Fall Art Project

fall crafts for kids

Need a fun art project for your older kids? This fall tree project is perfect. It’s somewhat time consuming for the careful or perfectionist child but dries quickly enough for those who are more impatient. Welcome fall into your house and or homeschool curriculum with this .

  1. Gather your materials. You will need a canvas, painters tape, a sponge paint brush and paint.
  2. Start by taping the tree form. I ripped my tape into strips for the branches.
  3. I also made falling and fallen leaves with tiny pieces.
  4. Press down hard so paint won’t seep under.
  5. Start painting. I used all different fall colors and blended them.
  6. Let dry
  7. Peel off the tape carefully.

Need a fall themed craft for a younger child? Try this Fall Leaves Craft

Books About Fall

Fall Books For Kids

Leaf Jumpers by Carole Gerber is a beautifully illustrated , informative book that all all about leaves in autumn. It’s not the most exciting book but is a good teaching resource and tool when you are teaching your child about the changing seasons.  I can’t say this is a must read, but it’s useful and worth a look at your local library and will probably make you and your children want to jump in a few giant piles of leaves!

When_Autumn_Falls

When Autumn Falls by Kelli Nidey is a stunning book, the illustrations which are painted paper collages, by Susan Swan are so richly colored you will want more after turning the last page. The text is clever as well. Readers will discover that fall is well named not just because of falling leaves, but also pumpkins falling from the vines, temperatures falling, seeds falling from their leaves and even football players falling! The text is the perfect length for toddlers but not too short for preschoolers too.  Cute book for this time of year.

Great Acorn Mystery

Dot & Jabber and the Great Acorn Mystery by Ellen Stoll Walsh is a perfect fit for this activity!  The little mouse detectives Dot and Jabber are trying to figure out how a tiny oak tree has sprouted so far from the big one across the meadow. I love how this book excites my son about learning, he wants to figure out this mystery right along side the two little detectives. Isn’t that what science really is? A mystery to be solved? The mice do solve the mystery and a squirrel is involved but you will have to read the book for all the clues and details. I highly recommend this book , it’s engaging, visually beautiful and teaches about the life cycle of an oak tree effortlessly.

This post contains affiliate links.

Apple Orchard Craft

When my son read this book we started learning about apple orchards and the idea for this craft was born. My son is much more into digging in our backyard and building with legos than art these days but I knew I could entice him to create if it involved food coloring and medicine droppers… and I was right! He even asked his dad to take it to work and put it up in his office he was so proud of it.   There are a lot of steps for little guys in this craft but you can omit some easily and still make a fun apple tree!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need coffee filters, red and green food coloring, 2 eye or medicine droppers, ice cube tray, construction paper, markers, scissors, glue and popsicle sticks. You may also want to use a cutting board and some paper towels under the coffee filters to protect your work surface.
  2. Start by handing your child the construction paper and markers – have them draw the orchard , but make sure they know you will be gluing trees on top. We don’t want any meltdowns over covering their picture.
  3. Next layer the paper towels under the coffee filters.
  4. Pour the food coloring into your tray – I watered down the green but not the red.
  5. Start with the green food coloring on the coffee filters.
  6. Next add red. Let dry.
  7. While they are drying ( doesn’t take long in the sun!) have your child color the popsicle sticks with the brown marker.  This is great fine motor skills practice! My son decided to make a single line on each …one of which continued onto my table. Remember to use washable markers and a wet cloth nearby always keeps blood pressure low !
  8. Glue the sticks onto the construction paper.
  9. Cut the filters into tree tops.
  10. Glue on and let dry.

More Apple Books

Apple Picking Time by Michele Benoit Slawson  was not what I was expecting , it was so much more. I was expecting a basic book about picking apples at an orchard.  This book is anything but basic, it’s dreamy and while reading it I almost felt as thought I was back in time when a whole community would come to a stand still for something like apple picking.  The protagonist is Anna a little girl who works hard in the orchard along side her parents and grandparents . She isn’t as fast as her parents, but with hard work and the support of her family she reaches her goal and fills a bin! I loved this book,  I would suggest it for preschoolers and up.

