Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Attempting Autumn-y Activities

This picture sums up my autumn so far. Beautiful weather, curious kids.
I found a cool virtual book club for kids about a month ago. It's through the blog Toddler Approved, which is a site that will make your inner Pinterest Mom drool. There's an Angry Birds craft. Enough said.

Two books are assigned for each month and the various bloggers who join are to read the books and come up with some activities based on the books or even other books by the same author. I vowed to do it. In fact, I think I even wrote on the post and said I would.

Eating the AlphabetLeaf ManThe author for September was Lois Ehlert. We read some of her books including Boo to You, Leaf Man, and Eating the Alphabet. Her art in the first two are made to look like objects arranged in certain shapes. Many of the objects are found in nature: acorns, leaves, etc. They’re clever. I thought I could do some kind of arranging of autumn-y objects with the boys. After a big windstorm we had earlier in the month we took a trip to a park by our house with the boys’ twin friends Trevor and Trey and little Alexandra.

Earlier in the morning we had watched an episode of Cat in the Hat. It was about silk worms and how they’re not worms but caterpillars. Nick, Sally, and Cat shrunk to the size of the caterpiller and had an lively and informative conversation with her. 

As we collected tons of bright green acorns that had been prematurely knocked from the trees in the wind storm, we found a huge green caterpillar. I’d never seen one that big except maybe behind glass at the Museum of Natural History. Later I looked it up and learned that it is the caterpillar for the big Polyphemus Moth—in the silkworm family! How did the Cat in the Hat know?! So cool. At least I thought so. The boys didn’t seem to care much. And I lost the pictures of the caterpillar. Gr. 
I could not believe the mileage that the boys got out of those acorns. We still have some of them on our balcony and probably under furniture in the house, and it’s been nearly a month since we collected them. The boys pretended they were trees. They were people. They tried to float them in water. They made them into piles and pretended the piles were birthday cakes whose candles they blew out. They were fruit to can. They were a fountain pouring down. You name it, they pretended it. The best part is that I can just toss them out when they’re done playing with them, rather than storing them like real toys.

We did a little craft with them—we looked at how different they were—even though they’re all acorns. Different colors, different sizes, even different shapes. Then the boys  and Alex glued some of each type and color on a piece of cardboard. I’m using it as a decoration on the mantle for now.

Green acorns glued to cardboard-- we tried to find
as many different-looking ones as we could.

We watched as the acorns turned brown. They're on the mantle
for another couple weeks before I toss them.
For another fall craft, we collected leaves of all shapes and sizes, taped them to TV trays, and the kids used color crayons sideways to make leaf rubs. I seriously cannot believe how easy it was to type that all in a sentence in comparison to how long it took to actually pull this off.
Running around collecting leaves

For some reason, the kids love each
having their own TV tray.

Very serious business
Cal's finished product
I did not get anything written about anything we did, other than this. I did not submit my activities to the book club. Perhaps next month? It was fun to discover a new author and new books. It also inspired me to put some books on hold at the library. Some other fall books that the boys have enjoyed are: Acorns Everywhere by Kevin Sherry, Awesome Autumn by Bruce Goldstone.
So, I didn't quite follow through on the book club obligation, but it was a great jumping-off point and I'll probably do this month's reading too.


  1. Found you through Tiny Steps Mommy!
    Loving your blog so far and your boys are super cute :)
    I live in Centreville. Stop by my blog and check it out whenever you have time!
    Your Newest Follower

  2. Glad you like my blog, Stephy! I'll take a look at your blog too.


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