Shredded leaves picture

Our garden is full of colourful leaves. We are raking them, jumping into them, make leaf angels, throwing them up in the air. Plus, we made some autumn pictures with the help of them. Here they are:

I collected and dried some leaves beforehand. When they were dry, I shredded them into small pieces by hand. You can do it with the kids. As Little L.’s attention span is still very short (she’s just 3.5) I knew shredding would have been all she could have been involved and the creative part of the activity would have been lost, so I did the shredding myself. It’s a nice sensory activity and the shreds can also serve as a great basis for a sensory box.

Later on 2 trays I prepared for them 3 motives drawn by pencil, liquid glue and a bowl of shredded leaves.

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First, they traced the outline of the image with the glue then sprinkled it with the shreds.

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To finish with, we let the exceed shreds fall of the picture. And there you can see a beautiful autumn picture.

Surprisingly, Little L. was great at tracing the outlines. I wasn’t surprised at E.’s fantastic tracing. Applying the right amount of glue needed a lot of concentration.

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When they’d finished with my pictures, they started to make their own. 

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E. made a tree with falling leaves, a flower and fruit.

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L. was working on a plum and a car (I guess).

I myself joined in and made our cat.

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This was the time when they lost interest, but I could encourage them to make a last one with their hands. The girls really liked the idea and the final outcome.

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This activity involved a lot of English interactions: autumn vocabulary (leaves, colours, autumn fruits), fine motor skill development (tracing with glue and sprinkling shredded leaves), giving and following instructions and artistic creativity. Not to mention fun, fun, fun.

Autumn door wreath

We’ve been collecting autumn leaves ever since the first on hit the ground. We’ve been carrying them home and pressing them in books. I didn’t know what to do with them until a friend of mine sent me a beautiful autumn wreath she made with her daughter.

Next to the entrance door we keep a tray where the kids can put down whatever they collected outside. There are different fruits of trees and berries from bushes, sticks, leaves, nuts and conkers. Finally we put them into good use.

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What you need:

  • paper plate
  • leaves and other autumn fruit
  • scissors
  • glue
  • ribbon

How we did it:

  1. We cut out the inside of the paper plate. I did it for Little L. although she tried the cutting herself. E. cut her own, I just made the final touches20181120_171724
  2. The girls stuck on a few leaves. In the meantime we were talking about the colours and how dry they got. We even felt the veins on the back of the leaves.

    On one of which we found tiny, dry eggs of a bug. We were guessing what bug it could be. To E.’s delight they were probably shield bug eggs.

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  3. After the leaves came the berries and other fruits. At this point I took out my hot glue gun. I applied the glue where they wanted and very carefully they places the berries and nuts on the paper plate.20181120_170955
  4. Last, but not least we added the ribbon to the back so we can hang it on the door. (E was afraid of the hot glue so she used a stick to fix the ribbon)20181120_173542

One wreath is on the inside and the other is on the outside. I change them every other day.

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Are your kids collectors when they’re outside?

Felt hand-tree

Autumn’s all about colours. This colour-matching activity has stuck into my mind and I’ve been planning to make it for years. Very easy even if you can’t really sew like me.

What you need:

  • coloured felt (brown, red, orange, yellow, green
  • buttons (of the same colours)
  • thread and needle
  • scissors
  • marker

How you can create it:

  1. First draw your hand around on the brown felt sheet and cut it out. This will be the tree
  2. Sew the button on the finger tips and thumb
  3. Draw a simple leaf on different coloured felt and cut them out. You can decorate them with the marker (draw the veins)
  4. Fold the leaves half vertically and cut a hole in the middle.

How to play:

Give your child the leaves and the tree-hand. Their task is to button the leaves up on the tree branches. They need to match the right leaf to the right button.

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This activity is great for kindergarteners who need practice doing up their buttons a lot.


In the meantime you can identify colours, talk about movements how to push the button through the hole.

Little L had a harder time at the beginning and needed some help with the first 2 leaves. But after that she did it all by herself.

They can take off the leaves and sing Autumn leaves are falling down.

Have a colourful autumn!

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Cotton bud skeleton reloaded

The cotton bud skeleton was also an old craft we did with 2-and-a-half-year-old E. She needed a lot of help at that time, but now, when we created it again she did everything all by herself.

She did the cutting of the cotton bud sticks, did the gluing and she even cut the big blue construction paper half perfectly straight (without a helping line).

Everything started with the huge skeleton puzzle we put together. We added white bottle tops as joints.

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And then came the cotton bud skeletons. We left L. out of this project as she still likes to put tiny things in her mouth.

So here is how we made the dancing skeletons. Of course, we revised the different bones in our body. Make sure you notice the doble bones in the lower arm, and the lower leg. e. was very accurate to make it right as on the skeleton pyjamas they’re just single bones, which is WRONG.

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cutting
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sticking

And here are our skeletons. The dancing bones.

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Shape witch reloaded

As I was going through the old Halloween blog posts I found the shape witch activity which was so much fun even when E. was only 2 and a half years old. I told her all about it and she got really excited. She wanted to make the shape witch again.

So be it. I though we could involve little L. as well since she’s almost 2 and she loves shapes.

With 2 kids craft projects are challenging indeed hence I prepared the activity by the time our new nanny, N. came to us for a session with E.

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I pre-cut the shapes and presented them on a tray. I left some for E. to cut if she wished and she did, of course. She loves cutting.

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Both kids enjoyed the witch building from shapes.

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L. was fascinated by the glue so after having finished with the witch we stayed a little longer to glue on some shapes randomly. We were practising both shapes and colours, not to mention how well this pushing motion helps to strengthen hand muscles.

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And here are the final results:

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Little L.’s creation
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E.’s witch is on the left, N.’s witch is on the right