Warm summer days are fading or long gone, depending on where you live in the U.S., and kids are inside more often. So here are ten fall crafts for kids to keep the little ones engaged, learning, and out of mischief. And if you're looking for something a little more grown-up, check out our favorite fall crafts for your home.
I suppose technically this is not a fall craft for kids, but pumpkin moon sand is a very fun way to get kids’ creative juices flowing. Perfect for sensory play, pumpkin moon sand requires play sand (which can be found at hardware stores for a steal), corn starch, water, pumpkin pie spice and food coloring, as well as a bin and fun extras like cookie cutters or pie pans. Moon sand has a unique consistency that is really hard to describe; it is easily shaped but also … elusive or oozy. This particular version smells exactly like fall ought to: pumpkin spice.
Get the recipe for Pumpkin Moon Sand from Growing a Jeweled Rose.
This fall craft for kids is one that recycles milk jugs! And who doesn’t have several of these in the recycle bin? I love crafts with milk jugs because I feel guilty throwing out plastic. And these adorable little milk jugs merely require the jugs, a string of white Christmas lights, scissors and a Sharpie. Have the kids draw spooky or silly faces on the jugs, then cut a hole in the back, stuff it with part of the Christmas lights and set the ghostly jugs on display. This is a nice craft for children too young to carve pumpkins. Bonus: this fall craft won’t rot like a carved pumpkin.
For detailed instructions, visit The Krazy Coupon Lady.
Fall crafts for kids that involve leaves are extra fun—first an adventure collecting the material, and then the delight of putting the collection to use, creating wild creatures or funny-shaped people. An inexpensive fall craft, this project requires only glue, scissors, leaves, paper, something heavy to press the finished project (a heavy book or rocks) and loads of imagination.
The Wildlife Foundation has more details on the leaf creature craft.
Another fall craft for kids with materials that are probably in most homes, this cotton ball ghost is a soft specter worth making. All it takes is a dab of glue on each cotton ball to secure it to a ghost-shaped piece of cardstock, then top off the fluff with a fun face made from construction paper and finish with a cute ribbon. Use a bowl of glue instead of the container, so the kids can dip each cotton ball instead of wrestling with squirt bottle. And finally, hang it somewhere special to show off the kids' handiwork!
Figure out how to make the fluffy phantom with 366 Days of Pinterest.
One of the things preschools focus on is fine motor skills, skills that are exercised when a child uses scissors. This fall craft idea is perfect for exercising fine motor skills because the shape of a bat includes many variations of scissor strokes, with challenging and exciting curves. It's also very festive! So grab a piece a felt and trace a bat outline in silver sharpie. The resulting bat may or may not look like a bat, but the kids will be getting better at using scissors!
Get the full tutorial from We Know Stuff.
Fall crafts for kids do not get any easier than this: Visit Make It Easy Crafts and download the coloring page file. Print it off and then hand it over to the children with crayons, coloring pencils, markers or paint. Then let them do their thing.
Make It Easy Crafts has the downloadable stained glass leaves coloring page.
Another adventure project, this fall craft is even simpler than the leaf designs. Just find beautiful leaves around the yard and glue them to a ring made from a paper plate. Tie a ribbon on it and hang it on the door. The leaf wreath is a classic project, and for good reason: it's foolproof and gorgeous. And again, collecting the leaves on a short (or long) nature jaunt is as fun as putting the project itself together! It's a great way to appreciate the beauty of the turning leaves.
See the original at preschool-education.org.
Ghosts are easy to use for fall crafts for kids because they're really flexible, which is to say that there is a lot of room for artistic license. If a parent draws a ghost outline and a child fills it in with glue, no one will know if the ghost has a few extra bulges here and there. And so the child can wear a couple of these ghosts (after letting it dry for two days), and have identifiable homemade ghosts on a lovely garland around her neck. Wearable festive art is a beautiful thing.
Martha Stewart has the full tutorial.
This adorable fall craft for kids is for older children because it requires advanced fine-motor skills and a little bit of patience. The paper strip pumpkin uses orange and green construction paper, a toilet paper roll that's been cut in half, some tape and scissors. After cutting the orange paper into strips, tape each end to opposing ends of the half toilet paper roll. Repeat until all the strips are gone. Cut out a cut leaf shape from the green and garnish the new pumpkin. So cute!
Find out all the details to make this fall craft for kids at All Kids Network.
Apples are great. They're nutritious, they're cheap and they're delicious. And it so happens that they also make excellent stamps. Just spread fall-colored acrylic paints evenly over halves of apples and let the kids stamp away—after stripping them down to diapers, of course! To teach them about different textures and vary the painting a little, try using leaves as stamps as well. The end product will not be as uniform, but it would be a great learning experience!
Get further inspiration from Sweet Little Peanut.
Photo Credits (from top): Growing a Jeweled Rose, The Krazy Coupon Lady, The Wildlife Foundation, 366 Days of Pinterest, We Know Stuff, Make It Easy Crafts, preschool-education.org, Martha Stewart, All Kids Network, Sweet Little Peanut
Do you have any favorite crafts for kids? Tell us about it in the comments or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.