Homeschool Autumn Art Day

It’s autumn here in the mountains, my very favorite time of the year. I grew up in South Texas where the trees do not change into beautiful colors (mostly brown) … so when I experienced my first autumn, I knew I had missed out on something great all my life! Beautiful red, yellow, green, brown and orange leaves on the trees always make me imagine that God takes out His magnificent paint brush and starts dabbing away at the trees with glorious colors.2014-10-08 10.35.30

So to start off my return to blogging after a summer break, I begin with a homeschool post. Sometimes it is just time for a break! We’ve been working hard at our core curriculum since July when we started a new grade level. We choose to school year-around for many reasons that make for a whole other blog post. Usually I know it is time for a creativity break when I see a meltdown or grumpy boys. So when my son who usually loves school time suddenly started to cry yesterday and say “I don’t want to do school anymore,” I knew it was time to change things up a bit. So I officially declared today “Free Fun Autumn Art Day.” We playdoughed. We colored. We painted. One of us did all three on one page! We made a big mess! We laughed and laughed. We exclaimed greatness over everyone’s creations. There might have even been some Charlie Brown Christmas Music involved. It was a blast and now I have kids who have their smiles back on their faces this afternoon.

So here is what we did in case you want some ideas for play. A note to all you perfectionists who don’t like to make a mess. RELAX. Let the mess happen today. Let them mix the paint colors together. Let the play dough fall on the floor – it will come up! They may even get paint on their clothes – dress accordingly. Let them go crazy. Creativity is usually messy around here and completely worth it! And don’t forget to participate – why not have fun too? Try your very best not to hover. It will be okay.

2014-10-08 10.01.01To prepare for today, I found a lot of printables online and printed out a bunch of things to color. We went with a pumpkin theme. 1+1+1+1=1 is one of my favorite blogs with tons of free printables. I used the “Just Color Fall Fun” and “Just Color Pumpkins” to pick and choose printables to color and paint. And we love Charlie Brown so I threw in a Great Pumpkin Coloring Page. I loaded up the table with all the art supplies I had in my closet and got things ready.

We started by making up a batch of easy play dough in the mixer in a wonderful orange color with pumpkin pie spice. I mainly did this batch for my 2 year old to play with while the big brothers did other things, but the older boys had not played with play dough in a while and their interest was renewed. My two older kids made pumpkins while my 2 year old played with cars and cookies cutters in his dough.

Somewhere in the midst of the playing and coloring, we read a couple of books. My 2nd Grader read this book, Duck and Goose Find a Pumpkin, to his younger brothers. It is one of our favorite autumn books! (click the picture to use my affiliate link to go to Amazon and get this book for Kindle or in board book edition!)

2014-10-08 11.06.42

As you can see, Hanan loves Art day! Just what he needed to get refreshed for learning.

2014-10-08 11.02.58

Hanan even decided to shape his play dough with his coloring page.

2014-10-08 10.35.40

Then came the painting. We cut out pumpkins and glued them to construction paper, then painted them all kinds of colors. Hanan discovered that mixing yellow and red would make more orange (his favorite color) so both boys started experimenting with mixing up colors. It made for a great discussion/demonstration about colors!  We prefer q-tips for painting instead of brushes for now.

2014-10-08 11.23.40 2014-10-08 11.23.37 2014-10-08 11.23.52

A few more pictures of finished products and play:

2014-10-08 10.55.23 2014-10-08 10.36.05 2014-10-08 10.36.01 2014-10-08 10.36.29

So there it is. Quite simple really, but it doesn’t have to be complicated to be fun. And everyone helped to clean up, so that was really easy! What creative and fun autumn art activities have you done to celebrate autumn in your homeschool?

Happy Autumn Everyone!