Fall Activities

Fall is here, cue all the fall activities. We are enjoying the temperature drop in North Carolina and spending a lot of time outdoors. I always admire the leaves changing colors but this year I am fully embracing the beauty and incorporating them into our activities. The kids are finding so much joy collecting nature treasures and then using them. Below are nine of our favorite fall inspired activities. These fall activities are eco-conscious and have minimal cost.

Witch Potions

Our “Witches Brew” was favored by Ethan. I often still think of him as being little, but watching him explore the reality hit, my 18 month old is not a baby! He is really enjoying sensory play and it is amazing to watch him look to his sister for guidance. In this activity we are using glitter but you will notice I mention that it is biodegradable. Did you know that glitter never breaks down and is harmful to the ocean? Leaf confetti is another great alternative to using products that can be harmful to our environment.

Items Used:

  • Candy eyes
  • Leaf confetti
  • Biodegradable sparkles
  • Fresh rosemary
  • Liquid watercolor
  • Water
  • 2 cups Baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cups Vinegar
  • Spoons, bowls, and measuring cups

How To:

  1. Collect nature treasures
  2. Use a hole punch to create leaf confetti
  3. In a large container mix water, 2 cups of baking soda, eco-friendly glitter and liquid watercolor. Food coloring could be substituted for liquid watercolor.
  4. In a separate container pour 1 1/2 cups Vinegar. This will be added in later for a fun fizzing reaction. The color of our water even changed.
  5. Set out your other potion ingredients, this can be anything from rocks and grass to fresh herbs and candy eyes.
  6. Invite your children to get lost in play creating their potion while scooping, pouring, squeezing and laughing!
  7. Pour in vinegar and watch the fizzy potion change

Apple Stamp Pumpkins

Apples and pumpkins, I can’t think of anything that screams fall more. This activity is an easy setup and clean up with minimal materials!

Items Used:

  • Apple
  • Orange paint
  • Paper
  • Paintbrush
  • Brown Marker

How To:

  1. Cut your apple in half, use one half as your stamp and the other half as a snack!
  2. Apply paint to apple on the flat side
  3. Stamp and create pumpkins
  4. Use your brown marker to create stems

Nature Soup

This activity was beautiful! The frozen nature treasures glistened and were so inviting to touch and a great way to explore hot and cold! This is a quick set up with essentially no purchases necessary.

Items Used:

  • Nature Treasures collected on a walk
  • Ice cube tray
  • Water
  • Cornstarch
  • Scoops, spoons and bowls

How To:

  1. Explore and collect fun treasures
  2. Place treasures in an ice cube tray with water and freeze
  3. Fill a large container with warm water
  4. Sprinkle in 2 Tbsp. of cornstarch and stir
  5. Invite your child to add the ice cubes into the water and explore

Sensory Bottle

We created a spring sensory bottle earlier this year and the kids loved it. After creating our spring bottle, I put it on the playroom shelf and we observed it for a few days following; the flowers eventually became translucent. For a toddler, using a large freezer baggie in place of a bottle is a great option. My 18 month old enjoyed exploring the movement as he hit the bag and the large opening allowed him independence while filling it with treasures and water.

Items Used:

  • Nature Treasures
  • Recycled bottle or large freezer baggie
  • Water
  • Glue

How To:

  1. Collect nature treasures while exploring
  2. Fill bottle or bag with treasures
  3. Add water to fill and allow movement.
  4. Glue lid on to prevent reopening and spills
  5. Observe changes

Scavenger Hunt

Exploring nature presents opportunities to organically educate. While exploring leaves, rocks, acorns and such it is easy to incorporate conversations about color, texture, environment, seasons, and more! Nature also allows the freedom to roam and investigate independently helping to boost their confidence and sense of wonder. A scavenger hunt is a great fall activity with so many different items to find!

Items Used:

How To:

  1. Paint each color of the rainbow on paper
  2. Explore and find treasures in varying colors
  3. Glue treasures near the color they match most

Popsicle Stick Monsters

These adorable, I mean spooky monsters are from my good friend, Shawna over at BubblesandBellyLaughs on instagram. These are the perfect silly craft to get in the Halloween spirit. You can even add a magnet to the back and decorate the fridge.

Items Used:

  • Orange, green and purple pre-dyed popsicle sticks
  • Large popsicle sticks
  • Black Paint
  • Sharpie
  • Googly eyes
  • Black, green, white, and red construction paper
  • Glue

How To:

  1. To create the spider: paint 4 large popsicle sticks black and glue them like an asterisk, then add a circle to the center for the body, and glue on googly eyes.
  2. To create the pumpkin: Secure 9 orange popsicle sticks together by gluing two horiztonal popsicle sticks on the back, then add the face and stem.
  3. To create the Frankenstein: Secure 9 green popsicle sticks together by glueing 2 horizontal popsicle sticks on the back, extending a little on each side of Frankestein’s head to represent the screws, glue on googly eyes, and finally use a black sharpie to draw on the other features.
  4. To create the monster: Secure 9 purple popsicle sticks together again gluing two horizontal popsicle sticks on the back, attach a large black rectangle to the front as a mouth with 3 white triangles for teeth, glue on three eyes, and attach 2 red horns to the top.

Fall Oobleck

Oobleck is such a great sensory bin filler. For those unfamiliar Oobleck is a non-newtonian substance meaning it has properties of both a solid and a liquid. When pressure is used, the oobleck is firm, but when free it is a gooey and runny liquid. I added a bin of water with a drop of color to it. The water allowed for the kids to easily rinse their hands in addition to experimenting with adding more liquid to experiencing the substance change.

Items Used:

  • 2 cups cornstarch
  • 1 cup water
  • Liquid watercolor
  • Water bin
  • Scoops, spoons and bowls

How To:

  1. Combine cornstarch and water until mixed
  2. Add liquid watercolor or food coloring
  3. Set up water bin and scoops
  4. Invite children to explore messy play

Playdough Tray

Playdough is beneficial for children’s dexterity and muscle strength. Most people think tracing letters is the most beneficial prewriting skill but building up the muscles in our children’s hand is so important. To add excitement to our invitation to play tray, I added nature treasures for the kids to explore. My 4 year old ended up making a treehouse. The leaves pictured above are from Dollar Tree.

Items Used:

  • Homemade playdough
  • Nature Treasures
  • Serving Tray

Playdough Ingredients:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • 2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 cup of water
  • Liquid watercolor or food coloring

How To:

  1. Mix dry ingredients and whisk together
  2. Add wet ingredients, whisking until clump free
  3. Add liquid watercolor, whisking until color is mixed
  4. Cook in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly until dough forms
  5. Remove from heat and knead dough until cooled

Keep playdough stored in an airtight container.

Decorate Pumpkins

Decorating pumpkins is something I will always associate with fall. There are so many options available now that expand beyond just pumpkin carving.

Items Used:

  • Pumpkin
  • Paint
  • Googly Eyes
  • Construction paper
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Pipe cleaners

How To:

  1. Paint pumpkins and allow time to dry
  2. Cut contruction paper into facial features
  3. Apply googly eyes
  4. Decorate with paper features and pipe cleaners

Follow Along For More

I hope this list of fall inspired activities brings you and your little ones joy. For more activities follow myself Lauren, on Instagram or Pinterest and my friend, Shawna, on instagram. You can also check out suggested items in my Amazon store including supplies used in the above activities. Happy playing!

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