Five Early Years Autumn Projects

Autumn will soon be here. So, now is a great time to start your autumn planning. Here are five project ideas to help you think.

When Does Autumn Officially Begin?

Well that depends on who you talk to. The weather men and women will say it’s on 1st September as they split the year up into neat, three monthly periods for easy year on year comparison of weather and temperatures.

The autumn equinox is on 23rd September when the days and nights are of equal length and this is when astronomers say that autumn starts.

And then there’s nature. She will determine the start of autumn by the leaves changing colour and berries ripening. So you can use phenology – the process of observing signs of change in plant and animal behaviour to determine when autumn starts.

With these three ways of determining autumn in mind you could do projects on the changing seasons, on the solar system, and one of observing how the plants and trees in your nursery garden change. Taking photos would be good for this so the children can compare a tree over time.

And of course there are lots of leaf pictures you can do involving printing, rubbing and collage. Check out our leaf resources.

Who doesn’t love hedgehogs? Last year I wrote a post all about hedgehogs, the noises they make and creative projects you can do. Check it out here.

Wood Sprites and Wood Sprite Pictures
I came across making wood sprites when my children were of nursery age. They’re really easy and fun to make. But first you will need to go for a walk to the park or wood to find some sticks. It’ll be great if you can get the children involved in gathering the sticks.

Then all you need is some clay or dough to use as the body to stick your sticks into. Some balls of clay for the feet – a good experiment would be to see how much clay is needed for your sprite to stand up. Then, use collage materials for the face.
For the wood sprite pictures you could gather leaves on your walk to make pictures with or you can use our artificial leaves.

Summer to Autumn Tree
This was a very successful project I did with the toddler group last autumn. I don’t know why leaves are a draw for children but they seem to love them. They certainly loved this project. Read all about it here.

Harvest Festival
This festival – held at the end of September on the Sunday nearest the full moon – is a great time to talk about food – how it is grown/reared, what we should eat to make us grow big and strong and what we should avoid, what different food looks like and even what food we can eat raw and what needs to be cooked.

It’s also a time of gathering in the crops and for sharing – a great topic to cover with the children.
And as the moon determines when the festival is held you could even do a moon topic. Find out more about the moon in this post.

Hopefully that little lot has given you some food for thought. Enjoy coming up with your autumn projects.


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