Autumn Activities for Toddlers.
Autumn, also commonly known as fall, is a truly a beautiful time of year. It’s also the season when the days get shorter and colder. Leaves shed from deciduous trees as they start to prepare for winter. To celebrate the changing of seasons, I will share with you a great collection of autumn activities for toddlers. These fun, creative and sensory activities are simple and engaging for your little ones to explore the wonders and vibrancy of Autumn.
Mindful Nature Walk
One of my favourite autumn activities for toddlers is to go on a mindful nature walk. We love visiting nearby parks and collecting colourful Autumn leaves, twigs, conkers or pinecones along the way. Encourage your child to tell you what colour or shape each leaf is as they collect them.
As you continue to walk, ask them to notice the sound the leaves make under their feet or light crisp breeze on their face. Watch leaves falling from the trees and notice how they glide, spin, or quickly drop down. Perhaps they notice that the weather is a bit drizzly.
Autumn is a great time for exploring nature. If you would like to learn more about mindfulness click here.
Other things to notice:
- Are most of the leaves on a tree the same colour?
- Do you see more trees that stay green and don’t lose their leaves or trees that do lose their leaves?
- How does the grass look in the places you walked?
- Do you notice any flowers blooming?
- Are there other things falling from trees – such as conkers, pinecones or seed pods?
- Can you see any animals?
Finally, when you arrive home encourage them to notice that their cheeks are a little ruddy from the colder weather. Another great toddler activity at home, is to sort the leaves according to their colour, size or shape. Perhaps sort the items into different categories like leaves, sticks and pinecones.
Autumn / fall window cling!
A window cling is sometimes referred to as a suncatcher but, if your toddler is like mine, there will not be a lot of blank space left to catch the sun. Toddlers and parents love this type of sticky collage as it’s not messy and the results are beautiful. If your little one collects ‘treasures’ on your park trips, why not use them for this activity.
All you need is clear contact paper as the backing. However, if some of the leaves are too heavy, you may have to add cello tape to hold them in place.
Sensory Autumn Activities for Toddlers.
Sensory play has many benefits for toddlers. There are lots of fabulous natural items to represent the colours of autumn all around you. Even things in your pantry like pasta, rice, cinnamon, oats, corn kernels, lentils, and dried beans. Add some small containers, muffin cases, bottles and spoons or scoops for exploring the sensory bin. Below I have included a couple of examples for inspiration.
In this sensory bin is:
- red / orange coloured rice (get recipe here).
This sensory tray has:
- white beans
Fall Tree Painting
Painting with q-tips also known as earbuds is a great way for kids to learn about creating texture and layering colours in art. This toddler activity celebrates Autumn and all the beautiful, vibrant colours of the season.
Materials: q-tips, autumn coloured paint, paper, marker and paint stick.
- Get your bundled q-tips ready. Use at least 6 q-tips per bundle and put them together with elastic bands.
- Trace your child´s hand for the tree trunk and branches.
- Spread various autumn coloured paints on a tray.
- Dip the bundles q-tips into one paint colour and dot around the tree´s branches.
- Repeat for the other colours. You don´t need to wait for one colour to dry before continuing.
- Once dry, use brown paint or a paint stick for the trunk.
Simple Leaf Printing
This simple leaf printing activity gets toddlers to observe the different shapes, sizes, and vein patterns of leaves.
Materials: Paint, leaves, paper and newspaper.
- Find the bumpy side of a leaf to feel the raised veins.
- Your child can use their fingers to spread a generous amount of finger paint on the bumpy side of their leaves or a paint brush.
- Put their leaves, paint-side down, on white paper and place a piece of newspaper over them.
- Press down firmly and rub every part of the leaf to make prints.
- Remove the newspaper and peel off the leaves.
- Observe the physical characteristics of their leaf prints.
Autumn Small World
Small world play is important for many areas of their development. It benefits the child’s independent play skills and their imagination as they explore the small world. It also offers the opportunity for children to build on their language skills, such as expanding their vocabulary and their understanding. Small worlds do not to be complicated setups.
To create a small world.
Use natural materials you collect from a nature walk. Add those to a cardboard box and perhaps add in a fall artwork and some woodland animal figurines. Your child can have a lot of autonomy in setting up this small world to their liking as it is really simple.
For more toddler activities click here.