Tot School Ideas: Autumn and Fall Crafts and Activities for Toddlers and Preschoolers

Are you looking for a Fall themed Tot School unit, or just some Fall themed crafts and activities you can do with your little one when you’re spending time together?
Well you’re in the right place, because I’ve rounded up some wonderfully Fall themed crafts, field trip ideas, gross motor and fine motor activities, free printables, books and snacks to inspire you!

Fall crafts and activities

  1. I love handprint crafts because every time you do one you capture a milestone and over time you can see how much your little ones have grown. Ciara shared this wonderful handprint sunflower craft and I think it would be incredibly cute to make the stalk out of longer sections of paper so that the sunflower could be the same height as your child!
  2. Thanks to Helen I learned about an amazing book called Secrets of the Apple Tree, where you shine a light through the pages to hunt for animals that live in a tree! As an extension activity Helen’s daughter made a wonderful lift the flap book of her own and she shows you just how you cans your kiddos can make one too.
  3. Anna’s boys have been making scrunched tissue paper autumn leaves this week. This activity looks great for little ones to get involved with as scrunching paper is pretty simple, but good for fine motor development. I love how Anna has added a little bit of string to the leaf so it can be hung in a window or on the mantle.
  4. Ciara’s kids are really getting into the Autumn spirit this week because they’ve been making cotton wool autumn trees too! I love how they used glitter to decorate the cotton wool leaves.
  5. Over at Mosswood Connections they’re making autumn trees out of stickers which is another great way to develop fine motor skills and hand eye coordination using simple dot stickers.
  6. Natalie has shared six great Autumn themed books that are perfect for 3 year olds, and she’s even included some wonderful extension activities.
  7. Natalie’s daughter is a big fan of Lois Ehlert’s Leaf Man so she also shared this leaf man preschooler fall art project.
  8. I couldn’t resist sharing this whimsical leaf owl, he has acorns for eyes and would look wonderful in any window of the house.
  9. Cassie’s daughters made the most adorable fall window scenes; an activity that’s perfect for toddlers and preschoolers.
  10. And finally if you want an Autumn craft idea that would make an amazing gift for grandma check out this fall leaves candle jar that would be the perfect centrepiece on the dinner table.

It's the perfect time to round up some wonderful Autumn and Fall crafts and activities for toddlers and preschoolers.

Fall field trips

If there’s no rain in the forecast why not grab a jacket and some wellington boots and go on a Fall field trip. Here are some ideas of places you could go:

  1. An apple orchard – your little one might even be able to pick some apples from the trees
  2. A pumpkin patch – because you’re going to need a pumpkin or two to carve in time for Halloween
  3. A local farm – especially one that has crops to harvest
  4. A nature walk – take a walk to your local park or through a woodland trail if there’s one nearby. Talk about the trees and the birds that you see and collect some leaves for crafting with back home.

Fall gross motor activities

Here are some wonderful Fall gross motor activities to help your toddler’s development, and to tire them out in time for naps!

  1. Practice raking up leaves in the garden with a child sized rake, and if you don’t have any leaves outside check out these artificial ones that your kiddos can play with indoors.
  2. When you’ve made a big pile of leaves practice jumping in the leaves, and throwing them up in the air!
  3. Or use the leaves you’ve collected to make a leaf maze which is also perfect for the development of problem solving skills and critical thinking.
  4. Kristina has a great Fall leaf alphabet movement activity which is perfect for toddlers and preschoolers.
  5. And I love this other Fall movement game game from Kristina, where the leaves really do fall and your little one has to catch and match them.
  6. Or try one of these Autumn gross motor jump activities, which are also good for language skills development. I’m definitely going to give that masking tape spider web activity a try!

