Hello and happy Halloween, my friends! I've been looking forward to this day all week. I didn't have any big plans, but I was craving a laid-back evening at home with spooky movies and a huge stash of candy. If you think I get excited about the seasons and holidays now, you should have seen me when I was a little girl! Every year, I was PUMPED about the prospect of dressing up, attending festivals and parties, and trick-or-treating with my family and friends. If you'd like to make this season even more magical for the children in your life, I've got some tips for a fall-themed storytime they're sure to love!
The Books-Pumpkins by Ken Robbins (nonfiction)
-Fall Mixed Up by Bob Raczka
-Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf by Lois Ehlert
-Fall Leaves by Don L. Curry
-Dappled Apples by Jan Carr
-Every Autumn Comes the Bear by Jim Arnosky
You can spark a child's interest in this storytime theme by asking questions about the fall season. Some examples: Do you know what season it is? Why is it called fall? What happens to the trees in the fall? Do you know another name for fall (autumn)? What holidays take place during fall (Halloween & Thanksgiving)? What do you like to eat, drink, and do during this season (pumpkin pie, cider, hayrides, festivals, playing in the leaves, trick-or-treating)?
-Pumpkins is a nonfiction book with simple text and large photographs illustrating pumpkin farming, uses, and lore.
-Fall Mixed Up is a rhyming book with silly fall mix-ups and full-page illustrations.
-Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf is an informative book about the life cycle of a maple tree. It features labeled illustrations and facts about maple trees in the back of the book.
-Fall Leaves would be a great read-along for beginning readers. Each page features a simple sentence and a matching illustration.
-Dappled Apples contains simple rhymes, fun words, and lots of fall traditions all wrapped up in one short book.
-Every Autumn Comes the Bear is a beautiful picture book about the changing of seasons. Watch for lots of interesting forest animals!
-Bring a variety of items with you to observe how they fall. Some of the items you might drop are an acorn, a leaf, a feather, and a maple seed. Have children guess what the item will look like before you drop it, then have them observe and discuss the way it falls.
-If possible, take the kids to the pumpkin patch or the fall produce section of the grocery store after introducing these books to them.
-While reading Fall Leaves, have kids act out each page as you point out the words you read.
-For older children who present no danger of putting small objects in their mouths, you can give them pumpkin or maple seeds to grow.
-Provide a selection of crayons or colored pencils, leaves, and a large sheet of paper. Begin by modeling how to do leaf rubbings and pass the paper around, asking each child to color over a leaf with their favorite fall color until you have a collage created by the entire group.
I hope you are enjoying this cozy season! What's your favorite fall tradition?