Fall is such a fun time of year, and there are so many fun books that teach children about the beauty of this season. In these fall books, the emphasis is on what children can see and find in nature around them during the fall season. (You can find more fall nature books and activities in part 1 and part 2 of this series.)
Have an Outside Scavenger Hunt
- Count Down to Fall by Fran Hawk introduces children to more than just the falling leaves of this season. In this book, children notice how the plants and animals in nature act in fall. This book also includes a number on each page so it is great for reinforcing counting.
- Another fun book to introduce a fall scavenger hunt is We’re Going on a Leaf Hunt by Steve Metzger. The children in this book spend a day hunting for different falling leaves around them.
- After reading these books, make a list of some fall specific things that you and your children might see around your house or a park. You can include things from the book such as certain types of falling leaves, squirrels, and acorns. Then take a walk around your neighborhood, a local park, or even just your backyard. See how many of the items on your list you can find. You can have your children collect many of the items in a bag, or if you want to leave nature outside, you could take pictures of the items you find to look at later.
Make a Leaf Man
- You can also read Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert as a fun fall read aloud. Your children will enjoy the rhythm and beautiful illustrations in this creative book.
- Another great book that focuses on the changing leaves is Why Do Leaves Change Color by Betsy Maestro. While this book emphasizes the science behind the changing colors, it is written in such an interesting way that it holds the attention of children.
- Once your have read all about the changing leaves, it’s time to get out in nature and find some leaves yourselves. Give your children each a bag of some kind. As you walk around a park or neighborhood, have them collect whatever leaves, acorns, or fall items they are interested in. (If you live in an area where the leaves have not changed color yet, you could let your children color and cut out pictures of fall leaves for this craft.) When you get home, have each child glue their leaves onto a piece of construction paper to make a leaf man. They can glue on acorns or acorn caps for eyes, nose, or even buttons. A curved twig would make a great mouth.
Children love to explore nature and the world around them. You can encourage that natural love by reading to them about what happens in fall and then letting them discover more about it for themselves. What other fall activities do you let your children do to explore nature?
Photo by: Alvert Barnes