Top 5 Kids Activities for Fall October 12 2011
As the weather starts to get colder, the opportunity for kids’ activities can seem to dry up. However, there are still plenty of ways to entertain your kids in Fall, before the true chill of winter sets in.
1 – Gardening
Fall is a great time to get out in the garden because there is still enough sunlight to establish your new plants, but there is
also cooler weather and just enough rain to protect your new garden from the harshest of the elements. Planting a garden is a perfect Fall activity to get your kids involved in because it gets them outside, they are involved in caring for the environment, you can plant an edible garden to supply your home with organic fruit and vegetables, plus caring for their plants teaches them long term responsibility.
Start your Fall gardening project by finding out the average date the first frost hits. This is the date you need your plants to be established by, for example if a plant takes eight weeks to mature, you want to plant it eight weeks before the first frost is likely to hit. You can then start preparing the garden for planting by breaking up the soil which is likely to be hard and dry from summer. You can also add some compost to the top soil for a healthier growing environment for the plants. This is a perfect way to get your kids involved, they can get their hands dirty, and see how things really grow from the beginning.
Now you can choose what you want to grow in your new garden and start planting. If you are planting in Fall, choose winter vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts. Look for plants which you can transplant to your garden, or start growing your seedlings indoors for around six weeks before you’re ready to plant them in the garden. You can also plant leafy vegetables such as lettuce, cress and spinach which will all be ready for hearty winter recipes before you know it.
2 – Crafts
Arts and crafts are a popular Fall pastime for children and adults, perhaps because there is so much beautiful inspiration out there are the colors change and the air is crisp. Following are several ideas for Fall craft projects you can do with your kids:
Tissue Paper Leaf
This Fall craft project is perfect for preschoolers or young children and doesn’t use glue so it won’t create a mess to do the
Black or brown paper
Clear contact paper
Tissue paper in Fall colours – reds, oranges, browns and yellows
A leaf shape
1. Print out a leaf shape and cut around the outside, and then cut out the middle of the leaf.
2. Trace the outline of the leaf you are left with onto the black paper and cut it out. You now have a frame for your craft project.
3. Cut out a square of contact paper which is slightly larger than your leaf frame and stick the leaf frame to the contact.
4. Cut the tissue paper into approximately one inch squares.
5. Stick the tissue paper onto the contact paper, making sure the colours over lap.
6. When the inside of the leaf frame is covered with coloured tissue paper, cut off the excess contact from around the leaf frame.
7. Hang your Fall leaf in a window where the sunlight can shine through.
Thanksgiving Paper Chain
Coloured paper in Fall colours – red, orange, brown and yellow
1. Cut out strips of construction paper.
2. Have your children write one thing they are thankful for on each strip of paper.
3. Glue each strip of paper into a circle and create a paper chain.
4. Decorate your home for Thanksgiving with a festive and meaningful paper chain.
3 – Cooking
There are plenty of ways your kids can help you in the kitchen in the Fall, and rather than shooing them out of your way, get them involved in these tasty activities.
Cinnamon and Raisin Pretzels
3/4 cup (175 mL) raisins
3-3/4 cup (850 mL) all purpose flour
1/4 cup (50 mL) brown sugar
1-1/2 tbsp (22 mL) baking powder
1/2 tsp. (1 mL) baking soda
1/2 tsp. (2 mL) salt
2 cups (500 mL) plain yogurt
1/4 cup (50 mL) granulated sugar
1 tsp. (5 mL) cinnamon
2 tbsp. (30 mL) butter
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and line two large cookie trays with lightly greased baking paper.
2. Place the raisins into a bowl and pour the boiling water in until they are covered.
3. In another bowl have your children mix together the flour, browns sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
4. In another bowl get the kids to whisk the yogurt with the egg.
5. Have the kids pour the yogurt mixture into the dry ingredients and stir until well blended.
6. Drain the raisins and add them to the dough, having your kids mix them in well.
7. Sprinkle flour onto your work surface and knead the dough about 10 to 15 times to bring it together.
8. Cut the dough into 12 pieces and work on one piece of dough at a time.
9. Have the kids help you roll each piece of dough into an even rope around ½ inch thick, and then twist it into a pretzel shape.
10. Place the shaped pretzels onto the baking trays.
11. Stir together the cinnamon and the sugar and melt the butter
12. Brush each pretzel with butter and then sprinkle with the cinnamon sugar.
13. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until the pretzels are brown on top.
Maple Pecan Pie
Your kids can help you make this seasonal recipe by mixing together the ingredients and chopping up the nuts.
1 cup (250 mL) maple syrup
2/3 cup (150 mL) sugar
1/4 cup (50 mL) melted butter
1 tsp. (5 mL) vanilla
1 cup (250 mL) coarsely chopped pecans
1 x 9-inch (23-cm) bought or homemade uncooked pie shell
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Beat together the maple syrup, sugar, eggs, melted butter and vanilla in a bowl, with an electric mixer until slightly thickened. This should take around two to three minutes.
3. Stir in the chopped pecans then pour the mixture into the prepared pie shell.
4. Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.
5. Serve warm or cooled, with whipped cream or ice cream.
4 – Indoor Sports
A white paint marker
1. Create a goal post by pinning two inch wide strips of poster board to the wall using poster tack.
2. Cut out football shapes from the brown card and decorate them with stitching stripes and each player’s name. Add a small amount of poster tack to the back of each football.
3. Line up all the kids around six feet from the wall.
4. Spin around one player at a time and let them approach the wall and try to score a goal with their football.
5. Play several rounds and the player with the highest number of goals wins.
Indoor Foot Volleyball
An inflated balloon
1. Tie your string across a ten foot playing area around one foot of the ground, to divide the court into two sides.
2. Create two teams of players and have them take their shoes off and position themselves face up on their hands and feet.
3. The team which wins the coin toss to serve first will have one player launch the balloon ball so that another player on their team can hit it over the string with their foot.
4. Both teams kick the balloon back and forth over the net, taking as many hits as they need to on each side.
5. If the balloon hits the ground, the other team gets a point and wins the serve. Play to 15 points each game.
5 – Outdoor Fall Sports
When the weather is fine enough to get outside, your kids can run around and warm up with these activities:
A group of kids wanting to play
1. One child is the chef, who aims to tag the other players.
2. When the chef tags another player they call out a pizza topping.
3. The tagged player has to tag another player and repeat the topping they were tagged with.
4. The next player then has to tag another player, repeat the topping they were tagged with, plus the toppings which were tagged before them.
5. If a player can’t recite the whole list of toppings they sit out and when there is only one child left they get to start as the chef for the new game.
At least two players, or multiple pairs of players
1 hula hoop for each player
1 small beanbag or other soft object for each pair
1. Lay all the hoops on the ground around eight feet apart.
2. Have each player stand inside their hoop and throw their beanbag into their partner’s hoop.
3. If the beanbag lands and stays inside the hoop, the thrower earns a point.
4. Players can block beanbags with their hands and their body, but must remain standing, and can’t kneel or sit in their hoop.
Alban has contributed numerous articles on parenting topics. When he is not blogging, Alban writes guides and articles at Savingsaccountfinder.com.au