The Autumn solstice is here, so the weather will make us stay indoors more than we want to, as opposed to going outside to play everyday. My toddler often gets bored, even if he has tons of toys, and he can watch TV, but whenever I come up with some fun, new, activities we can do together he’s more than excited.
The defining elements for these awesome fall activities for toddlers to do at home is picking up colorful whole, or nicely shaped, leaves, acorns, chestnuts, maybe a few pumpkins, pine cones and corn grains, whenever you go outside with your toddler, or shopping. And make sure you have plenty of paint and crayons with fall related colors. You’ll also need paper, the rolls from toilet papers, because if the boys in your house are anything like my own, you will have plenty laying around, as they never pick them up (maybe they know I secretly collect them), scissors, glue and cardboard
In my opinion you should do one activity per day, whenever you’re stuck inside, so you can stretch the fun surprises more, because there will be plenty of Autumn days too rainy to go out.
1. Funny Little Trees
I used the roll from the toilet paper, a cardboard, scissors, some glue, some paper, and paper tape. He’ll glue some leaves on and color the trunk and ground. I cut the roll in half, then made 2 tubes out of each side, glued them with tape straight up on the cardboard, that I glued white paper on, so he can paint the ground with leaves and grass. We glued the leaves on the tubes with paper tape and when we finished we painted the trunk in brown colors, and the ground in leaf colors, let it dry for a few minutes then glued the remaining leaves on it, on every surface I could glue. The result, as you can see, was pretty awesome.
2. Color using leaves
Get some papers and draw some shapes, animal, flowers, trees, whatever you want. If you are not good at drawing you can easily find some online and print. You can fill the shapes with some glue and he can take leaf fragments and glue them inside of the shape. Make sure the glue does not cross over the lines, maybe you can protect the lines with some paper tape and take it of after everything is dry.
3. Paint with leaves
Put some fall colors in a few trays. Brown, orange, yellow, green, and let him use a few leaves to paint. Dip them into colors and let his creativeness flow. He can just press them to make their shapes on the paper, it will look really neat, maybe even draw a tree so it appears the leaves fall down from it.
4. Decorate leaves
Get the biggest leaves you can find and glue, draw or paint funny faces on them. You can even glue a few funny looking eyes on it.
5. Acorn and chestnuts counting and sorting
You can fill 2 bowls with at least 10 each. My 3-year-old knows how to count till 12, so it depends what number you want to reach. These acorns and chestnuts are great for roll playing too. So when you’re done counting, you can use them for “cooking”. If your kid is a bit older you can even try some adding up. Add a few chestnuts in a bowl, a few others in another, make him count them separately, then ask him how many there are in total. Or just mix them up and let him sort them out.
6. Feel Game
You need a box, or a bowl and a scarf. Make a hole in the box, large enough so his tiny fists to enter. Put inside the box, or in the bowl and cover it with the scarf, acorns, leaves, chestnuts, and regular toys, and ask him to find the objects you want and give them to you. You can play this game as a memory game as well. Put a few objects, start small, 4-5, to see if he can memorize them, then remove one without him seeing it, and let him guess what object is missing.
7. Carving pumpkins
You can talk to him, and look on the internet for easy patterns you can carve on his pumpkin, and decide together. He can help you emptying the pumping with a spoon and even glue leaves on it. It does not have to be Halloween related, just have fun with it.
8. Pumpkin pie
I have a few pie recipes I like, but if you love fall, you probably have your own. So let your kid help. Mix the pumpkin with the sugar and spices, let him stir, just add the ingredients and he can poke the dough, stir in the filling, ask you a million questions. It will take longer, but it is better, and my boy loves to help me in the kitchen, so I bet yours won’t get bored either.
9. Corn grain accuracy
This game should be fun, played with more kids at a time. Get some corn grains and a spoon. Everybody has their own bowl and they try to get as many corn grains as you can, from a larger bowl, with your spoon and put it in your own. Whoever has more, wins the game.
10. Decorating a pine cone
I would use all kind of colored sparkles, and sprinkle it on top of pine cones after I smudge with a brush some glue. Then use some paint to paint the rest. You can decorate it like a Christmas tree or fall themed.
I hope these 10 awesome fall activities for toddlers will help you when you need to stay inside, but don’t forget to stash the leaves and everything you need before you get stuck home. I already started on them, cuz we both got a cold, and finished all the leaves already, almost run out on my tree, luckily I had some from a few plants I have home and managed to fill in. Good luck with your activities and keep us posted with your results.