“Imagination does not become great until human beings, given the courage and the strength, use it to create.”
– Maria Montessori
Montessori Fall Leaf Painting Preparation
The weather is beginning to cool, the leaves are starting to turn, and there’s no better way for us to celebrate the first official day of autumn on Saturday than with some leaf painting. This morning, we headed out to the park to gather leaves for our fall art project. We spend a lot of time outside and since my daughter is now potty trained, we tend to go out in 1-2 hour increments, so as not to impede her independence in that area. As a result, our double jogging stroller has become an invaluable part of our outdoor exploration, allowing us to maximize the time spent doing what we love. They may not be for everyone, but my kids love it. As you can see below, my daughter likes practicing how to put on the harness.
So we headed out to the park and had just enough time to stretch our legs and collect some leaves, before heading back home. Once home, we placed the leaves on the back porch to allow the morning dew to evaporate while we carried on with our day. After lunch, my daughter grabbed the leaves from the porch and we set up her workstation.
We taped some craft paper to her work table and my daughter put on her art smock. Next, we poured red, yellow, and green paint into their respective cups. Then, we mixed some red and yellow paint into a fourth cup to create our fall orange color. It turned out to be a great introduction to our next art activity: color mixing. My daughter knows her colors now and seemed pretty excited to see the orange form in the cup as she mixed.
I helped her hold the first leaf while she painted and she took it from there, turning the leaf over and smacking it onto the paper with her hand. After she did the first few, I noticed she was still maintaining the separation of colors by replacing the paintbrushes into the cup with the matching color lid. I did not expect that. Once she filled the craft paper with the leaf art, we set it aside to dry. After that, she spent much of her time playing with the leaves and mixing colors on each of them to see what would happen next. Finally, we cleaned up and waited for her artwork to dry.
Once her masterpiece was dry, she accessorized by applying some last-minute stamps she was using in her coloring book and grabbed a magnet to hang it in her favorite spot on the fridge.
This was a great activity for my daughter. It promotes fine-motor strength by building up those hand muscles needed in preparation for writing, both with the paintbrushes and the wooden handle stamp set, and it celebrates the changing of the seasons.
We hope you enjoy your weekend and the beginning of this cozy new season. As for us, we will be relaxing away with pumpkin spice and hygge!