Fall fine motor activities

And now for some wonderful Fall themed fine motor activities:

 
  1. If you picked up any horse chestnuts on your Fall field trips then check out Hannah’s things to do with chestnuts post, the tongs and muffin tin activity is perfect for developing fine motor skills.
  2. Jen set up this wonderful play dough apple orchard invitation to play for her son. Alongside the suitably coloured play dough you’ll need some red beads or counters to represent the apples.
  3. On a dry day take the fine motor play out into the garden and follow Chelsey’s lead by turning your water table into a sensory play pumpkin patch!
  4. If you’re feeling crafty and you have some felt, velcro and hot glue you can make this wonderful apple picking quiet book page which is a great way to practice fine motor skills while waiting for dinner or at the doctor’s office.
  5. Allison found some felt leaves at the Dollar Store and created this fall themed alphabet matching activity which is great for little ones who are just starting to learn their letters.
  6. And let’s finish up with this amazing apple play dough invitation to play that Shaunna dreamt up for her kids. As well as your play dough you’ll need some leaves, twigs and ‘worms’ so your child can create their own apple.

Fall learning packs and printables

If your tot likes to sit and do ‘table time’ or Tot Trays then you won’t want to miss these wonderful printable packs, and they’re all free.

  1. Cassie has designed a wonderful Fall pack for use with children aged two through eight. It includes there part cards, clip and count cards, word searches, shadow matching, sorting and much more!
  2. Carisa created an adorable scarecrow pack at her daughter’s request, which includes colour matching, a word search and cutting practice.
  3. Madonna has a leaves unit with a special book for younger tots.
  4. Jolanthe has shared a beautiful Fall fun printables pack which includes two part cards and cutting and writing practice.
  5. Pam and Lisa have shared their Autumn fairy and Autumn gnome packs which are packed full of activities and cute graphics.

Fall themed books for toddlers and preschoolers

Since we’re Raising Readers we’re going to need some books for our Fall themed Tot School:

  1. Apples, Apples, Apples is about a family of bunnies who go to the local apple Orchard where Farmer Miller teaches them all about apples. The illustrations are cutout paper and the book includes a song, instructions for an apple craft and a recipe for applesauce.
  2. I know it’s Autumn is a book that you can enjoy with your child year after year. The illustrations are wonderful and the rhyming text is creative and catchy, you know what I mean, the kind that sticks in your head and you find yourself reciting when you’re out and about.
  3. Fans of We’re Going on a Bear Hunt will love We’re Going on a Leaf Hunt which follows three friends as they hike over a mountain and through a forest collecting leaves of all shapes and colours.
  4. Teachers love to read Let it Fall to their kindergarteners, and children want to do the things they read about in the story, like helping with the harvest and going to a fair.
  5. Mouse’s First Fall is beautifully illustrated and perfect for younger readers as it encourages them to think about the shapes and colours of the leaves, and the sounds they make when you walk on them.
  6. The Apple Pie Tree follows two sisters as they grow the ‘best part of an apple pie’ in their garden. There’s even a recipe for an apple pie that you can bake together.

Fall themed snacks

And because all this learning is enough to make anyone hungry why not make some Fall themed snacks to munch on:

  1. This applesauce cake with cinnamon chips and cinnamon cream cheese frosting is the perfect snack for apple season!
  2. Your kids can help you make these apple pie bites which will make them taste all the yummier.
  3. Cassie shows you how to turn donut holes into sweet acorns.
  4. And Shaunna’s kids made a tree snack from grapes and pretzels.
  5. And for a perfect breakfast treat why not cook up some Fall leaf pancakes

If you enjoyed this collection of Fall activities why not check out our farm activities for toddlers or our collection of water table activities.

~Clare – currently pinning to Fun Toddler Activities.

Click here to follow our Fun Toddler Activities board over on Pinterest.
These fall activities are fabulous and should keep the kids entertained through the season. Click on the image to see them all!

 
 

22 thoughts on “Tot School Ideas: Autumn and Fall Crafts and Activities for Toddlers and Preschoolers”

  1. You’re welcome Anna – I am looking forward to trying this one out with the kiddos, I think they’ll enjoy scrunching the paper!

  2. You’re welcome Anna – I am looking forward to trying this one out with the kiddos, I think they’ll enjoy scrunching the paper!

  3. Fantastic round up of crafts and activities! My favorite thing to do with my little ones in the fall was taking them to the local orchard. If the kids were up for it, we would pick apples. If not, we’d play at the playground and buy apple cider donuts for a snack.

  4. Fantastic round up of crafts and activities! My favorite thing to do with my little ones in the fall was taking them to the local orchard. If the kids were up for it, we would pick apples. If not, we’d play at the playground and buy apple cider donuts for a snack.

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