Friday, November 12, 2010

Simple Fall Crafts

Living in Hawaii doesn't exactly make for the best hands on teaching when it comes to learning about all four seasons. Here you can learn about summer, rain, summer and summer! Believe me~ all you who post creative and beautiful ideas on what to do with all those beautiful fall leaves I am jealous! You should send me a box, help a Momma out!

Well, that just means we need to be a little creative when learning about fall and leaves! Being an art teacher I find myself adding arts and crafts to everything we learn. Here are a few ideas I have tried out with the kids that we loved.

We did an overlapping fall leaf painting. This one is great for any age, with a little help even Gracie got involved (and in the process also painted the sidewalk).

Overlapping Leaf Design

First gather your supplies: watercolor paper or card stock, watercolor paints or watered down tempera paints, paint brushes, fall leaves or a print out of fall leaves.

Step One: Have the artists trace or draw fall leaves. We traced them from a sheet of fall leaves, you can use a free printable like THIS or THIS.

Step Two: Over your initial drawings, trace or draw another set of leaves making sure to overlap whenever possible. You are striving for a whole lot of leaves resembling a nice fall pile.

We talked about the Element of Line in art and how important it is, how overlapping creates interest and depth in a work of art, and warm colors (red, orange and yellow).

Step Three: Painting! Have the artists work with one color at a time. Painting entire leaf shapes in one color only. I tried to have them color leaves that weren't touching. When it looks like about a third of the leaves are painted, move on to the next color. This time though you want to choose some of the leaves that are already painted with the first color to add some depth and change the color of the first wash. Repeat with the 3rd color until all leaves are filled in!
Ellie's Art
Jonah's Art

This is a great project for kids who are older than 6, they can focus and really do a great job adding layer after layer of leaves and colors. This project can be worked on over a period of time, allowing colors to dry in between washes or all at once allowing colors to run together. My kids are more the spontaneous action art type. So here is a project that suited them a little better:

Wet on Wet Accidental Design

 Using the same supplies, only this time we filled the paper with a humongous leaf. Starting with the lightest color (yellow) we painted the entire leaf generously, making sure there was a lot of puddles!
Next we sprinkled, splattered, action art-ed our way into making fall leaves by dropping the orange and red paint on the wet yellow and letting the leaf "paint" itself! The accidental designs were beautiful! My kids had a really fun time watching the paint "paint itself".

 In Art terms this is called "wet on wet" meaning a wet surface with wet paint.
Another fun idea is to cover the entire paper and then cut fall leaf shapes out of the paper and use those for various crafts!


  1. What a fun craft! My son will love this as painting is one of his absolute favorite things to do. :)

  2. Thanks Melly! My kids love painting as well and with watercolors there is no staining involved!! Luckily it's warm here so we can go outside and paint! Let us know if you try out this project!



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