The Apple Pie That Papa Baked by Lauren Thompson had me tricked into thinking that it was a new edition of an old book. The retro look to the illustrations hooked me and I was shocked to see it was only published 2 years ago. The reader is taken through all the elements that go into making a pie, not the recipe though. The story works backwards from pie to the apples, the tree, the roots and more . The message is one of interconnectedness and makes me feel equally important and small all at the same time. I think it’s useful to teach how everything in nature is dependent on other elements and can’t work alone. My son enjoyed the illustrations of the sun with a face and the little girl helping her father at every step.

Arbor Day Books and Crafts!

Halloween Craft

Did you know that today is Arbor Day?  In celebration of trees and all the fantastic things that trees bring to us like fresh air, shade on a sunny day and piles of leaves to jump into every fall we are posting all our tree crafts so you can make a tree and celebrate . Check out the official Arbor Day Foundation website for more info.

Sun Print Tree (above)

Apple Tree

Japanese Cherry Tree

Emily Carr Inspired Trees

Budding Spring Tree

Hole Punch Tree

Tree Books

Pablo's Tree

Pablo’s Tree by Pat Mora is a great book. The author has successfully integrated so many wonderful things into one still entertaining and engaging book. The story is about Pablo who is excited to go to his grandfather’s house to celebrate his birthday. See his Lito ( grandfather) has a wonderful tradition of decorating his tree every year to celebrate Pablo’s birthday. The book explains that this started before Pablo was even born, when his mom told her father that she would be adopting a baby. I love that this book is about a multi generation family, includes adoption without it being the only subject in the book, and it’s multi lingual text ( Spanish and English) . It’s a gem, oh and my son loved it too!

Our Apple Tree
by Gorel Kristina Naslund is a straight forward yet beautiful book about a year in the life of an apple tree. I like that it starts in winter because so often apple tree books start in the fall with the harvest . The pictures are delightful and two little tree fairies follow along with you as the tree goes through it’s life cycle. My son had very little interest in the book, but it wasn’t the book, at 2 he just wasn’t able to sit for so much information. This book is perfect for 4-8 year olds.

A tree for emmy

A Tree for Emmy by Mary Ann Rodman was a huge hit with my son who took a real liking to Emmy the “stubborn and a little bit wild ” main character of this book. She loves the Mimosa tree in her grandma’s yard and decides more than anything she wants her own for her birthday. Unfortunately they are wild and no nursery carries them. She is distraught and arguably a little bratty when disappointed but as luck would have it when she visits her grandma again she notices a shoot growing! I like how independent Emmy is , and must admit to taking great pleasure in my son noticing Emmy’s baby sister in a sling in one illustration! Very cute book!

Spring Tree

Spring Tree Craft

This craft was spur of the moment, I was sitting looking out at my backyard and decided to replicate our little cherry tree. While my son played with play dough I made this. He stopped playing and I offered him the option to make one but he just wanted to watch. I love how the Q-tips made perfect little buds and how rich the colors are. Young kids could easily do this if you made the tree for them , and older ones would have no problem doing the whole project independently.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need some white paper, a brown marker , water colors, a tiny bit of water in a dish..or perhaps an old sippy cup that happens to be on the table….and q-tips.Spring Tree Craft
  2. Start by drawing the outline of a bare tree. Spring Tree Craft
  3. Dip your q-tip in the water and then get it nice and covered in paint. Spring Tree Craft
  4. Dab it on. Spring Tree Craft
  5. Add more colors. Spring Tree Craft
  6. Paint the bark if you want. Spring Tree Craft
  7. Let dry. Spring Tree Craft

Chapter Book

Gaia Girls

I don’t often do chapter book reviews but this book is so good I recently re read it for fun !  So many great messages and with spring break coming up I thought I’d give a nod to an older book in hopes that some of you with older kids ( girls especially) would grab this for them.

Gaia Girls Enter the Earth by Lee Wells .  I couldn’t be more excited to share a book with my older readers. The story follows Elizabeth as she spends her summer on her parents small organic farm, learning that not all farming is as responsible as her family’s. But that’s not all Elizabeth meets someone magical and discovers she has a special power that can help her fight against the factory farms moving into her area. I love the magical aspect of this book, the author manages to make it work in a very down to earth way and it sucks the reader in. The strong environmental call to action in the book is wonderful, not only are the issues like factory farming explained but solutions and alternatives are as well. The girl power undertones are well done too, Elizabeth’s power isn’t exerted irresponsibly and she is conscientious about how to use it. I wish more books were this good.

