him to point to the ones I called later. I would have liked for the puzzle to be labeled but oh well.

Making a leaf garland

This activity idea came from My Montessori Journey. It's basically a leaf garland, made with a fall ribbon and some silk fall leaves (found mine at a dollar store). I made a small incision in each leaf so they could be threaded on the ribbon. 

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