The leaves are turning yellow, the air has that brisk feel to it, everything is pumpkin flavored. Fall has arrived! There is something about this short-lived season that makes me feel alive, that makes me want to take advantage of every bit of it and make some memories with my kids – because I want them to love fall as much as I do.
I love all the big fall activities, like apple picking, campfires, and corn mazes, but I’m trying to remember this year that we don’t have to do some elaborate, organized activity to make fall memories. Sometimes I get so overwhelmed, thinking an activity with my kids has to be picture-perfect, that I never even get around to doing anything. That’s a shame, and defeats the whole purpose, which is to connect with my children and develop our family identity through doing something fun together.
I still hope to make a trip to the corn maze, but I’m not going to wait until that outing to make family memories during my favorite season. If you keep your eyes open, it’s easy to find small opportunities for connection and fun surrounding things we do every day – like reading our favorite fall books! I let my imagination go a bit and came up with some ideas for activities to go along with some of the beautiful Autumn-themed books that we own. My children are all kindergarten-aged and under, so these ideas are for that age group, but I encourage you to use a little imagination and adapt these for older kids as well. My hope is that you can use these ideas as a guide to come up with some variations that work for you!
This book portrays little animal families enjoying all the fun aspects of the season. This book makes me want to bundle the kids up in their cute little coats and scarves and explore outside!
Activity/Craft Idea: Speaking of bundling the kids up – for an activity to go along with this book, go on a nature walk! The changing leaves are a great opportunity to talk to kids about how God gives us the seasons while your kids gather some samples. Encourage them to look for pretty leaves, pinecones, or even rocks and sticks. Bring them inside, cover the table with some paper. Give the kids some paint, glitter, and other craft supplies, and let them get creative! Paint the pinecones and sticks, tape the leaves to paper and paint around them, glue orange pom-poms onto the rocks to create mini pumpkins. Go a little wild and remember that the point isn’t a picture-perfect craft – it’s just to have fun!
Song Idea: Sing “This Is My Father’s World” as you enjoy the outdoors and decorate bits of God’s creation!
This is another adorable fall book with a cute little mouse family having Autumn fun together and thanking God for all the wonderful things that Autumn brings.
Activity/Craft Idea: Create your own “pumpkin prayer” of thanksgiving! Buy a pumpkin (a fake craft pumpkin might be best for this purpose), and each night at dinner, write something on the pumpkin that you are thankful for. Have the kids take turns coming up with something to write. Not only is this good practice on developing a thankful heart leading up to Thanksgiving, but it’s a great visual reminder to your kids of all their blessings.
Song Idea – I’m all about teaching my kids some of the good old hymns, and “All Creatures Of Our God And King” is always one I think of when Thanksgiving is on the horizon, because it focuses on praising God for who He is and all He has done for us.
This book has sweet poems and Precious Moments illustrations that cover almost everything you could think of for Autumn! I could almost suggest using this little book as a guide for coming up with ideas of things to do with your kids during the fall – it’s a complete Autumn celebration in a little book!
Activity/Craft Idea: Create a banner to enjoy throughout the fall! Trace a leaf shape on some construction paper or fall-themed scrapbook paper and cut them out. Use glue or double-sided tape to make a letter on each leaf spelling out a fall-related phrase. When we did this I spelled out “Happy Fall”. Place the leaves in plastic sandwich bags full of glitter. Have your kids shake the bags to help the glitter stick to the glue or tape. String the leaves across your window or wall and enjoy!
Song To Sing: A verse of the hymn “Count Your Blessings” is in the Happy Harvest book – sing this great hymn with your kids and then count your fall blessings.
I hope these ideas get your own creative juices flowing as you come up with ideas for your own family to do together! It’s not too difficult to make fall memories with our kids when we let go of our Pinterest-worthy standards and just focus on having fun and teaching our kids who gave us this beautiful season in the first place.
What are your favorite Fall books and crafts?