Friday, November 5, 2010

Autumn Envy-Preschool Theme on Leaves

leaf food

I live in Phoenix…the leaves don’t change colors here.  It is interesting teaching preschool aged children, from Phoenix, about the seasons, because we don’t see all 4 seasons.  But this has been a fun week learning all about leaves!

I like to start November with this theme because then I have a bulletin board that we add things we are thankful for, on leaves, to a tree!

leaf matching a

Clothespin Matching-I have clothespins with the whole alphabet on one side and then numbers on the other side, so that we can use them either way!  Get a stack of shapes to fit your theme (I made leaves in autumn colors).  Print the alphabet on one side and numbers on the back side.

leaf matching b

These leaves can be used to match the leaf to the clothespin, to sort by colors, spell out words, sort other object by number on top of the leaves, graph how many of each color, make patterns, etc.    leaf work

Leaf Tracing-I printed up a few leaves.  Have the kids work on the carpet with a tack (obviously watch them carefully with the tacks).  They poke holes along the outline of the leaf.  For some reason kids seem to LOVE this activity.  You can also let them poke holes with needles, pencils, etc.

Rainbow Tracing is using another leaf outline and having the children trace over the line, using each color in the rainbow.  Kids also seem to love this.

leaf ripping c

Leaf Collages-You can vary this depending on the age of the child.  This time I gave each child one strip of red, orange, and yellow paper.  Then, they tore these strips into piles of tiny paper pieces.  I used tissue paper last year.  You can also do this as a scissors activity.  Have thinner strips of colored paper for the children to cut into smaller pieces.  This is a great way to get children use to scissors. leaf ripping b

Have them put glue all over just the leaf shape.  Then, they can add the pieces however they like them.  leaf rubbing b

Leaf Rubbings-On our daily walk we collected leaves.  Even I was surprised at the variety of leaf shapes we found!  These were all from just my yard!  We even used citrus, strawberry, and tomato leaves!  I wish my zuchini and pumpkins had grown because those huge leaves would have been phenomenal to use for this activity and lots of others!

leaf rubbing a

I think you all know how to make leaf rubbings with the side of crayons.  So easy for the kids to get great results.  I do tape the paper down to the table to help it stay in place.   leaf rubbing tin

How about this leaf rubbing?

It is from a leaf skeleton that we made (which I will show you how to do next week) and tin foil.  I absolutely LOVE this and think we might end up framing some of these!

Eating Leaves-We ate foods that we cut out in leaf shapes (like pastries, sandwiches, cookies, etc.  We also ate caprese salad that we picked the basil leaves from my garden for!  As we cooked lunch this week we used herbs that we picked from my herb garden, to season our foods.  We also ate lettuce and spinach and I explained how those are leaves that we are eating.

Plant Pressing-We also gathered extra leaves and some flowers as well and are pressing them.  We have more activities that we made and are making, with the pressed plants.  I will show you those next week when we are all done with them.


If my zucchini plants had grown we would have made zucchini horns again, out of the leaves!   

It has been a fun week learning all about autumn, the seasons, leaves, and plants.  Many interesting topics come up when talking about leaves.  We talked about how we eat leaves like lettuce, spinach, and herbs.  We also saw how in the garden bugs also ate the leaves of the plants in our garden.  We talked about how some leaves provide shade for us, animals, and other plants.  We dissected some leaves and got them down to their skeleton to see the inner workings of leaves.

What leaf activities have you done?


3 comments: said...

That leaf rubbing art is so pretty! Thanks for the great ideas, I'll be linking.

Louanne said...

This is adorable!! My friend just sent me the link to your blog.

RootsAndWingsCo said...

Rachel, thanks, as always we LOVE being on your site!
Louanne, I'm glad you found your way to us! I'll have to check out your blog now.