You May Also Like

Japanese Cherry Tree Craft
Colorful Forrest
Q-Tip Dandelion

Inspired by Emily Carr: Tree Craft

If you watched the opening ceremonies of the Olympics you saw Sarah McLaughlin singing among tall painted trees. They were a homage to West coast painter Emily Carr , a personal favorite and not as well known outside of Canada. I have been waiting to do a fine art reproduction craft since it has been a while and this was the perfect link to recent events ! No matter if your child saw the ceremonies or not trees are something they can relate to.

  1. Gather your materials. This project although has a set end result we focused on all different ways to paint, so we are using multiple tools. You will need some coffee filters, brown or white paper, blue paper, glue, scissors, a roller, a glass sponge, an eye dropper, some blue, green and brown paint as well as some green food coloring.Emily Carr Trees
  2. Start by showing your child pictures of Emily Carr’s work online, in books or if you are lucky enough to have a real one near by at a museum. Talk about the trees, the colors and ask what they like and don’t like.
  3. Start by painting the trunks. We used a foam roller. My son pretended he was a steam roller and did this for a long long time!Emily Carr Trees
  4. Next hand them the sky, we used blue paper but white or pale green would both work perfectly. I put green and blue paint in a dish for him to use with the glass sponge. If you follow me on twitter you may have seen my tweet saying my son announced he was Jackson Pollack as he splattered the paint- this was when he said that!Emily Carr Trees
  5. Time for green food dye! Using an eye dropper suck up the food dye, and drop on the coffee filters. Have wet wipes on hand, my fingers are still green .Emily Carr Trees Emily Carr Trees
  6. Let everything dry.
  7. Cut out the trunksEmily Carr Trees
  8. Cut the filters into tree tops. I did this step for my son because his cutting skills aren’t yet developed enough . If your child is able invite them to do it, I did ask him if he wanted spiky trees or rounded trees!Emily Carr Trees
  9. Time to glue. Add three long lines. I added the first and then he did the rest. Emily Carr Trees
  10. Add your trunks.Emily Carr Trees
  11. Add glue for the tree tops Emily Carr Trees
  12. Add the tree tops and let dry.Emily Carr Trees

Books

Pablo's Tree

Pablo’s Tree by Pat Mora is a great book. The author has successfully integrated so many wonderful things into one still entertaining and engaging book. The story is about Pablo who is excited to go to his grandfather’s house to celebrate his birthday. See his Lito ( grandfather) has a wonderful tradition of decorating his tree every year to celebrate Pablo’s birthday. The book explains that this started before Pablo was even born, when his mom told her father that she would be adopting a baby. I love that this book is about a multi generation family, includes adoption without it being the only subject in the book, and it’s multi lingual text ( Spanish and English) . It’s a gem, oh and my son loved it too!

pocket full of kisses

A Pocket Full of Kisses by Audrey Penn is another book in her Kissing Hand series. Chester is not so happy about having a little brother and suggests that he gives him back! I love that jealousy doesn’t stem over toys or material things but rather over Mama giving his little brother a kissing hand too.  My mom has always called me sunshine and I will grudgingly admit that I do not like it when someone else earns this name, it’s an instinctual reaction and I am in my 30s! When Chester raccoon bursts into tears kids and adults a like can relate to it. Mam raccoon handles it beautifully and Chester understands that no matter how much love a mama has for one child it doesn’t take any way from others. This book was a great vehicle for discussion about our upcomming arrival and I urge other parents dealing with a new sibling or jealousy to check it out.

A tree for emmy

A Tree for Emmy by Mary Ann Rodman was a huge hit with my son who took a real liking to Emmy the “stubborn and a little bit wild ” main character of this book. She loves the Mimosa tree in her grandma’s yard and decides more than anything she wants her own for her birthday. Unfortunately they are wild and no nursery carries them. She is distraught and arguably a little bratty when disappointed but as luck would have it when she visits her grandma again she notices a shoot growing! I like how independent Emmy is , and must admit to taking great pleasure in my son noticing Emmy’s baby sister in a sling in one illustration! Very cute book!