ABC and 123: A Learning Collaborative: Thematic Thursday: Featuring Leaves

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Thematic Thursday: Featuring Leaves

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Today's post is a seasonal one featuring all the activities you've done that incorporate leaves! The seasonal fun is ongoing all the month! We plan on a thematic post with pumpkins, and we're especially interested in seeing your math, science, and cooking activities incorporating them. We've also got posts scheduled on bats and spiders and your favorite Halloween/pumpkin/fall books! Please send in your links now so we can include you!

The Harris Family did their whole letter L unit around leaves. They did fun art projects like a fingerprint tree, practiced lacing around a leaf shape, incorporated their felt board, and used a cute leaf colors book. Check out their post for more details on the activities and to access links to some of their resources.

Emily at Learning Vicariously has been working on making leaf textures in playdough. This would also be a nice way to start a discussion on the parts of a leaf because you can see them clearly in the impression or a jumping off start to talk about fossils.

Ticia at Adventures in Mommydom helped her little ones make Leaf Men, inspired by the book The Leaf Men.

Let's start with Vanessa at Pre-K Pages, we really like her entire Fall Unit, especially her literacy centers that work on letter and alphabet recognition as shown above.

We also really like the math activities she shares, like the fall number plates and leaf do a dot. Make sure you also see the simple leaf crown activity that reinforces patterns.

Celebrate Everyday reminds us of a fall classic, "Laminating" Leaves!
Meninheira made an "indian" mobile using leaf, boxes of eggs, sticks, feathers, acorns and even hedgehogs chestnut. The materials were collected on an autumn stroll and given new purpose.

Amy from Crunch and Green submitted a post full of a week's worth of Leafy Learning: math, scientific exploration, fine motor, and art projects.

A Mommy's Adventure used colorful dry beans to create a mosaic leaf.

Squiggle Mum submitted a colorful leaf rubbing suggestion for fall.

We love this faces flip book Handmade Beginnings made with the leaves they collected!

One of our contributors MaryAnne from Thrifty Crafty Mama has moved over to Mama Smiles and it was at her new location that we found this great way to make autumn leaves last all year round!

You'll love Sandy's tips for mess free fingerpainting and the darling fall leaves that were the result! BTW Sandy has also moved, formerly found at Just for Fun she's now consolidated into one blog Moments of Mommyhood. From her old blog we also like her painting with straws and leaf rubbing craft.

Even if you live in sunny southern California, you can still do fall activities. Just use silk leaves and you're project will be one you can save for years. Check out how Kristi at Orange Juice's falling leaves project came out!

Kristi at Run the Earth...Watch the Sky shared her twist on making a fall Eggs in a Nest. The best part are their painted leaves they make with the part of the bread cut out. Love how this means there is no waste!

Green Olives and Ham put together fall leaf lacing cards.

We like the following lesson plan, here are the objectives, click the title for the full lesson.
Subject: Science
Lesson Plan Title: Observe a Leaf by Jennifer Brouillette
1. Topic Area
Biological Science: Plant Parts - Leaf
2. Introductory Statement
Students will observe and describe leaves
3. Math Skills
a. Measurement
b. Counting
Science Processes
a. Observation
b. Comparison

Visit this link for some nice basic information on the parts of a leaf and blades on a leaf. It'd be nice to go for a nature walk and then sort your leaves by their type of blades. For younger children, sort by color. Be sure to graph your results in a simple bar graph so you can incorporate math skills like counting, numeral writing, and comparision language.

When researching leaves, make a scientist's journal so you can draw and record observations you make while on nature hikes. You can also record vocabulary and definitions in it to keep everything in one handy place.

Scholastic has put together several great ideas into their Autumn Lesson Plans page. Check under resources for some good extension ideas for popular children's books.

Creative Writing: Imagine you are a leaf on a tree and write a story from the leaf's perspective as fall time occurs. Is it nervous to fall from the tree for the first time? Write the final copy in a special leaf shape book. Use clip art to enlarge a leaf pattern to page size. Cut out and trace onto construction paper twice for front and back cover. Use pattern to cut as many sheets of writing paper as you need to make the inside pages. Write and publish your final copy in your best handwriting. Staple it all together into a book.

Leaf Reproducible Readers:

Here is a nice little falling leaves booklet for you to print out, color, and read that incorporates counting and a positional leaf book from Vanessa at Pre-K Pages.


  1. that pre-k pages is a new one for us but has lots of nice ideas. Thanks for the links!

  2. These are great ideas! We may need to go back and do another leaf theme this fall.
    Also thanks for featuring me.

  3. I'm so excited I was featured! Now, I'll have to bookmark this page for the next time we do leaves. Or trees.

  4. Great roundup, and thank you for featuring me!

  5. We tried out several of the ideas and I blogged about them here thanks for the great collection of ideas!