TOPIC OF THE MONTH
We love the change in seasons here at nursery. Autumn is a great time of year for themed craft projects, with plenty of inspiration to be found in the colours, events and natural phenomena associated with the season. Plus the main events of the season; Diwali, Halloween and Bonfire Night and the things that are associated with them (eg fireworks, lanterns, spiders, bats and pumpkins).
Take a walk to your local park and collect different coloured leaves, pinecones, acorns, conkers, twigs and sticks.
‘Rainbow’ leaf collage
Get the children to collect lots of leaves, in as many different colours as they can find (this may work well as a cumulative project involving several trips). Back inside, set up a long section of rolled-out paper and help the children sort and stick the leaves onto it by gradations of colour; so for example, starting with all of the dark red leaves at one end of the paper roll, moving onto bright reds, then oranges, yellows, greens etc.
Each child chooses some leaves; they may be all the same type of leaf, or perhaps a selection of different ones, but all should be fairly large and sturdy. You can then staple them onto a cardboard band to make an autumnal leaf crown.
For this project you’ll need A3 paper, conkers, and paint in a range of autumnal colours. Get the children to dunk a conker in some paint and roll it over the paper (they may need some help with this); build up layers using different colours.
Pipe cleaner spiders
Take four pipe cleaners in one hand and then wrap another pipe cleaner tightly around the middle with your other hand. Once the pipe cleaners are secure (you may need more than one around the middle), you can shape the legs on either side of the body, and then hang them up with elastic cord.
Pumpkin apple prints
Cut some apples in half and use these to make prints with orange paint on dark-coloured paper. The shapes will look very pumpkin-like, especially with the addition of eyes and mouths once the paint has dried – for these you could use black paint, pen or stickers.
For this activity you’ll need several lengths of cardboard tube with slits cut around the circumference (approximately 5cm long and 5mm wide), so that the tubes can be splayed out into flower-type shapes. The children can then use these to make exploding firework prints on dark-coloured paper with bright-coloured paint.
Get the children to collect handfuls of thin twigs. Back inside, help them stick these onto sheets of dark-coloured paper to make the base of a bonfire. Put out some bowls of red, orange and yellow paint and get the children to add flames by making several handprints of each colour above their twigs. These bonfire paintings can be really effective.