Here are the 7 best experiences for fall fun and learning:
1. Visit a Farm It doesn’t matter if you prefer apples or pumpkins. Every child should visit a farm in the fall. Most people buy their food prepackaged and so far away from where it is grown. Let children see just how apples grow in trees and pumpkins grow on the ground. There are usually lots of other fun things to do on a farm in the fall: hayrides, corn mazes, and petting farms are set up as attractions. You can spend a whole day enjoying the atmosphere.
2. Bake a fall treat Once you bring those apples or pumpkins home, you can continue teaching your children about fall foods by baking a pie from scratch. My children love to bake, and there is so much learning involved. You can teach math by focusing on measuring, literacy by focusing on the recipe, or science by observing the changes in the pie as it bakes. Learning is fun when there is a sweet dessert as a reward!
3. Cheer your local team It’s football season. Why sit on the couch all afternoon when you can watch your local high school team play? My kids love watching the games, and they learn a sense of pride in our community when we go. While you enjoy the game, you can point out the time clock and yard lines to sneak in a discussion of time or measurement
4. Witness an animal migration Many animals start their migration south in autumn. Your child can learn about the scientific facts of migration or simply be in awe of the amazing journeys these animals take. Check out Journey North,a fabulous online program where kids can follow the migration path of the Monarch butterfly, gray whales, and a wide assortment of birds.
5. Go hiking Fall is one of my favorite times to hike. The weather is cooler now, and the leaves are starting to turn colors. In his book, Last Child in the Woods, Richard Louv coined the term Nature Deficit Disorder to describe children who were stuck inside and completely removed from nature. He explained that children need time outside for their physical and emotional health. I agree and hope you’ll get on a trail this fall.
6. Make some Back to School Resolutions Kids are lucky. They get a fresh start every school year. New teacher. New friends. New things to learn. Ask your child to finish these sentences: This year I’d like to learn…. This year I want to get better at…. This year I want to help…. Now, your job is to help them reach these goals this year.
7. Have fun with leaves Raking is not a chore if it is a means to an end… of jumping in the pile. Make a big pile to jump in. Make circles of them and pretend they are nests or houses or castles. Take them inside and make leaf art. There are tons of ideas on Pinterest, but we’ll be trying this one from The Artful Parent soon.
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