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Autumn Art ideas: Leaf Critters!

Teacher author, Roisín, has shared some ways to make the most out of this time of the year and get your class thinking of the colours of the season with some simple Autumn Art ideas for younger students.

Head outdoors with your class and get hunting for as many different leaf shapes and colours that you can find! Get the children to collect a variety of leaves in a little zip lock bag or little container. Allow them to explore different areas outside and take note of the trees around them that the leaves are near. This could even be incorporated into an Autumn Trail!

Child with autumn leaves

Once back inside, the children lay out all of their found bits of nature.

Interestingly, my class called them ‘Autumn Artefacts’ – as well as being a nice bit of alliteration, it helped make a more formal and scientific link to the season as they collected appropriate examples.

Allow them to arrange their leaves, acorns, etc. in whatever way they want to sort them. Provide each child with a piece of card. White card is quite effective as a blank background and the white contrasts nicely with the Autumn colours. The children then begin to create their Autumn Leaf Critter/Person.

Whilst they’re arranging and sticking down their leaves, provide them with craft material that will allow them to further develop their critter such as googly eyes or black markers for adding detail/outlining, etc. 

Leaf Critter examples

I found it effective to leave just the googly eyes and markers in the middle of the tables and allow the children to become as creative as possible as I circulated and chatted to each child. It’s a great chance for vocabulary development, especially in younger classes.

For infant classes, you might also like to try using the ‘leaf person’ template as a simple colour, cut & stick activity. We all know how good cutting out is for little fingers! 

Extending the ideas

For older classes, a real challenge to stimulate creativity could be to make their Leaf Critter 3D. This would obviously need a large amount of leaves and would require them to be fairly fresh for moulding and bending. 

As an extension activity, my class thoroughly enjoyed completing creative writing on their character the day after they created them. I allowed the children to complete this as part of a free writing activity and completed it as part of a comic strip. We then displayed our leaf critters and stories alongside each other. 

Happy Leaf Critter Creating! 

Let us know what you think. You can share your own Autumn Art ideas in the comments.

Guest Teacher Author

Teachers’ Corner's school based guest authors share practical ideas and insights from their classrooms and schools.

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